Red beans are not usual ingredients in Western cuisine but they are often found in many Asian style baked goods. I made red bean buns with already made canned red bean to make my life easier. They are easy and fun to make, and even more delicious to eat. Red bean buns are one of my childhood favorite snacks. They are perhaps the most common sweet bread in most Korean bakeries, too. 

If you are not used to eating sweet red beans, it might take some time to acquire the taste. However, once you start enjoying it, there is no way to stop loving it. Hope you get to try this recipe.

You can use any of your favorite dinner roll recipes if you like. The white fluffy texture of the rolls with tender sweet red beans..., that is my kind of afternoon snack. 

Warm the milk first. Not too hot, but just luke-warm so that you don't kill the yeast.

Add sugar, salt, melted butter, instant yeast. Mix well. I used instant yeast so I didn't need to proof my yeast. If you are using the active yeast, you will need to proof your yeast with warm milk first, then add the rest of the ingredients.

Add the flour and mix with spoon first until the dough comes together, then knead for 5 minutes. Cover the bowl with towel and let the dough rise for 1 hour or until double in volume.

Cut the dough into 14-16 pieces.

I used canned sweet red beans. Scoop into 1-1/2" balls and set aside.

Flatten the dough and place the red beans on the center.

Close the dough to form a ball. Make sure to seal the seam completely.

Flatten the dough slightly with palm of your hand.

With scissor give 5-6 slits on the rim of the dough toward the center, but leave the center part uncut.

Brush with egg wash and sprinkle a little bit of black sesame seeds if you have.

Bake them in 350˚F oven for 15-18 minutes or until the top gets nicely browned.

These buns are good either hot or cooled. Serve with a cold glass of milk or hot cup of tea. Either way, they will comfort your afternoon craving of something sweet and satisfying. You can definitely serve these buns as a breakfast as well. They can last fresh for a couple of day if stored well.

~ Holly

Korean Sweet Red Bean Buns

makes 14 buns


  • 2-1/2 cups bread flour
  • 2/3 cup milk, luke-warm
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon instant yeast
  • 1 can (17 oz) sweet red beans
  • 1 egg + 1 teaspoon water
  • 2 tablespoons black sesame seeds, optional


  1. In a mixer, combine milk, egg, butter, salt and instant yeast; stir well. Add the flour and mix with wooden spoon to combine. With a dough hook attachment, knead the dough for 5 minutes on medium speed setting. If kneading by hand, you will need until the dough becomes elastic, about 7-8 minutes.
  2. Place the dough in the warm place for 45-60 minutes until it doubles in volume. 
  3. Punch the dough and cut into 14 pieces. Flatten the dough on your palm and put about 1-1/2 tablespoonful of red bean paste on the center. Gather up the edges of the dough and seal it to make a ball. Make sure you pinch all the seam. Flatten the balls with palm of your hand just a little bit to make thick disk shape. Using a pair of scissor, give 5-6 slits on the edge but leave the center uncut.
  4. Place the dough disks on a baking sheet and cover with a damp clothe. Let it rise again for 45 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350˚F.
  5. Brush the dough with egg wash. Sprinkle the top with a little bit of black sesame seeds if using. Bake them in preheated oven for 15-18 minutes until the top gets golden brown. Serve hot or cooled.

For more delicious Korean style sweet snacks, click the images below to get the recipes.

LA Sweet Rice Cake BarsRed Bean CakeSweet Rice Corn Hotteok