Char Siu Bao (Pork Buns)

Total Time
1hr 20mins
Prep 1 hr 10 mins
Cook 10 mins

I adapted the char siu recipe from my friend Mitch's late Great Uncle Kennie's recipe. Making these dim sum buns does take a bit of time, especially if you make the meat yourself, but the results are wonderful! If you have an Asian deli that sells char siu (Chinese BBQ pork), that will save you time. Times assume meat is pre-bought or made ahead of time. Thanks to Pneuma for putting this recipe in her best of 2008 cookbook!

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. To make meat:.
  2. Combine marinade. Marinate pork at least 3 hours, or overnight.
  3. Cooking methods:.
  4. a) place meat on a roasting pan with a rack -- with the pan below filled with water and roast at 350 F until done (turn over half way through) OR.
  5. b) cook in a crock pot with 3 cups of water for 1 hour on high and then 7 hours on low or until it flakes apart (this is the method I have used) OR.
  6. c) you could try grilling or broiling the meat, but it might lack some of the moisture that the other two methods will give you.
  7. To make filling:.
  8. Sauté ginger in hot peanut oil, stirring constantly, for about 4 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and mix with hoisin, chili paste, green onions and meat. Let cool.
  9. To make dough:.
  10. Mix yeast, sugar and warm water; let proof (sit and rise) for about 10 minutes.
  11. Place flours and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook, if available. (This can also be done by hand).
  12. Add yeast mixture. Knead until homogeneous and dough forms a ball.
  13. Let rise in a cool place to minimize air bubbles, about 15 minutes.
  14. Portion dough into 16 balls, flatten them, and place a small amount of filling into the center of each.
  15. Pinch back to close and form a ball shape.
  16. Place balls on lightly oiled piece of parchment or waxed paper (oiled plastic wrap would probably work too). Let proof 15 minutes, or until double in size.
  17. Place in a covered steamer, and cook for 8-10 minutes.
  18. Eat now or cool completely and freeze in ziplock bags (to reheat: steam 10 minutes).
  19. Enjoy the fruits of your labor!
Most Helpful

I love this recipe. Anything that makes us feel like we're eating out with out having to spend money is always good. Got the pork from a Chinese restaurant down the street and made extra to take to work. If you buy the pork and have a standing mixer this isn't too time consuming to make for a week night dinner. Served with Soy and Honey glazed chicken wings and fried rice with Chinese sausage. Yummy!

KacerPie January 20, 2010

Very time consuming but boy is it worth it. I used the recipe on 8 pieces of pork chops since that was all I have. Baked them at 375 for 1 hour, chopped them up then followed the rest of the directions. The char siu flavor is right on!! Thank you for sharing this wonderful recipe. The next time, I will definitely use the pork char siu for my dinner or fried rice.

YungB November 05, 2008

These are great char siu baos! I've always loved the dough and have been missing it for years! I made the meat from scratch using spareribs and chose A on how to cook them. The outcome of the char siu was definitely IT! Just the right sweetness and tastes exactly like the ones I'd order from the Chinese restaurants. I set aside a whole meat to be eaten with rice, the rest to make it with the buns. :D As for the buns, I kinda tweaked it a bit since it was too late to realize that I only had cake flour, so I used 3 1/2 cake flour, and 1 1/2 cup rice flour (ground rice :D) since I heard that rice flour is also good for making it although when I added the rice flour from grilling rice, it didn't seem to hold much hence so much cake flour. Added a tsp of vinegar as well so it doesn't come out dark, just in case. Crossed my fingers hoping it would work out. For the filling, instead of chili paste, I used the sweet chili sauce,and to make peanut oil, I added some ground peanuts to the canola oil. Was wondering why so much hoisin sauce considering the meat already had it,but when I tasted it after it cooked,yup,it was just right on! In steaming,I placed a towel on top of the top layered buns to prevent it from getting soggy just in case, and yes!!!! It came out great! Tastes just like the ones I buy from the chinese restaurants. The filling is like what my mom makes too! Next time, I'll make the dough your way though,so I'd know how it'll look/taste like. I actually ate 3 in one sitting after it's done and had another 2 for breakfast! lol Then half of it, I placed on the freezer for the rest of the week! :D I also made a Char Siu Bao Dimsum Sauce (Siopao Sauce) for it since what's the best way to eat char siu bao but with the sauce accompaniment. Will be added to my OAMC cookbook! Thank you very much Maito, for this keeper! Yummy!Update: Finally made your dough and it was whiter,more glutinous and smoother.Yummy!

Pneuma February 21, 2008