Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Babes Bake Bao Buns

(Actually, Babes steam Bao Buns, but it’s not nearly as poetic.)

Karen of Karen’s Kitchen Stories is the hostess this month.  To celebrate both the Bread Baking Babes and World Bread Day, Karen chose steamed Bao Buns for our challenge.  The good thing about steaming is that I can also bake a different kind of bread at the same time – two for the time of one, so to speak.

For me, the recipe made nine buns and I had to steam them in batches.  While each bun rested on a small piece of parchment paper, I also inserted a piece of paper in between the two layers.  This kept the two halves from sticking together, making them easier to separate and fill.

My filling was a mixture of minced, cooked pork, shredded carrots, and mashed avocado.  It made a delicious and satisfying lunch.  Any leftover buns can be wrapped and frozen for a future meal.

It’s always fun to try a new technique for making bread.  I would highly recommend this recipe – easy and satisfying to make, and delicious as well!

Visit the other Babes to see what they did this month.


Bao Buns


  • 2 cups (250 grams) all purpose flour, plus more for rolling out the dough
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/3 cup (70 grams)  sugar
  • 4 grams instant or active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup (120 grams) water, about 100 degrees
  • 1 teaspoon neutral oil


  1. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar, and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the water, and mix with the dough hook on medium for about 30 seconds. Add the oil, and knead on low for 5 to 7 minutes, until smooth. The dough should not stick to the sides of the bowl. This dough can also be kneaded by hand. 
  2. Cover with a damp towel or plastic wrap, and let rise until doubled (30 minutes to 2 hours). 
  3. Cut parchment paper into 10 four inch squares. You could also use lettuce leaves. (the purpose is to keep the buns from sticking to the steamer). 
  4. Deflate the dough and divide it into 10 equal pieces (about 50 grams each). Give each piece a quick knead. 
  5. On a floured surface roll the dough out into a 3 inch by 6 inch rectangle with rounded edges. Fold the dough in half lengthwise, and place on a parchment square. Cover lightly with oiled plastic wrap or a damp towel, and repeat with the rest of the dough pieces. Let proof for 30 to 45 minutes, until slightly puffy. 
  6. Bring a pot or wok of water to a steady boil (just slightly more than simmering) and fit your pan or wok with a steamer, bamboo basket, or steaming rack just above the water. Place the baos in the steamer, cover, and steam for 12 minutes. Cool slightly, fill with a filling of your choice, and eat. 
  7. You can refrigerate or freeze (I prefer freezing) leftovers. You can either thaw and re steam for 3 minutes, or wrap one in a damp paper towel and microwave for 20 to 30 seconds. 

Hope you decide to bake along with us this month.  If you do, send your link to Karen by October 29 to be included in the roundup.


Elizabeth said...

I can't get over how your bao buns puffed up! Clearly, it's a good idea to actually follow the recipe. Your lunch sounds delicious.

Karen said...

These look wonderful Judy! Thanks so much for baking... er... steaming with me!

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Holy macaroni! Parchment to keep the halves separate, how totally genius! The filling sounds perfect.

hobby baker Kelly said...

Beautiful! I thought about oiling the middle but didn't. My halves did steam together, but I was able to carefully prise them open without tearing. Parchment was a great thought.

Elle said...

Super puffy buns and great idea to put a piece of parchment or some oil between the fold. Love your filling, too. Almost a salad, right?

Katie Zeller said...

All of the fillings are so different! I love this with the avocado!

Aparna Balasubramanian said...

Leave out the meat and that's a filling I would love. Those Bao Buns look very good. :)