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Sweet Potato Steamed Buns

A festive bao with a spicy bean filling.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 1 hr 45 mins
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Vegan
Servings 10 buns



  • 1 cup non dairy milk
  • 2 tbsp raw cane sugar
  • 1 pack instant yeast
  • 1 medium sweet potato
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp backing powder
  • 3 1/4 cup flour
  • turmeric optional


  • 250 grams kidney beans
  • 1 large red onion
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 handful celery leaves
  • 1 tsp 5 spice
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 adjuma pepper (optional)
  • to taste salt + pepper



  • Start by chopping the onion, garlic and carrot. Sauté these in some oil on a medium/low heat for about 5 minutes (If you don't eat oil try using water). Now add the remaining ingredients and cook for about 10 minutes while mashing some of the beans in the process, this will make filling the buns a bit easier, while adding a nice texture to the filling. Add salt and pepper to taste and let the filling completely chill.


  • To make the dough we start by activating the yeast. Take a bowl and add the warm water and sugar and add the pack of yeast. Now let this bloom for about 5 to 10 minutes in a warm place.
  • Once the yeast has bloomed add the oil, mashed sweet potato, backing powder and flour to the bowl and mix until you get a soft and dough. I let the food processor mix the dough for about 15 minutes or so. You can also kneed it by hand. During this process you can add turmeric to enhance the colour. Now add the ball of dough to a bowl, cover it and set it somewhere warm to let it rise for about 60 minutes.
  • Once the dough has doubled in size take kneed the dough a little and separate the dough into little balls. Using a rolling pin flatten them out until about 1/4 of an inch and add a small table spoon of the filling in the middle. Now pinch to close the tops and roll it into a little ball.
  • Add a piece of parchment paper in your steamer and place the buns on top. I used a large steamer so i steamed about 5 buns at the time, keep in mind that they grow inside the steamer. Steam the buns for about 15 minutes and they are ready to be served. Enjoy.