These are so much fun to make, monotony and initial complexity aside. We wonder now why we ever paid up to $9 for a 20-count box of the little suckers, when one evening at home stuffing and wrapping yields a good hundred potstickers, for about $7!

We tried making these with the kid, and while I think older kids would be pretty good at it, younger ones seem to have a hard time getting the right amount of filling inside, and a good seal on the wonton wrappers. And they must be sealed well! It did take a while at first to get the flavors and wrapping and cooking methods right, but I'm here to unlock the mystery for you. The great thing is, it's totally customizable based on your spice tolerance and meat preferences. The first time we used ground turkey, but this time we gave it a shot with ground pork.

It's very important to get uniform pieces of all the vegetables so nothing pokes through the wonton dough. This is why I recommend using a food processor. Grating with a hand grater is fine, aside from the fact that it'll take you forever to get through all the vegetables.

You will need:

1 pack wonton wrappers (usually found refrigerated in the produce section)
1 lb ground meat (turkey, pork, chicken, or a combination)
4 carrots, peeled, shredded in a food processor or grated
1 small to medium head of cabbage, shredded in a food processor or grated
1 medium onion, shredded in a food processor or grated
3 cloves garlic, grated (in my experience, garlic in a food processor is a bad idea)
Generous amount of salt
Generous amount of black pepper
3-4 tablespoons soy sauce (I use light soy to control the sodium)
1 tablespoon Sriracha or concentrated chili paste
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon garlic powder

Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl. At this point you can either cover the mixture well and refrigerate for 24 hours, or you can get to wrapping. If you do get to wrapping, I recommend cooking a "test patty" in a small skillet with hot vegetable oil to test your seasonings. Letting it sit in the refrigerator will enhance the flavors, and making a tester isn't quite as necessary. Stuffing the wontons will also be much easier when the filling is well-chilled.

Get to filling:

You'll need a small bowl of water, and 2 sheets of wax paper: one to fill and one to set finished potstickers aside.

Spoon out about a tablespoon of filling onto a wonton square.

Form it into a ball, and then press into an oblong shape, diagonally. Slightly dampen the outside edges of the square with water, being sure not to oversaturate the dough.

Fold one end of the square diagonally over the filling.

Press the dough down where the edges meet to seal well.

Place the filled side of the wonton down onto wax paper or a cookie sheet; apply a slight bit of pressure to flatten the bottom of the potsticker.

Repeat for eternity.

You can freeze as many as you want in plastic baggies at this point, BEFORE you cook them. When you're ready for them, just cook them from frozen as you would from thawed.

To cook:

The cooking method for potstickers seems to defy all laws of cooking, but it actually works. Oil and water mix in a skillet in an effort to simultaneously fry the bottoms and steam the tops of the potstickers.

Coat the bottom of a skillet with oil. We used extra virgin olive oil here, but vegetable or canola would be fine also.

Allow to heat, then add potstickers flat side down.

SLOWLY add a tiny bit of water (just a few tablespoons) around the potstickers.

And quickly cover with a lid. Allow the potstickers to both steam and fry; you will know they're ready to come out when the edges turn golden brown.

Drain quickly on paper towels. Too long and the potstickers will stick to the paper towels, and potstickers should really only...stick to a pot. I guess?


If you want, you can make your own dipping sauce. If not, bottled stuff is fine.

Dipping Sauce

I do not have measurements for the sauce - I threw it together without thinking. The best I can do until it's time to make more sauce is list the ingredients from biggest portion to smallest portion.

You will need:

Soy sauce
Grated ginger
Chopped garlic
Orange juice
Sliced green onions (white and green parts)
Sriracha or concentrated chili paste
Brown sugar
Black pepper

Add all ingredients to a small saucepan and simmer over low-medium heat for 5-10 minutes. Transfer to a cruet or glass jar. Serve hot.

And there you have it! Totally customized, made with love, inexpensive Chinese takeout, with plenty more in the freezer for another potsticker craving.

By the way, you can also use wonton wrappers to make homemade ravioli. But that's another post for another day.  

1 comment:

  1. Mmm. This has me salivating and it's 12:13AM.

    Will let you know if we get around to trying this. Sounds delicious. :)