It is always a fight between those who like to boil food and those who like to fry food. Some of them state that boiling or steaming food is better for health. The others protest that fried food is tastier than boiled or steamed, and there is nothing harmful in eating fried food if you eat it in normal amounts.
The situation with dumplings is even worse. Some prefer only steamed dumplings, as this is the most common way of cooking them.
The others state that frying them is also possible and it is a lot tastier. It adds a crispy crust to dumplings and makes them tastier.
If you cook them correctly without using a lot of oil, there will not be so much of a difference in calories between them.
So, let’s find which of them is better.
Which Is Healthier?
If we are referring to the fat content and calories then the steamed dumplings are the best option to consider.
Speaking about a healthier way of cooking dumplings, we should take into account many things. If you suffer from any digestive disorders, it is recommended to eat steamed dumplings. They will be healthier, as they are easily assimilated.
When you eat fried dumplings, it doesn’t mean that they are harmful or dangerous. The problem here is connected with the fact that people use too much oil while cooking them.
But of course, it all depends on the frying method. If you fry the dumplings in a pan with a little bit of oil, you should worry about too much. If we are referring to deep-fried dumplings then these contain a lot more calories than the regular ones and it is better to opt for the regular pan-fried dumplings or the steamed ones.
The difference is in the calorie amount. So, the steamed version with pork will have about 80 calories, and the fried version will have about 90. The difference is not so great. Oil will add some calories to dumplings.
The way out here is to cook them and let them later leave to reduce extra oil. In fact, if you eat some fried dumplings, nothing terrible can happen. It is true if you don’t have serious health problems when fried food is forbidden.
A Better Alternative to the Fried Dumplings
If you like fried dumplings a lot but you are not ready to consume more calories, you may consider air-frying them. By making the dumplings in the air fryer, you will get a similar texture and taste to the pan-fried dumplings but you will use almost no oil to make the dumplings.
So, if you have an air fryer under your hands, I highly recommend trying to make the air fryer dumplings. I’m convinced that you will like them and that this method will become one of your favorite ways to cook dumplings.
To Steam or Fry? What Should You Consider?
It all depends on your preferences on how you plan to eat the dumplings. As a general rule, I would say that if the dumplings are with meat, then consider frying them as they will become crispy and will fit better with the meat dumplings.
If you plan to serve the dumplings near a plate of rice, soup, or some vegetables – opt for the soft steamed dumplings as they are easier for your stomach.
Difference Between Steaming and Frying Dumplings?
The difference between them is the way they are cooking. To make the steamed dumplings, you need to cook them in boiling water while for the fried dumplings you are frying them on a pan or wok using a little bit of oil.
Are Steamed Dumplings Better Than Boiled?
Steamed dumplings are a traditional way of cooking them. So, some people prefer boiling them. In fact, the process looks very close. Both ways are connected with water’s impact on the product. The only difference is how it is done.
When cooking boiled dumplings, you put them just inside water. They will be boiling there inside. It is important to shift them, otherwise, they will stick to each other.
It will turn into a big ball of dough with meat. That is one thing when steamed dumplings are preferable to boiling.
There is always a risk of overcooking dumplings while boiling them.
When you overcook dumplings while boiling, they will fall to pieces. So, it is preferable to cook steamed dumplings carefully as you will not like the result that you will get if you overcook the boiled dumplings.
How Many Dumplings Per Serving?
It all depends if you serve only the dumplings on the table? Or you prepared other dishes near it. If you serve only the dumplings then you should consider around 15 dumplings per person.
How to Steam Dumplings: The Main Rules
If you want to steam dumplings correctly, you need to know some facts.
First, you must understand that there can be two types of steamers. They all have their advantages and disadvantages.
If you cook in a steel steamer, you shouldn’t be afraid that you overcook and burn dumplings. If you use bamboo one, you should be careful.
Follow the guide to cooking dumplings correctly:
Cover the steamer with something. It can be either cabbage leaves or parchment paper. It is useful if you don’t want your dumplings to stick to the steamer.
Take a sauce or a wok. Fill it with some water. 1/2” will be enough. Place the steamer. If you use a bamboo one, it is recommended to put it in the way to touch the water. It will prevent the process from burning.
Heat the dumpling. You need to boil water. The recommended time to cook them is about 10 minutes. Mind the water level. If you see that there is almost no water, add some. Try not to use cold water, as it makes the process longer.
How to Know When Steamed Dumplings Are Ready?
What I like about the steamed and boiling dumplings is that they tell themselves when they will be fully cooked and you should remove them from the pan. When the dumplings will be raw, they will sit at the bottom of the pan, as soon as they will boil and will be ready to eat, they will plump and float on the surface of the water.
How You Can Cook the Dumplings?
As many people exist, as many ways of cooking something one can imagine. Even such simple dishes as dumplings can be cooked in several ways. People can add different seasons to dumplings and cook them with various fillings, including fish and vegetables.
There are three traditional ways to cook dumplings.
- Steam cooking. This means of cooking roots in China, where dumplings are usually steamed. This way requires a steamer, that can be of two types. It can be either a steel one or a bamboo one. A bamboo one is preferable. It creates an atmosphere of national cuisine. When you cook dumplings steamed, you will get a well-cooked dish with a soft texture and pleasant taste.
- Boiling is another way of cooking dumplings. This way of cooking is considered to be the simplest for many people. At the same time, it is not always so. You just need to make a sauce and some water to make them ready. The process of preparing it includes putting dumplings into boiling water. Don’t forget to shift them if you don’t want to get a sticky ball.
- The final way to cook dumplings is to fry them. Some people prefer to cook dumplings just this way. They like it because they are getting crispy and a little bit brown. When you want to cook fried dumplings, you need to take a pan. A nonstick pan will be of great use. Then, add some oil to make the dumplings brown. When they are almost ready on both sides, add some water to steam them. Cook it closed-lit for about 5 minutes. Then open it and let the steam and water evaporate. As a result, you will get crispy fried dumplings.
What to Choose: Steamed or Fried Dumplings?
If you plan to make the dumplings from scratch at home then there is no difference while you are making them from scratch.
First of all, you need to prepare the dough. Then choose good meat for filling them. Besides, some people prefer cooking dumplings with shrimp.
Then add meat to the dough and be ready to cook them.
Then it is time to choose the best way to cook dumplings. If you decide to please yourself with steamed dumplings, it will usually take you about 10-15 minutes.
It will make them soft and dumplings will melt while eating.
Fried dumplings are another popular way of preparing a nice dish. So, if you decide to fry them, it will take you about 10 minutes. The difference here is that, while frying, it is necessary to add oil. The oil will give dumplings a nice crispy texture.
In fact, the difference between fried and steamed dumplings is in their look and texture. Fried dumplings look brownish and crispy, steamed dumplings are white and softer.
It is not easy to say exactly what type of cooking dish is better. You will get more taste when you eat fried dumplings. If you want something soft and neutral, it is better to pay attention to steamed dumplings.
As we see, it is hard to answer what method of cooking to choose while you are making the dumplings. Everyone has their preferences. If you are looking for the healthiest way, then opt for steamed dumplings.
Especially if you are planning to serve them near a plate of rice or soup. If you like the crispy texture of the dumplings or you plan to cook some dumplings with a meaty filling, consider frying them.
If you worry about the extra calories that you will get during the frying process, consider cooking the dumplings in the air fryer if you have one under your hands. You will get the same crispy texture without using oil.