Best Chinese Recipes

 

Ditch takeout for the fresher ingredients, healthier cooking techniques and customizable flavors of Chinese food made at home.

 

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Yangzhou Fried Rice

Ching's fried rice hails from the Yangzhou region of China, where dishes and flavors are light and fresh. To replicate her well-textured dish, start off with day-old white rice, and when stir-frying the eggs, use chopsticks to create evenly sized, meaty chunks. (Bonus Tip: Can't find the Chinese pork? Sub in honey-roasted ham instead.)

Get the Recipe: Yangzhou Fried Rice

Perfect Pot Stickers

What makes Alton's pot stickers so perfect? A three-step cooking process – pan-frying, simmering in liquid, then warming in an oven – and making sure the wonton wrappers stay moist while prepping.

Get the Recipe: Perfect Potstickers

Beef with Broccoli

This quick-cooking takeout favorite takes only 10 minutes in a hot wok. Just stir-fry broccoli and thin-sliced sirloin in a sweet and salty honey-soy sauce mixture.

Get the Recipe: Beef with Broccoli

Healthy Sweet and Sour King Prawn Stir-Fry

Using just a few tablespoons of peanut oil, Ching-He gives her prawn stir-fry flavor with ginger, chiles, onions, pineapple and just a taste of honey for additional sweetness.

Get the Recipe: Healthy Sweet and Sour King Prawn Stir-Fry

Sesame Ginger Chicken

Kelsey's crunchy sesame ginger chicken is smothered in a (slightly sticky) sweet and spicy sauce that's so addictive you'll want to retire that Chinese-takeout number you have on speed dial.  

Get the Recipe: Sesame Ginger Chicken

Mapo Dofu

True to its Sichuan roots, this dish gains much of its hot, numbing flavor from a spicy, salty bean paste known to be characteristic of the region. Tales abound as to where the tender tofu got its name, the most popular being that a “Ma Po” – or old woman with a pockmarked face – served the unique recipe to poorer workers on the outskirts of a highly trafficked merchant city.

Get the Recipe: Mapo Dofu

Tofu and Pork Stir-Fry

Stock fermented black bean sauce, hoisin, sweet soy sauce and sesame oil in your cabinet so you can throw this dish in the wok whenever you get a craving for takeout.

Get the Recipe: Tofu and Pork Stir Fry

Sweet and Sour Pork

For her healthy, balanced take on takeout, Ching trims pork loin steaks of fat and then coats the meat with a ground soybean and pepper mixture (instead of breadcrumbs). After searing them in a wok, she tops the pork loins with pineapple juice and lime mixture for that characteristic sweet-and-sour flavor.

Get the Recipe: Sweet and Sour Pork

Golden Gate Chili Ribs

Hoisin and honey give Ching's Asian-inspired ribs a sweet base, while Chinese five-spice powder and Fresno chiles add a spicy kick to each bite.

Get the Recipe: Golden Gate Chili Ribs

Black Pepper Beef and Stir-Fry

To give carrots the thinness of bok choy, cabbage and sugar snap peas – and ensure that her vegetables cook evenly – Ching slices them into delicate ribbons using a potato peeler. She stir-fries them in a wok over high heat (adding a splash of cold water to steam and soften the ingredients) and then cooks the thick pieces of black-pepper-marinated beef. (Can't find Shaohsing rice wine? A dry sherry will do.) 

Get the Recipe: Black Pepper Beef and Stir-Fry

Chicken Chow Mein

To make a really stand-out chow mein, start with high-quality noodles. Ching recommends using shi wheat flour noodles ("shi" means "thin" in Mandarin), which cook in only three minutes. Toss the noodles with crunchy vegetables and strips of spicy chicken in a wok for a few quick minutes and you've got yourself a "mein" dish that's as easy as it is healthy. 

Get the Recipe: Chicken Chow Mein

Fast Hot and Sour Noodle Soup

This Sichuan province-based dish is one of Ching's favorite soups, which gains its "sour" from black rice vinegar, its "hot" from plenty of chiles and an overall earthy flavor from shiitake mushrooms. Feel free to omit the chicken strips for a vegetarian preparation and add extra chiles if you want to amplify the heat.

Get the Recipe: Fast Hot and Sour Noodle Soup

Pork and Prawn Boiled Wontons

To fill wontons – the thinner-skinned version of Chinese dumplings – Ching mixes ground pork and shrimp with a medley of salty, nutty and bittersweet ingredients. Ching twists the dough into a peak to close the wontons and then simmers them in a wok half-filled with water for a much healthier preparation than frying.

Get the Recipe: Pork and Prawn Boiled Wontons

5-Spice Pork Stir Fry with Mandarin Oranges

Though it may take a couple of hours to prepare, Kelsey's immensely flavorful pork stir-fry is well worth the wait. First she roasts pork loin with a sweet-and-tangy peach barbecue sauce (with ginger, garlic and soy Asian notes) and then stir-fries the cooked meat with a medley of vegetables and aromatic Chinese five-spice powder.

Get the Recipe: 5-Spice Pork Stir Fry with Mandarin Oranges

Beer Braised Szechuan Chicken Wings

Lee Anne Wong gives pub fare a fiery kick by braising chicken wings in a Szechuan peppercorn and dried chile-spiked ale before frying them; the reduced braising sauce gives them a sticky, spicy finish.

Get the Recipe: Beer Braised Szechuan Chicken Wings

Spicy Soy Ribs with Sweet and Sour Slaw 

Ching infuses pork spareribs with all the flavors found in Chinese cooking – sweet, spicy, bitter and pungent – by marinating them in her secret sauce overnight. Make sure to follow her recipe carefully; adding too much soy sauce will cause the meat to break down more than is desired. 

Get the Recipe: Spicy Soy Ribs with Sweet and Sour Slaw

Pork Dumplings

Kelsey's top-rated dumplings recipe will rival your local takeout joint – and will cost you an arm and a leg less. Using just a few standard Asian pantry staples and ground pork, this recipe yields almost 40 dumplings – perfect for leftovers or freezing for an anytime treat.

Get the Recipe: Pork Dumplings

Kung Pao Chicken

Depending on how much "pow!" you like in your Kung Pao Chicken, feel free to adjust the amount of dried chile pepper and Szechuan peppercorns to suit your taste.

Get the Recipe: Kung Pao Chicken

Grilled Coconut Lobster

In order to infuse lobsters with Chinese and other Asian flavors, Ching prepares a complex sauce of chiles, lemongrass, ginger and shrimp paste mixed in peanut oil and coconut milk, then marinates the boiled lobsters in it for several hours before grilling.

Get the Recipe: Grilled Coconut Lobster

General Tso's Chicken

While the Americanized version of this recipe typically calls for deep-fried chicken, Ching stir-fries her General Tso's chicken in a sweet and spicy sauce along with peanuts and scallions for a healthier (and more authentic) take on the recipe.

Get the Recipe: General Tso's Chicken

Shrimp Lo Mein

Stir-fried shrimp, assorted veggies and hearty egg noodles are generously coated in Kelsey’s salty and spicy sauce. Seasoned with what Kelsey calls the "trinity" of Chinese cooking — garlic, ginger and scallions — this better-than-takeout dish is ready in little more than 30 minutes. 

Get the Recipe: Shrimp Lo Mein

Uyghur Spicy Beef Skewers

This Chinese take on kebabs requires no dipping sauce – it has been marinated with a medley of Eastern spices, grilled to charred perfection and sprinkled with both chile flakes and cumin for a fiery, textured finish.

Get the Recipe: Uyghur Spicy Beef Skewers

Crispy Duck

Unlike the iconic Peking duck, crispy duck is simple to make at home (and is just as tasty and popular in Sichuan province restaurants). Ching gives this recipe a modern spin by first seasoning and pan-frying the duck breast, skin-on, before finishing it in the oven.

Get the Recipe: Crispy Duck

Black Bean Mussels with Chinese Beer

In this low-calorie, high-protein dish, mussels are infused with distinct Chinese flavors when cooked in a garlic, peanut oil, soy sauce and Chinese beer mixture.

Get the Recipe: Black Bean Mussels with Chinese Beer

Vegetable Chow Mein

In Mandarin, "chow" means to stir and "mein" means "noodle," so this dish literally means stir-fried noodle. While this is one of Ching’s favorite Chinese comfort dishes, it's actually quite healthy. She uses little more than a tablespoon of oil and one or two tablespoons of low-sodium soy sauce to soften and flavor the dish's fragrant vegetables .

Get the Recipe: Vegetable Chow Mein

Sichuan Tofu Gan and Warm Celery Salad

By slicing tender celery on an angle and using tofu gan – a flavored, firm tofu that holds up better to wok cooking – Ching ensures this dish cooks evenly and has the perfect medley of textures. A trio of chili bean paste, rice vinegar and chile oil add characteristic heat, offset by tangy lemon juice and sensation-inducing whole Sichuan peppercorns.

Get the Recipe: Sichuan Tofu Gan and Warm Celery Salad

Wild Shaxi Mushrooms Wok Tossed with Cured Pork

This simple stir-fry brings out the umami flavors of shiitake and porcini mushrooms, enhanced by a single piece of bacon and garlic.

Get the Recipe: Wild Shaxi Mushrooms Wok Tossed with Cured Pork

Dali Vegetarian Rice Noodle Stir Fry

Thin and tender rice noodles do a spectacular job of soaking up the deliciously nutty and spicy peanut-chile-sesame sauce, while the bean sprouts and Chinese cabbage add a pleasant crunch in this traditional Chinese side dish.

Get the Recipe: Dali Vegetarian Rice Noodle Stir Fry

Posh Chopped Suey (Fragrant Chicken and Mushroom Stir-Fry)

Served over steamed jasmine rice, Ching's "posh" take on chopped suey has little in common with greasy takeout versions of the recipe. Loaded with fresh vegetables and lean strips of chicken, it's a quick and healthy dish that possesses plenty of authentic flavor, thanks to ingredients like oyster sauce, Chinese five-spice powder and dried red Sichuan chile flakes. 

Get the Recipe: Posh Chopped Suey (Fragrant Chicken and Mushroom Stir-Fry)

"Zhajiang" Bao (Spicy Shrimp and Ground Beef Buns)

Ching offers her take on bao – steamed Chinese buns, and the sandwiches made with them – by composing a powerfully flavorful filling out of dried shrimp and mushrooms, ground beef and, for a dash of Italian fusion, smoky pancetta. To gain that ideal sweet finish (and textured presentation), she finishes the dish with a sprinkling of peanut sugar – ground peanuts mixed with a granular sugar.

Get the Recipe: "Zhajiang" Bao (Spicy Shrimp and Ground Beef Buns)

Peking Duck Spring Rolls

Peking duck is often served at Chinese weddings as a symbol of fidelity; the small birds mate for life. After roasting the duck (and giving it characteristic smoky, sweet and plummy flavors through a repeated glazing process), serve the shredded meat and crispy skin in a thin rice paper wrapper along with scallions and cucumber.

Get the Recipe: Peking Duck Spring Rolls

Steamed Sea Bass with Ginger and Chinese Mushrooms

Steam sea bass in true Cantonese fashion by stuffing its cavity with slices of ginger and shiitake mushrooms and then steaming the fish with more mushrooms and scallions atop a wok.

Get the Recipe: Steamed Sea Bass with Ginger and Chinese Mushrooms

BBQ Yellow Bean Chicken with Grilled Chinese Long Beans

Ching's favorite barbecue chicken recipe features Chinese yellow bean sauce, a salty paste made of fermented soy beans that can be purchased at any local Asian market. Charring the chicken skewers on each side imbues the meat with additional smoky flavor that rounds out the salty spice of the sauce. 

Get the Recipe: BBQ Yellow Bean Chicken with Grilled Chinese Long Beans

Oyster Sauce Chicken with Bok Choy

A wok is an essential tool to making quick and easy Chinese meals, but authentic Chinese ingredients are just as (if not more) important. The Shaohsing rice wine and Guilin chili paste in this recipe really help to build the complex and unique flavors of the dish.

Get the Recipe: Oyster Sauce Chicken with Bok Choy

Seafood and Chive Dumplings

The key to perfect dumplings? Great texture, achieved by mincing the ingredients (but not too finely), adding a bit of cornstarch to bind the filling together, then folding beautiful pleats.

Get the Recipe: Seafood and Chive Dumplings

Stir-Fried Vegetable Wraps

Filled with fresh veggies and flavored with a minimal amount of oil and soy sauce, Ching-He's wheat pancake vegetable wraps are an easy, healthy lunch or dinner option.

Get the Recipe: Stir-Fried Vegetable Wraps

Singapore-Style Noodles

Cracking an egg over a mixture of chicken, veggies and thin, springy noodles elevates the rich flavors of this dish and binds the individual components together into slightly eggy, bite-sized clumps.

Get the Recipe: Singapore-Style Noodles

Bacon and Water Chestnut Stuffed Fish with Ginger Sauce

Whole fish stuffed with bacon and mushrooms sounds delectable enough on its own, but it's even better when swimming in pepper-infused ginger sauce.

Get the Recipe: Bacon and Water Chestnut Stuffed Fish with Ginger Sauce

Kam's Baby Bok Choy

Serve this simple bok choy alongside any of your favorite Asian dishes. Four ingredients — ginger, sugar, chicken powder and salt — are all it takes to get this side dish on the table.

Get the Recipe: Kam's Baby Bok Choy