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Apr 17, 2012 07:39 AM

Veggie gelatin with stabilizers?

Anyone familiar with replicating gelatin using stabilizers? I have heard that agar agar could do this... but will it break down when heated?

I was looking to create a soup dumpling that is normally filled with a gelatinized broth.. once heated it melts and is very juicy .

Is it possible to replicate this in a veggie friendly way ?

I am not sure if the emulsifiers/stabilizers would turn back to liquid when heated?

what would the proportions be ? and would alot impact flavor or texture changes ?


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  1. A while ago, I posted a question about a veg substitute for gelatin in order to make a panna cotta recipe. There was a good discussion of a bunch of different alternatives, including agar agar, arrowroot, clearjel, and such. Maybe that will help you. Here's the thread: .

    I hope you do get an answer because I'd love to try to make veg soup dumplings too.

    1. I think agar is the best substitute for gelatin in cold dishes as it can be substituted equally in powdered form. If you can only find flakes, the substitution is a bit different though.

      The texture is a bit firmer, chewy? compared to gelatin, but you'll be heating it so that won't matter.

      Also agar does dissolve and melt at a higher temperature. Unlike gel you have to boil it and heat it for a long time to get it to melt, so your dumplings would need be steamed or boiled, simmering probably won't be enough to melt the gel again.

      So, maybe use a carageen gel instead if you are heating the mixture? Sorry, I don't know how well other gels work under heat. What temperature will your dumplings be cooking in?

      1. If you're talking about xiaolongbao, the vegetarian ones I've had (at a Shanghai place famous for xiaolongbao) are made with agar and shiitake mushroom. I have never had the "real thing", but the veg version was just Ok; I preferred the normal jicai buns and dumplings at the same place.

        I would try agar first. Just remember, you will probably only need a very small amount.