The best char siu bao in Hong Kong

We search high and low for the city’s best version of this dim sum classic
Char siu bao
By Time Out editors |
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Up there with siu mai and har gow as one of the must-orders any time you’re having yum cha, char siu bao are a classic of Cantonese cuisine. Whether it’s the traditional fluffy, steamed variety or crisp, baked type, the sweat meaty filling is irresistible. Everyone has their favourite but here are seven of the absolute best char siu bao in Hong Kong. If you disagree, let us know in the comments.

Looking for other contentious lists? See our guide to Hong Kong’s best restaurants and bars for more of the best F&B in town.

The best char siu bao in Hong Kong

Restaurants

Choi Lung Teahouse

icon-location-pin Tsuen Wan

Everything is self-service here, so head to the massive bamboo boxes, open the lids, and look among the dim sum for the char siu bao. If you can’t find them, yell (politely) for the cook to steam some right away. Quick, cheap and very tasty, this place is a great spot for takeout.

Restaurants

Lin Heung Tea House

icon-location-pin Central

There are lines around the block come lunchtime, and the crowds don't lie. Lin Heung is one of the oldest traditional Cantonese restaurants in Hong Kong, serving dim sum during the day and main courses at night. As such, char siu bao is served here the traditional way: alongside an array of other steaming hot dim sum on trolleys. Run to the cart as soon as it teeters out of the kitchen to ensure you get first pick. The pork is juicy, the bun, unbelievably fresh.

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Restaurants, Chinese

Mott 32

icon-location-pin Central

Something of a sexier take on the humble bao – a philosophy that extends to much of Mott 32’s exemplary contemporary Canto fare. The signature crispy sugar-coated barbecue Iberico pork bun at Mott is crumbly, sweet, morish and devoid of the greasiness that lesser char siu bao can sometimes be guilty of.

Restaurants

Tim Ho Wan

icon-location-pin Sham Shui Po

Tim Ho Wan is considered one of the best dim sums spots in the city and the small chain is your chance to dine at one of the cheapest Michelin-starred restaurants in the world. Its most famous dish? Its baked barbecue pork buns. They’re mouthwatering and addictive – the sugar dusted on top accentuates the sweetness inside – and many consider them among the best anywhere.

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Restaurants

Shang Palace

icon-location-pin Tsim Sha Tsui East

With its decidedly imperial and ornate decoration, this Tsim Sha Tsui hotspot is one of the more decadent locales on this list. Thankfully, they're not all show. The beautifully baked char siu bao are filled with sumptuous honey-glazed char siu that provokes opiate levels of euphoria. 

Restaurants, Chinese

Yan Toh Heen

icon-location-pin Tsim Sha Tsui

With two Michelin stars to its name, it’s easy to see why Yan Toh Heen is such a popular choice for dim sum among Hongkongers. One of the finest Cantonese restaurants in the world, your ability to multi-task will be put to the test when you can’t decide whether to focus on the exquisite napkin rings or the impeccable char siu bao. 

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Restaurants

Yat Tung Heen

icon-location-pin Wan Chai

Authentic and classically presented Cantonese dishes await at this top-drawer restaurant. If you think the char siu bao here don’t look all that from this picture, just remember this is a Michelin-starred establishment. Pop over and try some to realise just how great these buns are.

Looking for more dim sum classics?

Restaurants, Chinese

The best dim sum in Hong Kong

There’s no dearth of dim sum in Hong Kong. From humble siu mai, to fluffy char siu bao and soupy xiao long bao, we select the best dim sum restaurants in the city.

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