Chicken Siopao

I haven’t met a Filipino who does not  like siopao. This dish also called  Siu Bao was introduced to the Philippines by the Chinese centuries ago. This is  traditionally made with pork filling. Not many bao store in New York Chinatown sells chicken bao and being that we don’t eat pork, I make it with chicken.


  • 1 chicken breast, diced
  • 1 T oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 pieces dried Chinese mushrooms, soaked in 1 c water for 30 minutes or until fully hydrated, sliced thinly. Strain and reserve the mushroom water.
  • 1/3 c chopped onion
  • 2 T soy sauce
  • 2 T Hoisin sauce
  • 1 T Oyster sauce
  • ground black pepper
  • 3 T Chinese cooking wine
  • 1 t  sesame oil
  • 2 t corn starch
  • 3 sprigs of green onions, sliced

Cook the filling.

  • In a pan, heat the oil and cook the garlic until light brown. Add the onion and mushroom and cook until the onion is soft.
  • Add the diced chicken meat and saute until opaque in color.
  • Add the soy sauce, hoisin, oyster  sauces, cooking wine and  half of the reserved mushroom water, cover and simmer to allow the chicken to absorb the flavor.
  • Dissolve the corn starch using the rest of the mushroom water. Add to the pan along with the sesame oil and sliced green onions.
  • Stir and cook until thick. Cool before filling the buns.

Cooked chicken filling.


  • 3 cups of white bao flour, also called HongKong flour which is lighter than the regular all-purpose flour. You may also use low-glutten all purpose flour.
  • 3/4 c water
  • 1/4 vegetable oil
  • 3 T fine sugar
  • 2 t instant yeast

This is the flour I use. This is available in Asian groceries.

I use the bread machine to knead and rise the dough. You can also knead manually or in a mixer and rise for 30-45 minutes.

Kneaded dough.

Divide the dough into 16 pieces for small buns or 12 for big buns.

Flatten each piece and fill with about 3 T of filling. Wet the edges with water.  Gather the ends in pleats and seal.

Put a piece of wax paper under each bun. Bring the water in the steamer into a rapid boil. Cover and steam the buns for 12 minutes. Resist opening to peak.

Steamed bao.

Serve warm. We like it with a little Tabasco sauce. Enjoy!


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