When one thinks of dumplings, the image that’s conjured up is probably the plump, round balls served inside a bamboo steamer basket, with faint steams clouds drifting up from them. So this just may be my image of dumplings, but I think more often than not, dumplings are more frequently associated with Chinese food. However, dumplings are found in cuisines from all around the world, from the Americas all the way to East Asia, and nearly everywhere in between.
While dumplings are a nearly ubiquitous food, how they are prepared, what they are filled with, and how they are cooked all can vary greatly depending on the type of dumpling and where they are from.
Whatever variety of dumpling you have, it’s very easy to get carried away and order or make too many. Of course, they’re too good to throw away, so our only option is to save the leftovers to enjoy later.
There are 5 ways you should reheat dumplings – by oven, stovetop, steamer, microwave, or air fryer. However, for the best results, you should reheat them the same way that they were originally cooked.
Read on for our complete step-by-step guide to the best methods to reheat dumplings!
How to Reheat Dumplings
Now that you may be thinking about the dozens or even hundreds of types of dumplings and be worried about how to reheat all the different types, you don’t need to worry, because you can easily reheat any type of dumplings using just a handful of methods.
All you need to do is use roughly the same cooking method to reheat them for the best results.
This might be an oversimplification but you’ll see that reheating dumplings is pretty easy. Let’s get into it!
Reheating Dumplings In the Oven
This may be one of the slower methods, it can be a good way to reheat dumplings evenly and without the use of oil as well. It also keeps them from being soggy too.
However, while it can prevent sogginess, the dumplings may become a bit too crispy if left in for too long. That said, if you like your dumplings crispy, this is a great method for you as well.
- First, preheat the oven to 390 Fahrenheit.
- Place the dumplings on a baking sheet. Or, you can put them on some foil directly on the oven racks. It’s better to avoid using the pan entirely and instead place the foil directly on the oven racks. As a result, when the dumplings are placed on it, they will heat up evenly on all sides, both below and above. If you don’t want to deal with the mess that comes with sloppy handling, dumplings can be cooked in the baking pan too.
- Leave them in the oven for about five minutes. It will only take a few minutes for your dumplings to warm up. Of course, double-check the outcome; otherwise, it will take another half-minute to a minute, or a bit longer if you want them to be a bit crispier.
Reheating Dumplings on the Stovetop
Similar to when you reheat dumplings in the oven, this method makes it possible to make the dumplings a bit crispier.
However, if you don’t your dumplings to become crispy at all, and/or you don’t want the dumplings to absorb any extra oil then perhaps this method isn’t for you. But if you want them crispy or they’ve already been fried, then this is one of the best ways to reheat your dumplings.
- First, put a non-stick pan on the stove and turn it to medium heat. The pan should also be big enough to hold the dumplings comfortably. This means that there should be space in the pan, and the dumplings shouldn’t be crowded together as they may stick. Lastly, never turn the pan to high heat. This will cause the outside to cook much too quickly while the inside remains undercooked.
- Then, put a teaspoon or so of oil into the pan.
- Immediately after, add the dumplings.
- Fry them for about three minutes, making sure to flip them so they are evenly reheated.
- You can add more time if you want them to be crispier.
Reheating Dumplings in a Steamer
I previously mentioned the iconic image of fresh Chinese dumplings giving off faint clouds of steam when they sit inside a bamboo steamer. Well, you too can recreate this if you have a bamboo steamer. However, reheating dumplings in a steamer is best if they were cooked by steaming in the first place.
If you first cooked the dumplings using another method, you won’t get the same results. But, if you first cooked them in a steamer, you can rejuvenate them nearly back to their original form by using one to reheat them.
- First, use parchment paper or cabbage leaves to line the layers of your basket. This keeps the taste of your dumplings from being absorbed by the bamboo steamer.
- Then, arrange the dumplings in a single layer in each steamer basket, then stack them. Don’t forget to put the basket lid on top of it.
- Fill your wok or broad skillet with two to three inches of water. Make sure the boiling water doesn’t come in contact with the dumplings.
- Bring the water to a boil in a large pot.
- Warm up the dumplings for a few minutes until they are well heated.
- After they are reheated, take the steamer away from the heat and then carefully remove the dumplings from the steamer and serve.
Reheating Dumplings in the Microwave
Like reheating many other foods, reheating dumplings in the microwave should be used only if you’re short on time or tools.
While it can be a good method, it doesn’t quite compare to when they’re reheated using any of the other methods on this list. But, for the sake of convenience and time, microwaving is the best method.
- First, arrange the dumplings in a suitable container that’s microwave safe. Make sure they aren’t stacked on top of each other and that there is space between them.
- Next, cover them with a damp paper towel.
- Put them in the microwave and heat them on high for 45 seconds to one minute.
- Then, check them to see if they need to be cooked more.
- Reheat for additional 15-second increments until they are fully reheated.
How to Reheat Dumplings in Air Fryer
Lastly, you can reheat dumplings using an air fryer. This is a great method if they’re frozen too. However, it’s important to note that by using an air fryer to reheat dumplings, they can become crispy.
So, if you want them crispy, it’s a great method. If not, then it’s better to use a steamer or microwave.
- First, lightly brush the air fryer basket with vegetable oil.
- Next, preheat your air fryer to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Place the dumplings in the basket in a single layer, and make sure to leave space between each dumpling.
- Heat for three minutes.
- Flip dumplings and reheat for another three minutes.
- Remove them and serve!
How Long Can You Keep Leftover Dumplings?
How long dumplings will last depends on how they’re stored. Cooked dumplings will keep in the fridge for around three to five days. To keep the dumplings from drying out, store them in an airtight container or Ziploc bag. Uncooked dumplings can be stored in the refrigerator for roughly one to three days. It may stay a little longer if you solely used veggies as the main ingredients.
However, dumplings can last much longer if they’re stored in the freezer.
To freeze them properly, make sure to put them into a freezer bag or airtight container, to prevent freezer burn. Frozen dumplings and/or the dumpling ingredients can last for up to two months in the freezer.
Can You Reheat Dumplings Twice?
While it likely won’t cause you any harm, for the best quality dumplings, you should avoid reheating dumplings twice.
The reasoning behind this is similar to when you reheat or refreeze foods multiple times. Whenever you cook or freeze something, it impacts many different aspects of the food that gives it its taste and texture.
When something is reheated more than once, dumplings included, you’ll likely see a more noticeable difference in the taste and texture. But, it’s not the end of the world if you reheat dumplings twice.
But, your expectations of their quality should be lowered because while reheating dumplings once can be almost as good as when they’re freshly made, reheating dumplings twice can potentially make them soggier or conversely dryer, depending on how you reheat them.