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Xiao long bao at Yank Sing
Caleb Pershan

21 of San Francisco's Best Dumplings

Where to feast on the city's top dough

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Xiao long bao at Yank Sing
| Photo by Caleb Pershan

Is there any food more perfect than the dumpling? It satisfies on many levels: the tender chew of the wrapper, the soft, juicy meat on the inside, and the bracing salt from most dipping sauces. Almost every culture has its version (China's xiao long bao, Japan's gyoza, Korea's mandoo, etc.), and they're all represented right here in San Francisco.

There is no shortage of delicious dumplings in this city, with many excellent versions of soup dumplings, har gow (shrimp), momo, and much more. There are dumplings to be found in every corner of SF, so it's helpful to know which rise to the top.

These 16 restaurants have mastered the dumpling, and are sure to not let you down when the craving strikes. Some even sell frozen bags to go so you can make your own at home. No matter how you choose to eat them, here are San Francisco's best dumplings.

Did we miss your favorite version? Please let us know in the comments.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Dim Sum Club

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2550 Van Ness Ave
San Francisco, CA 94109

This very hidden gem on Van Ness (it's inside da Vinci Villa hotel) has all the standard Cantonese classics (chicken and broccoli, fried rice), but the dim sum, and especially the dumplings, is the way to go. Choose from pork buns, steamed shrimp dumplings, pork and shrimp shumai, vegetarian dumplings, and soup dumplings. Or, just get them all, because they are all of very high quality, with full pieces of shrimp, tender, chewy wrappers, and expert folding.

2. China Live

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644 Broadway
San Francisco, CA 94133
(415) 788-8188
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Restaurateur George Chen's years-in-the-making Chinese food and retail palace is finally up and running — and, admirably, living up to the hype. Its first-level Market Restaurant offers a stunning survey of regional specialties, including classic Chinese dumplings like a xiao long bao and a standout sheng jian bao, or "SJB," pork dumping fried to crispy perfection on specially imported pans.

3. Bund Shanghai Restaurant

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640 Jackson St
San Francisco, CA 94133
(415) 982-0618
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Come here for the excellent xiao long bao (soup dumplings), which sport thin wrappers and juicy fillings. Prepare for future cravings by leaving with a bag of frozen dumplings to go.

4. Good Mong Kok Bakery

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1039 Stockton St
San Francisco, CA 94108
(415) 397-2688

Be prepared to wait in line at this bakery-style dim sum joint, where you order at the counter as you walk by the options and take them in a box to go. Don't be afraid to ask what items are, or just start with some har gow (shrimp dumplings), shumai (steamed meatball dumplings), and char siu bao (steamed pork bun). Orders usually come with three pieces, and will cost around $1.50 per order, though prices have been going up. Cash only.

5. City View Restaurant

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662 Commercial St
San Francisco, CA 94111
(415) 398-2838

Yank Sing may get all the SF dim sum glory, but City View should be sharing the spotlight. It's your standard cart-style dim sum, so within seconds of sitting down, you'll be bombarded with carts flaunting tasty dumplings and delicious small plates. There's a pretty varied selection, and all of the stand-bys (har gow, xiao long bao, etc.) are done well.

Stefanie Tuder

6. Yank Sing

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101 Spear St
San Francisco, CA 94105
(415) 957-9300
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It's expensive for dim sum, but you get what you pay for at Yank Sing. Here, the xiao long bao are exemplary, and carts arrive in abundance carrying many other dumpling delights. Make reservations for larger parties, or wing it — just don't be surprised if there's a wait.

7. Bini's Kitchen

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McKesson Plaza, 1 Post St
San Francisco, CA 94104
(415) 590-3087
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Binita Pradhan, a Kathmandu native, has honed her Nepalese dumpling catering operation and downtown stand (near the Montgomery BART station) with the help of food incubator La Cocina. Bini’s turkey, lamb, and vegetarian momos — Nepalese dumplings — all come with a light dressing of spicy tomato cilantro sauce. Next up for Pradhan: a full-service restaurant sometime in 2019.

8. Red Chilli

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522 Jones St
San Francisco, CA 94102
(415) 931-3529
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For expert momo (Nepali dumplings), head to or order in from Red Chilli. The minced chicken filling is incredibly juicy, and the wrapping is perfectly cooked throughout, which can be hard to manage in this extra-pleated style of dumpling. Dip with abandon in the spicy momo sauce, which is tomato chutney with sesame and red chili.

9. Good Luck Dim Sum

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736 Clement St
San Francisco, CA 94118
(415) 386-3388

A quick, cash-only restaurant with to-go options and some seating, Good Luck Dim Sum deserves its reputation for fortunately priced and tasty dumplings and buns. Get as many as you can of the plump har gow, their pink shrimp peeking out through translucent wrapping

10. Chili House

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726 Clement St
San Francisco, CA 94118
(415) 387-2658
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Made fresh daily, Chili House's dumplings are a welcome reprieve from the numbing spices of the Sichuan fare. Choose from xiao long bao, shumai, pot stickers, and more.

11. Dragon Beaux 俏龍軒

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5700 Geary Blvd
San Francisco, CA 94121
(415) 333-8899
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Dragon Beaux has the city's most Instagram-friendly dumplings, with the very recognizable shot (below) of five different flavors of soup dumplings (spinach skin with kale, squid ink skin with black truffle, natural skin with juicy pork, beet skin with beets, turmeric skin with crab roe). That's in addition to its other options, like sea bass dumplings, scallop shumai, standard XLB, and more.

12. Dumpling Time

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11 Division St
San Francisco, CA 94103
(415) 525-4797

Chef Do Leung has a lengthy menu of Chinese and Japanese dumpling varieties from gyoza to har gow at this new school temple to drinking and dumpling eating from the Omakase Restaurant Group (Omakase, Okane, Live Sushi Bar). Order generously, and you'll leave as stuffed as their King-Dum soup dumpling, which is large enough to stick a straw into.

Photo by Grace Cheung

13. Rintaro

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82 14th St
San Francisco, CA 94103
(415) 589-7022
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Rintaro's gyoza aren't always on the menu, but when they are, make sure you order the Berkshire pork-filled, lattice-surrounded dumplings.

14. Dancing Yak

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280 Valencia St
San Francisco, CA 94103
(415) 525-4857
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Funky Nepalese newcomer Dancing Yak is winning fans with its traditional Nepali dishes like marpha soup, daal bhat plates, and of course, momos, Chicken dumplings here are plumply filled and served with spicy tomato and roasted soybean sauce (it’s definitely spicy). Vegetarian momos are packed with spinach and served with a tomato and cilantro sauce.

15. Yuanbao Jiaozi 元寶餃子

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2110 Irving St
San Francisco, CA 94122
(415) 702-6506

Yuanbao Jiaozi serves delicately flavored dumplings literally wrapped and cooked to order by chefs behind a glass divider in full view of the well-lit dining room. Options in thick, chewy wrappers include pork with three delicacies (that’s egg and chive), shrimp and zucchini, and fish with shiitake mushroom. They’re all subtle, and served on their own or in clear broth. Opened in Spring 2018 in the Outer Sunset, the Yuanbao Jiaozi’s is new-school, with prompt service and low prices.

16. The Morris

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2501 Mariposa St
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 612-8480
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At $3 each, The Morris' chicken and foie gras dumplings are among the more expensive on this list. But the decadent flavor and umami bomb that lies within the tender wrapping is worth the money, so saddle up the bar, order a few and pair them with the restaurant's extensive wine list.

17. Namu Gaji

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499 Dolores St
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 431-6268
Visit Website

Every part of Namu Gaji's dumplings is designed to enhance umami, from the shiitake filling to the nori garnish. Plus, during truffle season the restaurant shaves some of the prized mushroom on top. We dare you not to pick up the bowl and sip the remaining rich dashi at the bottom. Bonus: Korean mandoo have been known to make special appearances on the menu from time to time.

18. MaMa Ji's

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4416 18th St
San Francisco, CA 94114
(415) 626-4416
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Dumplings take up a very large portion of the dim sum menu at this Castro Sichuan spot, and includes more unusual varieties such as cilantro shrimp dumplings, chive shrimp dumplings (pictured), and pork cabbage dumplings, as well as all the standards (XLB, har gow).

19. Kingdom of Dumpling

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1713 Taraval St
San Francisco, CA 94116
(415) 566-6143
Visit Website

Don’t confuse this Noriega dumpling shop with its regally named rival across the park, Shanghai Dumpling King, famous for its xiao long bao. Kingdom of Dumpling serves fine XLB, but it's really known for its Northern-style shuijiao dumplings, which are more oblong, have thicker wrappers, and fillings like lamb or pork and cabbage. There's also a long menu of Chinese restaurant standards, including worth-ordering flaky green onion pancakes. Pro tip: Score bags of frozen dumplings to take home and steam up at your leisure.

20. Old Mandarin Islamic Restaurant 老北京

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3132 Vicente St
San Francisco, CA 94116
(415) 564-3481

Traditional dumpling filler pork is out at this halal Chinese spot, but you won't miss it when faced with Old Mandarin Islamic's take on lamb and beef versions. You'll see workers making the dumplings if you take a bathroom break through the kitchen, so you know what you're getting is very fresh. Though not soup dumplings, the inside is juicy enough to squirt out, so proceed with (delicious) caution.

21. Shanghai Dumpling King

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2347, 696, Monterey Blvd
San Francisco, CA 94127
(415) 585-1300
Visit Website

Tragically, Shanghai Dumpling King’s Outer Richmond location is no more — but their Monterey Boulevard presence remains. The specialty here is xiao long bao. These are indisputably some of the best in town, with thin wrappers bursting with salty broth. Get an order of the regular XLB and maybe also the variation stuffed with crab, but don’t overlook the rest of the menu. The shrimp wontons in chili sauce, bready pan-fried pork buns, and chewy Shanghai noodles are all at the top of their game.

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1. Dim Sum Club

2550 Van Ness Ave, San Francisco, CA 94109

This very hidden gem on Van Ness (it's inside da Vinci Villa hotel) has all the standard Cantonese classics (chicken and broccoli, fried rice), but the dim sum, and especially the dumplings, is the way to go. Choose from pork buns, steamed shrimp dumplings, pork and shrimp shumai, vegetarian dumplings, and soup dumplings. Or, just get them all, because they are all of very high quality, with full pieces of shrimp, tender, chewy wrappers, and expert folding.

2550 Van Ness Ave
San Francisco, CA 94109

2. China Live

644 Broadway, San Francisco, CA 94133

Restaurateur George Chen's years-in-the-making Chinese food and retail palace is finally up and running — and, admirably, living up to the hype. Its first-level Market Restaurant offers a stunning survey of regional specialties, including classic Chinese dumplings like a xiao long bao and a standout sheng jian bao, or "SJB," pork dumping fried to crispy perfection on specially imported pans.

644 Broadway
San Francisco, CA 94133

3. Bund Shanghai Restaurant

640 Jackson St, San Francisco, CA 94133

Come here for the excellent xiao long bao (soup dumplings), which sport thin wrappers and juicy fillings. Prepare for future cravings by leaving with a bag of frozen dumplings to go.

640 Jackson St
San Francisco, CA 94133

4. Good Mong Kok Bakery

1039 Stockton St, San Francisco, CA 94108

Be prepared to wait in line at this bakery-style dim sum joint, where you order at the counter as you walk by the options and take them in a box to go. Don't be afraid to ask what items are, or just start with some har gow (shrimp dumplings), shumai (steamed meatball dumplings), and char siu bao (steamed pork bun). Orders usually come with three pieces, and will cost around $1.50 per order, though prices have been going up. Cash only.

1039 Stockton St
San Francisco, CA 94108

5. City View Restaurant

662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111
Stefanie Tuder

Yank Sing may get all the SF dim sum glory, but City View should be sharing the spotlight. It's your standard cart-style dim sum, so within seconds of sitting down, you'll be bombarded with carts flaunting tasty dumplings and delicious small plates. There's a pretty varied selection, and all of the stand-bys (har gow, xiao long bao, etc.) are done well.

662 Commercial St
San Francisco, CA 94111

6. Yank Sing

101 Spear St, San Francisco, CA 94105

It's expensive for dim sum, but you get what you pay for at Yank Sing. Here, the xiao long bao are exemplary, and carts arrive in abundance carrying many other dumpling delights. Make reservations for larger parties, or wing it — just don't be surprised if there's a wait.

101 Spear St
San Francisco, CA 94105

7. Bini's Kitchen

McKesson Plaza, 1 Post St, San Francisco, CA 94104

Binita Pradhan, a Kathmandu native, has honed her Nepalese dumpling catering operation and downtown stand (near the Montgomery BART station) with the help of food incubator La Cocina. Bini’s turkey, lamb, and vegetarian momos — Nepalese dumplings — all come with a light dressing of spicy tomato cilantro sauce. Next up for Pradhan: a full-service restaurant sometime in 2019.

McKesson Plaza, 1 Post St
San Francisco, CA 94104

8. Red Chilli

522 Jones St, San Francisco, CA 94102

For expert momo (Nepali dumplings), head to or order in from Red Chilli. The minced chicken filling is incredibly juicy, and the wrapping is perfectly cooked throughout, which can be hard to manage in this extra-pleated style of dumpling. Dip with abandon in the spicy momo sauce, which is tomato chutney with sesame and red chili.

522 Jones St
San Francisco, CA 94102

9. Good Luck Dim Sum

736 Clement St, San Francisco, CA 94118

A quick, cash-only restaurant with to-go options and some seating, Good Luck Dim Sum deserves its reputation for fortunately priced and tasty dumplings and buns. Get as many as you can of the plump har gow, their pink shrimp peeking out through translucent wrapping

736 Clement St
San Francisco, CA 94118

10. Chili House

726 Clement St, San Francisco, CA 94118

Made fresh daily, Chili House's dumplings are a welcome reprieve from the numbing spices of the Sichuan fare. Choose from xiao long bao, shumai, pot stickers, and more.

726 Clement St
San Francisco, CA 94118

11. Dragon Beaux 俏龍軒

5700 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94121

Dragon Beaux has the city's most Instagram-friendly dumplings, with the very recognizable shot (below) of five different flavors of soup dumplings (spinach skin with kale, squid ink skin with black truffle, natural skin with juicy pork, beet skin with beets, turmeric skin with crab roe). That's in addition to its other options, like sea bass dumplings, scallop shumai, standard XLB, and more.

5700 Geary Blvd
San Francisco, CA 94121

12. Dumpling Time

11 Division St, San Francisco, CA 94103
Photo by Grace Cheung

Chef Do Leung has a lengthy menu of Chinese and Japanese dumpling varieties from gyoza to har gow at this new school temple to drinking and dumpling eating from the Omakase Restaurant Group (Omakase, Okane, Live Sushi Bar). Order generously, and you'll leave as stuffed as their King-Dum soup dumpling, which is large enough to stick a straw into.

11 Division St
San Francisco, CA 94103

13. Rintaro

82 14th St, San Francisco, CA 94103

Rintaro's gyoza aren't always on the menu, but when they are, make sure you order the Berkshire pork-filled, lattice-surrounded dumplings.

82 14th St
San Francisco, CA 94103

14. Dancing Yak

280 Valencia St, San Francisco, CA 94103

Funky Nepalese newcomer Dancing Yak is winning fans with its traditional Nepali dishes like marpha soup, daal bhat plates, and of course, momos, Chicken dumplings here are plumply filled and served with spicy tomato and roasted soybean sauce (it’s definitely spicy). Vegetarian momos are packed with spinach and served with a tomato and cilantro sauce.

280 Valencia St
San Francisco, CA 94103

15. Yuanbao Jiaozi 元寶餃子

2110 Irving St, San Francisco, CA 94122

Yuanbao Jiaozi serves delicately flavored dumplings literally wrapped and cooked to order by chefs behind a glass divider in full view of the well-lit dining room. Options in thick, chewy wrappers include pork with three delicacies (that’s egg and chive), shrimp and zucchini, and fish with shiitake mushroom. They’re all subtle, and served on their own or in clear broth. Opened in Spring 2018 in the Outer Sunset, the Yuanbao Jiaozi’s is new-school, with prompt service and low prices.

2110 Irving St
San Francisco, CA 94122

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16. The Morris

2501 Mariposa St, San Francisco, CA 94110

At $3 each, The Morris' chicken and foie gras dumplings are among the more expensive on this list. But the decadent flavor and umami bomb that lies within the tender wrapping is worth the money, so saddle up the bar, order a few and pair them with the restaurant's extensive wine list.

2501 Mariposa St
San Francisco, CA 94110

17. Namu Gaji

499 Dolores St, San Francisco, CA 94110

Every part of Namu Gaji's dumplings is designed to enhance umami, from the shiitake filling to the nori garnish. Plus, during truffle season the restaurant shaves some of the prized mushroom on top. We dare you not to pick up the bowl and sip the remaining rich dashi at the bottom. Bonus: Korean mandoo have been known to make special appearances on the menu from time to time.

499 Dolores St
San Francisco, CA 94110

18. MaMa Ji's

4416 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94114

Dumplings take up a very large portion of the dim sum menu at this Castro Sichuan spot, and includes more unusual varieties such as cilantro shrimp dumplings, chive shrimp dumplings (pictured), and pork cabbage dumplings, as well as all the standards (XLB, har gow).

4416 18th St
San Francisco, CA 94114

19. Kingdom of Dumpling

1713 Taraval St, San Francisco, CA 94116

Don’t confuse this Noriega dumpling shop with its regally named rival across the park, Shanghai Dumpling King, famous for its xiao long bao. Kingdom of Dumpling serves fine XLB, but it's really known for its Northern-style shuijiao dumplings, which are more oblong, have thicker wrappers, and fillings like lamb or pork and cabbage. There's also a long menu of Chinese restaurant standards, including worth-ordering flaky green onion pancakes. Pro tip: Score bags of frozen dumplings to take home and steam up at your leisure.

1713 Taraval St
San Francisco, CA 94116

20. Old Mandarin Islamic Restaurant 老北京

3132 Vicente St, San Francisco, CA 94116

Traditional dumpling filler pork is out at this halal Chinese spot, but you won't miss it when faced with Old Mandarin Islamic's take on lamb and beef versions. You'll see workers making the dumplings if you take a bathroom break through the kitchen, so you know what you're getting is very fresh. Though not soup dumplings, the inside is juicy enough to squirt out, so proceed with (delicious) caution.

3132 Vicente St
San Francisco, CA 94116

21. Shanghai Dumpling King

2347, 696, Monterey Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94127

Tragically, Shanghai Dumpling King’s Outer Richmond location is no more — but their Monterey Boulevard presence remains. The specialty here is xiao long bao. These are indisputably some of the best in town, with thin wrappers bursting with salty broth. Get an order of the regular XLB and maybe also the variation stuffed with crab, but don’t overlook the rest of the menu. The shrimp wontons in chili sauce, bready pan-fried pork buns, and chewy Shanghai noodles are all at the top of their game.

2347, 696, Monterey Blvd
San Francisco, CA 94127

Related Maps