chinese chicken steam buns
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 12 buns
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 12 packaged frozen steam buns (at least); get them from the frozen food aisle at an Asian grocery store; in a pinch, use small flour tortillas instead for an Asian-inspired "taco"
  • 4 cups fresh snow peas (also known sometimes mange tout), julienned (cut into thin strips)
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon miso paste
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 bunch radishes, thinly sliced
  • ½ seedless English cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup distilled vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt (plus extra for seasoning)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • optional, for serving: fresh cilantro, roughly chopped peanuts
  1. Make ahead: put vinegar, sugar and 1 teaspoon salt in a small saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring until the sugar and salt are dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Put the radishes and cucumber in a nonreactive bowl (glass or plastic) and pour the vinegar mixture over it. Cover with plastic wrap and let cool to room temperature before refrigerating up to a week before serving.
  2. Rinse the chicken breasts and pat dry with paper towels. Season both sides with salt and pepper.
  3. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add olive oil and heat until shimmering. Add the chicken breasts and cook, 3-5 minutes per side, until browned and cooked through. Remove the pan from heat and transfer the chicken breasts to a plate and set aside.
  4. Prep the steam buns: Fit a plate inside of a large pot with a lid. Remove the plate and add about 2-3 cups of water. Heat the water until it is barely simmering, then carefully put the plate back inside the pot. Arrange the frozen steam buns on the plate and cover the pot. Steam the buns according to the package directions, usually between 8-10 minutes.
  5. Make the slaw: whisk together the miso, rice vinegar and sesame oil. Pour over the snow peas in a medium-sized bowl. Sprinkle the sesame seeds over the top, and toss to combine.
  6. Whisk together the hoisin sauce and mayo in a large bowl. Using two forks, shred the chicken breasts and add to the large bowl. Toss to combine.
  7. Serve immediately with steam buns, radish and cucumber pickle, cilantro and crushed peanuts.
Recipe by Grits and Chopsticks at