Nude Dumplings, the gluten free pork and cabbage dumplings

by Beyond Kimchee on September 18, 2012 · 34 comments

Nude dumplingsI promise this will be G rated post.

These are called Nude Dumplings.  They are nude because they are not wearing the wonton wrappers like the traditional dumplings would.  For being a very modest cook, I thought of covering them with fig leaves (joking!), but I decided to go with a different material instead.  There is a thin shear layer covering them to hold their shape, which makes these guys almost see through look.

Anyhow they are very simple to make dumplings and takes far less time than traditional kinds.  And they taste awesome!
You can use any dumpling filling you like. I used ground pork, cabbage, and Asian chives — my favorite combination.  Since they don’t wear any wonton wrappers, they can be great gluten free dish as long as you use naturally brewed soy sauce for seasoning.

Shall we start the today’s nude episode?


First, chop the cabbage into small pieces.


Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt and toss well.  Let it sit 10-15 minutes. This will extract the moisture and your cabbage will pretend dead.


Squeeze them out as hard as you can to show your love.

When you love someone, don’t you feel like squeezing them? Or is it just me being weird…?


Now combine ground pork, the nearly-squeezed-to-death cabbage, Asian chives (or green onion), garlic, soy sauce, sesame oil, salt and pepper, and an egg yolk.

Wait! I think I am forgetting someone again.


Ahhh! Ginger.  Grate her in an elegant manner.


Mix well together.


Roll the mixture into 1″ balls or whatever size you desire.


Coat them with corn flour. You want to coat them twice to hold their shape during cooking.


Here, the ready to go dumpling balls! Make sure you boil a pot of water on the side while you are rolling them.


When the water comes up to a gentle boil, drop these guys.


Boil them for about 3 minutes stirring occasionally so they don’t stick to the bottom of pot. They will float to the top when they are fully cooked.


Take them out and serve with soy sauce+vinegar dipping sauce.


Nude Dumplings

I like my dumplings served in a broth to keep them moist.  I used simple anchovy-kelp stock but any broth will be fine.  Or you can simply serve as is, as soon as they come out of water

You will love these dumpling balls, especially if you can’t have gluten.   It is simple to make, quick to cook, low in calorie, gluten free, and most importantly, delicious!!!

What else is better?

Nude dumplings

Nude Dumplings; for those who can’t have gluten
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
  • ¾ lb ground pork
  • 3 cups Napa cabbage finely chopped
  • ⅓ cup Asian chives finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • some cornstarch to coat
For the dipping sauce
  • 3 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1½ tablespoon vinegar
  1. Toss chopped cabbage with ½ teaspoon salt in a bowl and let it sit for 15 minutes to wilt. Squeeze out the cabbage with hands to remove as much moist as you can.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine pork, cabbage, chives, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, rice wine, sesame oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and pepper. Mix all together and make into 1" balls.
  3. Bring a pot of water to boil.
  4. Pour cornstarch in a shallow bowl and roll the balls to coat evenly around. You want to coat them twice to hold their shape.
  5. When the water comes to gentle boil, drop the balls a few at a time to cook, about 3 minutes, stirring with a spoon occasionally so that they don't stick to the bottom of the pot. They will float to the surface when they are fully cooked.
  6. Take them out and serve with the dipping sauce while hot.

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{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

Anne Lamps September 18, 2012 at 10:31 pm

Brilliant! Thank you. I have been contemplating GF dumpling wrappers for the celiac members of our family, but this is even a better idea. We lived in China for 4 years and miss this tummy-warming meal. Very exciting.


Ann Mah September 18, 2012 at 11:01 pm

What a cute idea! I love homemade dumplings but don’t really love the tedious process of making them. This is a wonderful shortcut!


Esther September 18, 2012 at 11:13 pm

Yup, sounds like my type of dumpling! No need to wrap. Almost like chinese meatballs. Now i am getting hungry…douh.


kitchenriffs September 18, 2012 at 11:42 pm

Fun recipe title! And a really great recipe. These are so easy, no one now has an excuse not to make their own dumplings. Excellent post – thank you.


leaf (the indolent cook) September 18, 2012 at 11:48 pm

Love how you call these nude dumplings! And yes, I like to pinch and squeeze my loved ones as a sign of affection. (Hopefully they are used to it by now…)


Nami | Just One Cookbook September 19, 2012 at 1:14 am

Haha! I love your title/recipe name! I’ve never coated in corn starch to make dumplings like this. I have to make this. Especially the weather has been cold and this reminds me of comfort food. Looks delicious!!


Jennifer Angell September 19, 2012 at 9:25 am

I just made these for dinner and they taste fabulous! The dipping sauce sends it right over the top! We added some ginger to that and some chili oil for heat. I am curious how you got yours coated so well…our coating almost all came off.


Holly September 19, 2012 at 10:40 am

Make sure your water is not a full vigorous boil, otherwise your dumplings will dance around up and down in the pot which cause their coating to come off. Gentle boil over medium-low to low heat will be sufficient.


Leanne @ healthful pursuit September 19, 2012 at 6:17 pm

This is such a great idea! I’ve missed dumplings since I went gluten-free over 5 years ago. Great to know I can make them at home quite easily. Fantastic!


Marta@What Should I Eat For Breakfast Today September 19, 2012 at 6:39 pm

I love dumplings. Polish ones are a bit different, but also very tasty. I like the filling so much!


Ken September 20, 2012 at 1:50 am

Noona, thank you for your recipes…reminds me of home-cooked food! I enjoy your blog a great deal.


Holly September 20, 2012 at 6:13 am

Thanks Ken.


Vicky @ Ursine Cuisine September 20, 2012 at 6:47 am

Great idea to coat in cornflour! I am married to a dumpling-loving mainly-GF man, and I’ve never considered this! Brilliant idea, thank you so much for posting!

I bet these would be great in a broth, with some noodles and green veg – wonderful. And yet more beautiful pictures, Holly!


Marina@Picnic at Marina September 20, 2012 at 11:24 pm

Hi Holly, It is just one of our favorite meals: easy, quick, and delicious. Versatile too. I make some variation of it, and my men can’t have enough of it. Served with kimchi it flies out of the plate in seconds! :)


shuhan September 23, 2012 at 12:12 pm

what a great idea for a less heavy sort of dumpling! for chinese new year last year, I decided to do away with dumpling skins too, but instead, I used cabbage as wrappers! go do a search for cabbage dumplings if you’re interested. It was a lot lighter and pretty to boot, but of course took a fair bit of work as compared to yours, which I’m definitely going to try! they look delicious!


Kathryn September 24, 2012 at 1:16 am

Hi, I have just stumbled on to your blog and I love it!! Thank you! I was inspired to buy a bunch of new products online, because of your recipes, and I came home last week to a huge, smelly, fantastic package and I couldn’t be happier. My only problem is that I didn’t notice until today that the dried anchovies needed to be frozen…I don’t know who else to ask…do you think they will be okay (they were on the counter for 4 days)? I tend to air on the side of not waisting food so I want to use them, but do you think it is dangerous? I don’t think so, but I don’t know. I can’t wait to cook your delicious recipes and the idea of ordering and waiting, well, it’s torture! Help!


Holly September 24, 2012 at 7:00 am

Hi Kathryn
The reason we keep the dried anchovies in freezer is so that they don’t get damp in a humid climate, which tend to attract mold. You can definitely use the anchovies even if they were sitting on the counter for over 4 days. No worries!
It is advisable to keep some Korean dried goods, such as anchovies, chili flakes, seaweeds and etc, in the freezer for longer storage. I am glad that you found my blog. Please, let me know if you need any assistance.


Kathryn September 26, 2012 at 7:30 am

Thank you!! I’m going to start cooking now! Yay!!


Stephanie October 3, 2012 at 2:13 am

These look delicious! I am definitely excited to try them out.


Natalie November 22, 2012 at 3:21 pm

Looks great! I just stumbled uppon this recipe on Pinterest and I know it’s gluten free but what if I want to use something else instead of cornstarch? Will coconut flour work? Do you have any grain free suggestions?


Holly November 22, 2012 at 4:56 pm

Hi Natalie, I don’t have any experience with coconut flour so I can’t assure you if it would work. But I think as long as it has some binding capacity in them it should work. Also Potato flour will be another option.


Karen February 8, 2013 at 10:14 pm

Hello! Be very careful about the gluten-free thing here. I’m sure you all know that naturally fermented sauces are the best choice.

Just be careful too about people who are also wheat sensitive or intolerant. For those people, any wheat in any form is a painful experience that will not go unnoticed.

Some of us can’t have soy either, but that’s another thing altogether. :(

Eggs either.

Or peanuts.

Or anything with citric acid…like chilies and stuff. :'(


Catalina August 24, 2013 at 10:04 am


This recipe looks great, I’m going to try them this weekend! I was wondering what you think about storage, can left over be frozen and steamed or boiled at a later date like other dumplings?



mee October 12, 2013 at 11:37 pm

Can you deep fry them too?


Holly October 15, 2013 at 1:04 pm

I don’t see why not.


Lily Chang January 17, 2014 at 1:23 am

Are these meatballs freezer friendly?
Would you suggest freezing pre or post cooking?


Holly January 17, 2014 at 8:45 am

Yes, you can freeze them. I would freeze them before you roll them out to meatballs, otherwise they will stick together.


CHANTAL January 29, 2014 at 3:33 pm

exellent post I love Dumpling since I can’t get the wrapper where I leave so this is fine for me thank you for sharing!!!


BK February 28, 2014 at 2:14 am

Hi Holly
I love dumplings in soup too!
Could you share how to make the anchovy soup and any other soup that this recipe can go with.


Holly March 1, 2014 at 2:24 pm

Simmer a few pieces of large dried anchovies and dried sea kelp in water for 10 minutes. Discard the anchovies and sea kelp. Season the broth with Korean soy sauce for soup or salt, and black pepper. You can always dress up with vegetables for a better taste.


Nhung May 21, 2014 at 12:33 pm

Hi Holly :)

I’m new to this website, but I have to admit that it was love at first sight!!!
Your recipes are so easy to understand and to cook! I love them as does my mother loves the outcome <3 <3 ___<?

Thank You so much for everything!!!!

Best regards,



Holly May 22, 2014 at 8:34 pm

Thank you, Nhung
I am very happy that you and your mother like my recipes.


Ariel Marie June 5, 2014 at 12:16 pm

just curious, how many dumplings does this recipe make?


Holly June 6, 2014 at 7:27 pm

Hi Ariel
It depends on the size of the dumpling balls you make. I think this recipe will feed 2-4 people depends on how hungry they are.


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