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The most famous Chinese dishes


Famous Chinese Dishes - What Are The Top Five?

Who doesn't love Chinese food. When you come to China for the first time, you are usually full of expectations of the famous Chinese cuisine. And don't worry, you won't be disappointed.

One thing first: Chinese food in Germany is not the same as Chinese food in China!

Once you have tried the food in China you will quickly notice that this is quite different from the Chinese food we know at home. And that's not just because you will only eat with chopsticks in China!

The most popular basics in China: rice and noodles. Rice is mainly eaten in the south, noodles more in the north. Otherwise, Chinese cuisine is extremely diverse and differs from city to city, from province to province.

In order to give you a small overview, in this blog we will introduce you to the five Chinese dishes that you should definitely not miss during your language trip to China!

1. Peking duck 北京 烤鸭 - The most popular Chinese dishes

2. Hot Pot 火锅 - The most popular Chinese dishes

3. Hong Shao Rou 红烧肉 - The most popular Chinese dishes

4. Dumplings 饺子 - The most popular Chinese dishes

5. Biang Biang Mian 油泼 扯 面 - The most popular Chinese dishes

1. Peking duck 北京 烤鸭 - The most popular Chinese dishes

Peking Duck - Famous Chinese Dishes

As the name suggests, the Peking duck comes from the Chinese capital Beijing. But even if you don't come to Beijing during your trip to China, you can rest assured. This dish is really offered everywhere in China!

Traditionally, the skin of the Peking duck is lightly caramelized with sugar. There are also small round pancakes in which you put the duck meat. Cucumbers and spring onions are served with it, which are also wrapped in the Chinese pancake. Finally, there is a sauce, which usually consists of sweet red beans or plums. Wrap everything up, dip in the sauce and you're done!

Of course, the recipe for Peking duck varies from restaurant to restaurant, but the basic ingredients are usually the same.

And the prices for this popular Chinese dish also vary widely. You can get a portion of Peking duck in a small Chinese restaurant for the equivalent of € 2.50. Then there are also famous restaurants like Dadong Duck or Quanjude, for which you have to dig a little deeper into your pockets. The Quanjude has a long history, a good reputation and was opened in 1864 - but the duck also tastes particularly good here.

Freshly made Peking duck

And even if you are a vegetarian or vegan, you can still enjoy the Peking Duck! In some alternative restaurants, a vegan variant made from tofu is offered, which is served with the other traditional ingredients.

One thing is certain: the Peking duck is simply part of a stay in China.

2. Hot Pot 火锅 - The most popular Chinese dishes

The second must-try dish is the hot pot, which, like the Peking duck, comes in countless variations.

One of the most famous hot pots is the Chongqing Hot Pot (麻辣 火锅). But we should warn you in advance: This variant will strain your taste buds, because the hot pot is very spicy. The main differences in the hot pot lie in the sauces and the meat that is served with it.

One hot pot restaurant that you should definitely visit is Hai Di Lao Huo Guo 海底 捞 火锅. It's not just about the food (which is delicious) but also about the service and the atmosphere.

The service at Hai Di Lao cannot be beat as the staff go out of their way to please the guests. Sometimes you even get your drinks for free with your meal!

Everything your heart desires - Chinese hot pot

Because of its good reputation, there is one thing you should keep in mind: reserve in advance. In the evening it gets quite crowded at Hai Di Lao and without a reservation you can quickly wait over an hour to get a table.

At the table you will be given a kind of bib so that your top doesn't get dirty. The food is ordered via an iPad, which you receive at every table. Here you will find a menu in English and Chinese, and you can order anything your heart desires.

If your group of friends has different tastes, you can choose from four different soups in which you can later cook all kinds of ingredients. There are spicy soups, vegetarian soups, tasteless soups, etc ...

Noodle dance in Hai Di Lao

When the ingredients for the hot pot have been ordered, you can make your way to the buffet. There you will find a huge selection of sauces, pastes, herbs and fruit. It's best to mix a few of the sauces together and create your own hot pot sauce!

We also recommend that you order the “dancing noodles” (烩面). What exactly that is remains a secret, but the photo already reveals what is in store for you!

When the food arrives, you can slowly cook it in the soups right at the table, have a drink and enjoy the evening. You can already see that you can't get out of the swarming!

3. Hong Shao Rou 红烧肉 - The most popular Chinese dishes

This dish is not as well known among foreigners as the first two, but if you like to eat meat you should definitely try this Chinese dish.

Hong Shao Rou 红烧肉 - famous Chinese dishes

The German translation by Hong Shao Rou is roughly “red braised pork belly”. This dish is originally from Shanghai, but is popular all over China.

Traditionally, the pork is braised with many different ingredients such as ginger, garlic, chilli, soy sauce, rice wine, sugar and various spices. In this combination it is an unbelievable taste experience!

The most popular variant is the pork belly from Hunan. This is probably because Mao Zedong was particularly fond of this dish ... Today there are Hunan restaurants in every major city where you can order this variant.

紅燒肉 Hóng Shāo Ròu - traditional Chinese dishes

4. Dumplings 饺子 - The most popular Chinese dishes

The word “dumpling” is far too short to summarize what you can get in China when you order dumplings. Because here, too, the same applies: Each region prepares these little delicacies differently. Whether vegetarian, with meat, with fish, boiled, fried, sweet or savory ... the variety is huge!

Dumplings in China - one of the most popular dishes

Dumplings are not only very cheap in China, they are also easy to prepare. If you have Chinese friends or live with a Chinese host family, you will definitely do a few 饺子.

The dough for the dumplings is made either from bread, potatoes or flour. When the dough is rolled out and you have cut out small, round dough pieces, the filling begins. And there are no limits to your imagination!

Then the dumplings are usually boiled in hot water, but they can also be fried, baked or steamed. This is usually served with garlic and vinegar.

These are the most famous variants of the dumplings:

  • Jiǎozi 饺子 - Crescent-shaped dumplings that are boiled or steamed
  • Guōtiē 锅贴 - Fried dumplings.
  • Bāozi 包子 - Large steamed dumplings with filling.
  • Xiǎo lóng bāo 小笼 包 - Soft, cooked dumplings that are slightly smaller than the 包子
  • Shāomài 烧卖 - Non-closed dumplings, the filling of which can be seen.
  • Dim Sum (Diǎn xīn 點心) - Cantonese style.

If you want to eat dumplings in China, you don't have to look far as practically every restaurant has dumplings on their menu. Just search for the Chinese character 饺子 and be surprised.

Another plus point: The dumplings are usually incredibly cheap!

饺子 - The Chinese cuisine is diverse

5. Biang Biang Mian 油泼 扯 面 - The most popular Chinese dishes

This dish should definitely not be missing from a list of the best Chinese dishes! Because the dish is famous not only for its taste, but also for its name. Biang Biang Mian may sound harmless at first, but the Chinese character for it has it all!

油泼 扯 面 - Unfortunately, the Chinese character for this dish is not on the keyboard

The character for “Biang” is so complex that most Chinese restaurants don't write it out at all, but simply write the pinyin for “Biang” on the menu! Once you have looked at the symbol you will understand why ...

These are the two variants of the Chinese character for “biang”. The trained eye will quickly recognize the difference: One is the simplified version and one is the traditional version. Both variants have one thing in common: They consist of an incredible number of radicals and individual signs.


The traditional character consists of an incredible 58 lines, the simplified version still consists of 43. Now you probably understand why most restaurants simply call this dish BIANG BIANG 面 describe! Fortunately, the dish has an alternative name:yóu pō chě miàn 油泼 扯 面.

And what exactly is Biang Biang Mian?

The dish itself is very tasty. It originally comes from the Xi’an region, the hometown of the world-famous Terracotta Army. At the bottom of the bowl are the noodles and on top of them are many different ingredients that are then mixed with the noodles.

Biang Biang Mian - a dining experience in China

The Biang Biang Mian are incredibly delicious

Mostly you will find eggs, meat, tomatoes, potatoes, vegetables and much more on the pasta. The whole thing is then served with a lot of oil (as is usually the case in China). When mixed together, this famous Chinese dish unfolds its full aroma. If you like it a little hotter, you can add chili oil.

Did we forget your favorite dish in China on our list? Then comment on our post and tell us why you particularly like this Chinese dish!

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