Can Chinese Flat Bread Be Steamed?

Chinese flat bread, also known as "bing," has been a staple in Chinese cuisine for centuries. With it’s simple yet versatile nature, this bread has captivated countless taste buds with it’s soft and chewy texture. While it’s most commonly associated with being cooked on a dry griddle, the question arises: can Chinese flat bread be steamed? This inquiry delves into the possibilities and variations of preparing this beloved delicacy through the art of steaming. Exploring the heritage, techniques, and flavors associated with steamed Chinese flat bread unveils a new dimension to this timeless food. Whether it’s the desire for a lighter, fluffier texture or a creative twist on a classic dish, steaming unveils a world of delicious possibilities for this traditional Chinese delight.

What Is the Difference Between Steamed and Baked Bao?

One of the main differences between steamed and baked bao is the cooking method used. Steamed bao, also known as baozi, are traditionally cooked by steaming. This process involves placing the filled buns in a steamer and allowing the steam to cook the dough and filling. On the other hand, baked bao are cooked in an oven. The dough is shaped into buns and baked until golden brown.

Another difference lies in the texture and taste of the buns.

Both versions are delicious and can be enjoyed with various fillings, whether it’s traditional char siu or vegetarian options.

Ultimately, whether Chinese flat bread can be steamed or baked depends on the specific recipe and desired outcome. Each method brings it’s own unique characteristics and flavors to the table, giving bao lovers a variety of options to choose from.

When serving steamed buns, it’s important to complement their deliciousness with equally enticing side dishes. Some classic options include Asian Slaw, Steamed Dumplings, Edamame, Vegetable Spring Rolls, Bok Choy, Sesame Noodle Salad, Stir-Fried Green Beans, Kimchi, Pickled Vegetables, Fried Rice, and Cucumber Salad. These flavorful companions will elevate your baozi experience and satisfy your taste buds with a delectable combination of flavors and textures.

How Do You Serve Steamed Buns?

When serving steamed buns, there are numerous side dishes that complement these delicious Chinese delicacies. Asian slaw is a perfect accompaniment with it’s crunchy texture and tangy dressing. The freshness of the slaw provides a refreshing contrast to the softness of the steamed buns.

Another popular choice is steamed dumplings, which are bite-sized and flavorful. These dumplings can be filled with various ingredients such as meat or vegetables, adding even more variety to your meal. The combination of the buns and dumplings creates a satisfying and filling dining experience.

For a healthier option, edamame is a great choice. These steamed soybeans aren’t only high in protein but also add a pop of vibrant green to your plate. They’re a popular side dish in many Asian cuisines, making them a natural fit for steamed buns.

Vegetable spring rolls are also a fantastic choice to serve alongside baozi. These crispy rolls stuffed with a medley of fresh vegetables add a delightful crunch to your meal. The contrast between the soft buns and crispy spring rolls creates a dynamic eating experience.

Bok choy, a type of Chinese cabbage, is another versatile side dish to consider. It can be steamed or stir-fried, providing a delicious and nutritious addition to your meal. It’s mild and slightly sweet flavor complements the flavors of the steamed buns perfectly.

Sesame noodle salad is a tasty and satisfying side dish that pairs well with steamed buns. The cold noodles coated in a flavorful dressing, topped with sesame seeds and green onions, provide a satisfying contrast to the warm, fluffy buns.

Stir-fried green beans are a classic Chinese dish that goes well with steamed buns. The vibrant green color of the beans and their crisp texture make them an appealing addition to your meal. The savory flavors of the stir-fried green beans harmonize with the flavors of the baozi, creating a delightful combination.

Kimchi, a traditional Korean side dish, can also be served alongside steamed buns. This spicy and fermented cabbage adds a tangy kick to your meal, enhancing the overall flavor profile.

Pickled vegetables offer a tangy and refreshing contrast to the soft and savory steamed buns. The acidity and crunchiness of pickled vegetables create a perfect harmony of flavors and textures.

Fried rice is a versatile side dish that can be customized to suit your taste. With it’s savory flavors and variety of ingredients, fried rice is an excellent choice to serve alongside baozi. The combination of steamed buns and fried rice ensures a satisfying and well-balanced meal.

Lastly, a simple cucumber salad adds a cool and refreshing element to your meal. The crispness of the cucumbers and the tangy dressing provide a light and refreshing contrast to the rich flavors of the steamed buns.

Other Types of Steamed or Filled Buns From Different Cuisines Around the World, Such as Siopao From the Philippines or Momo From Nepal

  • Siopao from the Philippines
  • Momo from Nepal

Source: What To Serve With Bao Buns: 15 Delicious Side Dishes

Chinese steamed buns, known as baozi or bao, are a popular type of filled bun in Chinese cuisine. Made with yeast-leavened dough, they come in various fillings and are most commonly steamed. Similar to mantou, a staple in Northern China, baozi can be filled with meat or vegetarian ingredients. When it comes to the nutritional content, one Asian-style Steamed Bun contains 24g of total carbs, 23g of net carbs, 6g of fat, 6g of protein, and 230 calories.

How Many Carbs Are in Chinese Steamed Buns?

Chinese steamed buns, also known as baozi or bao, are a popular type of filled bun in Chinese cuisine. These delicious buns come in various fillings, both meat and vegetarian options, and are typically steamed to perfection. Baozi is actually a variation of mantou, a popular type of steamed bread from Northern China.

When it comes to the nutritional content of Chinese steamed buns, the carb count may vary depending on the specific ingredients used in the filling. However, on average, one baozi contains approximately 24 grams of total carbohydrates. Out of these 24 grams, around 23 grams are considered net carbs, which means they’re the carbs that are actually digested and absorbed by the body.

In addition to carbs, a typical steamed bun also contains 6 grams of fat and 6 grams of protein. This combination of nutrients provides a balanced profile and can be a satisfying snack or even a meal on it’s own. It’s worth noting that the filling of the buns greatly affects the overall nutritional content, so it’s important to consider the specific ingredients used.

In terms of calories, one baozi will provide you with approximately 230 calories. This calorie count can vary slightly depending on the size and filling of the bun. However, it’s important to note that steamed buns are relatively low in calories compared to other types of bread products.

Whether you prefer a meat or vegetarian filling, these buns offer a satisfying combination of carbs, fat, and protein. So go ahead, indulge in these fluffy, steamed treats knowing that they can be a delicious and relatively healthy addition to your meal.


Through research, it becomes evident that the answer is a resounding yes. Steaming has been a traditional and widely used method for preparing Chinese flat bread for centuries, resulting in a soft, fluffy, and delicious final product. Whether it’s the famous mantou, baozi, or shaobing, steaming plays a crucial role in achieving the desired texture and taste. The steaming process preserves the bread's moisture, enhances it’s flavor, and allows for a healthier cooking method. Furthermore, the ease and simplicity of steaming make it an accessible cooking technique for both experienced chefs and home cooks. Overall, the steaming method remains an integral part of Chinese culinary culture and continues to be embraced and enjoyed by people worldwide.

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