Chinese Food Vocabulary

Popular Chinese Food

Bao
bāo zi (包子). Nigel Killeen / Getty Images

Chinese food is one of the most popular types of cuisine worldwide. It's no wonder! Chinese food is tasty, healthy, and the wide variety means there's something for every taste.

As with many cultural exports, the names of some Chinese dishes have changed by the time they arrived in other countries. So if you visit China or Taiwan, you may find that the names of dishes are unfamiliar.

List of Popular Chinese Food Names

If you visit a Mandarin-speaking country, this list of popular Chinese food dishes will help when it comes time to ordering food.

The items have been roughly arranged by type of food.

Click on the links in the Pinyin column to hear the audio.

EnglishPinyinCharacters
boiled dumplingsshuǐ jiǎo水餃
sticky bunsmán tou饅頭
steamed stuffed bunbāo zi包子
   
fried noodleschǎo miàn炒麵
plain noodlesyáng chūn miàn陽春麵
fried rice noodleschǎo mǐ fěn炒米粉
steamed white ricebái fàn白飯
sushishòu sī壽司
   
vegetarian plattersù shí jǐn素什錦
white radish pattyluóbo gāo蘿蔔糕
spicy tofumá pó dòufu麻婆豆腐
beef and riceniúròu fàn牛肉飯
egg omeletdàn bǐng蛋餅
chicken leg and ricejī tuǐ fàn雞腿飯
Peking duckběi jing kǎoyā北 京烤鴨
pork chop and ricepáigǔ fàn排骨飯
   
fish cooked in soy saucehóng shāo yú紅燒魚
fried rice with shrimpxiā rén chǎo fàn蝦仁炒飯
crabpáng xiè螃蟹
   
egg and vegetable soupdànhuātāng蛋花湯
seaweed soupzǐ cài tāng紫菜湯
hot and sour soupsuān là tāng酸辣湯