Gua bao is a flavorful dim sum staple that typically consists of braised pork belly stuffed into a soft, fluffy steamed bun. Sometimes referred to as just “bao,” the handheld treat is one of the most popular dishes in Taiwan. But gua bao doesn’t always have to contain pork belly. Tons of TikTok chefs have put their own spin on the street food classic. Check out these five delicious TikTok takes on gua bao.
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1. BBQ brisket bao
TikTok chef @aaronalterman repurposed some leftover brisket into a delicious bao snack. After making the buns, he sears the brisket and brushes it with a bit of soy sauce. Then he spreads hoisin sauce on the inside of the bun and assembles his bao by adding some cucumber, carrot and cilantro.
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2. Huang Men chicken gua bao
TikToker @its.chloeh places a braised chicken and potato filling inspired by the traditional Huang Men Ji recipe inside the pillowy bao. Usually the bao pockets are plain, but @its.chloeh coats hers with some green onions and oil for a little extra flavor before steaming.
3. Black squid ink bao with calamari
This black bao is certainly an attention grabber! Inspired by Chinese-American musician ZHU, TikToker @hwoo.lee adds squid ink to the bun recipe to give it its dark color. He fills the bao pockets with deep-fried calamari for a very squid-y snack.
4. Salmon and egg gua bao
This TikTok offers two recipes for the price of one! The first recipe involves pan-frying a mixture of egg, green pepper, soy sauce, garlic paste and sesame oil. Once the egg is cooked, fold it up omelette-style and place it in your bao for a very unique breakfast! Meanwhile the salmon gua bao calls for coating salmon in a Korean marinade and pan-frying it before it goes inside the bun. Yum!
5. Pork belly gua bao
There has to be at least one pork belly gua bao recipe on this list. This simple recipe calls for a marinade made from gochujang, soy sauce, hoisin sauce and sugar. TikToker @bamboooyah then coats it on slices of pork belly before pan-frying them. Place your cooked pork belly inside the bao, top with some cucumber slices, and you’ve got yourself a small snack that’s big on flavor.
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