Dumpling is a broad class of dishes that consist of pieces of dough (made from a variety of starch sources), oftentimes wrapped around a filling. The dough can be based on bread, flour, buckwheat or potatoes, and may be filled with meat, fish, tofu, cheese, vegetables, fruits or sweets. Dumplings may be prepared using a variety of methods, including baking, boiling, frying, simmering or steaming and are found in many world cuisines.[1]

Traditional Korean mandu
Main ingredientsFlour, potatoes, bread or rice
Uyghur manta, a variety of Central Asian manti


Banku and kenkey are defined as dumplings in that they are starchy balls of dough that are steamed. They are formed from fermented cornmeal. Banku is boiled and requires continuous kneading, while kenkey is partly boiled then finished by steaming in corn or banana leaves.[2]

Tihlo—prepared from roasted barley flour—originated in the Tigray region of Ethiopia and is now very popular in Amhara as well and spreading further south.[3]

Souskluitjies, melkkos, and dombolo are dumplings found in South Africa. Souskluitjies are a steamed sweet dumpling, sometimes made with plain flour and sometimes with the addition of dried fruits or other flavors. They are often served with a syrup flavored with cinnamon or a custard sauce.[4][5] Melkkos are formed by putting milk, one teaspoon at a time, into a dry flour mixture. The flour clings to the milk and forms dumplings, which are then boiled in a mixture of milk and butter. They are served hot and sprinkled with cinnamon sugar.[6] Dombolo, also called ujeqe or steam bread, is made from steamed dough and is often consumed with different kinds of side dishes such as chicken stew, beef stew, oxtail stew, lamb stew, or tripe.

Caribbean and Latin America

Homemade empanadas from Salta, Argentina

Empanadas, whose stuffing, manufacture and types are numerous and varied, differ from traditional dumplings in that they are deep fried, steamed, or oven baked, and excess dough is not cut off.


In Barbados, dumplings differ from those in other Caribbean islands in that they are slightly sweetened. The dumplings may either be of the flour or cornmeal variety. The dough is flavoured with spices, cinnamon and nutmeg. Dumplings are often added with Bajan soup where they are boiled. When found in Stew food, the dumplings are steamed along with ground provision, salted meat, plantain and other ingredients which is served with gravy.


In Brazil, there are:

  • Pastéis, thin dough that can be stuffed with a variety of fillings, such as condimented ground beef, chicken, shrimp, mixed vegetables, cheese, or even sweets, then fried or baked.
  • Empada, muffin-shaped dough stuffed primarily with chicken, cheese or seafood.
  • Coxinhas, thick dough stuffed with chicken (could be described as a chicken corn dog), and
  • bolinhas, which literally translates to 'little balls', can have meat (bolinhas de carne) or cheese (bolinhas de queijo) inside.

All dumplings can vary of its original form with optional additions like olives, onions or spices. They are commonly served in parties. In some parts of Brazil like Rio it can be found in fast-food kiosks ('open restaurants', where there is no door to enter and you are served in a big counter) in the city or in parks, but it is very diffused through the territory, so you could find people who also eat these on the beach or after work with beer, fruity alcoholic drinks known as batidas, or non-alcoholic beverages like soda or refrescos (a sort of juice).


Dumplings are either pan fried using a simple recipe including all-purpose flour, water, and salt made into a thick dough before frying on a pan until golden brown, or boiled in a soup. The fried version is usually served with breakfast codfish as a side.


In Chile, there are pantrucas, a type of flat, elongated irregular dumplings flavoured with fresh parsley and served in soup. In Chiloé, a Chilean southern archipelago, one of the American regions potato is native from, traditional meal are "chapalele", "milcao", "chuchoca", "chuhuañe" and "vaeme". All of them made potato based, cooked or raw and sometimes mixed in different proportions of wheat flour, seasoned with lard. Some are flat and round filled with greaves and fried (milcao); flat boiled (chapaleles, milcaos), similar but bigger to "pantrucas or pancutras" or a roasted roll in a stick (chochoca). Size is one portion and regularly served as bread. Also are served with honey (mainly hot chapaleles, as dessert). In Chile also existing traditional "papas rellenas". Boiled potatoes and flour dough; meat, onion, some cumin filled and fried; served regularly with crystallized sugar over.


In Haiti, doumbrey are elongated flour dumplings. They are made with flour and water, rolled, and boiled in water before being added to soups and stews.


Dumplings come in three forms in Jamaica, fried, boiled, and roasted. All are made with flour, white or wheat, and the white-floured dumplings are often mixed with a bit of cornmeal. These foods are often served with a variety of dishes like ackee and saltfish, kidneys, liver, salt mackerel, etc. and often taste better when refried. A refried dumpling is an already boiled dumpling left over from previous cooking that is fried, which gives it a slightly crispy outer layer and a tender middle. A purely fried white flour dumpling (also known as a "Johnny Cake") is golden brown and looks similar to a buñuelo, often substituting the boiled dumpling, but it is mostly consumed as part of breakfast. Fried dumplings can be made with or without sugar. One popular variation is the Jamaican Festival a cylindrical fried dumpling made with flour, sugar, cornmeal and baking powder. These slightly sweet dumplings are served with all types of traditional Jamaican home food, particularly as a complement to the sweet-and-sour escovitched fish, as well as street food.


"Papas Rellenas" or stuffed potatoes consist of a handful of mashed potatoes (without the milk and butter) flattened in the palm of the hand and stuffed with a savoury combination of ingredients. The stuffing usually consists of sautéed meat (could be beef, pork or chicken), onions and garlic. They are all seasoned with cumin, aji, raisins, peanuts, olives and sliced or chopped hard boiled eggs. After stuffing a ball is formed, rolled over flour and deep fried in hot oil. The stuffed potatoes are usually accompanied by onion sauce consisting of sliced onions, lime juice, olive oil, salt, pepper and slices of fresh peppers. The same dish may also be made with seafood. In some countries, yuca purée is used as the starch component of these Latin American dumplings.

Puerto Rican

In Puerto Rico, dumplings are made of grated tubers such as yuca and malanga with added calabaza, unripe bananas and plantains mixed with flour. These dumplings are a traditional part of Puerto Rican-style pigeon pea soup. Olive oil and annatto are usually added and help the mix from turning brown. The dumplings are formed into small balls and are first cooked in olive oil before boiling. Once the dumplings are crispy on the outside, they are then boiled with added ingredients.

Alcapurria is a popular fried street dumpling that resembles kibbeh. The dough is made from yautía, green banana, and lard and stuffed with meat.

The pastel, a dumpling made from a masa of grated root vegetables, squash, plantains, and unripe bananas, is greatly beloved here, especially around Christmas. The Puerto Rican variety has a tender, slightly wet consistency. The masa dough is mixed with milk and annatto mixed in oil or lard, then stuffed with stewed pork, chick peas, olives, capers or even raisins. The dumplings are then wrapped in a fragrant banana leaf, tied and then boiled or steamed. The origin of pasteles leads back to Natives on the island of Borikén. Pasteles are popular in the Dominican Republic, Hawaii, Trinidad and lately seen in Cuban cuisine.


Pupusas, a thick griddle cake or flatbread from El Salvador and Honduras, made with cornmeal or rice flour, similar to the Venezuelan and Colombian arepa. It is usually stuffed with one or more ingredients, which may include cheese (such as quesillo or cheese with loroco buds), chicharrón, squash, or refried beans. It is typically accompanied by curtido (a spicy fermented cabbage slaw) and tomato salsa, and is traditionally eaten by hand.


In the city of El Callao, domplines are fried and made from wheat. Usually filled with curry chicken and cheese.[7] There are usually present in the carnivals of Calypso de El Callao.

Central Asian

Kazakh/Uzbek/Tajik manti in a steamer

Manti (also manty or mantu) is a steamed dumpling in Central Asian and Chinese Islamic cuisine. It contains a mixture of ground lamb (or beef) spiced with black pepper, enclosed in a dough wrapper. Manti are cooked in a multi-level steamer (mantovarka) and served topped with butter, yogurt, sour cream, or onion sauce. These dumplings are popular throughout Central Asia, including in Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, the Xinjiang region in China and the Caucasus.

Chuchvara is a very small boiled dumpling typical of Uzbek and Tajik cuisine. Made of unleavened dough squares filled with meat, it is similar to the Russian pelmeni and the Chinese wonton, but in observance of the Islamic dietary rules, the meat filling is without pork. Chuchvara can be served in a clear soup or on their own, with vinegar or sauce based on finely chopped greens, tomatoes and hot peppers. Another popular way of serving chuchvara is topped with suzma (strained qatiq) or with smetana (sour cream), Russian-style.

East Asian


There is no unifying word for dumplings in Chinese. What are described as dumplings in English (e.g. the jiǎozi, the wonton, and the many steamed dumplings) are considered distinct from each other.


The jiǎozi (餃子) is a common Chinese dumpling, which generally consists of minced meat and finely chopped vegetables wrapped into a piece of dough skin. The shape is likened to that of a human ear. In China dumplings usually refers to boiled dumplings.[8] The skin can be either thin and elastic or thicker. There is even a statement that the skin of a dumpling determines the quality of the dumpling.[9] Popular meat fillings include ground meat (usually pork, but can instead be beef or chicken), shrimp, and even fish. Popular mixtures include pork with Chinese cabbage, pork with garlic chives, pork and shrimp with vegetables, pork with spring onion, garlic chives with scrambled eggs. Filling mixtures will vary depending on personal tastes, region and season. According to region and season, ingredients can include oyster.[9] Dumplings are usually boiled, steamed or fried and continue to be a traditional dish. Some people will place a coin or candy inside the dumpling in the hope of obtaining a fortune or having a sweet life,[9][10] on Chinese New Year's Eve and special family reunions. In Northern China, dumplings are commonly eaten with a dipping sauce made of vinegar and chilli oil or paste, and occasionally with some soy sauce added in. However, baozi is not a type of jiaozi.


Jiaozi are served in Chinese families at different times of the year. In ancient times, Jiaozi were not very common and were treated as a luxurious food for the common people. People make Jiaozi to celebrate important festivals and dates.[11]

On the night of Chinese New Year's Eve, Jiaozi are usually served at the stroke of midnight after a big dinner.[11] The name Jiaozi sounds similar to an old saying in Chinese which means “stepping into a new era” and thus carries the meaning when people eat them at the moment of New Year.[12] The remaining Jiaozi are stored in the refrigerator and reboiled or fried for breakfast.

Chinese people also eat Jiaozi on the 5th day after the Chinese New Year in the lunar calendar. There are many forbidden things[13] to do in between the 5 days according to Chinese traditions. People eat Jiaozi on the 5th day, the last day of the New Year period, as a means to celebrate getting out of the forbidden traditions.[14]

On the first day of the hottest days of summer, Jiaozi mark the beginning of the harvest. When people’s storages are filled with harvested wheat, which is made into doughs and Jiaozi to celebrate the success of future harvesting.[15]

Particularly, in Northern China, people generally eat dumplings on the winter solstice in the hope of a warm winter. Extended family members may gather together to make dumplings, and it is also eaten at farewells to family members or friends.


According to legends, Jiaozi was invented in Eastern Han Dynasty between 150-219 CE by Zhang Zhongjing, who was a popular Chinese medicine practitioner. When Zhang returned to his hometown during a harsh winter, he saw many poor people suffering from frostbite in their ears due to the bad governing of the emperor. Using his knowledge of Chinese herbs and medicine, he mixed Chinese medicinal herbs that heat up bodies with lamb and chili in doughs, folded the doughs into the shape of ears, put them in boiling water, and gave them to the poor people. After eating the wrapped dough with herbs and drinking the soup, people’s frostbite heals quickly.[16] In memory of his help to many people, eating Jiaozi became a tradition during the winter.[17][18]

Written records show that jiaozi became popular during the Southern and Northern dynasties (420–589 CE) in China, the earliest unearthed real jiaozi were found in Astana Cemetery dated between 499 CE and 640 CE.[19] [20]


The wonton (Cantonese name) or hún dun in Mandarin (雲呑/餛飩) is another kind of dumpling. The shape is similar to Italian tortellino. It is typically boiled in a light broth or soup and made with a meat or shrimp filling. The skin wrapping for wontons is different—thinner and less elastic—than that used for jiaozi . Wontons are more popular in Southern China (Shanghai, Guangdong, Hong Kong etc.), whereas in Northern China, jiaozi are more popular. Jiaozi, wonton and potstickers are each wrapped differently.


Baozi are a range of Chinese yeast-leavened buns with fillings inside of them. Baozi can be either salty or sweet depending on its fillings. Famous types of Baozi include Cha Sui Bao, Shui Jian Bao and many others.[21] Based on Legends, the filled Baozi was invented by Zhuge Liang, who made baozi and offered to a Chinese God for good luck of military operations.[22]


Tangbao are Chinese dumplings that have soup in them, the most famous of these is the xiaolongbao (小籠包) from the Jiangnan region.

Xiao Long Bao Xiao Long Bao, also known as soup dumplings are steamed dumplings from Jiangsu cuisine that originate in the Song Dynasty. They are prepared in a bamboo basket with either leavened or unleavened dough and are filled with minced pork and/or meat jelly filling.[23]

Other Chinese dumplings

Steamed har gow (shrimp dumplings) served in dim sum
Zongzi wrapped in a bamboo leaf (right) and ready to eat (left)

Another type of Chinese dumpling is made with glutinous rice. Usually, the glutinous rice dumplings, zongzi (粽子), are triangle or cone shaped, can be filled with red bean paste, Chinese dates or cured meat depending on region. Glutinous rice dumplings are traditionally eaten during the Duanwu Festival.

Chinese cuisine also include sweet dumplings. Tangyuan (湯圓) are smaller dumplings made with glutinous rice flour and filled with sweet sesame, peanut, red bean paste. Tangyuan may also be served without a filling. Tangyuan are eaten on the 15th day of Chinese New Year, or the Lantern Festival. In Southern China, people will also eat the sweet dumplings (tangyuan) with shape angle on the top, in the Winter Solstice meaning the harvest in the coming year.[9]

Other kinds of dumplings include as har gow, fun guo, siew mai, Cha siu bao, lo mai gai, crystal dumplings, and several varieties of dim sum.


Japanese dango
Japanese gyoza

Dango (団子) is a sweet dumpling made from rice flour, similar to mochi. Dango is eaten year-round, but the different varieties are traditionally eaten in given seasons. Three to four dango are often served on a skewer.

Gyōza (ギョーザ/餃子) is the Japanese version of the Chinese jiaozi, while Nikuman (肉まん) is the Japanese variant of baozi.


Korean dumplings are called Mandu (만두, 饅頭). It is considered that route through which dumplings were brought into Korea is through the Western Regions. The first dumplings in Korea are seen in the Hyowooyeoljeon(효우열전/孝友列傳) in Goryeosa (고려사, 高麗史), and it is said that they were made by a naturalized Khitan during the reign of King Myeongjong of Goryeo. They are typically filled with a mixture of ingredients, including ground pork, kimchi, Galbi, Bulgogi, vegetables, Cellophane noodles, but there are very many variations. Mandu can be steamed, fried, or boiled. The dumplings can also be used to make a soup called mandu-guk (만둣국).


  • Buuz (Бууз) are Mongolian steamed dumplings, generally made of dough, minced garlic and ground beef or ground mutton. Originally one of the main festival foods during the Mongolian Lunar New Year, but now widely eaten all year round.
  • Khuushuur (хуушууp) are the deep-fried version of buuz. Commonly eaten during the national festival Naadam.
  • Bansh are smaller version of Buuz. Bansh can be steamed, fried, or boiled in a milk tea or a soup.


British and Irish

Savoury dumplings made from balls of dough are part of traditional British and Irish cuisine. Traditionally dumplings are made from twice the weight of self raising flour to tallow, bound together by cold water to form a dough and seasoned with salt and pepper but can also be made using self-raising flour and butter. Balls of this dough are dropped into a bubbling pot of stew or soup, or into a casserole. They sit, partly submerged in the stew, and expand as they are half-boiled half-steamed for ten minutes or so. The cooked dumplings may be airy on the inside and moist on the outside. The dough may be flavoured with herbs, or it may have cheese pressed into its centre.

The Norfolk dumpling is not made with fat, but from flour and a raising agent.[24] Cotswold dumplings call for the addition of breadcrumbs and cheese, and the balls of dough may be rolled in breadcrumbs and fried, rather than cooked in a soup or stew.[25] Vegetarian dumplings can be made with vegetable suet, a type of shredded vegetable fat. When sweetened with dried fruit and spices, dumplings can be boiled in water to make a dessert. In Scotland, this is called a clootie dumpling, after the cloth.[26]


Raviole du Dauphiné (in English, 'Dauphiné ravioli') are a type of French dumpling. The regional specialty consists of two layers of pasta made out of tender wheat flour, eggs, and water, surrounding a filling of Comté or Emmental cheese, cottage cheese made of cow's milk, butter and parsley. They are usually associated with the historic region of Dauphiné in South-Central France.

Central and East European

Tyrolean roast wild boar with Butter­milch­servietten­knödel (slices of bread dumpling made with buttermilk)

Germany, Poland, Romania, Austria, the Czech Republic and Slovakia boast a large variety of dumplings, both sweet and savoury. A dumpling is called Kloß in northern Germany, Knödel, Nockerl or Knöpfle in southern Germany and Austria, and pierogi in Poland. These are flour dumplings, the most common dumplings, thin or thick, made with eggs and semolina flour, boiled in water. Meat dumplings (called Klopse or Klöpse in north-eastern Germany, Knöpfle and Nocken in southern Germany) contain meat or liver. Liver dumplings are frequent additions to soup. Thüringer Klöße are made from raw or boiled potatoes, or a mixture of both, and are often filled with croutons. Bread dumplings are made with white bread and are sometimes shaped like a loaf of bread, and boiled in a napkin, in which case they are known as napkin dumplings (Serviettenknödel). Potato dumplings, known as Kartoffelklöße, are common in Bavaria, Thuringia, and the Rhineland areas, but they are also consumed all over the country.[27] They generally consist of a combination of cooked and raw potatoes that are cooked in a salted water or pan-seared in butter. A Thuringian type of potato dumplings called Thüringer Klöße, is made with potatoes and bread and is a common variation of potato dumplings. Kartoffelklöße are often served alongside roasted and braised meats, sauerbraten and sauerkraut, goulash and rouladen.

Maultaschen are a Swabian (Baden-Württemberg) specialty food, consisting of an outer layer of pasta dough with a filling traditionally made of sausage meat, spinach, bread crumbs and onions and flavored with various spices. Similar in appearance to Italian ravioli, Maultaschen are usually larger, however, each Maultasche being about 8–12 cm (3-5 inches) across.

The only potato dumpling museum in the world, the Thüringer Kloßmuseum, is in Heichelheim near Weimar in Germany.

A monument to halušky in Poltava, Ukraine

Halušky are a traditional variety of dumplings cooked in the Central and Eastern European cuisines (Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, and Ukraine). These are small lumps cut from a thick flour and egg batter and dropped into boiling water, similar to the German Spätzle, Knöpfle, or Knödel.

Plum dumplings

In Hungary and Romania, the dumplings usually contain plums or cottage cheese and are called in Hungarian szilvás gombóc, Romanian galusca cu prune, or túrógombóc (Hun), coltunasi cu branza (Rom), depending on the filling. Sweet dumplings are either pre powdered, or dredged with sugar when a sweeter taste is needed. In Hungary, dumplings are called gombóc and in Austria Zwetschgenknödel. Sweet varieties called gombóc are made with flour and potato dough, which is wrapped around whole plums or apricots, and then boiled and rolled in hot buttered bread crumbs. Shlishkes or krumpli nudli are small boiled potato dumplings made from the same potato dough as sweet plum dumplings, also rolled in hot buttered bread crumbs.

Bryndzové halušky, considered the Slovak national dish, are small potato dumplings without a filling, served with salty sheep's cheese on top. The same dumplings are also used to create a similar dish, strapačky. Also available are their related stuffed version called pirohy, usually filled with bryndza (bryndzové pirohy), quark cheese, potatoes, onions, cabbage, mushrooms, or meat.

Slices of Czech knedlík

In Czech cuisine dumplings have two main forms:

  • Knödel is called in Czech knedlík and in Slovakia knedľa. It can be either houskový (bread) or bramborový (potato) knödel. These dumplings are boiled in loaf shape and then cut in slices and are part of many Czech national dishes such as Vepřo knedlo zelo or Svíčková na smetaně.
  • Ovocné knedlíky (ball-shaped knedle) filled in with fruit: plums, strawberry, blueberry etc. Meal is completed on plate with grated quark, melted butter and powder sugar.

Idrijski žlikrofi are Slovenian dumplings, regionally located in the town of Idrija. They are made from dough with potato filling and have a characteristic form of a hat. Žlikrofi are made by a traditional recipe from the 19th century, but the source of the recipe is unknown due to lack of historical sources. The dish may be served as a starter or a side dish to meat based dishes. Žlikrofi were the first Slovenian food to be classified as a Traditional speciality guaranteed dish.

Ukrainian varenyky filled with sour cherry

Pierogi of Poland and varenyky of Ukraine are ravioli-like crescent-shaped dumplings filled with savoury or sweet filling. Varenyky are usually boiled or steamed. Pierogi are often fried after boiling.

"Little ears", variously called uszka in Poland, ushki (ушки) in Russia, vushka (вушка) in Ukraine, and vushki (вушкі) in Belarus, are folded ring-shaped dumplings similar in shape to Italian tortellini or Jewish kreplach. They are stuffed with meat or mushrooms and traditionally served in borshch or clear soup. In Romania, "little ears" (Romanian: urechiuşe) are also served in dumpling soup (supă de găluşte)

Lithuanian potato dumplings – cepelinai

Lithuanian dough dumplings are called koldūnai and virtiniai. They are usually filled with meat or curd. One of the varieties is called šaltanosiai, "cold nosed ones", and is made with blueberry filling. There are also potato dumplings called cepelinai or didžkukuliai, filled with meat or curd inside, served with soured cream. A similar dish exists in Belarus that is called klyocki (клёцкі).

Russian pelmeni are smaller than varenyky and made only of minced meat with addition of onions and spices. Sometimes the meat used is only beef, in other recipes is a mixture of beef with pork or mutton, while in Siberia the filling often includes venison. Pelmeni should be juicy inside. They are unrelated to the pasta with which they are sometimes compared as it is a savoury main dish. They are usually boiled in water with spices and salt, or in meat bouillon, sometimes fried before serving. They are often served with plenty of sour cream.

Pelmeni ready for boiling

An important difference between pelmeni, varenyky, and pierogi is the thickness of the dough shell — in pelmeni this is as thin as possible, and the proportion of filling to dough is usually higher.[28] Pelmeni are never served with a sweet filling, which distinguishes them from varenyky and pierogi, which sometimes are. Also, the fillings in pelmeni are usually raw, while the fillings of vareniki and pierogi are typically precooked.

The word pelmeni is derived from pel'n'an' (пельнянь) – literally "ear bread" in the Uralic Komi, Udmurt and Mansi languages.[29][30] It is unclear when pelmeni entered the cuisines of the indigenous Siberian people and when they first appeared in Russian cuisine. One theory suggests pelmeni, or stuffed boiled dumplings in general, originated in Siberia, possibly a simplified adaptation of the Chinese Wonton (in some dialect is called Bāomiàn "包面"). Pelmeni are particularly good means of quickly preserving meat during long Siberian winter, especially eliminating the need to feed livestock during the long winter months.

The main difference between pelmeni and Momo (dumpling) is their size—a typical pelmeni is about 2 to 3 centimetres (0.79 to 1.18 in) in diameter, whereas momo are often at least twice that size.

In Siberia, especially popular with the Buryat peoples are steamed dumplings called pozi (buuz in Mongolian, from Chinese: 包子; pinyin: bāozi). They are usually made with an unleavened dough, but are often encountered leavened. The traditional filling is meat, but the kind of meat and how it is processed varies. In Mongolia, mutton is favored, and is chopped rather than ground; pork and beef mixes are more popular in Russia.

Manti, samsa, chiburekki, and belyashi are all popular imported dumplings.


In Cypriot cuisine, dumplings are called ravioli ("ραβιολες") and are pasta that contains the Cypriot cheese "halloumi" ("Χαλούμι"). They look like some types of Italian ravioli.


Filled pastas such as ravioli and tortellini fit the basic definition of a dumpling: these are pockets of pasta enclosing various fillings (cheese, mushrooms, spinach, seafood, or meat). Instead of being made from a ball of dough, the dough is rolled flat, cut into a shape, filled with other ingredients, and then the dough is closed around the filling.

Gnocchi is a different kind of Italian dumpling. The word gnocchi literally means "lumps", and they are rolled and shaped from a mixture of egg with potato, semolina, flour, or ricotta cheese (with or without spinach). The lumps are boiled in water and served with melted butter, grated cheese, or other pasta sauces. Gnocchi are frequently added to soup.


Maltese ravioli (ravjul) are pockets of pasta filled with ricotta cheese.

Pastizzi and qassatat are pockets of dough that can be filled with a variety of fillings, usually ricotta (irkotta) or mashed peas.


Norwegian raspeball and kjøttkake.

In Norwegian cuisine, dumplings have a vast variety of names, as the dialects differ substantially. Names include potetball, klubb, kløbb, raspeball, komle, kumle, kompe, kumpe, kodla, kudle, klot, kams, ball, baill, komperdøse, kumperdøse, kompadøs, ruter, ruta, raskekako, risk, klotremat, krumme and kromme. They are usually made from crushed potatoes mixed with various types of flour, often with an emphasis on barley and wheat. In some local recipes the potatoes are dehydrated, while in others there is a mixture of raw and boiled potatoes. Occasionally they are filled with salted pork. Depending on local tradition, dumplings can be sided with syrup, lingonberry jam, swede and often meat if the dumplings does not have meat filling. Leftovers are often fried in butter and served with granulated sugar.

One distinct variety particular to Møre og Romsdal is blandaball (lit. mixed ball), where equal parts potatoes and fish are used. The fish is commonly pollack or haddock.


In Swedish cuisine, potato dumplings of originally German origin[31] have several regional names, mainly depending on the type of flour used. When the potato is mixed with wheat flour, which is more common in southern Sweden, it is called kroppkaka. In Blekinge[32] and parts of the island of Öland, it is traditionally made from grated raw potato, which makes it greyish in colour, while on Gotland and in Småland it is predominantly made from mashed boiled potato, and is thus whiter in colour.[31] The kroppkaka is usually filled with diced, smoked bacon and chopped, raw onion, and is often spiced with allspice.[31]

Swedish palt, served with butter and lingonberry jam.

When the potato is mixed with barley flour, which is traditional in northern Sweden, it is known as palt in Lapland, Västerbotten and Norrbotten,[31] and as kams in Jämtland, Ångermanland and Medelpad.[31][33] Originally, palt was eaten all over Sweden and was made from barley or rye flour alone, but during the 19th century, when potato was added and wheat became more common and inexpensive, the northern recipes retained the original name, while kroppkaka, which had always been the name used on Öland for the flour dumpling, became the name for the variant in southern Sweden.[34]

Palt and kams is usually filled with diced, unsmoked bacon. However, sometimes fried bacon is served on the side of unfilled palt or kams, which then is known as flatpalt or flatkams, as the lack of filling makes it flatter. The most well-known palt variant is the Pitepalt from Piteå. In Dalarna, where the dish is known as klabbe, it is still made without potatoes and is never filled. Klabbe is instead served with diced bacon on the side.[35]

A variant of palt is blodpalt, where pig, beef or reindeer blood is mixed into the dough. Other palt variants are leverpalt, with minced liver added to the dough, and njurpalt, with diced kidney mixed into the bacon filling.[31] Blodpalt also existed across the country originally, and has been found in Iron Age graves in Halland.[33]

The filled kroppkaka, palt or kams ball – as well as the flatter, unfilled flatpalt, flatkams and klabbe – is dropped into boiling salted water and cooked until it floats. It is traditionally served warm with melted butter and lingonberry jam, although in some parts of southern Sweden the melted butter is replaced by half cream (a mix of milk and cream) or a warm milk sauce, and in parts of northern Sweden the butter is replaced by a warm milk sauce spiced with messmör. Leftover kroppkaka is often served halved and fried.[31]

Unfilled flour dumplings for use in soup are called klimp if the flour is wheat, but mjölpalt if the flour is barley or rye.[31]

Middle Eastern

Armenian boraki
Georgian khinkali
Iraqi kubbeh



Meat-filled manti in Armenia are typically served with yogurt or sour cream, accompanied by clear soup. Mantapour is an Armenian beef soup with manta.

Boraki (Armenian: Բորակի) are a kind of Armenian fried dumplings. The main distinction of boraki is that the minced meat is pre-fried, the boraki are formed as small cylinders with an open top, the cylinders are lightly boiled in broth and then fried. Boraki are served garnished with yogurt and chopped garlic.[36]

Dushbara (Azerbaijan: Düşbərə) is an Azeri soup with tiny lamb-filled dumplings.[37]

Mataz are dumplings in Circassian and some other Caucasian cuisines, closely related to manti. They typically consist of a spiced meat mixture, usually lamb or ground beef, with greens and onions, put in a dough wrapper, either boiled or steamed. Mushrooms, potatoes, or cheese may be used in place of meat.

Khinkali (Georgian: ხინკალი) are Georgian dumplings[38] which originated in the mountain regions of Pshavi, Mtiuleti, and Khevsureti.[39] Varieties of khinkali spread from there across different parts of the Caucasus,[40] now the towns of Dusheti, Pasanauri and Mtskheta are particularly famous for their khinkali. The fillings of khinkali vary with the area. The original recipe consists of only minced meat (lamb or beef and pork mixed), onions, chili pepper, salt and cumin. Modern recipes use herbs like parsley and coriander. In Muslim-majority areas the use of beef and lamb is more prevalent. Mushrooms, potatoes, or cheese may be used in place of meat. The khinkali is typically consumed first by sucking the juices while taking the first bite, in order to prevent the dumpling from bursting.



South Asian


Indian cuisine features several dishes which could be characterised as dumplings:

  • Ada (Malayalam) is a sweet South Indian dish from Kerala. Scraped coconut mixed with sugar or jaggery is enveloped between the spread rice-dough and steamed. The sweet version of kozhukattai is equally famous in Kerala.
  • Bhajia are dumplings sometimes stuffed with vegetables and fruits.
  • Fara (Hindi) is famous in North India and is very similar to dumplings. It is made of wheat flour with stuffing of lentils and similar delicacies.
  • Gujia (Hindi) is a sweet dumpling made with wheat flour, stuffed with khoya.
  • Kachori (Hindi) is a round flattened ball made of fine flour filled with a stuffing of baked mixture of yellow moong dal or urad dal (crushed and washed horse beans), besan (crushed and washed gram flour), black pepper, red chili powder, salt and other spices.
  • Karanji (Marathi, Oriya) or Kajjikayi (Kannada, Telugu) or kanoli are fried sweet dumplings made of wheat flour and stuffed with dry or moist coconut delicacies. They are a popular dish among Maharashtrians, Oriyas and South Indians.
  • Kozhakkattai (Tamil) or kadabu (Kannada), is another South Indian dish that can be sweet, salty or spicy. The outer shell is always steamed sticky rice dough. In the sweet version, a form of sweet filling made with coconuts, boiled lentils and jaggery is used, whereas in the salty version, a mixture of steamed cracked lentils, chillies and some mild spices is used.
  • A dumpling popular in Western India and South India is the modak (Marathi, Oriya) or mmdhaka (Kannada) or modagam (Tamil), sugiyan (Malayalam) or kudumu (Telugu), where the filling is made of fresh coconut and jaggery or sugar while the covering is steamed rice dough. It is eaten hot with ghee.
  • Nevryo (or neureo) is a sweet dumpling made dominantly in Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts of Karnataka and Goa, just before Christmas.
  • Pidi (Malayalam) is a South Indian dish from Kerala that is usually eaten with chicken curry.
  • Pitha (Bihari, Oriya, Bengali, Assamese) are stuffed savouries made either by steaming or deep frying. A wide range of pithas are available in eastern and north eastern India.
  • Samosa is a popular savoury snack eaten in the Indian subcontinent and Iranian plateau. It is a fried dumpling usually stuffed with mince, vegetables (mainly potatoes) and various other spices. Vegetarian variants of samosas, without the added mince stuffing, are also popular and are sold at most eateries or roadside stalls throughout the country.
  • Momo (dumpling) are native in the Ladakh, Northeast India, and Darjeeling regions of India. The region has developed their own form of momo; from the original Tibetan version.[41]


Plateful of Momo (food) in Nepal

In Nepal, steamed dumplings known as momo (or momo-cha) are a popular snack, often eaten as a full meal as well. They are similar to the Chinese jiaozi or the Central Asian manti. This dish is native to Nepal and the concept of the dumpling was brought to Nepal by the Newar traders of Kathmandu who were trading goods with Tibet before the 1930s. Many different fillings, both meat based and vegetarian are common. Kathmandu Valley, a popular destination for momo, has with time developed its own essence for this food that differentiates it from its Tibetan counterpart.

Momo can be served fried, steamed or grilled. Momo are usually served with a dipping sauce normally consisting of tomatoes and chillies as the base ingredient, from which numerous variations can be made. Momo soup is a dish that has steamed momo immersed in a meat broth. Momo that are pan fried after steaming first are known as kothey momo, and steamed momo served in a hot sauce are called C-Momo in Nepal. Momo can also be prepared by directly deep frying without steaming first. Momo are one of the most common items on the menus of Nepali restaurants not only in Nepal but also around the world.


Yomari, also called yamari, is a traditional dish of the Newar community in Nepal. It is a steamed dumpling that consists of an external covering of rice flour[42] and an inner content of sweet substances such as chaku. The delicacy plays a very important role in Newaa society, and is a key part of the festival of Yomari punhi.[43] According to some, the triangular shape of the yamari is a symbolic representation of one half of the shadkona, the symbol of Saraswati and wisdom.[44]

North America

Dropped dumplings simmering for chicken and dumplings, an American comfort food[45]

American dumplings may be of the filled pastry type (which are usually baked), or they may be little pieces of dough added to a savoury or sweet dish, in which case they are usually boiled.

Baked sweet dumplings are a popular dessert in American cuisine. They are made by wrapping fruit, frequently a whole tart apple, in pastry, then baking until the pastry is browned and the filling is tender. While baking, the dumplings may be surrounded by, and even basted in, a sweet sauce, typically containing brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon or other spices.

Baked savory dumplings, in the form of pizza rolls, are a popular prepared snack food.

Boiled dumplings are made by mixing flour, fat, and baking powder with milk or water to form a dough, which may be either rolled out and cut into bite-size pieces, or simply dropped by spoonfuls into the simmering liquid of a savoury soup or stew, or, for dessert dumplings, onto simmering sweetened fruit. The dropped kind are sometimes called "doughboys". When added to chicken and vegetables in chicken broth, the starch in the dumplings serves to thicken the broth into a gravy, creating the popular comfort food chicken and dumplings. Other common savoury pairings, particularly in the Midwestern and Southern US, are turkey, ham, and butterbeans. Popular sweet pairings are strawberries, apples, and blackberries. Dumplings also feature in the regional stews of the midwest and south called "burgoos." Further north, dumplings are frequently served with beef, corned-beef and duck stews, and blueberries are the favourite fruit for dessert dumplings.

In Canada, the poutine râpée is a type of filled dumpling made with pork mince inside a flour ball.

Southeast Asian


Indonesian cuisine features several dishes which could be characterized as dumplings under the influence of Chinese and Portuguese.

  • Jalangkote is a South Sulawesi fried pastry with an empanada shape and stuffed with vegetables, potatoes and eggs. Spicy, sweet and sour sauce will be dipped into prior to be eaten.
  • Pastel is the most common empanada-shaped fried pastry to be found in Indonesia. The name was taken from Portuguese pastei. It is stuffed with ragout that is made from chicken, vegetables and eggs.
  • Panada is a South Sulawesi type of fried bread similar to an empanada and stuffed with spicy tuna.
  • Pangsit (wonton) is another type of dumpling that may be boiled, fried, or steamed, and often is used as complement of bakmi ayam or chicken noodle.
  • Siomay is an Indonesian fish dumpling served in peanut sauce. In a different part of Indonesia such as in Surabaya, siomay can mean steamed pangsit and it will be served with bakso, meatballs soup.

See also


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  3. "CUSTOMS". Tigrai Online. Retrieved 3 January 2013.
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  5. evelynathens (17 June 2006). "Souskluitjies (South African Dumplings In Custard Sauce)". FOOD. Food.com.
  6. Swanepoel, Sharon. "South African Recipes". God's Glory Ministries International.
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  28. Пельменів не буде — будуть равіолі? Нові стандарти на заморожені напівфабрикати відклали до весни [Dumplings will or will not be ravioli? New standards for frozen semi-finished products postponed to Spring]. pogliad.ua (in Ukrainian). 19 December 2008.
  29. Dal Dictionary Online derives the etymology of pel'men' from pel'=ear and nan'=bread in Komi and Mansi (Vogul) languages. This may be why pelmeni are called uszka ("ears") in Poland.
  30. Also in Max Vasmer's etymological dictionary of the Russian language. See: пельмень - Этимологический онлайн-словарь русского языка Макса Фасмера (in Russian)
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