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Sometimes it’s the simplest things that make us the happiest, am I right? This super simple Panda Express cream cheese rangoon recipe is fun to make and so so good!
With only 4 ingredients, you can create this classic Chinese favorite that’s just like what you’d get at Panda Express.
Cream cheese rangoon, also know as fried wontons, is a tasty appetizer of crispy wonton wrappers with a cream cheese filling. It’s typically served at Chinese restaurants with a sweet and sour sauce for dipping. And it’s obviously a very popular item on the Panda Express menu.
Making them at home couldn’t be easier! And if you think you’ll eat just one or two, think again! Fully addictive, for sure.
Ingredients for Cream cheese Rangoon
Here is the short list of simple ingredients that you’ll need to make this Panda Express cream cheese rangoon recipe:
- Wonton wrappers. They’re sold either refrigerated or frozen at your local grocery store.
- Cream cheese. Be sure that it’s room temperature so it blends easily with the green onions and garlic powder.
- Green onions, i.e. scallions.
- Garlic powder
- Oil, for frying
How to Make Cream cheese Rangoon
Make the Filling
Set up a separate bowl of water for your hands.
Assemble the Wontons
Take each square piece of wonton and place 1 teaspoon of cream cheese filling in the center. Then, dip your fingers in water and moisten each corner of the wonton wrapper.
Now, gather two opposite corners together with one hand. With the other hand, bring the other two corners into the center, so that all 4 corners are connected.
Press the corners together to seal them.
Dip your fingers in water again, and press all of the edges together so that there are no holes. Set each wonton on a piece of parchment paper until you’ve done all of them.
Fry the Wontons
A lot of recipes call for 3 or 4 inches of oil in the pan, but you can get this job done with under 1 inch of oil.
Start by heating the oil over medium heat in a heavy duty pan. Drop a few drops of water into the oil. If they sizzle, it means that the oil is ready for frying.
Before you fry, be sure to set up a wire rack over some paper towels. And if you have a slotted spoon, this is a good time to use it.
Now, drop the wontons into the hot oil. You’ll notice that the edges of the wonton wrappers will start to turn golden brown really fast, like 20-30 seconds fast. Then, flip them over. Let them go another 20 seconds and get them outta there!
Set the cream cheese rangoon on the wire rack to drain excess oil.
Serving Suggestions for Cream Cheese Rangoon
Keep it simple and round out your meal with any of these ideas:
- Dipping Sauces: Serve with Thai sweet chili sauce, soy sauce or a spicy sriracha mayo.
- Side Salad: Create a simple salad with fresh greens and a light Asian-style dressing for a refreshing contrast.
- Fruit Salsa: Pair your Rangoon with a fruit salsa made from mango, pineapple, and cilantro for a tropical twist.
- Soup: Enjoy them as a side dish with a hot bowl of wonton soup for an authentic Chinese dining experience.
Variations on this Panda Express Cream Cheese Rangoon Recipe
Get creative with your Cream Cheese Rangoon by trying out these variations:
- Crab Rangoon: Make this Chinese restaurant classic by stirring real or imitation crab meat into the cream cheese mixture.
- Shrimp Rangoon: Add cooked and chopped shrimp to the cream cheese mixture for an alternative to crab.
- Sweet Rangoon: Fill the wonton wrappers with sweet cream cheese, sugar, and a touch of vanilla extract for a dessert version. Dip the hot wontons in cinnamon-sugar after frying.
What is the best oil to use for frying Cream Cheese Rangoon?
Alternative Cooking Methods
The best way to get the crispiest rangoon is to fry them. That said, if you don’t want to fry your cream cheese rangoon, no worries!
Here are some healthier ways to get it done, deliciously:
Air Fryer Method
Preheat the air fryer to 350°F. Assemble the rangoon according to the instructions in the recipe card. Then, lightly coat with nonstick cooking spray or brush the Rangoon with oil to help them crisp up.
Place them in a single layer in the air fryer basket, and cook for 6-8 minutes or until they’re golden brown and crispy.
Conventional Oven Method
Preheat your oven to 375°F. Place the filled rangoon on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Lightly brush or spray them with oil to help achieve a crispy texture.
Then, bake for 12-15 minutes or until they’re golden and crispy.
How to Store Leftover Cream Cheese Rangoon
Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They will keep for several days.
To store cream cheese rangoon for longer, pop them into a freezer bag and remove as much air from the bag as possible. They will stay good in the freezer for 1-2 months.
How to Reheat Cream Cheese Rangoon
To revive the crispy texture of your wontons, avoid the microwave. They tend to get soggy that way. Instead, reheat cream cheese rangoon using these other options:
- Oven: Preheat your oven to 350°F and bake for about 3-4 minutes until they’re hot and crispy.
- Air Fryer: Reheat in the air fryer at 350°F for 4-5 minutes until crispy and heated through.
When you try this Panda Express cream cheese rangoon recipe, I’d love to hear about it! Drop a rating or leave a comment below. Enjoy!
For more Chinese restaurant favorites, try these:
- Creamy Chinese Coconut Shrimp Recipe (Buffet Style)
- String Bean Chicken Recipe (Just like Panda Express!)
- Easy Shrimp Mei Fun Recipe (Singapore Rice Noodles)
Easy Cream Cheese Rangoon Recipe (Panda Express)
- 24 wonton wrappers
- 8 oz. cream cheese room temperature
- 2 Tbsp. scallions diced
- 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
- vegetable oil for frying
- Combine cream cheese, chopped scallions and garlic powder in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Set up a small bowl of water and a clean, flat surface.
- Place one teaspoon of cream cheese mixture in the center of a square wonton. Dip your fingers in the water and dab water onto each corner of the wonton.
- Gather two opposite corners together. Then, gather the remaining opposite corners to the center, so that all four corners are joined together.
- Dip your fingers in water again and seal all 4 edges so that there are no holes. Set the wonton aside and continue to repeat with the remaining wontons.
- Heat 1 inch of oil over medium heat in a heavy bottomed pan. Drop the wontons into the hot oil. When the edges turn golden brown (about 20-30 seconds), flip them over and cook another 20-30 seconds. Remove onto a wire rack.
- Serve warm, with sweet chili sauce for dipping.