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I'm a Vietnamese living in Indiana who had to find a recipe for one of my favorite Vietnamese snacks, banh bao. They are a variation on the Chinese cha siu bao (Chinese pork buns). I would like to thank Houston Wok for providing Ms. SkimmyJeans' moist filling recipe and Miss Adventure[at]home for a tasty bun recipe. Combined, this is my ultimate banh bao recipe.

Recipe Summary

30 mins
35 mins
1 hr 30 mins
25 mins
18 buns


Original recipe yields 18 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified


Instructions Checklist
  • Mix pork, shallots, fish sauce, oyster sauce, and soy sauce together in a large bowl. Let mixture marinate in the refrigerator, about 30 minutes.

  • Combine self-rising flour, milk, and sugar in another large bowl; knead until dough is smooth and no longer sticky. Cover dough with cheesecloth; let rest, about 5 minutes.

  • Divide dough into 18 balls. Roll out each ball into a circle with a rolling pin on a floured work surface. Place a spoonful of the pork mixture in the center; top with 2 sausage slices and an egg quarter. Gather the edges of each circle together like a coin purse; twist and pinch to seal the bun.

  • Cut waxed paper into eighteen 2-inch squares. Place each bun on a waxed paper square. Arrange 1 inch apart in a steamer; cover with lid.

  • Steam buns until puffed up, about 30 minutes.

Cook's Notes:

If dough seems too moist in step 2, add more flour until it no longer sticks to your fingers.

I'm still trying to find a means of making the buns white. I usually add a tablespoon of white vinegar to the steaming water. However, I don't really see any difference. Others have advised using baking powder. I may try that next time.

Nutrition Facts

277 calories; protein 12.9g; carbohydrates 34.6g; fat 9.6g; cholesterol 65.1mg; sodium 736.4mg. Full Nutrition