Steamed BBQ Beef Buns

Four steamed BBQ buns
8 servings

These fluffy steamed buns are just like the ones you have your eye on when you go for Dim Sum.



Beef Filling

1 ½
cups (200 g) diced cooked beef (such as braised pot roast or roast beef)
cup (60 mL) ketchup
tbsp (25 g) granulated sugar
tbsp (30 mL) cider vinegar
tbsp (15 mL) light soy sauce
tbsp (15 mL) hoisin sauce
(2.5 cm) piece fresh ginger, finely grated
tsp (3 g) Chinese 5-spice powder
1 ¼
cups (185 g) all-purpose flour
cup (130 g) cake and pastry flour
cup (70 g) granulated sugar
tbsp (9 g) baking powder
tbsp (90 mL) 2% milk
tbsp (45 mL) water
tbsp (30 mL) vegetable oil



The buns can be assembled up to 4 hours before steaming and kept refrigerated.

Step 1

For the filling, place the beef in a small saucepan and add the ketchup, sugar, vinegar, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, ginger and 5-spice and stir occasionally over medium heat until the sauce reduces a little, about 5-7 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Step 2

For the dough, sift the flours, sugar and baking powder into a large mixing bowl. Add the milk, water and oil and stir this with a wooden spoon until it becomes too difficult to do so. Turn the dough out onto a work surface and knead the dough by hand until it feels smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Set this back in the bowl, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rest on the counter for an hour.

Step 3

On a lightly flour work surface, cut the dough into 8 equal pieces. Roll each piece to as close to ¼-inch (6 mm) as possible, then using a 4-inch (10 cm) round cutter, cut out a circle. To fill each bun, hold a piece of dough in the palm of your hand and shape it with your fingers to make it more like a cup. Put a tablespoonful of the beef filling in the centre and then pinch the edges of the dough up and around to seal it in – it does take a bit of practice to make precise folds, so have patience. Place each bun, with the pinched end up, on a 2-inch (5 cm) square piece of parchment paper.

Step 4

Fill the bottom of a wok or other large pot that will hold a large bamboo steamer with water and bring this to a full boil over high heat. Arrange 4 buns into the steamer (if you have 2 baskets, you can stack them, with 4 buns in each). Cover and steam for 13-15 minutes – the buns will open up as they steam – this is expected. Remove the steamed buns with tongs and serve within 40 minutes of steaming.

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