Char Siu Bao (蜜汁叉烧包)

Very pleased because we all had seconds and wiped out 10 baos at one go. I tried to make this more Cantonese style by cooking a thick gravy and freezing the fillings first and it worked perfectly.

Recipe for filling (14 bao)

  • About 200g pork collar cut into small strips
  • 3 slices ginger
  • 1 tbsp Chinese wine
  • 1/2 onion chopped
  • 2 stalk spring onion chopped
  • 3 tsp dark sauce
  • 1.5 tbsp oyster
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp soya sauce
  • 1 tbsp corn starch

1. Cut pork into small strips. Cut ginger, onion and spring onion.

2. Add a small amount of oil into a pot and add pork and ginger. Stir fry at low heat till cooked. Add Chinese wine and onion and stir fry till fragrant.

3. Add all the rest of the condiments except corn starch in a bowl and add 1/2 bowl of water. And mix well.

4. Add this bowl of condiment and spring onion into pot and stir.

5. Stir and cook at low heat for 10 min until sauce thickens and caramelizes.

6. Add corn starch to a half bowl of tap water and mix well. Then add into pot. Stir to form a thick gravy.

7. Off the flames and taste and adjust accordingly. I added a little salt and a little more water as my sauce was too thick.

8. Place into a plate, clingwrap and freeze for 2 hours. After freezing, divide in 14 equal portions to wrap as fillings.

Recipe for Bao (makes 14)

  • 125g water
  • 10g sugar
  • 3/4 tsp yeast
  • 250g plain flour ( can replace up to 50g cake flour for whiter and softer bao)
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 15g oil


1. Mix all above in a stand mixer for 10 min at low speed. Form a smooth elastic dough.

2. Divide into 14 equal pieces. Knead each piece and roll round.

3. Roll out 5 pieces at one go, make sure edge is thin. Place char siu filling in the centre and pleat.

4. Complete for all dough. Proof for 30 min.

5. After 30 min, the bao will look slightly larger.

6. Steam at high heat for 12 min, leave covered for another 5 min. Serve.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Mich says:

    1. Can I freeze the meat filling the night before?
    2. How do I divide into portions in its frozen state.
    3. When placing the filling in the dough, this the filling still in its frozen state?
    Sorry for asking so many questions, its my first time making pao!


    1. oladybakes says:

      It’s not so ‘strict’, slightly frozen is fine. Or just follow the suggested timing in the recipe.


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