Pillowy soft buns with a spicy, meaty, and umami Mapo Tofu filling. A perfect marriage between Taiwanese-style buns and Sichuanese flavor.
Wait.. Vegan Mapo Tofu (麻婆豆腐) in a bun?! Believe it or not, I actually came across these gems at a street vendor specializing in plant-based buns in Taipei, Taiwan. While the idea of stuffing tofu in buns seems intuitive (given its meaty texture is just like minced pork), it really came from a place of hardship and poverty.
Those who couldn’t afford to have meat on their dinner tables resorted to tofu as protein, leading to an explosion of plant-based recipes as people tried to replicate meatless versions of the foods they were familiar with, including this invention that I’m showcasing today. Perhaps this is why people often dub Taiwan as “Vegan Heaven.”
I love making these buns because I could make a bunch of them at a time, then freeze all of them for whenever I need a quick & delicious bite. They are re-heat-able by microwave (2 mins on high heat), but you could also re-steam them for arguably better texture.
Why is the fermented black bean crossed out on the recipe? This looks great! BTW 🤗
Hi Mark! Hmm that’s weird, it’s not crossed out on my end. Perhaps you were hovering over it? I have a feature where you can cross out ingredients that you already have, but that should just be on your end!
Yep I think you’re right- I must’ve accidentally touched that ingredient and it crossed it out 🤷🏻♂️🤣
These turned out so good! We made too many vs the filling we had, and decided to put apple cinnamon in them as a dessert. You can put almost any combination you want as the insides. A++!
So glad you liked them, Grace!! Apple cinnamon sounds amazing, perhaps I should make some dessert bun recipes too! =)
Made these last night and really loved both the texture and the flavour. Thank you for sharing. I struggled with a couple of aspects of the recipe, which others may encounter, too: if your settings allow it, it may be helpful to add proofing time (i.e. 2 hours) to the prep time. Likewise, it may be more accurate to increase the cooking time to reflect both the cooking for the fillling and the steaming + resting time for the buns (i.e. closer to 30min in total). I’m a bit of a novice with buns and still struggle with how best… Read more »