What Are the Types of Chinese Dumplings?

Last Updated on April 12, 2023 by Lauren Beck

If you’re a fan of Chinese cuisine, then you’ve probably tasted Chinese dumplings at some point in your life. But did you know that there are actually many different types of Chinese dumplings? From boiled to steamed, and from pork to vegetarian, Chinese dumplings come in all shapes, sizes, and flavors. 

In this article, we’ll explore the different types of Chinese dumplings and answer some common questions about them.

What Are Chinese Dumplings?

Chinese dumplings, or jiaozi, are a traditional Chinese dish that consists of a filling wrapped in a thin layer of dough.

The filling can be made from a variety of ingredients, including meat, vegetables, and seafood. The dumplings are then cooked by either boiling, steaming, or frying.

Ways to Cook Dumplings

  • Boiling: This is the most common way to cook dumplings. To boil dumplings, simply bring a pot of water to a boil and drop the dumplings in. Boil for a few minutes until the dumplings float to the surface and the filling is cooked through.
  • Steaming: Steaming is another popular way to cook dumplings. To steam dumplings, place them in a steamer basket and steam for 8-10 minutes until the filling is cooked through.
  • Frying: Fried dumplings, also known as potstickers, are crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside. To fry dumplings, heat some oil in a pan and place the dumplings in. Fry until the bottom is crispy and golden brown, then add some water to the pan and cover with a lid. Cook until the water has evaporated and the dumplings are cooked through.

9 Types of Chinese Dumplings

  1. Pork Dumplings: These are the most common type of Chinese dumplings and are usually filled with ground pork, scallions, and ginger.
  2. Vegetable Dumplings: Vegetarian dumplings are filled with a mixture of vegetables such as cabbage, carrots, and mushrooms.
  3. Soup Dumplings: Also known as xiao long bao, soup dumplings are filled with broth and meat and are usually steamed.
  4. Shrimp Dumplings: These dumplings are filled with shrimp and are usually steamed.
  5. Pan-Fried Dumplings: Also known as potstickers, these dumplings are pan-fried until crispy and golden brown.
  6. Wontons: Wontons are small dumplings that are usually filled with ground pork or shrimp and are boiled in a soup.
  7. Crab Dumplings: These dumplings are filled with crab meat and are usually steamed.
  8. Scallion Pancake Dumplings: These dumplings are made by wrapping scallion pancakes around a filling of meat or vegetables.
  9. Sweet Dumplings: Sweet dumplings are filled with sweet ingredients such as red bean paste, fruit, or chocolate.

Common Dumpling Fillings

The filling of a Chinese dumpling can vary widely depending on the region and the cook. Here are some common fillings:

  • Pork and cabbage
  • Shrimp and chives
  • Beef and scallions
  • Chicken and mushrooms
  • Tofu and spinach
  • Egg and leeks

Can You Make Gluten-Free Dumplings?

Yes, you can make gluten-free dumplings. Instead of wheat flour, you can use rice flour or cornstarch to make the dough. You can also buy pre-made gluten-free dumpling wrappers at some grocery stores.

What Do You Eat With Dumplings?

Chinese dumplings with sauce

Dumplings are often served with a dipping sauce made from soy sauce, vinegar, and sesame oil. They can also be served in a soup or stir-fried with vegetables.

How Do You Store Dumplings?

If you have leftover dumplings, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days. To reheat, you can steam them for a few minutes or pan-fry them until crispy.

Are Dumplings Chinese or Japanese?

While dumplings are popular in many East Asian countries, including Japan, Chinese dumplings are the most well-known and popular.

In Japan, dumplings are known as gyoza [1] and are similar to Chinese potstickers.


Chinese dumplings are a delicious and versatile dish that can be enjoyed in many different ways. From pork to vegetarian and from boiled to fried, there’s a type of dumpling for everyone. Whether you’re making them at home or enjoying them at a restaurant, dumplings are a must-try dish for anyone who loves Chinese cuisine.


Lauren Beck
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