Try these bao buns fillings, then check out our bao buns with pork belly, pork and prawn dumplings and more Asian street food recipes.

How to make bao bun fillings... step-by-step video

What is effortless?

Easy on the eye and simple to make, thanks to shop-bought ingredients and no fiddly techniques. These recipes can be made ahead or require 30 minutes or fewer of prep – they’re go-to ideas for entertaining special guests.

Effortless tip: You can fill the bao with the main filling and keep these warm, then add the sauce and slaw just before serving. For alternative bao fillings, try a ready-made dish such as pulled pork


  • 2 green chillies (deseeded, if you prefer)
  • 1 bunch of coriander
  • 2 spring onions
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 1 tsp caster sugar
  • 2 tsp fish sauce (optional)
  • 1 tbsp rapeseed oil or sunflower oil, plus extra for baking
  • 1 sweet potato
  • 200g breaded prawns or fish goujons
  • 300g breaded chicken
  • 18 bao buns


  • STEP 1

    Heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 4. To make the sauce, chop 2 green chillies (deseeded, if you prefer) and tip into a food processor with a bunch of coriander, the spring onions, lime juice, caster sugar and fish sauce (leave this out of a portion of the sauce if you’re making the vegetarian bao). Blend, then tip the mixture into the rapeseed or sunflower oil and set aside.

  • STEP 2

    Cut the sweet potato into large wedges, toss in oil and some seasoning, tip onto a baking tray and bake for 40 mins until brown at the edges and tender.

  • STEP 3

    Cook the breaded prawns or fish goujons and karaage or breaded chicken following pack instructions.

  • STEP 4

    Microwave or steam 18 bao buns following pack instructions until hot.

  • STEP 5

    Fill the warm bao with either the chicken, prawns or fish, or sweet potato, some slaw (see recipe below) and green sauce.

Sweet and sour slaw

Put 200g of finely shredded red or white cabbage, 1 finely shredded carrot and 2 finely sliced spring onions in a bowl. Mix 2 tbsp of cider vinegar with the juice of 1 lime, 2 tbsp of golden caster sugar and 1 tbsp of roasted sesame oil. Toss the dressing with the vegetable mixture to coat, then leave to stand for 30 mins before serving.


Lulu GrimesManaging editor

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