These prawn wontons in chilli oil are such a satisfying dish that is perfect for when you’re looking for comfort food at its finest. This recipe is much easier than you’d expect and the wontons themselves are silky and tender, filled with prawns and cabbage and finished with a rich, salty and spicy homemade chilli oil.
I cannot get enough of these prawn wontons! They are one of my favourite things to order takeaway but they are even better when freshly made at home. These wontons are filled with prawns and cabbage, but the hero of the dish really is the homemade chilli oil so make sure to go heavy on the sauce!
These wontons in chilli oil are perfect as a standalone meal but can also be served as an appetiser or alongside other dumplings to make a feast!
Don’t let making these wonton’s intimidate you, they are as simple as mixing together the filling (which is made even simpler by using a food processor) and then shaping the wontons. They are then cooked in boiling water and bathed in homemade chilli oil.
The shaping is very simple using pre-made wonton wrappers. This process takes a little bit of time but once you get into a rhythm of pinching the edges together it becomes quite cathartic.
They are warm, spicy, salty and so full of flavour that you’ll want to make these again and again!
This recipe has two parts, the prawn wontons and the chilli oil. The wontons themselves use just a few ingredients, while the sauce will use most of which can be found in a well stocked pantry.
- Raw prawns – I like to use frozen green prawns or shrimp that have been defrosted for 10-15 minutes in warm water. You could also use ground pork instead or a combination of both.
- Cabbage – we’re using shredded green cabbage for this recipe but you could also use wombok (also known as napa cabbage).
- Ginger and garlic – the key flavour base.
- Spring onions – adding flavour and freshness to the filling, you can leave these out if you prefer.
- Soy sauce – we’re using a light soy sauce for this recipe to give the filling flavour.
- Wonton wrappers – you can find fresh wonton wrappers in most supermarkets or Asian grocers. I prefer to use the square shaped ones to make folding easiest, but the round ones will also work fine.
- Bok choy or pak choy – to serve the wontons, we’re adding some asian greens to the bowl to make it a meal. You can skip or use something else instead.
For the chilli oil, you’re using a base combination of sesame oil, soy sauce and white vinegar and then adding your flavours of garlic, chilli flakes, sesame seeds and cumin. Adjust the quantity of chilli flakes based on your preference and tolerance for spice.
To make these prawn wontons, you’ll need a food processor to make things easy. If you don’t have one, just chop the prawn meat up finely instead. You’ll also need a large pot to boil the water and a smaller saucepan to make the chilli oil.
Using the food processor, chop the raw prawns until they have a slightly chunky texture, then transfer them to a bowl. Add shredded cabbage, grated ginger, crushed garlic, spring onions, and soy sauce, and mix everything together until well combined.
Now, how to fold a wonton! Place a wonton wrapper on a clean surface or in your palm. Spoon about 2 teaspoons of the prawn filling into the centre of the wrapper. Moisten the edges of the wrapper with water using your finger. Fold the wrapper diagonally to form a triangle, pressing the edges firmly to seal the wonton. If you want you can also pull the two side corners of the folded edge together and pinch them in front to get the more classic wonton shape.
Continue this process with the remaining prawn mixture and wonton wrappers until you have used up all the filling.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Carefully drop the wontons into the boiling water and cook for around 3-4 minutes until they float to the surface and the prawns are fully cooked. Use a slotted spoon to remove the cooked wontons from the water and set them aside. Remember to reserve about ½ cup of the cooking water.
If desired, toast sesame seeds in a small dry saucepan for about 2 minutes until they become fragrant. Remove them from the pan and set aside. In the same saucepan, heat sesame oil over medium heat. Add crushed garlic, chilli flakes, and cumin. Cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly, until the garlic becomes fragrant. Remove the chilli oil from the heat and stir in the toasted sesame seeds, soy sauce, and white vinegar. Set aside.
In the same pot of boiling water used for the wontons, blanch the pak choy or baby bok choy for 1-2 minutes until they become tender. Remove the greens from the water and divide them between serving bowls.
To serve, distribute the cooked wontons among the serving bowls with the greens. Pour some of the reserved wonton cooking water into each bowl to create a broth.
Generously drizzle the chilli oil over the wontons and greens and garnish with finely sliced spring onions. Serve the prawn wontons in chilli oil while hot and enjoy!
The chilli oil adds a spicy kick and enhances the overall flavour of the dish, but if you prefer a milder taste, you can omit it. The wontons will still be delicious, and you can serve them with a soy-based dipping sauce or any other sauce of your choice.
Cooked wontons can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 days. When ready to enjoy again, gently reheat them in a steamer or microwave until heated through.
Yes, you can definitely experiment with different vegetables. While cabbage provides a nice crunch and flavour, you can try using shredded carrots, bean sprouts, or even finely chopped spinach as alternative options.
More prawn recipes:
Prawn Wontons with Chilli Oil
For the prawn wontons:
- 340-350 grams raw prawns
- 11/2 cups shredded cabbage
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
- 1 clove garlic crushed
- 1-2 spring onions finely chopped
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- 1 x packet wonton wrappers approx. 30
For the chilli oil:
- ¾ cup sesame oil
- 4 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- 3 cloves garlic crushed
- 1-3 tablespoons chilli flakes
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- Park choy or baby bok choy
- ½ cup reserved wonton cooking water
- In a food processor, add the raw prawns and pulse until they are well chopped but still have a slightly chunky texture. Add the prawns to a bowl with the shredded cabbage, grated ginger, crushed garlic, spring onions and soy sauce. Mix well until combined.
- Place a wonton wrapper on a clean surface or in the palm of your hand. Spoon about 2 teaspoons of the prawn filling into the centre of the wrapper.
- Moisten the edges of the wrapper with water using your finger. Fold the wrapper diagonally to create a triangle shape, pressing the edges firmly to seal the wonton. Make sure there are no air pockets trapped inside. You can keep the wontons like this or pull the two side corners together and pinch in front.
- Repeat the process with the remaining prawn mixture and wonton wrappers until all the filling is used.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Carefully drop the wontons into the boiling water and cook for about 3-4 minutes or until they float to the surface and the prawns are cooked through. Remove the cooked wontons from the water using a slotted spoon and set aside. Reserve about ½ cup of the cooking water.
- Optional: add the sesame seeds to a small dry saucepan and gently toast for about 2 minutes until fragrant. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Add the sesame oil to the saucepan and heat over medium heat. Add the crushed garlic, chilli flakes, and cumin. Cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly, until the garlic is fragrant. Remove the chilli oil from the heat and stir in the toasted sesame seeds, soy sauce and white vinegar. Set aside.
- In the same pot of boiling water used for the wontons, blanch the pak choy or baby bok choy for 1-2 minutes until tender. Remove the greens from the water and divide between serving bowls.
- To serve, divide the cooked wontons among serving bowls with the greens. Pour some of the reserved wonton cooking water into each bowl to create a broth.
- Drizzle the chilli oil generously over the wontons and greens and garnish with spring onions. Serve hot and enjoy!
Nutritional information is provided as a guide only and is calculated using automated online tools, therefore we cannot guarantee the accuracy. We encourage you to make your own calculations based on the actual ingredients used in your recipe.