Chinese Steamed Buns (Mantou) 鮮奶饅頭

This is a very simple Chinese steamed buns recipe. I used to steam the buns with my bamboo steamer set over a wok. But recently I discovered that my 30cm-bamboo steamer sat snuggly over my 8 quart Instant Pot. I gave it a test run and immediately fell in love with this method. I liked it so much that I ran to the grocery store to purchase a second bamboo steamer the next day so that I could steam more at the same time!
這是非常簡單的饅頭食譜,EC一般把竹蒸籠放在鑊上蒸饅頭,但最近發覺家中的30厘米蒸籠原來剛好可以穩妥地放在8 qt Instant Pot之上!EC首次測試之後立刻愛上,第二天更立刻跑去超級市場多買一個竹蒸籠以便可以一次過蒸更多饅頭呢!

The buns on the lowest level always rise bigger and are the puffiest after steaming. If you want evenly sized buns, I would suggest placing a little bowl of hot water inside the top steamer rack during proofing.

Steaming buns using the Instant Pot is super convenient as all you need is to press a button (I usually go watch TV afterwards). When the timer beeps you just press cancel and after a couple of minutes the buns are ready. If you own an Instant Pot and steamers of the right size you gotta give this method a try.
使用Instant Pot蒸包的好處是完全不用睇火!按鍵調校好時間後便可以輕輕鬆鬆地去看電視,時間一到跑回廚房再按取消鍵,多待一會兒便可以吃了!大家若有Instant Pot和尺寸適合的蒸籠也可一試。

For other variations, please visit my blog posts Purple Sweet Potato Swirl Steamed Buns (Mantou), Chocolate Swirl Steamed Buns (Mantou) and Bear-Shaped Chinese Steamed Buns (Mantou).

Chinese Steamed Buns (Mantou)

Makes 12


500 g (100%) all purpose flour (I used organic unbleached all purpose flour)
50 g (10%) granulated sugar (I used organic cane sugar)
4 g (0.8%) active dry yeast
275 g (55%) milk, room temperature
20 g (4%) grapeseed oil


中筋麵粉(EC用有機無漂白麵粉) 500克 (100%)
細砂糖(EC用有機蔗糖) 50克 (10%)
活性乾酵母 4克 (0.8%)
牛奶(室溫) 275克 (55%)
葡萄籽油 20克 (4%)

Directions 做法

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar and yeast. Make a well in the center then pour in the milk and oil. Stir with a pair of chopsticks or a spatula until a shaggy dough forms. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside for 10 minutes.

Scrape dough onto a lightly floured working surface and knead until dough is smooth and elastic. Cover with plastic wrap and rest for 5 minutes.

With a rolling pin, roll dough on a floured surface or silicon mat into a rectangular shape. Give it a letter fold then a quarter turn. Roll into a thin rectangular sheet again. If there is any air bubble, pop it with a pin.

Flatten the ends of the long sides and lightly brush dough surface with water. Roll the dough into a log lengthwise and pinch to seal the seams. Roll evenly into a log.

Trim off both ends with a sharp knife. Divide the log evenly into 12 pieces. Place each portion on a piece of parchment paper square with seam side down.

Fill inner pot of Instant Pot with 4 cups of warm water. Place a tall trivet inside then top with a steaming rack and 4 pieces of dough. Set two bamboo steamers over the Instant Pot and place 4 pieces of dough in each steamers. Put the lid on and allow to rise until the dough is 1.5 times its original size, around 30 to 40 minutes. When slightly pressed the dough will spring back slowly.
Instant Pot內鍋倒入4杯暖水,放入高身蒸架及蒸片,先放四個饅頭,上面放兩層竹蒸籠並各放四個饅頭,蓋上蒸籠蓋待麵糰發酵至1.5倍大(約30至40分鐘),發酵好的麵糰用手指輕按表面會慢慢回彈。

Press the Sauté button and set timer to 25 minutes. When time is up, press the Cancel button and wait for 5 minutes. Open the lid slightly to let steam escape. Wait for 3 more minutes before removing the lid completely (this will prevent dramatic temperature change which causes shrinkage and wrinkled skin). Serve hot or warm.

Stovetop Steaming: arrange prepared buns into two bamboo steamers, spacing them out evenly. Fill a wok with some warm water then set the steamers on top. Cover with lid then let rest until the buns are about 1.5 times its original size. Bring water to a boil then reduce to medium heat and steam for 15 minutes. Turn heat off and let rest for 5 minutes. Open the lid slightly and wait for 3 more minutes before removing the lid completely
煮食爐蒸法:麵糰排放在兩層竹蒸籠內,麵糰間要留空間,放在已注暖水的鑊上,蓋上蒸籠蓋發酵至1.5倍大,從冷水開始蒸,水滾後轉中火蒸約15分鐘 ,關火待5分鐘後打開蓋子留小縫散熱,3分鐘後才取出饅頭。

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5 thoughts on “Chinese Steamed Buns (Mantou) 鮮奶饅頭

Add yours

      1. Thanks! I found a nice cedar steamer set on Amazon.
        p.s. Maybe this is useful for others. My instantpot is 6 quart Nova Plus model. And the steamer size that fits my instantpot is 27 cm outer diameter.


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