Easy and healthy Chinese steamed rice cake recipe (Rice Fa gao) that you will love once you tried. I have planned quite a long time ago to make the two types of Chinese steamed rice cake with videos. And finally I bring the two on the blog.

There are two types of Chinese steamed rice cake– one is made from pure rice flour (with large spongy like holes) and the other one is made with rice flour and plain flour (with small holes). Although the ingredients are similar, the two types of steamed rice cakes are different. Pure rice flour rice cake, also known as Bai Tang Gao in mandarin and Bak Tong Gao in Cantonese, is fluffy and chewy. Usually Bai Tang Gao is served after cooling down. However rice fa gao should be served when still warm. This post introduces steamed rice fa gao firstly and then Bai tang gao recipe will come later in next recipe.

steamed rice cake- Rice Fa gao

In China, this is usually served as a dessert as breakfast or between meals. My favorite serving way is with tea as those rice cakes are a little bit too sweet for me.

The batter for this one is quick thick, something similar to chiffon cake batter. The final steamed rice cake is not middle  fluffy and dry. We have another steamed rice cake with a thin batter, which is moist and more fluffy.

steamed rice cake-rice fa gao

Steamed Rice Cake

Steamed Chinese rice cake-- Rice Fa Gao
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Breakfast, staple
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: Rice, steamed
Prep Time: 3 hours
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 20 minutes
Servings: 24 Making 24 middle size steamed rice cake
Calories: 69kcal



  • Dissolve sugar in hot water and set aside to cool down to warm or room temperature (under 38 degree C)
  • Mix rice flour, flour and yeast in a large mixing bowl and stir in sugar liquid. Combine and mix well.
  • Set aside to ferment for 2-4 hours based on the temperature. It takes me 2.5 hours in room temperature around 25-28 degree C until there are lots of small bubbles on the surface and the batter rises twice.
  • Brush the moulds with oil and scoop the liquid to full 80% full. Bring water to boil in wok and then steam the cakes for 20 minutes over high fire.
  • Wait for 5 minutes, transfer out, cool down slightly and de-mould when still warm.
  • This cake should be served warm. Reheat before serving if necessary.


The left rice cakes should be covered with a wet cloth or plastic wrapper to avoid drying out. Reheat before next serving.
The Nutrition Facts is based on each single Fa Gao.


Calories: 69kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Potassium: 12mg | Sugar: 5g | Calcium: 1mg | Iron: 0.1mg

steamed rice cake- rice fa gao

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  1. 5 stars
    Is this very moist inside. I’m looking for a recipe that is extremely moist almost wet to the touch and so far have not found what I am looking for. I get the dessert in a Chinese buffet.

  2. hello

    my question is, Can i replace the yeast with something else ? I have yeast allergy and i would love to try this recipe!

    Thank you

    1. There is a mixed flour with baking powder, which can be used to make this recipe. It is called “预拌粉”. You can try to search it.

  3. The cake came out a little dry. Made this with 120g of sugar and added the same amount of all other ingredients, ended up having to add about 60ml more water for it to reach a similar consistency, and even then the cake was dry.

  4. I am looking for something like this that is gluten free and vegan, could I substitute the flour with gluten free flour? Or do you have an alternative recipe you would recomment