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Recipe for Chinese Dumplings

Updated on March 24, 2013
BlossomSB profile image

Bronwen is interested in food, diet, and creating recipes, as she has prepared family meals and organised church and home functions.

Delicious Dumplings
Delicious Dumplings | Source

Dumplings for Chinese New Year

Chinese dumplings are a popular speciality in Taiwan. The local people love them for lunch or for important occasions. For visitors and expats living there, they are a whole new world of delicious and varied gastronomical delights.

Lunar New Year Dumplings: Chinese dumplings are known as Jiăo Zi and are linked to the Lunar New Year festival. For this festival, much food is prepared before hand, so that on the holiday there is not so much work to do. Traditionally, on New Year’s Eve, the whole family will sit around the table and share in making the dumplings. They are then eaten for breakfast on New Year’s Day. Too many dumplings are made so that they will last for about four days of the festival and as, in the old days, the weather was cold, they were left uncooked outside to freeze, and then a number were brought inside and cooked when needed.

The Shape of the Dumpling: The shape of the Jiăo Zi is important, it is different from the rounder wonton. The Jiăo Zi is longer and the edges of the pastry are often crimped, so that they resemble ancient silver and gold ingots. This is a way of wishing wealth and good luck. Sometimes a clean coin is hidden in one dumpling and the person who gets that one can expect an especially lucky year. The dumplings are placed in bamboo steamers in layers, as the photograph below in a dumpling shop shows.

Dumpling Fillings

The fillings for Chinese dumplings are widely varied, according to what is available.

  • Meat Fillings: These include pork, lamb, beef, fish, shrimps and other sea-foods. The meats will be mixed with a variety of vegetables, chopped finely.
  • Vegetable Fillings: many different vegetables are used, depending on the season and what is available. Probably the most popular include spring onions, garlic, leek, grated Chinese turnip, and cabbage.

Dipping Sauce

When being eaten, the dumplings are dipped in a sauce. This usually has a basis of soy sauce and rice vinegar, and that may be sufficient for a simple sauce.

The dipping sauce can be varied and may include ingredients such as garlic, hot chillies, sesame oil or ginger. It can be made just the way you would like it to be by experimenting with the separate flavours or adding a combination of ingredients.

In a Busy Dumpling Restaurant Kitchen
In a Busy Dumpling Restaurant Kitchen | Source

Rate This Recipe

5 stars from 3 ratings of Chinese Dumplings

Cook Time

Prep time: 45 min
Cook time: 15 min
Ready in: 1 hour
Yields: 20 dumplings


  • 3 cups glutinous rice flour
  • 1 cup rice flour
  • 1½ cups warm water
  • 1 tablespoon lard, softened (may substitute oil)
  • 10 white cabbage leaves, blanched until soft, then shredded
  • 500 g minced meat
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, chopped finely
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons light soy sauce


  1. Dough: Sift flours together. Add water and mix. Add lard and mix well. Knead to a smooth dough, cover and stand. Later cut into 20 pieces.
  2. Filling: Mix all ingredients together well.
  3. Flatten a piece of dough, roll into a circle. Place about 1 tablespoon filling in centre and fold dough into half-moon; pinch edges firmly on top.
  4. Place the dumplings into bamboo steamers. Steam for about a quarter of an hour over a high heat. Serve with dipping sauce.
Enjoy! | Source


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    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 4 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      ryanjhoe: It's a pleasure to share. I think dumplings are a great comfort food. Thank you for your comments - do try the recipe sometime, they're yummy!

    • ryanjhoe profile image

      ryanjhoe 4 years ago from Somewhere over the rainbow

      I love dumplings, I often eat dumplings. It's great for breakfast or snack. It depends on the fillings but mostly it's always delicious, would love to try your dumplings recipe sometimes, thanks for share this!

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 4 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      stars539: God bless you, too. I'm glad you found the recipe interesting. I hope you enjoy the dumplings when you make them.

    • stars439 profile image

      stars439 4 years ago from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State.

      Thank you for sharing , and interesting recipe. This should be a delicious challenge too embrace in our kitchen one day. God Bless You Dear Heart.

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 4 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      kidscrafts: Yummm! Coriander goes so beautifully with some of the dumplings. Thank you for your comments.

      Annie Miller: Hope they work out well and that you have fun making them.

      teaches12345: Yes, I certainly was enjoying myself. It was dumpling heaven.

      Nellieanna: The sweet potato flour on chicken makes it crunchy. Lard was common in our place, too, and it really does give a good flavour. Pity it's a no-no these days. Actually I eat a lot of salads these days, they're healthy and easy to prepare - and wiser, too, although I've no desire to reach 100, I believe that Heaven is a great place, too.

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 4 years ago from TEXAS

      Thank you for the suggestions, Blossom! I don't have problems with gluten, but I have great respect for the healthiest grains and sweet potatoes are awesome. I like sweet potato chips occasionally, though I don't eat potato chips. I'll have to find and try some of the sweet potato flour. It might add too dominating a flavor to Chicken Piccata, though. Probably rice flour would be a better choice for that.

      When I was growing up, lard was a common staple till Crisco shortening came along. I can't say I prefer either one! I don't really prefer a greasy taste or feeling in my mouth very much. I use very few fried foods and no longer bake pastries or other desserts which I used to bake for my family. Now that I can eat just what I personally prefer, it is a very simple and extremely healthy diet, by preference. My days of making and sharing in sophisticated cuisine are behind me both by preference and wisdom so I'll fulfill my destiny to make it to 100 or more, still healthy and feisty. :-) (Fortunately dark chocolate gets a good health score and I enjoy it moderately.)

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      I absolutely love chinese dumplings. Thanks for the recipe. You look like you are truly enjoying yourself in the photo.

    • Annie Miller profile image

      Annie Miller 4 years ago from Wichita Falls, Texas

      I, too, love dumplings and was so excited to see this recipe here, Can't wait to give it a try. Thank you, Blossom, for sharing.

    • kidscrafts profile image

      kidscrafts 4 years ago from Ottawa, Canada

      I love Chinese dumplings! I had a good friend who was Chinese and I learned how to make a lot of Chinese disshes with her but not the dumplings. One of my favorite restaurant here in Ottawa is a Chinese one that makes the most delicious dim sum dishes and they have several kind of dumplings. They use coriander in some of them and it gives a divine taste! Thank you very much for sharing your recipe!

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 4 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      midget38: Is that the Cantonese for the dumplings? They are certainly delicious little dragons and I love the ones filled with prawns, too. Thank you for your lovely comments.

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 4 years ago from Singapore

      In Chinese, we call these "ciao long bao" (little dragon dumplings) and they are absolutely delicious. They can also be filled with prawn too. So glad you've shared this, and I am passing this delicious hub around!

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 4 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      Nellieanna: Rice flour is great for people who need a gluten-free diet and it has a lovely texture for anyone. I haven't tried it, but it should go well on your chicken. I often use sweet potato flour for that. Oil is certainly healthier, but the lard gives a great flavour. Hope you make them and that they turn out well. Thank you for your comments.

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 4 years ago from TEXAS

      Yum!! So many ingredients I just love. I haven't had rice flour on hand for many a year. I just make few recipes which require any flour, other than to coat chicken for my chicken piccata recipe. But this inspires me to get some rice flour. Might even be better for coating the chicken!

      Everything else are things I routinely have. I would definitely use oil, rather than the lard. This would be such a treat. And steamed, too! So healthy I would love the soy sauce & rice vinegar dipping sauce - with ginger!

      Thank you for sharing it, Blossom!

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 4 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      Frank Atanacio: I love them, but if I eat any more I'll probably be a dumpling, too.

      MsDora: Do try them the next time you have the opportunity. I'm sure you'll love them.

      Faith Reaper: God bless you and thank you for your comments.

      Monis Mas: It is a good recipe because it's so versatile, just about anything can be added and they taste so good.

      Highland Terrier: I hope your sister enjoys making them and that you enjoy eating them, Carmel. You could always help in the folding and shaping of the dumplings.

      Mhatter99: Bless you. I love them, too.

      EuroCafeAuLait: So glad you like the recipe and the photos. Hope you enjoy making them, too.

      Eiddwen: Your grandchildren would probably have fun shaping them. Hope you enjoy, Eddy.

      The Dirt Farmer: They do take a while to fold and prepare, but if done in a group it's fun and the reward is delicious.

      livingsta: Yes, it is healthy and might be suitable for those on a gluten-free diet, too.

      carter06: Hope you make lots and enjoy them. Thank you for your comments.

      always exploring: Thank you for your vote - I do hope you enjoy them. Don't forget to make a dipping sauce with ingredients that agree with you - and that tastes good.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 4 years ago from Southern Illinois

      The dumplings look delicious and gluten free, that's a must for me. Thank you. Voted 5 stars and up...

    • carter06 profile image

      Mary 4 years ago from Cronulla NSW

      Oh wow Blossom thanks for sharing this delicious recipe..I so love dumplings!! Lot's of votes..cheers

    • livingsta profile image

      livingsta 4 years ago from United Kingdom

      Thank you for this hub, these look similar to momos, but the flour used here is rice flour. Looks like a healthy recipe too. Votes up and sharing!

    • The Dirt Farmer profile image

      Jill Spencer 4 years ago from United States

      Don't know if I want to make them, but I sure to love eat them! Will save your recipe just in case. (Had no idea about the significance of the shape.) Very interesting!

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      Mmmm I love Chinese food and these look and sound delicious. A must here and I vote up.

      Thanks for sharing Blossom.


    • EuroCafeAuLait profile image

      Anastasia Kingsley 4 years ago from Croatia, Europe

      Dear SB, just when I was craving Chinese food. Thanks so much for reading my mind. Bookmarked and UP. It's on my list of Must Try Recipes. Thanks again! Liked the photos, too!!

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 4 years ago from San Francisco

      Thank you for this. Love those dumplings.

    • Highland Terrier profile image

      Highland Terrier 4 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      I am no cook, but I shall pass on the recipe to my sister who loves cooking.

      Thank you a nice interesting hub



    • Monis Mas profile image

      Aga 4 years ago

      It look like a great recipe. Thanks for sharing!

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 4 years ago from southern USA

      Thanks for sharing this great recipe here!

      Voted up +++ and sharing

      God bless, Faith Reaper

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 4 years ago from The Caribbean

      These Chines dumplings always looked like a mystery to me. I've never touched them. You have taken away the mystery. Thanks for sharing the recipe. I may taste them the next time, thanks to you.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 4 years ago from Shelton

      thank you so much blossoms for adding this rcipe to my little collection LOL bless you and happy dumpling :)