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A bowl of beef dumplings in a hot & sour soup.
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5 from 12 votes

Beef dumplings in hot & sour soup (酸汤水饺)

Beef dumpling soup is warm, comforting and addictive. This recipe provides a step by step guide on how to make it at home.
Prep Time40 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Rest30 mins
Total Time1 hr 30 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: Dumplings
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 513kcal
Author: Wei Guo


For the dough

  • 300 g all-purpose flour plus extra for dusting
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 160 ml water see note 1

For the filling

  • 300 g minced beef see note 2
  • 1 stalk scallions finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon minced ginger
  • ½ teaspoon ground Sichuan pepper or Chinese five-spice powder
  • 1 teaspoon Shaoxing rice wine
  • 1.5 teaspoon salt
  • 150 ml water or stock
  • 150 g Chinese chives finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil

For the spiced vinegar

  • 80 ml black rice vinegar
  • 80 ml water
  • 2 teaspoon brown sugar or regular sugar
  • 1 piece Chinese cinnamon(cassia cinnamon)
  • 1 star-anise
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 pinch fennel seeds
  • 1 pinch Sichuan peppercorn

For EACH bowl of soup

  • 1 teaspoon light soy sauce
  • ½ teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon Chinese chilli oil or to taste
  • 1 pinch salt
  • Spring onion chopped
  • Coriander chopped
  • Toasted sesame seeds
  • Papery dried shrimp Optional


Make the dough

  • In a mixing bowl, add flour, salt and water. Knead with your hands (or a stand mixer with a fitted dough hook) to form a medium-firm dough (See note 1).
  • Leave to rest for 30-60 minutes. Then knead again until smooth.

Mix the filling

  • Mix beef, spring onion, ginger, ground Sichuan pepper (or five-spice powder), rice wine and salt.
  • Swirl constantly in the same direction while gradually adding water/stock into the mixture until all the liquid is completely absorbed.
  • Add Chinese chive and sesame oil then mix well.

Prepare the spiced vinegar

  • Simmer all the ingredients for the spiced vinegar for 5 mins (cover with a lid) then drain through a sieve. Discard the spices. Set aside.

Roll the wrappers

  • Make a loop with the dough (about 2.5 cm / 1 inch in diameter). Cut it into about 40 equal sections.
  • Press each piece into a small disc with the palm of your hand.
  • Use a rolling pin to flatten it into a thin disc (please refer to the video). Always remember to dust with flour if the dough sticks.

Shape the dumplings

  • Place a spoonful of filling in the middle of a wrapper. Fold the wrapper, then seal it. You may do it any way you like as long as you make sure there is no leakage (See note 3).

Cook the dumplings

  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil over a high heat. Gently slide in half of the dumplings (see note 3). Cover with a lid.
  • When the water returns to a boil, pour in about 120 ml of cold water then cover. Repeat the same procedure another two times (see note 4).

Assemble the bowl

  • While waiting for the dumplings to cook, prepare the serving bowls. Pour 1-2 tablespoons of spiced vinegar into each bowl. Add all the remaining ingredients. Spoon in cooked dumplings along with some water from the pot.

How to freeze dumplings

  • Freeze raw dumplings right after they are assembled. Lay them on a tray (dust with flour or line with parchment paper). When totally frozen, transfer them into an air-tight bag.
  • No need to defrost before cooking. Follow the same cooking procedure described above.


1. The ideal flour water ratio may vary slightly depending on the brand of the flour and how you measure it (Measuring flour with cups is less accurate). To make wrapper rolling easier, the dough shouldn’t be too soft.
2. For better taste, choose minced beef which has a higher fat content.
3. Please refer to my post on "Ten ways to fold dumplings" which includes a turorial video. 
4. It is advisable to cook dumplings in batches (20-25 dumplings at a time) to avoid them sticking to the bottom of the pot.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 513kcal