Fried Vs Steamed Dumplings

Fried Vs Steamed Dumplings – What’s The Difference?

Whether they are fried or steamed, dumplings come in so many different shapes, sizes, and forms, and are the ultimate comfort food. As for the differences between fried and steamed dumplings, fried and steamed dumplings are assembled almost exactly the same way. Steamed dumplings are steamed, whereas fried dumplings are fried. Find out why steamed dumplings are generally healthier, how they are cooked, and more about fried and steamed dumplings.

What Are Fried And Steamed Dumplings?

The dumpling is a small mass of soft dough that is rolled out to enclose a filling or formed into a mound and cooked on its own. Asian cuisines – mostly China, Japan, Korea, and Vietnam – are best known for these dishes, which have become extremely popular worldwide. A variety of cooking methods can be used to prepare dumplings, which are known as jiaozi in China and gyoza in Japan. Dumplings are typically fried or steamed. Fried dumplings are cooked in any kind of fat, while steamed dumplings are cooked over boiling water in a basket.

Some of the most popular dumplings include:

  • Jiao Zheng

  • Jiao Shui

  • Tie Guo

  • Mai Siu

  • I’m baozi

  • The wonton

  • Bao Xiao Long

What Is The Difference Between Fried And Steamed Dumplings?

Steamed and fried dumplings are made with the same flour and water dough, which is kneaded and rolled out to encase the filling. You can experiment and use a wide range of ingredients including beef, chicken, and your choice of vegetables, depending on your taste and type of dumpling. The most popular dumpling filling in China is pork and scallions, but you can also use beef or chicken.

The difference comes in the cooking method, which is either frying or steaming the dumplings after they are prepared. Steamed and fried dumplings differ mainly in their cooking method and their taste and texture. Potstickers, or fried dumplings, are fried and steamed simultaneously in a pan. 

The dumplings are fried in oil with a little water before being covered for about 10 minutes. The frying gives the dumplings a crunchy exterior and a soft interior. The flavor of fried dumplings is slightly nutty and caramelized because they are deep-fried in oil. The type of oil used also affects the final taste.

The most traditional Chinese dumpling is the steaming dumpling, which has a soft, chewy exterior and is made in a steamer. Soft, squishy, and succulent, their exteriors taste somewhat bland compared to fried dumplings. A crispy exterior is best achieved with fried dumplings, while a soft outer layer is best achieved with steamed dumplings.

Which Is Better – Fried Or Steamed Dumplings?

Whether you want steamed or fried dumplings depends entirely on your preference. People claim that fried dumplings are more flavorful because they are fried in oil and have a crispy exterior, which adds to their flavor. However, Chinese cuisine is more commonly associated with steamed dumplings, which are prepared in a steamer. Fried dumplings and steamed dumplings differ not only in texture and taste, but also in nutrition. Let’s find out how!

Which Is Healthier – Fried Or Steamed Dumplings?

There is no doubt that dumplings are a healthy option; however, steamed dumplings contain less oil than fried dumplings, making them the healthiest option. As fried dumplings are cooked in oil, they have a higher fat content than steamed ones. Apart from the cooking method, the quality of the filling can also affect the healthiness and nutritional value of the dumpling.

The type of meat you choose will make a huge difference, with lean meats a good choice for a low-fat meal. As well as the type and quality of meat, the vegetable content also influences the amount of vitamins and minerals you consume. Whatever type of dumpling you choose, keep an eye on how many you are eating, as it is easy to eat too many.

How To Make Fried Dumplings

A popular dumpling choice among dumpling lovers, fried dumplings are usually filled with pork, cabbage, shiitake mushrooms, and garlic, although the ingredients can be changed to create new and exciting combinations.

Fried dumplings are also known as pan-fried dumplings and are actually cooked in two stages. There are no rules concerning the filling, only how you cook them.

Firstly, the dumplings are fried in oil in a hot pan, and then they are steamed in the same pan by adding water. This makes the dumplings crispy and soft on top, and the filling is delicious and tender on the inside.

Step-By-Step Instructions For Making Fried Dumplings

  1. Make your choice of filling by gathering all the ingredients.

  2. Mix them thoroughly in a large bowl.

  3. Enclose the filling in dumpling wrappers, either homemade or bought.

  4. Put 1 teaspoon of filling in the center of the wrapper and gently spread it out to the sides.

  5. To make sealing easier, moisten the edges of the wrapper with water and cornstarch.

  6. Bring the moistened wrapper’s edges together at the top center by lifting them gently.

  7. Using your fingers, pinch the edges of the wrapper together to seal them.

  8. Protect the dumplings from drying out by covering them lightly with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel.

  9. The oil should be heated over medium-high heat in a wok or non-stick pan.

  10. The bottom part of the dumplings should be golden brown after 2 to 3 minutes in the pan.

  11. In the same pan, add 1/3 cup of water and steam the dumplings until they are cooked through and all the liquid has been absorbed, about 5 minutes.

  12. You can serve them as is or with a delicious dipping sauce!

Use a pan with a thick and heavy bottom so that each dumpling cooks evenly. Non-stick pans are also a good option. Add a little extra oil and avoid moving the dumplings until the bottom hardens. Here’s a helpful beginner’s guide from Tasty on YouTube for those who learn visually:

How To Make Steamed Dumplings

A steaming method is another popular way to cook dumplings because it uses no oil in the cooking process.Steamed dumplings cook more quickly than fried dumplings and are stress-free to make. You simply set the timer and let it do its job! Steamed dumplings also keep their shape better during the cooking process. Traditionally, steamed dumplings are prepared in cute little steamers (like this one), but they can also be prepared in a regular pot.

Step-By-Step Instructions For Making Steamed Dumplings

  1. All the ingredients for the filling should be gathered and combined in a large bowl.

  2. You can either make your own dumpling wrappers or purchase them at the store.

  3. Place approximately 1 teaspoon of filling in the center of the wrapper and gently spread it across. Don’t overfill.

  4. Water and cornstarch can be used to moisten the edges of the dumpling wrapper so that it is easier to seal.

  5. When the edges of the moistened wrapper are lifted gently, they will reach the center of the wrapper.

  6. Using your fingers, pinch the edges of the wrapper together to seal them.

  7. Prevent the dumplings from drying out by covering them lightly with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel.

  8. Bring the steamer basket to a full boil by adding two inches of water to it.

  9. You should leave some space between each dumpling on the steamer rack so that they can expand.

  10. In the steamer, place the steamer rack, cover it, and heat it over medium heat until steam begins to emerge.

  11. In order for the dumplings to be completely cooked, they should be cooked for 10 minutes.

  12. Dip in a tasty dipping sauce and serve immediately.

Use napa cabbage leaves or wet cheesecloth to line the steamer basket. If you use a metal steamer, brush a thin layer of oil on the rack to prevent the dumplings from sticking. You can make a different type of steamed dumpling by watching this video from emmymade on YouTube!

Can You Deep Fry Dumplings?

In addition to deep frying, you can also steam or pan-fry dumplings, giving them a crispier exterior and a softer and juicier interior. Deep frying is more oily than pan-frying or steaming, so deep frying may not be the healthiest option.

A few American restaurants do serve deep-fried dumplings, but they are not as common as those served in Chinese restaurants. Dumplings that are deep-fried use the same variety of fillings as those that are pan-fried or steamed, and they are made in the same manner as those that are steamed or pan-fried.

Step-By-Step Instructions For Making Deep-Fried Dumplings

  1. Make sure the non-stick pan is hot by heating it over medium heat.

  2. Make your choice of oil for frying the dumplings and heat it.

  3. Make sure all sides of the dumplings are golden brown in the pan before adding them to the oven.

You can learn how to make Cantonese deep fried dumplings by watching this YouTube video from Souped Up Recipes:

Can You Air Fry Dumplings?

Using an air fryer is easy and you can make anything you want. If you’ve never tried air-fried dumplings, you’re seriously missing out! Make fresh dumplings from scratch or air fry frozen dumplings you bought from the market or made earlier. When you air fry dumplings, you use less oil than you would when pan frying. They are healthier, easier to make, and the end product is delicious.

Step-By-Step Instructions For Making Air-Fried Dumplings

  1. Prepare the dumplings by assembling and preparing them.

  2. A light coating of oil should be applied to the air fryer basket.

  3. Be careful not to overcrowd the basket with dumplings.

  4. Spray some oil lightly on the dumplings.

  5. They should be cooked for 12 minutes at 375°F or until they are golden brown.

  6. Halfway through the cooking process, flip the dumplings over.

  7. You can serve the chicken with a delicious sauce as a dipping sauce when it is ready.

When determining the exact cooking time, air fryers are not all the same. 

Depending on the size of your air fryer and the speed at which it heats up, make sure to read the guidance that came with it and keep an eye on your dumplings while they cook. If you’re working with frozen dumplings (or egg rolls), here’s a quick video from Air Fryer World on YouTube:

What Can You Serve With Fried And Steamed Dumplings?

Dumplings stuffed with delicious filling can be eaten on their own, without any accompaniment. A dipping sauce, however, can really enhance their flavor and help cut through the rich and savory filling. In the same way that there are different types of dumplings, there are different types of dipping sauces.

To make the best dipping sauce for dumplings, combine some soy sauce, vinegar, sesame oil, garlic, and hot chili oil. You can also add thin strips of ginger or scallions to add some texture and flavor to the sauce. To add a hint of sweetness, add brown sugar.

You can pair your dumplings with chicken stir-fry noodles, green bean salad, Thai fried rice, Chinese noodle soup, hot and sour soup, or orange chicken for more variety.

Related Questions

We thought you might have a few additional questions about fried and steamed dumplings now that you know how they differ.

What are boiled dumplings?

It is also possible to cook dumplings by boiling them in water and leaving them to simmer for a few minutes. Boiled dumplings can be cooked directly in the soup or stew in which they are to be served.

Are dumplings and wontons the same?

Chinese cuisine includes many different types of dumplings that come in small parcels and are often filled with pork and bok choy. Wontons can be steamed, fried, or boiled in a wonton soup.

What are sweet dumplings?

Tangyuan is a delicious traditional Chinese treat made with peanut butter mixture. It is smooth and slightly sticky outside with a sweet, nutty, and gooey inside.

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