Life in Shanghai

Street Foods in China You Should Try

WRITTEN BY Courtney Visser ・ 22 March, 2021

Food is a part of the foundation of every culture, and in China it's no different. Street foods are found on almost every corner and down every alley, and the varieties are endless!

These delicious Chinese crepes are undoubtedly the most popular breakfast street food in all of China. The types of jianbing vary from city to city, but the base is a wheat and grain dough which is fried on a griddle with an egg. You can choose your fillings, but they are usually filled with a crispy fried cracker, spring onion, lettuce, cilantro, and rich chili sauce. Super filling and really tasty!

Juicy meat and/or vegetables in steamed dough buns? Yes please! Baozi or Chinese steamed buns are a classic street food and you'll find them pretty much everywhere. They are prepared in a similar way to jiaozi dumplings but the dough is thicker and they are stuffed with tons of filling.

Rou Jia Mo:
Also known as a Chinese hamburger are pockets of absolute joy! These hamburgers look and taste nothing like the American version though - the bun is flatter and flavoured with meat gravy and chili paste, and the meat is shredded and marinated in a spiced gravy (usually a pork or lamb). We highly recommend trying these!

Chinese kebabs are thinly sliced pieces of meat and sometimes vegetables skewered onto bamboo sticks. The meat is deliciously spiced with salt, chili flakes and ground cumin and then barbecued until well done. This street food is particularly popular at night markets in the summer.

Cong You Bing:
Deep-fried spring onion pancakes are a firm favourite on the go meal. These flatbreads or Chinese pancakes are layered with spring onions and sprinkled with sesame seeds. These pancakes are made with dough rather than batter. They're absolutely delicious and cost as little as 3RMB!

There are so many different street foods to try in China that the list could be endless if we're honest, but try our top five first and work your way down the list from there!

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