BAO Kings Cross

Silver Award

SquareMeal Review of BAO Kings Cross

Silver Award

Tucked away in a discreet corner of Pancras Square, you’ll find the latest iteration of ever popular Taiwanese bun slingers Bao. If you were starting to experience Bao fatigue (there are now five across London as well countless imitators), you will be glad to know Bao Kings Cross is something of a soft rebrand for the group, being its first all-day operation.

The dining room at Bao Kings Cross has a vintage, yet minimalist feel to it, complete with red flooring and a cluster of large paper lanterns hanging from the ceiling. The menu features the group’s signature buns alongside a few innovative takes on Western classics. Earlier in the day, you can stop by and sample the bakery goods counter, which swaps out the standard likes of eclairs and doughnuts for more unique sweet treats - think a dense, doughy coconut slice that’s the size of a small bread loaf or a caramel cookie version of a classic bao.

Later in the day, the menu expands to include a selection of buns and sharing plates which arrive at the table when they’re ready and trust us when we say you’ll be tempted to try everything. We kicked things off with a tender, smoky beef cheek croquette rolled in breadcrumbs and slicked with a fiery green sauce, before moving on to perhaps the most luxe take on chips and dip we’ve ever seen - golden, skin-on fries dipped into the buttery sweet filling of a lobster head.

The brand’s signature buns also make an appearance, including two exclusive to this location; the Hamburger Bao consists of dry-aged beef slicked with a burger sauce that cuts through the patty’s acidity, and the Seafood Roll sees deep-fried brioche filled with lobster, crayfish and mayonnaise, creating a symphony of sweetness.

From the short list of puddings and house cocktails, we were most taken by those with punny names. The BAOfiterole sees a scoop of malted milk ice cream sandwiched between a sweet bao bun drizzled with a chocolate mirror glaze, while the BAO-ppino cocktail consists of a scoop of mango sorbet floating in Prosecco.

There may come a time when Bao jumps the shark, but for now, sticking to its winning formula of novel dishes, swift service and fair prices has paid dividends.

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £30 - £49
Cool, Fun, Quirky, Unique
Food Occasions
All day dining, Dinner, Lunch
Alfresco And Views
Outside seating
Special Features
Counter dining, Vegan options, Vegetarian options
Perfect for
Child friendly, Dates


Found at Pancras Square in King’s Cross, Bao Kings Cross serves the many hungry punters that pass through this busy London thoroughfare each day, keeping them topped up with small plates, baos and fresh Taiwanese baking - the latter being a new concept for the popular bun-slingers. 

Bao is often seen as responsible for putting Taiwanese steamed buns on the map in the capital, thanks to its simple format of a tick-list menu, counter seating and pillowy bao buns filled with everything from pork belly to beef short rib. Bao Kings Cross represents a bit of a departure from previous sites though, offering a selection of unique 'tea snacks' and 'cafe plates'. The smaller tea snacks include Bao favourites like Taiwanese fried chicken and beef tendon nuggets, and are ideal to order alongside a few bao buns. Alternatively, the larger rice-based cafe plates are designed to be more of a lunch for one, and those include pork chop lard rice with soy cured egg, chilli chicken rice, and mapo tofu rice with pine nut nori. 

Elsewhere, diners also have the chance to sample BBG, otherwise known as Bao Bakery Goods. The handmade selection features savoury delights such as a pork pie baozi and a salted egg ‘muffin’ bao, while sweeter options include a cookie made using Pump Street chocolate. You can enjoy your baked goods in the restaurant or if you are short on time, snap them up via the ‘to-go’ counter.

Speaking about the King's Cross opening, Bao’s founder and food art director, Erchen Chang, said: “The inspiration for Bao Kings Cross stemmed from Yoshoku cuisine, an interpretation of western food, seen through an Asian lens. This style of cooking is something that’s always resonated with us and made us feel quite nostalgic. After a recent trip to Taipei, Hong Kong and Osaka we realised we wanted to bring it to life.”

Menu Highlights

Main Courses
Bone Marrow Rice - £8.50

Our Taiwanese Chi Shang rice is lightly torched before a generous scoop of roasted bone marrow, drizzled with the umami aged white soy and finished with some crunchy pickled daikon for added freshness. On the menu at Kings Cross only.

Bone Marrow Rice - £8.50

Our Taiwanese Chi Shang rice is lightly torched before a generous scoop of roasted bone marrow, drizzled with the umami aged white soy and finished with some crunchy pickled daikon for added freshness. On the menu at Kings Cross only.


Can you book Bao King's Cross?

Yes, booking ahead is recommended but some space is reserved for walk-in diners.

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Where is Bao King's Cross

Bao King's Cross is found in Pancras Square in King's Cross, a short walk from the tube station.

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Is Bao King's Cross child-friendly?

There is no dedicated children's menu, but children are welcome.

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4 Pancras Square, King's Cross, London, NIC 4AG

Opening Times

All day
Mon 12:00-22:00
Tue 12:00-22:00
Wed 12:00-22:00
Thu 12:00-22:00
Fri 12:00-22:30
Sat 12:00-22:30
Sun 12:00-21:00


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