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July 15, 2010 / Michelle Ferris

Easy Gluten Free Gyoza / Dumplings!

Gyoza is such a delicious, easy food that can be made in many ways. When I went gluten-free, Jesse (being the dear that he is), took up the diet with me. Since then, we’ve both lamented about the bags of gyoza in our freezer that we can’t eat. Finding a gyoza without wheat in them has been impossible for us, thus far. None of the large Asian markets near my house carry anything like that (which, given that the traditional Asian diet has so little wheat flour in it, surprised me). This was something we were going to have to figure out on our own.

We played with different pastry/dough recipes and flours, but found that the easiest way to make gyoza gluten-free is by wrapping the filling in rice paper like Vietnamese fresh/summer rolls and serving warm, just like that.

Let me give you the quick outline of how this recipe will work…

  • Cut your rice paper first. Here are some examples of the rice paper. I buy the larger ones and cut them into thirds while they are dry, but feel free to use whatever size or shape you are comfortable using:
Vietnamese Rice Paper

Vietnamese Rice Paper

  • Make your filling first.
  • Steam cabbage (you can use it to separate the gyoza so that they don’t get stuck to each other on the plate. Also, it’s a tasty garnish.
  • Wrap up your fillings in the paper and set on serving tray (with garnish between).
  • Serve.
  • Insert in mouth.
  • Chew.
  • Savor.
  • Love life.
  • Swallow.
  • Repeat last 5 instructions.

Shiitake Mushroom Filling:

  • Cooking spray
  • 4  C  diced Shiitake mushroom caps (about 3/4 lb)
  • 4  C finely chopped green cabbage
  • 2  Tbsp chopped green onions
  • 2  Tbsp Mirin (sweet rice wine) – or, if you don’t have it, use 2
  • 2  Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce / Tamari (wheat/gluten free)
  • 2  tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1/2  tsp salt
  • 1/4  tsp dark sesame oil
  • 4  garlic cloves, minced

Pork Filling:

  • 1/3 cup chopped cabbage (boiled)
  • 2 Tbsp chopped green onion
  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp soy sauce or Tamari
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 20 gyoza wrappers

Leek Filling:

  • 2 leeks
  • 1/2 lb ground pork
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp soy sauce / Tamari
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 egg

Thai Chicken Filling:

  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast, minced in food processor (do not sub ground chicken, it is too fatty!)
  • 1 tablespoon roasted rice powder (available in Asian markets or you can make your own by roasting raw rice in a dry skillet till brown)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 spring onions, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped shallots
  • 3 tablespoons chopped mint leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon garlic and red chili paste

Japanese Style:

  • 2 cups napa cabbage
  • 1/2 teaspoon plus 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 gloves garlic, minced and crushed into a paste
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 2 tablespoons chopped Chinese chives
  • 6 ounces ground pork
  • 1/3 pound medium shrimp, shelled, deveined, and chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon Japanese soy sauce / Tamari
  • 1 tablespoon sake
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil

Method:

Here’s your more-or-less instructions… it’s essentially the same across the board, with one exception in the Japanese Style.*

  • For all recipes, it is easiest if you steam some leftover cabbage pieces beforehand to serve gyoza on. They will not stick to the cabbage, so it makes for a great “separator.”
  • Cook meat.
  • Drain fat.
  • Cook other vegetables and when halfway done.
  • Add vegetables, sauces, and seasonings.
  • Cook until done.
  • Use warm water to soak rice paper wrapper. Once pliable (don’t let it get too pliable… it won’t seal up or hold the filling well), stuff with filling.
  • Pinch, roll, or fold shut. Origami, GO!
  • Serve and enjoy!

* Japanese style calls for the cabbage to be lightly pickled. Once chopped up, rub cabbage with salt in a bowl. Let rest for half an hour. Rinse twice, thoroughly, then proceed with recipe.

Gyoza Dipping Sauce:

  • 3 Tbsp soy sauce (or soy-sauce replacement, such as tamari)
  • 2 Tbsp seasoned rice vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp chili oil
  • 1/2 tsp fresh grated ginger (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp thinly sliced scallions
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9 Comments

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  1. Lori / Jul 17 2010 9:37 pm

    Hi! I was going to a party where a few people do not eat gluten, and I had just envisioned gf dumplings in rice paper, and then I found your very timely post! I didn’t use your recipes exactly, but I did derive much inspiration and empowerment from them; thanks for posting! After much thought, I prepared 2 fillings, cabbage/shitake/garlic chive, and a Thai-inspired chicken filling. I ended up making small rolls, because, try-as-I-might, I couldn’t get the rice papers to make anything resembling dumplings. (I did try cutting papers in half and in thirds.) I would love to hear more about how you formed dumplings! Also, did you serve your dumplings cold or warm?

    In the process, I learned a couple of things about working with rice paper that was helpful. First is about buying rice paper – check this article out: http://www.vietworldkitchen.com/blog/2009/06/vietnamese-rice-paper-buying-tips.html I tried rice papers with just rice and with rice and tapioca, and the ones including tapioca (which is also gf) were much easier to work with! The other helpful hint is to work on a damp surface, like a slightly damp kitchen towel. This prevents the papers from sticking to your surface.

    Happy cooking!

    • myspork / Jul 19 2010 9:32 am

      Ah! That’s great news with the rice/tapioca wraps! I will have to try that out – thank you for the suggestion.

      To answer your questions, I was cutting the rice paper sheets into quarters or thirds (if I remember right, thirds worked better for size, but quarters were fine, too).

      I had some trouble at first getting the rice paper to stick to itself enough to look like any sort of dumpling. However, I found that if I soaked the paper a little less, it had more absorptive powers or something, perhaps, and stuck to itself better.

      For folding, I ended up either folding them up into little packets or envelopes of goodness, which worked the best and held together the best, or being lazy (when serving for just myself or my sugar) and just pinching it shut. When just for myself, I figure so long as it holds it well enough to go from plate to mouth, it’s all good.

      I found that using a surface like a textured cutting board worked well – so long as you use something that won’t absorb/put out moisture, you’ll do okay.

      I serve my dumplings warm, but I’d be willing to bet that they’d be wonderful cold, too. Something I haven’t done yet, but will next time around, is try serving it warm, but just before serving, throwing a little brush of oil on them, then tossing them under the broiler for a minute to crisp it up. Might work, might not. If you beat me to it, let me know how it goes!

      How did you like the fillings? The thai filling is one of my favorites. A good dipping sauce for that is fish sauce, sugar & vinegar. Pizzaz and balance however you’d like, but that’s essentially the base. 🙂

  2. Lori / Jul 19 2010 8:25 pm

    Hi, Michelle,

    Well, I just couldn’t get a dumpling or gyoza shape solid enough to take to a party. But, the rolls were beautiful, and everyone loved them. Actually, they were MUCH easier than regular goi con, the Vietnamese fresh rolls – that filling is always poking everywhere because of the sprouts and lettuce. I think in the future I will be more likely to use a cooked filling. Also, I ended up serving them cold – hot day, and laziness – and I never even got around to a dipping sauce. But, they sure disappeared anyway:-) (Actually, I think people always appreciate, or at least, enjoy, real, prepared food, instead of just another hummus and cheese platter.) We had some that I had saved back tonight (my “failed” dumpling shapes,) and they were even tastier warm; I steamed them just a bit to revive the rice wrappers.

    Not that I measured anything – I am far too lazy (and yes, confident) for that – but my vegetable filling was pretty close to the mushroom one you posted. I added a full bunch of garlic chives, and I am quite sure I used lots more of everything flavorful – cuz I like strong flavors. In the end, this was great, since I never made the dipping sauce.

    I really LOVED them, until I tried the chicken ones…

    My chicken filling started with lots of shallots, then garlic, then ground chicken, and then I added cilantro (lots), black pepper (lots), scallion, lime juice, toasted rice powder, and soy sauce (my fish sauce was possibly not gf) They were great – reminded me of larb gai, possibly one of my favorite dished on earth. (Gives me ideas to make larb gai rolls – wouldn’t that be a hit!) So many possibilities in these rolls! I am thinking lemongrass, lime leaf, mint… YUM!

    I really appreciated your article! It’s funny – I don’t know what it is – but I do an awful lot of food and recipe research online, and I OFTEN end up on gluten free blogs. I am not usually looking for gf recipes or anything. I am thinking that people that have to be extra-conscious of their food get great use of the internet for community and sharing. Life is good in this 21st century!

    Take care, and good luck with your food and dietary explorations.

    Lori

  3. myspork / Jul 20 2010 8:22 am

    I’m so glad it worked out for you (at least, in the rolled shape). I agree – cooked filling is easier to work with than typical Vietnamese spring rolls. Darned bean sprouts are always trying to tear holes in my rice paper. But both are pretty dang tasty.

    Glad you enjoyed the recipes! The Thai Chicken recipe is actually from a larb gai recipe that I have posted on my blog as well. We made it one night and stuffed it in dumplings and just about died and went to heaven. So that might be why you were reminded of it. 🙂

    I find that I also often end up on gluten-free, low-carb, vegan, or vegetarian blogs. And by nature, I eat everything. It’s only recently I’ve had to start cutting things out of my diet (I have a recipe for a Blue Cheese Pork Tenderloin on my blog that is out of this world… if you can eat it, you should. Don’t think I will ever be able to again… *sniffle*).

    I think that typically (I may be being presumptuous, but…), those who know how to cook also know that they don’t have to rely on cream, butter, fat, bread, meat, frying… or any of the “less healthful” techniques or ingredients to make a dish come together. So when we search for recipes, we don’t come up with the recipes that are worse for you / more allergenic / fattier / heavier / reliant on staples.

    Sounds like you’re a pretty good cook yourself – do you have any favorite recipes to share?

    • Lori / Jul 20 2010 12:37 pm

      Recipes – sure – I used to post, just a bit, on Recipezaar.com (which is, sadly, known as food.com now) Two favorite recipes are Tod Mun Goong http://www.food.com/recipe/tod-mun-goong-thai-fish-and-shrimp-cakes-173998 and Sirniki (Russian Cheese Pancakes) http://www.food.com/recipe/sirniki-russian-cheese-pancakes-177812 I have some other recipes there, also, but mostly stopped posting and participating regularly because recipezaar and internet food sites were just getting to be the biggest suckhole of my time. I mean, I was playing a cooking game, participating in some forums, etc – I never had time to COOK! Additionally, I just cook, don’t really stop to measure stuff much.

      Yeah – I consider myself a pretty good cook, and so do some others. BUT, my definition of a good cook is someone who DOES cook! Not so common, but we’re out there! And, like you, I do consider food an area of interest, a hobby, etc., and I love to explore all about it.

      Take care!

      • myspork / Jul 20 2010 12:50 pm

        Oh my God. I want those fish & shrimp cakes in my mouth. Right now. My stomach literally grumbled at me. I can’t eat a lot of what’s in them right now, but I am going to try to figure out how to substitute all the things I can’t with all the things I can. And hopefully it will be delicious! Thank you for sharing those!

        Blogging and posting can definitely take up time – I had to give up my daily diary because I simply didn’t have time to keep it up to date.

        I’ve never been one to measure, either. It’s really more of a guesstimation. I only started measuring recently – and it was so that I could relay measurements to others, not so that I could cook for myself (the lack of measuring is probably why I’m an awful baker).

        I wish you the best in all your cooking adventures. Might even end up poking you some time for advice on a recipe, too.

        Feel free to subscribe to my blog if you haven’t already. Thanks, and take care!

  4. KatyDel / Jan 24 2014 6:56 pm

    Instead of warm water, use an egg wash on both sides of the rice wrapper. Wrap up filling. I use a vacuum sealer to pull all the air out and I freeze them. Once hardened, you can fry or I usually spritz them with cooking spray and put them in a preheated oven at about 325 degrees. It’s taken 2 years of experimenting, but I finally got it right. Yay! Real Eggrolls and Dumplings!

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