• lifecyclenz

Vegan Dumplings

Updated: Jun 1, 2020

I love to make this recipe when I have a group of friends come over. Folding dumplings together as a group is a great way to bond with friends and family. It is also a great way to food prep for weekly meals and easily enjoy delicious vegetables. Simply freeze dumplings, ensuring some separation, then cook using the below methods as needed. This recipe is highly modifiable depending on what ingredients that you have on hand: want to use up some other vegetables? Chuck them in! In the end dumplings are a vessel for delicious sauce, so invite some friends over and dig in!

Vegan Dumplings

Makes: 60

Feeds: 4 – 5

Prep: 45 min

Cooking: 30 min


60 medium store bought dumpling wrappers (Can be found at all good Asian supermarkets)

½ cup flour/cornflour (for dusting)

2 ramekins warm water, half filled

3 tbsp oil (depending on cooking method)


450 g tofu (hard/firm works best), well drained and mashed

1 medium carrot, finely grated

1 cup chives, coarsely chopped

¼ cabbage, very finely chopped

½ cup mushrooms, finely chopped

2 tsp garlic, minced

1 tsp ginger, minced

2 tbsp soy sauce (more to taste)

2 tsp rice wine vinegar

1 tsp sesame oil

Dipping sauce

3 tbsp soy sauce

2 tbsp rice wine vinegar

1 tsp sesame oil

1 tsp coarsely chopped chives (optional)

1 tsp chilli flakes (optional)

1 tsp sriracha hot sauce (optional, more to taste)

1 tsp runny honey/brown sugar

1 tsp sesame seeds


Preparing dumplings

  1. To a large bowl/pot, add all the filling ingredients and mix until well combined. It is important to ensure the tofu is well drained prior to this so there is less filling ‘juice’.

  2. Prepare: four plates lightly dusted with flour, two ramekins half filled with warm water and the remainder of the flour split into two additional ramekins. Lay these out evenly on the surface you intend to prepare your dumplings on and ensure that everyone can easily reach a plate, warm water and flour. Bowls can be used instead of ramekins.

  3. Take one dumpling sheet and place it on the palm of your hand. Using a spoon, place enough mixture into the centre of the sheet so that when you fold it in half, there is about ½ centimetre of dumpling wrapper around the edge that can be pressed together. Take your index finger and dip it in the water. Run your finger along the edge of the dumpling wrapper. Fold the wrapper in half and press down first in the centre, then gradually seal the seam until the dumpling is completely closed by pinching the edge and all filling is contained within. This is just one method of folding, get creative and try other methods!

  4. As you fold your dumplings, place them onto a floured plate. Sprinkle a small amount of flour on each dumpling to prevent them from sticking to each other.

Preparing your sauce

  1. Place all sauce ingredients into a bowl/ramekin and combine until well incorporated. To cater for guests, split sauce into multiple bowls/ramekins to make dipping easier.

Cooking your dumplings

There are many great methods for preparing dumplings, I have included my favourites: steaming and pan-frying. When I make these with friends, I normally use both methods so that everyone can enjoy dumplings their favourite way. If you are preparing dumplings from frozen, allow more steaming time, and allow to defrost slightly before pan-frying.

  • Steaming

  1. Using your steamer, heat about 2 inches of water until it gently simmers.

  2. Spray or coat the steamer surface with oil to ensure dumplings do not stick.

  3. Place dumplings onto the steamer surface, slightly separated. Cover the dumplings and let them steam for 10-15 minutes or until the dumpling wrappers are cooked through. Prick the joined dumpling wrapper to check for a soft, pasta like texture.

  • Pan-frying

  1. Using a large pan that has a lid, heat 1 tablespoon of oil on medium heat. Place dumplings into the pan and allow to cook for 2-3 minutes, or until the bottoms of the dumplings start to turn golden brown.

  2. Pour over ¼ cup of water and place the lid over the dumplings. Allow dumplings to steam for 8-10 minutes, or until steam has evaporated. If dumpling wrappers are not yet cooked, add a few more tablespoons of water and allow to steam for another few minutes.

Got some ingredients to use up?

The wonderful thing about dumplings is the lack of requirement to use certain ingredients. Use what you have! If you find the mixture is becoming too loose, add extra tofu.

*Here are some examples of other ingredients you could add to your filling:

  • Eggs - whisk up to three eggs (don’t let the mixture become too moist)

  • Capsicum - finely mince 1 capsicum

  • Bok choy - sub cabbage for finely minced bok choy (you could even do a combination of both!)

  • Coriander - sub chives for coriander

  • Chillies - finely mince 2 chillies

  • Onion - finely mince half an onion

Danielle is a student at Auckland University of Technology studying a double major in Environmental Science and Applied Conservation. She is a keen hiker that tries to identify every plant along the way. She has been known to make up the names of birds or trees if someone asks and she doesn’t know.

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