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Monday, June 24, 2024

Napa Cabbage Dumplings with Vegan Fillings for Lunar New Year

Ring in the new year with the cutest and yummiest vegan dumplings that can bring you good luck! These napa cabbage-shaped and napa cabbage-filled dumplings are the most fantastic addition to your festive table.

Do you know the name for napa cabbage in Chinese – Bai Cai, sounds exactly like Hundred Fortune? That’s why napa cabbage is a symbol of good luck and wealth in Chinese culture and a very popular image you can find in interior decoration sculptures, jade pendants, paintings, and of course, dumplings!

For the Lunar New Year celebration especially, we love to serve food that’s not only delicious but also a good omen. So these napa cabbage dumplings are just the perfect dish! The green “leaf” part of the dough is made from spinach juice and the fillings are a mixture of umami vegetables and meaty tofu.

This is a recipe that’s much easier to follow with a visual aid so watch the video below and reference the measurements for all the ingredients in the written recipe. Have fun and Happy Lunar New Year!


For the green dough –

150 gram all-purpose flour

75 gram spinach juice

1/4 teaspon salt

For the white dough –

150 gram all purpose flour

60 gram water

1/4 teaspoon salt

For the fillings –

12 oz extra firm tofu

4 cup chopped napa cabbage

1 carrot

4 shiitake mushroom

2 scallion

3 garlic clove

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 tablespoon rice vinegar

2 tablespoon coconut amino

1/4 teaspoon white pepper

pinch of salt

1 tablespoon arrowroot powder or cornstarch

cooking oil


– Bring a pot of water to boil, quickly blanch a handful of spinach, about 90 grams;

– Blanch the spinach for about 10 seconds, until just soft, quickly run them under cold running water, transfer to a blender, add a splash of water to help it get going, and blend till completely smooth, measure 75 grams of the juice;

– In a mixing bowl, mix together the flour and salt for the green dough, stir while you pour in the spinach juice, shreds of dough will form;

– Start pinch the shreds of dough together and knead for 1 minute, cover, and let it rest for 15 minutes;

– Meanwhile, repeat the same process with the white dough, but instead of spinach juice, use water, also cover and let it rest for 15 minutes;

– When the 15 minutes is up, knead each dough separately again for 1 minute, the dough should be fairly smooth and soft by now, cover each dough again and let them rest for 1 hour;

– While the dough is resting, make the fillings;

– Chop all the vegetables, separate the scallion greens and whites;

– Heat a drizzle of cooking oil in a large nonstick pan, fry off the scallion whites and garlic first for about 1 minute till aromatic;

– Crumble the tofu into the pan, break down any big chunks with your spatula, add in the soy sauce to season and color the tofu, stir to coat evenly and let the water evaporate;

– Add in all the rest of the vegetables, vinegar, coconut amino, salt, and pepper, stir and cook till the vegetables are just soft, not mushy;

– Finally sprinkle in the scallion greens and the arrowroot powder, stir to combine and the filling now should be able to stick together well;

– Once the dough is done resting, knead again for 1 minute or so, shape into a ball, and poke a hole in the center with your thumb;

– Turn the dough around your thumb and work to expand the hole, then break the “donut” into a strip, roll into a cylinder shape, repeat the same process for both colors and make sure they are the same length;

– Take the green dough cylinder, roll it out into a rectangle, check again if it’s the same length as the white dough cylinder, adjust if it’s not;

– Sprinkle a little bit of water on top of the green rectangle and spread it evenly, the water will act like a “glue”, place the white dough on top, and wrap the white part completely with the green dough;

– Roll the wrapped dough into a longer cylinder and use a sharp knife and slice it into 1/4 inch thick disks;

– Sprinkle some dry flour onto the disks so they don’t stick together or to your board, roll each disk out with a rolling pin while turn it with your other hand, so the entire round is rolled out evenly;

– Put 1 to 2 teaspoon of filling on the center of the wrapper, depending on how big or small you rolled them, fold the wrapper in half, and lightly press the sides together;

– Place the edge of the dumpling on top of both of your index fingers, press down firmly on the edge only with your two thumbs while squeezing the “belly” of the dumplings towards the center;

– Repeat to finish all the wrappers and fillings;

– Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil, gently drop each dumpling into the water one by one;

– Carefully push the dumplings and let all the them turn around in the water either clockwise or counterclockwise to make sure they’re not stuck on the bottom;

– Once the water boils again and the dumplings are floating to the surface, they’re ready, strain them out;

– Serve hot as is or with your preferred dip, enjoy!

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