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Steamed Pork Buns - Char Sui Bao

Makes 16 buns

This type of steamed bun has a distinctive soft yet slightly chewy texture.  Typically found on Chinese Dim Sum menus, Char Sui Bao are a classic snack or tasty lunchtime treat. You can use any leftover, cooked pork or chicken to make the filling. Steamed Mushroom Buns make a great vegan alternative.

Free from Egg, Dairy, Nuts
Without crystal sugar


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Pork Filling

  1. Measure the soy sauce, oyster sauce, honey and boiling water into a small saucepan over a gentle heat.
  2. Put the cornflour and cold water into a small bowl and stir to make a paste.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat and slowly tip the paste into the saucepan while stirring.
  4. Return the pan to a medium heat, stirring as the sauce thickens.
  5. Remove the pan from the heat and leave the sauce to cool.
  6. Chop the leftover pork or chicken into small dice and mix it into the cold sauce.

Bao Bun Dough

  1. Measure the water into a jug, add the honey and stir until dissolved.
  2. Melt the lard then remove from the heat.
  3. Put the plain white flour and yeast into a mixing bowl.
  4. Pour the liquid from the jug into the bowl and stir to make a batter.
  5. Invert a large bowl over the batter and leave in a warm place until starting to bubble, 1 – 2 hours.
  6. Add the self raising flour and salt to the bowl and stir until lumpy.
  7. Tip the melted lard into the bowl and stir to make a dough.
  8. Gather everything together with your hands to form a ball of dough
  9. Knead the dough for 100 presses.
  10. Cut the dough into 16 equal pieces and roll each into a ball.
  11. Flatten each ball of dough into a circle 75mm/3” in diameter.
  12. Return to each circle of dough and roll it into a 10-12cm /4-5” circle.

Steamed Pork Buns - Char Sui Bao

  1. Brush oil around the inside of 16 paper muffin cases using a pastry brush and arrange them in the steamer baskets.
  2. Divide the pork filling into piles in the middle of each 10-12cm /4-5” dough circle.
  3. Pull the outside edges of the dough circles up and over the filling, pinching and twisting them together to seal at the top of each bun.
  4. Lift the buns into the prepared muffin cases.
  5. Cover with an upturned bowl and leave in a warm place to rise for 35-40 minutes.
  6. Quarter fill a wok or saucepan with boiling water and put it on a medium heat.
  7. Place the steamer baskets on top of the pan and steam for 20 minutes. Half way through cooking, check the water has not all evaporated.
  8. The buns are best served warm but also good when cold.
  9. To re-heat the buns put them back into the steamer over boiling water for 10 minutes.


jug, 2 x mixing bowls, pastry brush, steamer, wok or saucepan with the same diameter as the steamer and saucepan and 16 paper muffin cases

Cooking time

20 minutes

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