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Personalized Catering

Pizza Dumplings, This Should Be A Thing

November 21, 2015 at 11:47 am By

One of my current goals is to get better at dumplings, partly because I am obsessed with Happy Dumpling’s Shandong Style Pan Cooked Bao. Unlike the more familiar potsticker which uses a thin, unleavened wrapper, Shandong Style dumplings use a bao dough made with yeast and milk. Normally bao buns are steamed, leaving them pillowy soft, but the Shandong style pan fries them first, giving the bottoms a delicious golden crust. For a gluten free version of this recipe check out Andrea Nguyen’s blog Viet World Kitchen.

The problem for me is that I grew up eating McCain Pizza Pockets, so when ever I start stuffing things in dough my mind goes straight back to those delicious little bundles. And since my kitchen is currently full of bao dough I thought what the heck, let’s start stuffing these things with pizza!

My go-to bao recipe is from David Chang’s Momofuku and can be found here. Below I have it scaled down to make 9 little pizza dumplings. I don’t bother kneading the dough, I just mix all the ingredients until thoroughly combined, then let rise for a few hours in a warm spot.


  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1 cup plus 1 tbls bread flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon nonfat dry milk powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon butter, at room temperature

The secret to my filling is to cook the pepperoni either in the oven, or in the microwave for a few minutes. This helps get rid of most of the oil that would otherwise make the filling greasy. It also significantly improves the flavour. I then chop the pepperoni into very small pieces and mix it with the cheese, tomato paste, and seasonings. Obviously you can use what ever pizza fillings strike your fancy. I recommend that additional ingredients should be cooked first (ie peppers, mushrooms, etc).


  • 3oz pepperoni
  • 6oz can of tomato paste
  • ¾ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne (optional)


The next step is to lightly grease your hands, then rip off a golf-ball sized piece of dough. Flatten it in the palm of your hand, and then add about a tablespoon of filling. Pull the dough up around the filling and gently seal, the pinched part will be the bottom of the bun.


Place the bun on a lightly greased plate while you continue to fill the rest of the buns, and cover with plastic wrap while you work. At this stage the buns are ready to cook but can sit for at most an hour at room temp, they can also be frozen and cooked later.

When it is time to cook, add 1-2 teaspoons of cooking oil to a pan with a tight fitting lid. Place the buns in the pan leaving space between them. Place on medium heat until the bottoms begin to cook and turn golden, about 2min. Carefully add ¼ – ½ cup of water to the pan, cover with the lid, then reduce the heat slightly. Let steam for 7min, adding more water if needed. Remove the lid and let the rest of the water cook off so the bottoms get toasted again. Enjoy!

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