The Meal Planner

Gyoza (pronounced "gee-oh-za") are Japanese potstickers filled with ground pork and shredded cabbage and flavored with garlic, ginger and sesame oil. The combination is lethal; death by dumpling overload. Every time my husband and I go out for Japanese we order these puppies, only to be left wanting more and more. $5.95 for 6 dumplings split between two people doesn't cut it for me. I found dumpling wrappers at our Asian Supermarket and then I researched and experimented with filling recipes for the last six months so that I could make these at home. The results make my waistline want to scream because I could eat two dozen of these to myself.

Gyoza are prepared by first pan frying to crisp up the bottom and then steamed to finish the cooking. You get both the pillowy softness from being steamed and a nice little crispy edge as well. If you enjoy these at restaurants, you will be surprised how simple they are to make at home. You can find most ingredients in your regular supermarket, but a few you may need to venture to an Asian market to get. Make sure the wrappers are marked specifically "gyoza wrappers" or "dumpling wrappers". It is definitely not the same to substitute these with spring roll, egg roll or won ton wrappers.

Get ready to gorge yourselves my friends.


Makes 72 dumplings

1 lb ground pork
1 lb bag of coleslaw (or 1 lb cabbage finely shredded)
1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated or minced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp sugar
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame oil

1 package of gyoza skins (also called Shanghai dumpling wrappers)
1/4 cup water
1 tsp cornstarch

Before you start making the gyoza, prepare your workspace. Get out a large baking sheet and moisten a clean kitchen towel or paper towel until just damp. In a small bowl mix together the water and cornstarch.

In a large mixing bowl mix together the pork, cabbage, ginger, garlic, sugar, soy sauce and sesame oil until well combined.

To begin filling your gyoza, hold a dumpling wrapper in one hand. Dip your finger in the cornstarch water and moisten all around the outside edge of the wrapper.

Place a heaped teaspoon of filling in the middle of the wrapper.

Fold the gyoza wrapper in half and pinch in the middle.

To make a pleat, you'll need to make a small fold to the left of the middle.

Pinch that together.

Make another fold to the left of the pleat you just made and pinch together.

It will look like this.

Make the same pleats pinching them together on the other side until the dumpling is completely sealed.

Your cute little pot sticker is now folded and ready to stand up....

In the palm of your hand or on a hard surface, stand the gyoza up and tap to make a flat bottom.

I've looked at pictures in dumpling cookbooks and they have many more pleats than I do but this works for me, takes less time and this is what ours look like at our local Japanese restaurant. You can get fancy and add more pleats if you like.

When you are all done folding and making the potstickers, you could at this point place your whole baking sheet in the freezer. The gyoza will freeze in about an hour or two and can then be placed in a ziplock bag. This prevents them from freezing into a big potsticker ball. When you are ready to use them, just pull them out of the freezer and add an extra minute or two for cooking time.

Whether cooking these fresh or frozen, get out a large non-stick skillet that has a tight fitting lid. Place a couple teaspoons of oil in the pan and turn the heat up to high. Get a 1/2 cup of water ready and place on the counter beside you. Place the gyoza in the pan on the flat side with their pleats sticking up. Depending on the size of your pan you should be able to fit about 12 or so into the pan (if I'm serving this as a meal for 4, I have two frying pans going at once). After about a minute or two the bottoms of the gyoza will be browned and crispy. Grab the lid to the frying pan in one hand and the 1/2 cup of water in the other. Quickly pour the water into the pan and put the lid on. Turn the heat down to low and set a timer for 10 minutes. The dumplings will finish cooking in the pan by steaming.

After 10 minutes remove the lid of the pan. If not all the water is gone let them sit another minute or two to let the water evaporate and let the bottoms of the gyoza get crispy again. Remove to a serving dish. In the Japanese restaurant, they serve them with crispy side up.

If you want to impress your company they look really pretty pleat side up. You choose.

Serve the gyoza with your choice of dipping sauce:

#1 Soy Sesame Dipping Sauce

2 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil

Mix ingredients together in small bowl and serve with gyoza.

#2 Tangy Chili Dipping Sauce

3 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tsp chili oil (Layu chili oil)
Dash of chili pepper (Ichimi togarashi)

Mix ingredients together in small bowl and serve with gyoza.

Sauce #1 is made with easily accessibly ingredients that most people already have in their pantry. Sauce #2 is the same as the one served in our Japanese restaurant and I found the chili oil and chili pepper at our little Asian market. Both are great dipping sauces. I serve both to give my guests choice. My personal favorite is the two sauces mixed together.



The recipe sounds long and complicated but I assure you it is not. Mayyyyyybe slightly time consuming, but it's the kind of thing that you can make on a Saturday afternoon, throw in the freezer and have a restaurant-worthy meal in 15 minutes on a weeknight. If I could inject this stuff into my veins I would. I can never seem to make a big enough batch. My husband and I inhale them.

Stumble Upon Toolbar
22 Responses
  1. kylee Says:

    Wow! those look awesome!

    I've made them myself too, but I totally cheated and bought myself a potsticker tool (see my blog for details) and it cuts the pleating part down by around 90%

    Mine is a different recipe to yours too, so for a variation - I'm going to add cabbage like you did.

    Thanks for a great post!

  2. Katie Says:

    These look great! I can never find dumpling wrappers, though. Where do you get them?

  3. Anonymous Says:

    These look delicious!

    I get the dumpling wrappers at the local Asian market. They are in the freezer or the refrigerator.

    I also cheat and have the potsticker tool. ;)

    I'm with you though, I could eat these by the dozen, easily. Sooo good!

  4. Carol Egbert Says:

    I love potstickers. This looks delicious. I didn't realize that there was a difference between wonton wrappers and dumpling wrappers.
    Thanks for an interesting post.

  5. Unknown Says:

    Wow! You are so talented to figure this recipe out. I totally can not experiement like this....

    Looks delish. Makes me hungry!

  6. Brenna Says:

    Thanks for this recipe. I made a huge batch last night and I am so happy that I can pull them out of the freezer whenever the craving starts.

  7. Dumplings rule!! Every culture has them( ravioli, pierogi Etc...)

  8. Simply Life Says:

    These look AMAZING and are so impressive! Great photo!

  9. Vickie Says:

    These look fabulous! I love trying something totally different . . . and who doesn't LOVE potstickers? I'm fairly certain that Mr. H would do a home improvement for homemade potstickers. ;)

  10. Unknown Says:

    Dear Meal Planning101, those dumplings looks incredible! "Wild Thing", you make my heart sing! Loved and saved this recipe. I shall revisit you soon. Thank you for sharing.
    Cheers, Gaby
    You can always visit me at

  11. Thank you everyone for such wonderful comments!

    USA Kiwi - I checked out your post and the gyoza tool makes beautiful looking dumplings! If I find myself making these often I may have to get one of those ;)

    Kat - As Anonymous said, I get them at my Asian market. I always find them in the refrigerator case. I don't by any means have a big Asian market that I visit, just a small family own store that is jam packed with ingredients. Hopefully you have some kind of Asian market in your area.

    Brenna - Wow, you made a batch already! Once they are made I LOVE being able to pull them out of the freezer for a super quick lunch or dinner.

    Ed - It's true, I'm a Polish girl so we eat bucket loads of pierogi's. Maybe explains my Dumpling Overload Syndrome :)

    Vickie - Haha, it's definitely worth seeing what your husband could get done around the house for a batch of these!

  12. Terry Says:

    Thank you for showing this method. My husband and I are totally addicted to gyoza when we go to a Japanese rest....I can't wait to make them....Thanks again.

  13. Everything looks beautiful -- I love your blog's layout and photographs. Fantastic!

  14. Terry - you and your husband sound like me and mine!

    Erin - Thank you so much.

  15. reagan Says:

    These look so awesome. I do OAMC so I'm going to add these to my list for my Dec. cooking session. I will have to switch it up a bit since one of the gals I OAMC with doesn't eat pork ... perhaps ground turkey ...

  16. Thank you for posting your recipe. Your Potstickers look gorgeous...

  17. Firstly, this recipe is beautifully illustrated.

    Secondly, the gyoza turned out perfectly and they were delicious.

    Thank you for a such a great recipe. I've posted a review on my blog with full credit to you and your terrific site.

  18. I love your photos of all the little gyoza in pretty rows! I'm doing a link roundup on my site and I included a link to your recipe here :) You can find the link roundup at


  19. Anonymous Says:

    followed the recipe and these came out great! for $10 bux u cant beat it!

  20. Anonymous Says:

    You mention moistening a towel ... did I miss what that is used for?

  21. Anna P Says:

    The moistened towel is to cover the (yet-unused) wrappers to keep them from drying out while you are wrapping them.

    All - I find the wonton wrappers near the produce at my grocery store - by the tofu.

  22. Kevin Says:

    Do you pre-cook the pork? If so - what is the preferred method?