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Recipe for red curry shrimp dumplings

Dunk these red curry shrimp dumplings in a sesame dipping sauce.

Buried in the deepest corner of my freezer, an "emergency" bag of shrimp and vegetable dumplings waits for the times when I crave dumplings and nothing else will do. The dumplings I buy from the Chinese market are okay, not great, not sensuous like these spicy, salty, red curry shrimp dumplings. I can microwave the storebought dumplings in a couple of minutes and get my fix, but it doesn't take all that much longer to create these one-bite shrimp dumplings from scratch, especially with all of the ingredients sitting in my pantry. The technique is the same one I use to cook potstickers: pan fry the dumplings to get a nice chewy crust on the bottom; then, steam them in the same pan to finish the cooking. Once you master the method, you can build your own dumplings with wonton skins and any mix of fillings (chicken, cabbage, tofu) you have on hand.

Red curry shrimp dumplings, on The Perfect Pantry.

Red curry shrimp dumplings

From the pantry, you'll need: ginger root, frozen shrimp, Thai red curry paste, fish sauce, wonton wrappers, reduced-sodium soy sauce, sesame oil, lime.

This recipe, adapted from Everyday Food magazine, serves 4-6 (makes 24 dumplings); can be multiplied.


3/4 lb shrimp (21-25 or 26-30), defrosted if frozen, peeled and deveined
2 scallions, roughly chopped
2 tsp grated ginger root (I use a Microplane)
4 tsp Thai red curry paste, or less, to taste
1 tsp fish sauce (I recommend Three Crabs brand)
24 wonton wrappers
2 tsp vegetable oil
2 Tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp lime zest


In the work bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade, add the shrimp, scallions, ginger, curry paste and fish sauce. Pulse several times until the ingredients come together and form a finely-chopped paste.

Set out a small bowl of water.

Working with 1 wonton wrapper at a time, place 1 teaspoon of the shrimp mixture in the center. Wet your finger and run it around the edge of the wonton wrapper. Then, pull all corners to the center, and pinch to seal the dumpling. Repeat with remaining wontons and filling.

In a large nonstick frying pan, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat. Place the dumplings flat side down in the pan, and cook for 1 minute until the bottoms are brown.

Remove the pan from the heat, and carefully pour in 1/2 cup water. Immediately cover the pan, and return it to the heat. Cook until the water is almost evaporated, approximately 3 minutes. Then, uncover, and cook until the remaining water evaporates.

Meanwhile, stir together the soy sauce, sesame oil and lime zest in a small bowl to make the dipping sauce.

Serve the dumplings right out of the pan, with dipping sauce.

[Printer-friendly recipe.]

More recipes in The Perfect Pantry:
Sweet potato and apple potstickers
Fresh Vietnamese salad rolls
Shrimp potstickers
Vegetable dumplings
Asparagus wonton wraps with hoisin, wasabi or mustard filling

Other recipes that use these pantry ingredients:
Pan fried pork and shrimp potstickers, from Steamy Kitchen
Vegetarian potstickers, from Herbivoracious
Beef potstickers, from Eating richly even when you're broke
Indian spiced potstickers, from The Food in My Beard
Ginger chicken potstickers, from Fake Food Free

Red curry shrimp dumplings, an appetizer with a kick!

Disclosure: The Perfect Pantry earns a few pennies on purchases made through the Amazon.com links in this post. Thank you for supporting this site when you start your shopping here.


This sounds really great, and thank you for a cooking method more in keeping with how we like to eat our (gyoza, mandoo, potstickers). We like the crispy bottoms from frying, too, so a merely steamed dumpling doesn't cut it for me.
Now to play with the ingredients at the back of *my* freezer, which sadly are not as cool as the stuff in the back of yours.


I've never made potstickers or dumplings, but it sounds like a fun project for cooking in the new house! And the filling for these sounds divine.

Kirsten, that sticky bottom adds a lot of flavor in addition to looking pretty good! You can make dumplings like this with any filling, but don't leave out the Thai red curry paste. That's my favorite part!

Kalyn, it's really fun to make dumplings with a crowd, and it goes so much faster, too. The filling here would be very good in a lettuce wrap.

These sound perfect for that Chinese food fix Lydia. The fact that we probably have all of the ingredients sitting in our pantry is the bonus.

Bellini, I always have the fixings for these dumplings in my pantry. Once you know the technique (fry, then steam), it's easy to make just a few at a time.

Hi Lydia, these look really tasty! I'm a bit confused on the frying and then steaming: you fry them first, leave them in the pan and then add the water? So you sort of boil them too, before the steam comes? Just checking, because I'm definitely going to try this.

Esther, yes. The technique is pan fry, then steam in the same pan. The amount of water is quite small, and the pan is very hot, so as soon as the water hits the pan, it creates steam. That's why it's important to slap the cover on right away. Although it seems like you will boil the dumplings, you won't if you're using a large frying pan.

I'm totally making this over the weekend! I have, like, 15 packs of wonton skins to get rid of. No joke. Thank you so much for this recipe! :)

Anjo, sounds like you need to have a dumpling party!

This is going to be my dinner tonight. Thank you!

Kristen, enjoy!

Dumplings are my all time favorite food! I love the thai influence in these dumplings. Sounds perfect!

Lokness, I have a weakness for dumplings, too, and for anything spicy.

Hi, sounds like a great flavor combo! The frozen gyoza I get at Trader Joe's have the same cooking method directions, I love it. Just wondering, can these be frozen for later use? Do they need to be thawed prior to frying, or can they go straight from freezer to pan like the pre packaged ones? Thanks!

Anna, I've never tried freezing them, but most dumplings can be frozen, so I'll say, why not? I would spread the dumplings on a sheet pan and freeze them, then put in a bag (so they don't stick together). You could also cook them, then freeze (same method).

those look so darn good but scary for me to make... Thank you Esther above for clarifying the technique in case I ever get brave enough to try this! :-)

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