Hoisin Duck Recipe

Published on June 18th 2022 by Jennifer Dodd.
Last updated on March 20th 2024
This recipe, developed through the collective effort of at least six experts, underwent meticulous research and testing for over three months. Learn more about our process in the art and science behind our recipes. This post may contain affiliate links. Read our Disclosure Policy.
Top View of Hoisin Duck

Duck can be an intimidating or uncommon protein to cook at home. However, Hoisin Duck is a quick and easy recipe to prepare, using duck breast marinated in dark soy sauce, Chinese five-spice containing cinnamon, fennel, star anise, cloves, and Sichuan peppercorns, as well as Shaoxing cooking wine, which has a similar flavor to sherry. This is rubbed into the duck breast and marinated overnight. Next, the duck breast is pan-seared until the skin is crispy and golden brown and then wrapped in homemade Mandarin pancakes. Mandarin pancakes are not like those you would find at an American pancake house; they are made using boiling water, flour, sea salt, and sesame oil. Next, the dough is rested, rolled into a flat tortilla shape, and cooked with sesame oil in a skillet. Finally, the pancakes are filled with cucumber, scallions, hoisin sauce, and sliced crispy duck breast. For a lower-carb option, this recipe can also be made into lettuce wraps using iceberg or romaine lettuce. If you love duck meat, you'll love this Roasted Duck Breast With Red Wine Sauce recipe for your next culinary adventures.

What does hoisin sauce taste like?

Hoisin sauce is a thick sauce made from five-spice powder, fermented soybeans, sugar, vinegar & garlic. The five-spice powder contains cinnamon, star anise, fennel, cloves & Sichuan peppercorns. Its flavor profile is sweet, salty, zesty, and aromatic due to the spices. Hoisin is usually served as a dipping sauce, added to soups & stir-frys, or spread inside wraps and sandwiches. 

What goes well with duck?

Duck contains a high amount of fat as well as flavor, so it pairs well with acidic items such as berries, cherries, apples, or oranges. Sweet and sour sauces such as sweet chili, plum sauce, and hoisin sauce also go well with duck. Meanwhile, stir-fried vegetables, noodles, and rice make perfect side dishes. 

How do you eat hoisin duck?

Hoisin duck can be eaten on its own, wrapped in Mandarin pancakes or warm moo shu wraps, and inside steamed buns, served with cucumbers or pickled vegetables. And, of course, topped with plenty of hoisin sauce. 

Author: Jennifer Dodd
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Time & Serves

Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
45 mins
Serves
4 persons

Ingredients

Duck Breast
  • 2 tablespoons Shaoxing Cooking Wine

  • 1/2 teaspoon Chinese Five Spice Powder 

  • 3 tablespoons Dark Soy Sauce 

  • 4 pieces Duck Breast

Mandarin Pancakes
  • 2 1/2 cups All-Purpose Flour

  • 1/4 teaspoon Sea Salt 

  • 1 cup Boiling Hot Water 

  • 1/4 cup Toasted Sesame Oil 

Hoisin Duck Assembly
  • 8 warm Mandarin Pancakes 

  • 1/4 cup Hoisin Sauce 

  • 4 Duck Breasts, sliced 

  • 1 medium Cucumber, sliced into small sticks, seeds removed 

  • 6 Scallions, white part only, julienne 

Instructions

Duck Breast

Using a small bowl, whisk together the Shaoxing Cooking Wine, five spice powder & soy sauce.  

Score each duck breast using a Chef's knife, lightly slicing into the skin both vertically & horizontally creating a diamond pattern. The slices should only be made into the skin, not piercing the meat. This will allow the duck skin to cook evenly, and the fat to render down creating crispy skin. Scoring the skin will also prevent the duck breast from curling up while cooking. 

Add the marinade to a small, shallow baking dish. Place the duck breasts into the marinade with the skin side facing up. The marinade should only be on the duck meat & not the skin. Place the dish into the fridge, uncovered, overnight. Leaving the duck unwrapped will help to dry out the skin, resulting in crispier skin. 

Once the duck has marinated overnight, remove the duck from the fridge placing it onto a plate lined with paper towel. Leave the plate of duck breast on the countertop letting the meat come up to room temperature for 20 minutes.

In the meantime, you can make the dough for the Mandarin pancakes. 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Place a medium-sized skillet onto the stovetop setting the temperature to medium heat. 

Once the skillet is hot, add the duck breasts to the pan, skin side down. Continue to cook the duck breast skin for 5 minutes to reduce the duck fat. Once the duck fat begins to render and released into the pan, use a large spoon to baste the duck meat; this will keep the meat tender & prevent it from getting dry.  

After the duck skin is golden brown and rendered down, flip the duck breasts over & move the pan to the oven, cooking the duck for 5 minutes. Duck breast is best served at medium temperature; the center of the duck breast should read 125F on a kitchen thermometer. Let the duck breast rest on a cutting board for 5 minutes before thinly slicing them; the duck will continue to cook while it rests, reaching a perfect medium temperature. 

Mandarin Pancakes

Set up a stand-up mixer on the countertop, and add 2 cups of flour and salt to the mixing bowl of the stand-up mixer. Reserve the other 1/2 cup of the flour for dusting the countertop and rolling out the dough. Attach the bowl to the mixer as well as the dough hook attachment. Turn the mixer onto medium-low speed, then carefully and slowly add the boiling water to the bowl. Continue mixing for 6-7 minutes until the dough has cooled off, and the dough is smooth in texture. 

Remove the bowl from the mixer covering the dough with a clean, damp kitchen towel. Let the dough rest for 30 minutes at room temperature. 

Once the dough has rested, lightly dust the countertop with flour & cut the dough into 16 pieces and roll the pieces into balls. 

Dust a rolling pin with flour & roll each ball out into 3 inches circles. Using a pastry brush, brush 8 of the pieces of dough with sesame oil just enough to coat the dough. 

Stack the other eight pieces of dough on top of the eight pieces of dough that have been brushed with sesame oil. They will now be stacked in 2 like a sandwich. 

Take each stack and roll them out using the rolling pin, pressing the dough together and rolling out each stack into 8-inch circles.  

Place a large non-stick pan onto the stovetop, setting the temperature to medium-high heat.  

Using the remaining sesame oil & pastry brush, brush the pan with oil & add a pancake to the pan. Cook the pancake for 1 minute until it starts to bubble & puff up, then flip it to cook on the other side for an additional minute. Place the cooked pancake onto a plate lined with a clean kitchen towel or napkin, and cover to keep the pancakes warm. Repeat the process with the remaining pancakes. 

Hoisin Duck Assembly

Place each pancake onto a cutting board, filling the pancakes with a spoonful of hoisin sauce, sliced duck breast, cucumber and scallions. Roll the pancakes into a crêpe shaped roll slicing them in half. 

Place onto a large platter & serve with extra hoisin sauce on the side. 

Jennifer Dodd
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Savor the taste of culinary excellence with Jennifer, where each dish tells a story of tradition and adventure.

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Keywords
hoisin duck, sauce, Peking, recipe, stir fry, roast, slow cooker, crispy, Cantonese cuisine, scallion pancakes

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