Chances are good that when you think of dumplings, a specific type of dumpling comes to your mind. Maybe you think about Chinese dumplings that are filled with veggies and steamed to perfection. Perhaps you think about the southern dish of chicken and dumplings that is considered classic comfort food.
There are all kinds of dumplings. Every country on Earth has its own regional cuisine and one food that seems to be universal is the dumpling. By loose definition, dumplings are filled pockets of dough which include wontons, ravioli, kreplach, pierogi, gnocchi, Jamaican patties, gyoza, knishes, empanadas and samosas.
They can be filled with sweet or savory food or ingredients can be mixed into the “dough” itself. Dumplings can be steamed, boiled, baked or fried. Some people put them in soups or stews while others dip them in sauce. No matter how different the various types of dumplings may be, one thing they have in common is that they are a delicious type of comfort food.
Let’s take a culinary tour and see all kinds of global dumplings that prove great things come in small packages.
1. Perfect Fried or Steamed Veggie Dumplings
Whether you call them dim sum, dumplings or pot stickers, these delectable Asian snacks are hard to resist. These Perfect Veggie Dumplings can be prepared either steamed or fried, but since this type of decisions can be tough, we suggest making these vegan dumplings both ways.
2. Plantain Dumpling Soup
Love plantains and stew? Then you’re sure to love this hearty Plantain Dumpling Soup. The flavors are perfectly balanced – a bit of heat from fiery green chiles, sweetness from the plantains, a delicate aroma from fresh lemongrass – your taste buds will be so happy!
3. Creamy, Cheesy Homemade Ravioli
It’s easier than you think to make your own Creamy, Cheesy Homemade Ravioli. The filling is completely dairy-free, not that anyone will be able to tell based on how creamy and delicious it is. Serve these up with a sauce of your choosing and watch them disappear.
4. Homemade Butternut Squash Potstickers That Beat Anything You can Find in a Restaurant
Home cooked perfection…better than any restaurant! These Homemade Butternut Squash Potstickers are not only unique, they are delicious right out of the pot and even cold. Serve with the sesame-tamari dipping sauce.
5. Beans and Plantain Ravioli
These Bean and Plantain Ravioli are a unique twist on the classic pasta dish. Freshly made pasta is filled with a lightly spiced mixture of beans and plantain, topped with sautéed red pepper and garlic. Make it fancy by garnishing with fresh herbs and small mounds of julienned cucumber.
6. Vegan Malai Kofta (Potato Dumplings in Spiced Tomato Sauce)
This Malai Kofta is a vegan version of a favorite Indian dish. Traditionally, this dish is a rich combination of fried potato, veggie, and cheese meatball/dumplings floating in a creamy spiced tomato sauce. Served with rice or flat bread, this vegan and gluten-free version is really a treat.
7. Steamed Chinese Bao With Peanut Butter
You might know about Chinese bao or steamed buns but these Steamed Chinese Bao with Peanut Butter may be a whole new thing for you. Filled with peanut butter, these may not be traditional but they are really delicious.
8. Vegan Matzo Ball Soup
Matzoh balls are a type of Ashkenazi dumpling made from a mixture of matzoh meal, eggs, water and oil and served in soup. This egg-free Matzo Ball Soup is just like the classic but vegan.
9. Potato Gnocchi
This Potato Gnocchi is delicious, easy to make and so filling. Serve with your favorite pasta sauces like marinara, pesto or even a vegan alfredo. The sky is the limit with these pillow soft and totally comforting dumplings of joy.
10. Rosemary Chicklins and Dumplins Stew
Chicken and dumplings is a famous southern dish. This Rosemary Chicklins and Dumplins Stew is a vegan version of the classic made with vegan chicken. This is good home-cooking made kinder and healthier.
11. Jamaican ‘Beef’ Patties With Cheese
Just like authentic patties, these vegan Jamaican “Beef” Patties have a spicy filling of “beef” and cheese surrounded by a dough that’s flaky and flavorful. They can be filled with greens, veggies, tofu, seitan or whatever you love.
12. Succulent Tortellini With a Nut Cream and Wild Mushroom Sauce
Tortellini are Italian dumplings that are flat pockets of dough filled with veggies and cheese and then boiled and served with sauce. These Succulent Tortellini stuffed with spinach and mushrooms are served in a delicious nut cream and wild mushroom sauce.
13. BBQ Lentil Baozi
These BBQ Lentil Baozi are made from scratch, with love. Lentils and sweet potatoes in a homemade BBQ sauce, all nestled inside a warm and pillowy soft steamed bun. What’s better than a baozi? Not much. If you’ve never had one, you’re in for a real treat.
14. Phulkopir Shingara (Bengali Samosa)
Sometimes a dish is greater than the sum of its ingredients. These Bengali Samosas have a crisp and flaky crust and a gentle cauliflower and potato filling accented with bits of crushed peanuts that make this an absolutely sublime and sensational creation.
15. Vegan Matzo Ball Vegetable Soup (Gluten-Free Option)
This Matzo Ball Vegetable Soup is very much like the classic except this is vegan. Of course the soup functions primarily as a venue for the matzo balls, a yummy type of dumpling.
16. OMG…These are the Most Perfect Vegetable Dumplings
These Perfect Vegetable Dumplings are filled with shiitake mushrooms, spinach, baby bok choy and so many other good things. Serve them with the soy-agave dipping sauce.
17. Tempeh and Kale Steamed Gyoza
The Japanese make sweet dumplings out of rice flour called dango. Gyoza are made with extremely thin wrappers and can be filled with any filling you like. These Tempeh and Kale Steamed Gyoza are easy to make and so delicious. Serve them with the sweet chili dipping sauce.
18. Potato Samosas with Coconut-Mint Chutney
These Potato Samosas are tasty little pillows filled with potatoes, edamame and warm Indian spices. The crust is easy to work with and bakes up flaky with a lovely golden color. The coconut-mint chutney is the perfect creamy, fresh complement to the hearty and spicy potato filling.
19. Vegan Russian “Meat” Pierog and Beet Salad
Pierogi can have either sweet or savory fillings. These vegan Russian Pierog has a dairy-free sour cream pastry, vegan protein crumbles and is served with the traditional beet salad.
20. Crispy and Soft Veggie Gnocchi With Spinach and Garlic Sauce
Gnocchi are small dumplings rolled and shaped from a mixture of potato (usually) and flour. Made of sweet potatoes and spinach, this Veggie Gnocchi packs a healthy punch! Crisp, yet soft, you get the best of both worlds. Make this a weekly dinner and you’ll never get complaints!
21. Crispy Lasagna Pockets
Have you ever thought to yourself that lasagna would be so perfect if it was just a bit more dip-able? Well, then you’re in luck! This recipe for Crispy Lasagna Pockets takes the magic that is lasagna and places it neatly inside crispy wontons for a perfectly portioned, delicious take on a classic Italian entree.
Wow! Every single one of these dumpling recipes looks and sounds incredible. If you are only used to eating one or two types of dumplings, try these global recipes. It’s like taking a trip around the world without ever leaving your kitchen.
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Lead image source: Tempeh and Kale Steamed Gyoza