Bao or Steamed Buns


  • 2⅓ cups (300 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp yeast
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • ½ tbsp vinegar
  • ¼ cup milk
  • ¾ cup (180 to 200 ml) warm water
  • ¾ tsp baking powder
  • Oil for brushing
  • Chicken sautéed in soy sauce
  • Coleslaw
  • Mayonnaise mixed with sriracha (ají (Peruvian pepper) sauce), to taste
  • For the dough for the rolls, put the flour in a bowl. In the middle, place the sugar along with the yeast and sprinkle the salt around the edges. Add the vinegar and milk and mix with the flour. Gradually add the water, mixing until you have a soft but not sticky dough. Transfer to the counter and knead until you have a smooth and elastic dough.
  • Let rest covered for 1 hour or until the dough has doubled in size. Once it has risen, stretch out on a lightly floured counter. Sprinkle with the baking powder and then form a cylinder. Cut the 8 pieces and roll into a ball. With the palm of your hand, roll out each ball until you have a 4 in (10 cm) circle. Brush one face with oil and then fold. Place on a floured tray while preparing the other buns.
  • Cover the Instant Pot® rack with aluminum foil. With a skewer, poke holes all over the surface and brush with oil.
  • Place the stainless steel inner pot inside the Instant Pot®, add 1 cup of water, insert the rack with aluminum foil and place 3 buns on top.
  • Close and lock the Instant Pot® lid. Make sure the steam release handle is turned to Sealing. Press Steam, pressure level Low, and set time to 8 Minutes.
  • When done cooking, press Cancel and turn the steam release handle to Venting. Once all the pressure has been released, open the lid and remove the rack with the buns. Repeat the process with the rest of the buns, making sure to fill the pot with enough water.
  • Serve the buns with shredded chicken, coleslaw, and sriracha sauce.
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