Red bean dumplings in ginger broth

Red bean dumplings in ginger broth – an easy gluten-free recipe!

Special everyday cakes and treats

Do you love fresh ginger and light refreshing desserts?  Can you get your hands on a can of sweetened red bean paste and some glutinous rice flour from the local Chinese store?  That’s all you need to make these amazingly delicious gluten-free red bean dumplings in just 20 minutes.  You can add black or white sesame seeds to the mochi-like dough for extra taste and texture.  I used to buy these typical Chinese dumplings frozen but homemade ones are so much better and not very sweet at all.  So fast, so easy, so yummy!  Plus the fresh ginger broth is delightfully refreshing and must be kind of heatlhy. 🙂

Red bean dumplings recipe with glutinous rice flour

Red bean dumplings in ginger broth

This is a typical and very common Chinese or Asian dessert.  I was fortunate to have my ex-flatmate from Shanghai and various Chinese friends making it during Chinese New Year and other festivals.  I also recently found some in Barcelona, in an authentic Chinese restaurant complete with basic wooden stools and very low prices.  Heavenly and delicious (the dumplings not the wooden stools).

They’re not quite the same with canned red bean paste but still not too sweet, tasty and very convenient.  If you’ve never tried them I recommend you do.  And if you’ve had Japanese mochi you’ll notice the dough is similar.  Personally I love these dumplings’ soft slightly springy dough texture and the taste of the red bean paste, perfectly set against the slightly sweet zingy ginger broth.  It must be because it’s gluten-free, what with the rice flour and all, but it feels really light on the stomach.  So let’s make this super fast and amazing dessert!

Red bean dumplings recipe with glutinous rice flour

Red bean dumplings in ginger broth


This is an adaptation of the lovely glutinous rice dessert dumplings in The Dumpling Sisters Cookbook.  For my dumplings I had to use a little more water for the dough but less water in the ginger syrup.  I also adapted the other quantities and tried white sesame seeds as well as black (the black seeds are attractive but the white ones are really tasty – both add a lovely subtle crunch).

As the Dumpling sisters say, you can play around with these dumplings and even use other fillings!  I tried a few balls with Nutella and organic peanut butter but they were more delicate and didn’t marry as well with the ginger broth (aka syrup).  The sweetened red bean paste I bought contains 60% red beans, sugar and water so it must be vegan (some brands contain animal fat apparently).  It doesn’t taste too sweet but if you prefer there are many recipes online for homemade red bean paste.

Red bean dumplings in ginger broth

Red bean dumplings in ginger broth

Ingredients (for 15 or 16 balls, 2 servings – halve the quantities for an individual bowl or freeze half for later)

Ginger syrup

ginger broth or syrup

  • 400ml/1 and a third cups water
  • 4 to 6 slices of fresh ginger (peeled), to taste
  • 2 teaspoons brown or golden caster sugar, to taste (you can also use maple syrup or honey)

Ginger broth - red bean dumplings part 1 illustrated recipe

Note:  Oops, I wrote ‘taste’ before I realised it would be on top of my cartoon nose!  Um… arty?!

Remember you can make a light ginger broth or simmer it longer to have it darker and stronger.


Making red bean dumplings 1

  • 125g/1 cup glutinous rice flour
  • 1 teaspoon white toasted sesame seeds or 1/2 teaspoon black toasted sesame seeds, to taste and optional   
  • 110ml/g water, at room temperature

Red bean filling

  • 16 level teaspoons sweetened red bean paste (canned)

Red bean dumplings part 2 illustrated recipe

Making red bean dumplings 2

Don’t worry if your balls are a bit messy and have very small cracks – they clean up in the boiling water.  🙂Making red bean dumplings 3

Eating and storing

Wait 5-10 minutes before eating because the broth and balls will be very hot.  If you have too many put extra balls in the freezer on baking paper on a tray for an hour until frozen then transfer to a plastic bag or airtight tupperware container.   Boil from frozen (it probably takes a little longer – about 10-15 minutes).

free from friday

And share …  I’m taking these to Free from Fridays hosted by Emma@Freefromfarmhouse.  Please do visit her for some great ‘free-from’ recipes.  And have some dumplings!  🙂

Red bean dumplings in ginger broth

Red bean dumplings in ginger broth

Hope you’ve enjoyed these red bean dumplings in ginger broth.  Wishing you a refreshing and zingy end of the week and weekend ahead.  With lots of happy baking, no-baking and eating of course. 🙂  Lili x

Posted by

Baking on Sundays with my French mum was a lovely part of my childhood. Later I experimented with baking books or internet recipes and did the pâtisserie course at Le Cordon Bleu Paris. Still trying out new recipes and inventing cakes with influences from all around the world, including some healthier ones. Yes, love cakes!!! Hope you'll love them too and have fun baking. :)

18 thoughts on “Red bean dumplings in ginger broth – an easy gluten-free recipe!”

  1. I love this dessert – or anything with bean paste. The recipe is so easy, and I think I will make some bean paste – I think the recipe is that good.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Hilda! That’s very kind. This is my first bean paste dessert and I can see why you love the stuff. Must try to make a cake with it, and also make bean paste like you. Maybe you could tell me about a good recipe for it some time. 🙂


  2. Pingback: Ginger and lime marshmallow cloud tarts recipe for Spring and the April cake collection | lili's cakes

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