Cheater’s Siopao Bola Bola made easy using refrigerated biscuits, meatballs, and quail eggs. These steamed buns are so fluffy and delicious with so little effort and in under 30 minutes!

Who doesn’t love a hearty piece of siopao smothered in a sweet and savory brown sauce? Left to my own devices, I’ll have these steamed meat buns breakfast, lunch and dinner and all the snacks in between!

But as deep as love for siopao is my dislike for their labor. The making of the dough, the filling, and the sauce all translate to a good day’s hard work and not one I am willing to tackle. My solution? Refrigerated biscuits, frozen fully-cooked meatballs, and canned boiled quail eggs!

In thirty minutes tops, I can have a dozen or so of stored siopao bola-bola in the freezer to zap in the microwave when craving hits.

Of course, nothing beats traditional siopao, and if you have a good afternoon to spare, I do have a Siopao Asado recipe you can try.

But if you’re looking for a quick fix, this cheater’s siopao bola-bola shortcut method is the perfect answer. The refrigerated biscuits steam into soft and pillowy buns in a tenth of the time it takes to make from-scratch yeast dough.

I use frozen pre-cooked meatballs and hard-boiled quail eggs from the can to keep with the quick and easy theme but feel free to experiment with your favorite fillings and make the steamed buns extra special. Here are a few suggestions below.

Steamed Bun Fillings

  • shredded adobo chicken
  • shredded pork asado (follow my macao-style recipe; just swap pork butt for the spare ribs and thicken the sauce with cornstarch slurry)
  • chopped Chinese BBQ/char sui pork
  • custard, ube halaya or sweetened red bean paste
  • Peking duck slices with hoisin sauce


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