Easy and Delicious Homemade Chinese BBQ Pork Buns Cha Siu Bao Recipe

Ingredients for Homemade Chinese BBQ Pork Buns

Kick-off your culinary adventure with the gathering of essential items for the Cha Siu Bao. Making these homemade Chinese BBQ pork buns won’t be as challenging as you think. Browse this perfect list of ingredients, crafted after years of practice and kitchen experiments.

For the filling, you’ll need:

  • 300g of pork shoulder. Why shoulder? It’s got the right mix of fat and meat to deliver that juicy filling you’re after.
  • 4 tablespoons of char siu sauce. Try to get a quality sauce as it’s a vital flavor component.
  • 1 tablespoon of oyster sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of host sugar. It provides a unique sweet and complex flavor.

Switching gears to the dough, these are the essentials:

  • 450g of low-gluten flour
  • 200ml of milk
  • 5g of instant yeast
  • 50g of white sugar

Want to take your Cha Siu Bao to another level? Here’s where it gets interesting. Sprinkle some sesame seeds or chopped spring onions on top before baking. You’ll end with an Instagram-worthy Bun that packs an explosive flavor punch.

If nutritional value piques your interest, we’ve got you covered. Here’s a brief snapshot of what you’re in for:

Ingredient Calories Carbs Protein Fat
Pork Shoulder 331 0g 25g 26g
Low-Gluten Flour 355 74g 12g 1g
Host Sugar 48 13g 0g 0g

Keep in mind, everyone’s nutritional needs vary, and these numbers should serve as a guiding tool.

On your mark. Get set. Bake! Dive into the baking process in the next section. There, you’ll find the method laid out in a simple, easy-to-follow fashion. No convoluted cooking jargon, just plain English instructions to guide you in crafting these delectable Chinese BBQ Pork Buns. So, stay tuned and get ready to elevate your culinary journey.

Making the Pork Filling

Your next step is to prepare the juicy, flavorful pork filling. You’ll need a blend of specific ingredients to nail the true Cha Siu Bao taste.

Begin with 1 cup diced Cha Siu Barbecued pork. An important part of your filling, Cha Siu, is an iconic Chinese barbecued pork with a sweet and savory taste. Want something a bit different? Try Honey-roasted pork for a sweeter flavor profile.

Next, gather the rest of your ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup finely chopped onions
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch

Let’s move onto the process. Start off by heating a large saucepan over medium heat.

Add in your diced pork and chopped onions. Stir frequently and cook until the onions turn a golden brown. This should take about 5 minutes.

Next, sprinkle in your cornstarch, stirring until it’s fully incorporated. The mixture might get clumpy, but don’t worry because it’ll help thicken the filling later on.

Pour in oyster sauce, water, and sugar into the pan. Simmer on low heat for another 5 minutes. By now your pork should be coated in a glorious, sticky-sweet sauce.

One final trick to amplify the flavor? Sprinkle in a pinch of five-spice powder. It’s a bit unconventional, but this addition brings an unexpected depth of flavor to your filling.

So, nutritional value, yes? This is how it pans out.

Ingredient Calories Carbs Protein Fat
Cha Siu Pork 220 7g 33g 8g
Onions 11 2.7g 0.2g 0g
Oyster sauce 9 2g 0.3g 0g
Sugar 16 4.2g 0g 0g
Cornstarch 30 7g 0g 0g

Preparing the Bun Dough

Now that you’ve mastered the pork filling, we’ll delve into the art of making the perfect dough for your pork buns. The dough, a crucial component, balances the flavors of the delicately seasoned pork filling.

Start with the basics: flour, sugar, yeast, milk, water, and a bit of oil.

Create a markdown table for the exact quantities:

Ingredients Quantity
Flour 3 1/2 cups
Sugar 1/2 cup
Yeast 1 1/2 tsp
Milk 1 cup
Water 1/2 cup
Oil 2 Tbsp

The first step involves activating your yeast. Warm your milk slightly – the ideal temperature is 110˚F. Too hot, you’ll kill the yeast; too cold, it won’t activate. Disperse your yeast in this warm milk and let it sit for 5-10 minutes. You’ll know it’s ready when you see a foamy layer on top.

Next, in a large mixing bowl, combine your flour and sugar. Make a well in the center and pour in the foamy yeast mixture, lukewarm water, and oil. Get your hands in there; mix it up until you have a soft dough. It might be a bit sticky, but don’t fret.

Take this dough, and on a floured surface, knead it for about 10 minutes. You’re looking for a smooth, elastic dough that springs back when you press it. If it’s too sticky, don’t hesitate to add more flour, a tablespoon at a time.

Once that’s achieved, cover this dough with a damp cloth and set it aside. In about 2 hours, it should double in size, signaling that it’s ready to use.

The dough’s nutritional value is worth mentioning. Whole grain flour adds essential fiber, B vitamins, and antioxidants. Opt for low-fat milk to minimize the calorie count in your dough.

Whole grains: add fiber, B vitamins, and antioxidants
Low-fat milk: reduces calories of your buns

Assembling and Steaming the Buns

After patiently letting your dough rise, it’s time for the next exciting phase – Assembling and Steaming the Buns. Your hard work in preparing the dough and flavorful filling is about to pay off.

Start by lightly dusting your working surface with flour. Split the dough into two equal portions. Keep one covered to prevent it from drying out. Roll out one section at a time into a cylindrical shape. Then, cut it into eight pieces. This tactic gives you control over the dough and makes handling more manageable.

Once you’ve divided the dough, flatten each piece into a disc. Your center should be slightly thicker than the edges—a technique known as the “belly button” method. It ensures an even distribution of dough around your filling and creates a more professional appearance.

Next, load your dough disc with a healthy dollop of your perfectly seasoned pork filling. Spoon in 1-2 tablespoons—you want it satisfying, not soup. Gather the edges and pinch them together at the top, creating a cute little pouch. Be sure to seal them well, so your filling stays put while cooking.

Steaming the buns can seem daunting, but it’s straightforward. Arrange them in your steamer, leaving enough space between so they don’t stick. If you’re working without a traditional bamboo steamer, don’t worry. A simple pot with a lid, fitted with a metal rack and some parchment paper, works just fine, too.

As for the steaming time, 15 minutes usually does the trick. Ensure your water’s at a full boil before placing the buns in. Your patience here has a double reward: The pork gets cooked, and the dough turns soft yet firm with a gorgeous sheen.

The great thing about these buns is they’re rich in flavor and high in protein and carbs. Your BBQ pork buns, by substituting whole grain flour and low-fat milk, have a balanced nutritional profile. A single bun contains:

Nutrient Amount
Calories 240
Carbs 40g
Protein 12g
Fat 5g

You’ll love the unique experience of making these buns at home. Whether it’s for a holiday or everyday treat, you now have the tools to craft these warm, delightful buns like a true professional.

Serving and Enjoying Your Cha Siu Bao

Perfectly Steamed Cha Siu Bao is a delight to savor. Hot from the steamer, the dough has a soft quality while maintaining a light firmness. The succulent pork striped with BBQ sauce adds a contrasting savory note with a hint of sweetness. Be mindful, though! That first bite can release a burst of hot steam. Let them cool for a minute or two before serving.

Elevate your Chinese Dining Experience by serving this classic dim sum with other must-try dishes like dumpling soup, noodles, or a stir-fry. Remember, arranging a variety of dishes creates an engaging and balanced meal. Showcase your culinary prowess by pairing the Cha Siu Bao with complementing flavors for a memorable feast.

Get creative with Unique Twists to the classic Cha Siu Bao. Jazz it up with garnishing, or take it up a notch by slipping in some added ingredients like grated ginger, green onions, or even a dash of wasabi. Experiment with flavors, but remember the key is to not overpower the distinct taste of the BBQ pork.

As for the Nutritional Value of these gems, they leave nothing wanting. Your homemade pork buns are loaded with protein, supplied by the pork filling. They also have a fair share of carbs from the dough. To make it healthier, opting for whole grain flour and low-fat milk in your recipe can elevate the nutrient profile. Here is a breakdown of the potential nutritional per bun:

Nutrient Amount
Calories 200
Protein 8g
Carbs 25g
Fat 6g

Casual or Festive, your homemade pork buns can fit right in. Handheld, compact, and bursting with flavor, they make a great choice at parties as an appetizer. Or, enjoy them for breakfast or a quick snack. There’s no wrong time to enjoy a Cha Siu Bao!


So you’ve journeyed through the art of making homemade Chinese BBQ pork buns. You’ve discovered the joy of biting into that soft dough, tasting the savory-sweet pork filling and realized how versatile these buns can be. Perhaps you’ve even been inspired to experiment with your own unique twists. Whether you’re serving them alongside other Chinese dishes, enjoying them for breakfast or grabbing one as a quick snack, these buns never fail to impress. And let’s not forget the nutritional perks! With their protein and carb content, they’re not just tasty, they’re also a balanced choice. If you’re health-conscious, remember you can always opt for whole grain flour and low-fat milk. So go ahead, make your next occasion, casual or festive, a memorable one with these delicious buns. Here’s to mastering the art of Chinese BBQ pork buns and savoring every bite!

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