The Top 9 Dim Sum Recipes

Edited by Liv Wan.

Dim sum (點心)plays an important role in Chinese food culture and especially Cantonese cuisine. If you travel to Guangdong province or Hong Kong, you’ll often see people sitting with really thick newspapers, sitting in a dim sum restaurant with a pot of Chinese tea and a plates of dim sum.

Sometimes people will read quietly, sometimes people will talk really loudly in big groups but dim sum are a real social food in Chinese cuisine but dim sum is often eaten for breakfast or brunch.

Generally dim sum is prepared as a small bite-sized portion of food and steamed in a small bamboo steamer but there are also different kinds of dim sum prepared in different ways including deep-fried or baked.

Below are some of the most popular dim sum recipes on the Chinese food 


  • 01 of 09

    Spring Rolls

    Chinese egg roll wrapper recipes
    Chinese egg roll wrapper recipes. Victoria Firmston

    Spring rolls have their origins in the spring festival, and were originally filled with vegetables from the Spring harvest. The filling for these spring rolls includes barbecued pork and Chinese dried mushrooms (dried shiitake mushrooms,) along with shredded carrot, red bell pepper and mung bean sprouts. Serve the spring rolls plain, or with a simple soy sauce and rice vinegar dipping sauce.

    If you’re vegetarian, please have a look of vegetable spring rolls recipe here.

  • 02 of 09

    Char Siu Bao (Steamed Pork Buns)

    Char siu bun
    Getty Images/Melissa Tse

     You will find these at any dim sum restaurant. Steamed buns filled with barbecued pork and the bun tastes slightly sweet with a very soft texture. 

  • 03 of 09

    Shu Mai (Siu Mai)

    Shumai dim sum recipes
    Sino Images/ Getty Images

    These basket-shaped, open faced dumplings are also called “cook and sell dumplings.” In this recipe, the Siu Mai are filled with shrimp, pork and Shiitake mushrooms. Using wonton wrappers saves you from having to make your own dumpling dough.

    You can also have a look at a seafood flavour of shu mai recipe here

  • 04 of 09

    Steamed Beef Balls

    Steamed Beef Balls
    IMAGEMORE CO., LTD/Getty images

    This recipe comes from Evelyn Chau, who notes that the watercress absorbs the flavour of the seasoned beef. It includes dried citrus peel (chenpi), available at Chinese/ Asian markets. 

    Continue to 5 of 9 below.
  • 05 of 09

    Pearl Balls

    Chinese Pearl Meatball Banquet Food Recipe
    Chinese Pearl Meatball Banquet Food Recipe. Chris Radley Photography/

     Pearl Balls are made from sticky rice and delicious pork. 

  • 06 of 09


    Potstickers recipe
    Lauri Patterson/ Getty Images

    The easiest type of Chinese dumpling to make, potstickers are fried on one side and then steamed. According to legend, potstickers were invented when a cook accidentally burnt a batch of dumplings and decided to serve them anyway. Ideally, potstickers should be crispy on the bottom and soft and smooth on the top.

    You can also have a look at the “vegetable potstickers recipe” and “how to freeze potstickers” article to help you to make potstickers easily at home. 

  • 07 of 09

    Turnip Cake

    Chinese New Year Special Turnip Cake Recipe
    Chinese New Year Special Turnip Cake Recipe. Liv Wan

    Glutinous rice flour (sticky rice flour) is available in Chinese/Asian markets. Like other Chinese cakes, turnip cake is steamed instead of baked. Slices of the cake are fried just before serving.  

  • 08 of 09

    Mango Pudding

    Bowls of Mango Pudding on Tray (Close-up)
    Joe Borrelli / Getty Images

    This recipe comes from chef/cookbook author Stephen Wong. 

    How to make mango pudding – a step-by step photo instructions article. 

    Continue to 9 of 9 below.
  • 09 of 09

    Coconut Bun (Cocktail Bun)

    Hung Quach / Stocksy United

    These soft buns are filled with a buttery coconut filling, made with coconut flakes.