Dumplings, in their myriad forms and styles, are among the planet’s most-loved foods. And Boston, port city that it has always been, is no mere welterweight in the global prizefight of places to partake in the dumpling splendor. Whether it be pop-ups in the game, like relatively new mainstay Mimi’s Chūka Diner, or tried-and-true dumpling favorites like Dumpling Daughter, dumplings abound in Boston. Try these 15 restaurants for must-try renditions at restaurants across the city.Read More
Where to Eat Dumplings in and Around Boston
From mini juicy buns to gigantic soup dumplings, Boston’s got the goods
Look, extra-large soup dumplings are never going to taste quite the same as the standard size — the ratios are off. But if you’re desperate to try one, head to District Kitchen in Malden, the only purveyor of ginormous soup dumplings in the area. The restaurant — revamped in late 2018 to focus on Sichuan cuisine — also serves a variety of other interesting (and attractive) dumplings, including cuttlefish, pork, and chive dumplings in a black cuttlefish ink wrapper and lobster, pork, and cucumber dumplings in a red wrapper. Try the giant dumpling for the novelty factor, but focus on the other dumplings.
These Nepalese dumplings are the pride of Magoun Square. Sophie Thakali began making momos for friends but soon found herself opening a restaurant. The spicy momos are a must, but be warned: They are not for the faint of heart.
Chalawan Asian Eatery
Chalawan serves an upscale mix of Southeast Asian cuisines. Dumplings aren’t a focus of the menu; in fact, there’s just one dumpling option, but it’s an absolute must. Aunty Wang’s steamed snapper dumplings, featuring a delicate seafood flavor, are served with chile and black vinegar sauce.
Zoe's Chinese Restaurant
Zoe’s — a popular Somerville spot that features hefty selections of both Sichuan and Hunan cuisine — offers a variety of dumplings. From steamed juicy pork buns to spicy Sichuan dumplings with peanuts, an eater can’t go wrong.
The menu at Dumpling House is packed with around a dozen different kinds of dumplings, ranging from vegetarian spinach dumplings to pan-fried dumplings with pork and leek, but the star of the show is the pork soup dumpling.
Mimi’s Chūka Diner at Artifact Cider Project
One of the Boston area’s best new-ish pop-ups, Mimi’s Chūka Diner — cofounded by B&G Oysters alums Ted Woo and Jon Awerman — is inspired by chūka ryori, a style of cuisine in which dishes with Chinese origins are cooked in a Japanese style. While a permanent restaurant may eventually be in the plans, Mimi’s is still residing at Artifact Cider’s Cambridge taproom, offering a rotating menu of dumplings and more. No order is complete without the pan-fried yasai chikara gyoza — a vegan powerhouse of a dumpling.
Now with three locations (Brookline and Weston in addition to this one in Cambridge’s Kendall Square), the Dumpling Daughter trio pays homage to founder Nadia Liu Spellman’s mother, Sally Ling, of the eponymous Sally Ling’s, an upscale Chinese restaurant on Boston’s waterfront from the 1980s through the early 2000s. Dumpling Daughter is casual, though, serving a variety of dumplings, buns, scallion pancake wraps, rice bowls, and more.
Got a Sunday night dumpling craving? No worries: Dumpling Kingdom in Allston is open late every night. The Taiwan-style pan-fried dumplings are special, and the mini juicy buns with pork are also worth your dollar. This Allston shop is a sibling to Chinatown’s Dumpling Cafe (listed below).
Go to Taiwan Cafe for the ma po tofu; stay for the Taiwan-style pan-fried dumplings. Chinatown is the city’s best food neighborhood, and these are among its best dumplings. The soup dumplings, too, are a must.
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There are many excellent pork soup dumplings in the city; Dumpling Cafe’s are the most excellent. Order them with Taiwan-style eggplant, string beans, and deep-fried pig intestines. The Taiwan-style pan-fried dumplings are also extraordinary.
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Myers + Chang
It’s hard to go wrong with anything on the menu at Myers + Chang. Get anything that’s wok-charred (but really, get anything), and get an order of the classic Mama Chang’s pork and chive dumplings.
Mei Mei Dumplings
The lemongrass pork dumplings at Mei Mei are a non-negotiable order, as are the ones stuffed with cheddar, scallion, and potato. Survey the scene at Mei Mei’s new South Boston dumpling factory while you eat, and sign up for a dumpling-making class while you’re at it.
Head to Blossom Bar for an excellent cocktail, Chengdu-style dry hot chicken, dan dan noodles, and some irresistible pork dumplings in chile vinaigrette and tingling Sichuan peppercorn oil.
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Bess’s Cafe in Brookline is perhaps best known for its scallion pancake wraps, but the dumplings are also worthy of this list. Try the chicken dumplings with Sichuan sauce or the pan-seared pork and chive dumplings.
Ming Seafood Restaurant
Dim sum spot Ming’s Seafood’s enormous dim sum selection is full of gems (don’t miss the crispy shrimp in red rice rolls), including several dumplings. Try the steamed shrimp dumplings in cuttlefish wrappers or the chow chow dumplings with the crunch of peanut waiting inside.