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Vegan Tofu Potstickers, Crispy Dumpling Skirt

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Vegan tofu potstickers with a crispy dumpling skirt on a grey plate with a dipping sauce and chopsticks.

I can’t be alone — I regularly devour ten potstickers (or more!) and then realize I have no space left for the main course. But can you blame me? Especially when these tofu potstickers are on the table. With that soft yet chewy dumpling wrapper hiding the juicy, meaty, and savory vegan filling, the crisp golden-brown bottoms, and that crunchy, lacy dumpling skirt, they’re so delicious they almost outshine the other plates on the table! 

The tofu potstickers are surprisingly subtle in flavor, allowing the punchy, umami-packed, equally spicy, and tangy potsticker sauce to do most of the talking. Nonetheless, they have a distinctively moreish effect and taste 10000% better than anything you can buy from the store. 

And even though these little treats are vegan, please try the recipe even if you don’t follow a plant-based diet. The tofu in the dumplings adds a hearty texture but doesn’t overwhelm in taste, meaning you’ll enjoy these even if you’ve shied away from tofu in the past.

Tofu is one of my favorite ways to instantly boost the meatiness of dumplings, and the unusual technique of grating the tofu really does the job. Plus, it’s packed with protein — considerably more than my other favorite “meaty” addition, mushrooms — which I use in my recipe for mushroom wontons with sweet chili sauce.

Honestly, if you weren’t drooling at the description in the very first paragraph, I don’t know how to convince you. Maybe these photos … scroll down and take a look! 

Tofu potstickers on a plate with sauce.

What is a Potsticker?

Potstickers are a variety of dumplings characterized by their cooking method: you fry the dumplings, then steam them. The technique creates a gorgeously crisp bottom and soft wrapper that yields delicately flavored fillings. 

Specifically, potstickers are a Chinese dumpling known as “jiaozi.” You might have eaten the snack as part of a dim sum feast! 

Potstickers can have any filling, although the most common combinations are pork and cabbage (I love using Omnipork for a vegan alternative) or mixed vegetables. In this tofu potsticker recipe, I use mixed vegetables with grated tofu for extra protein and an unbelievably meaty texture. 

What’s the Difference Between Potstickers and Dumplings?

While all potstickers are dumplings, not all dumplings are potstickers! 

Ultimately, the distinction lies in the cooking method and shape. 

Dumplings can be boiled, steamed, fried, or baked. Conversely, potstickers always follow just one method: pan-frying, then steaming. 

Similarly, potstickers have a distinctive shape. Small half-moons, pleated at the top, vegan potstickers stand out from other global dishes, like Nepalese momos, Polish pierogi, or British suet dumplings. 

Perhaps the most similar to potstickers is the Japanese vegetable gyoza. They likely originated from the Chinese jiaozi, and, at first glance, Japanese gyoza looks identical. So, what is the difference between potstickers and gyoza? Well, potstickers are typically larger and thicker than Japanese gyoza. Gyoza are usually pan-fried and steamed, much like potstickers. However, they can be prepared in all manner of ways!

Tofu and vegetable potsticker cut open showing the vegan filling.

What are Vegan Tofu Potstickers Made Of?

You’ll only need a handful of ingredients to make this Asian appetizer! 🛒 That includes dumpling wrappers, tofu, vegetables, and pantry-staple aromatics. 

You likely already have most of these ingredients in your kitchen but head to your local Asian market or my Amazon storefront if you’re missing anything.

  • Dumpling wrappers make the slightly chewy, delicious casing of these tofu potstickers. You can buy frozen premade dumpling wrappers from your local Asian market or make them using flour, salt, and water. They are naturally vegan! Make sure to use round ones.
  • Extra firm tofu is the main protein of our recipe. It has a mild flavor and tender texture, ideal for replicating meat. Use store-bought pressed extra-firm tofu or make my easy three-ingredient homemade tofu
  • Cabbage adds bulks to the vegan potsticker filling as well as slight sweetness. My top two choices are either napa cabbage, which boasts a lovely delicate peppery flavor, or mild white cabbage. 
  • Carrot is sweet and earthy, delivering a satisfying crunchy texture.
  • Fresh ginger provides a hint of punchy, warm, and spicy flavors.
  • Garlic adds a sweet butteriness, contrasting with the other sharper tastes. 
  • Onions are crisp and loaded with umami, complementing the rich soy in the dipping sauce.

What is a Dumpling Skirt Made Of?

Just three ingredients are needed to create a crispy potsticker skirt: 

  • Plain flour, also called all-purpose flour, is essential for that beautiful lacy dumpling skirt. 
  • Cornflour helps to make the dumpling skirt ultra crispy. 
  • Water creates a lacy, open pattern. 

The exact ratio I’ve used in this recipe is ideal for creating the perfect dumpling skirt: crispy all the way through, delicate and brittle, perfectly browned, and not too heavy. 

Of course, you can make this recipe and skip the dumpling skirt entirely. Although I recommend it … it upgrades the dish to unthinkable heights. 

Vegan potstickers with a crispy dumpling skirt on a plate.

Tofu Potsticker Allegens

It’s notoriously hard to find vegan Chinese recipes when eating out. Although China boasts many vegetarian restaurants, the dishes prevalent here in the West tend to lean towards meat-heavy options. 

I can’t count the number of times I’ve eaten out at a restaurant, and there were NO vegetarian dumplings on the menu. 

That’s why I love making my takeout-style fakeaway recipes at home! 

  • These tofu potstickers are vegan, featuring tofu as the protein source rather than ground meat. Most store-bought potsticker wrappers are vegan, but I recommend double-checking the ingredients. 
  • Vegan potstickers are also nut-free, making it suitable for children’s lunchboxes, or large gatherings! You can check out more of my nut-free recipes here

Unfortunately, potstickers aren’t gluten-free since the wrappers use all-purpose flour. If you make homemade gluten-free dumpling wrappers, you’re all good to go — although you’ll need to adjust the potsticker dipping sauce, replacing the soy sauce for tamari. 

Crispy dumpling skirt on vegan potstickers.

How to Make Tofu Potstickers

Making restaurant-quality vegan tofu potstickers is surprisingly simple, although the process can be time-consuming, especially if you’re not making them regularly! However, I love to sit down and watch TV or involve the whole family, which makes the process fun and easy.

  1. Prepare the filling by finely grating the tofu, cabbage, and carrots. Mince the ginger, garlic, and onion. 
  2. Cook the filling. Heat oil in a non-stick frying pan and gently sauté all the ingredients. 
  3. Pleat the dumplings by putting the filling in the center, brushing the edges with water, and bringing the edges together at the top with small folds. 
  4. Fry the tofu potstickers. Add oil to a large non-stick frying pan and arrange the vegan potstickers until no space is left. Let them cook until browned. 
  5. Make the dumpling skirt by mixing all the ingredients and pouring them into the pan. Let the potstickers steam by covering the pan until they are soft and translucent. Let any water evaporate and the skirt crisp up.

Gently slide the dumplings on a plate, whip up the easy potsticker dipping sauce, and dig in! 

Cookware You Need

Tofu potstickers on a plate with sauce.

How to Serve Vegan Tofu Potstickers

These vegan tofu potstickers are best steaming hot! I love serving them as an appetizer or side dish for a proper fakeaway meal with dishes like my spicy, comforting vegan tantanmen ramenWagamama copycat katsu tofu curry, or takeaway-style satay curry alongside vegan egg fried rice, vegetable chow mein noodles, and vegan prawn crackers. 

Tell me your mouth isn’t watering! 

Of course, I always serve potstickers with a piquant dipping sauce. Luckily, it’s seriously easy to whip up and I’ve even included it in the recipe below. You’re welcome. 😉

How to Reheat Potstickers

Because we add that tantalizingly crispy dumpling skirt, it’s not easy to reheat the dumplings without losing their crunch. 

For that reason, I highly recommend forgoing the dumpling skirt if you plan to reheat the potstickers. 

Two of my favorite ways to reheat the tofu potstickers are by either steaming or for a more satisfying texture, following a shortened version of the cooking process: add a splash of oil to a frying pan, let them cook for a minute, then add a splash of water and let them steam. Tuck in once the tofu potstickers are hot, or add the dumpling skirt now. 

You can also microwave potstickers to reheat them, but I don’t suggest this method. It tends to result in rubbery or tough wrappers, which nobody likes! 

This Recipe Is:

  • Authentic and traditional
  • Takes just like Asian takeout
  • High in protein
  • Delicious and moreish
  • Vegan and nut-free
Vegan Tofu Potstickers

Vegan Tofu Potstickers

Yield: 28 Potstickers

This vegan tofu potsticker recipe with a crispy dumpling skirt tastes better than any from a restaurant, and is just as easy .


  • ~28 Vegan Dumpling Wrappers*

For the Vegan Potsticker Stuffing

  • 1 tsp Neutral Oil
  • 280g Extra Firm Tofu, grated
  • 80g Cabbage, grated
  • 60g Carrot, grated
  • 1 tbsp Ginger, grated
  • 4 Garlic Cloves, minced
  • 40g Onion, minced
  • Salt, to taste

For the Vegan Potsticker Skirt

  • 2 tbsp Neutral Oil
  • 1 tsp Plain Flour (All-Purpose Flour)
  • 1 tsp Cornflour (Cornstarch in U.S.)
  • 100ml Water

For the Vegan Potsticker Dipping Sauce

  • 1 tbsp Dark Soy Sauce
  • 1 tbsp Hot Water
  • 1/2 tsp Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Sesame Seeds
  • 1/2 tsp Rice Vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp Red Chili Flakes
  • 1 Garlic Clove, minced


  1. Cook the filling. Over medium heat, add oil in a non-stick frying pan and gently sauté all the ingredients under "potsticker stuffing." Cook for two minutes, or until they have all softened, and season with salt to taste. Consider that the dipping sauce will add extra saltiness and umami.
  2. Pleat the dumplings. On a flat surface, take one dumpling wrapper. Put a small amount of filling in the center, and brush the edges with water. Bring the edges together, folding the dumpling in half. Pleat the top with small folds — this will get easier with practice!
  3. Repeat the process for the remaining filling and wrappers. Cover the completed dumplings with a damp cloth while you work to avoid them drying out.
  4. Fry the tofu potstickers. Over medium heat, place a very large non-stick frying pan. Once it heats, add around 2 tbsp oil and arrange the tofu potstickers in a spiral shape, covering the bottom of the pan. You can do this in two batches if it's more practical.
  5. Fry the vegan dumplings uncovered for around 2 minutes, or until the bottoms are just lightly browned.
  6. Make the dumpling skirt. Whisk together plain flour, cornflour, and water to a smooth consistency.
  7. Steam the dumplings. Pour the dumpling skirt batter into the frying pan. Be careful, because water hitting hot oil can splash. Immediately cover the pan with a lid and let the tofu potstickers steam for around 5 minutes, or until the wrappers are slightly translucent and soft. Remove the lid and if necessary, let the skirt crisp up until golden. Slide the dumplings onto a plate.
  8. Make the potsticker sauce. In a small bowl, whisk together all the ingredients under "for the vegan potsticker dipping sauce." No need to cook.

Dip the tofu potstickers into the sauce and enjoy!


* If you buy frozen dumpling wrappers, you'll have to leave extra time for the wrappers to defrost.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 179Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 448mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 9g

Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.

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