Chinese Food in Beijing

My Beijing Food Tour

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Talking about the most famous Chinese food in Beijing, you must name Beijing duck as number one. Actually we have a lot other yummy foods here.

Chinese food in Beijing greatly reflects the eating habits of the ruling class who built their capital city here. Yuan Dynasty rulers came from Mongolia. They were very fond of lamb, especially lamb hot pot. Mongolian hot pot is therefore extremely popular in Beijing. Even nowadays, Beijing people have lamb hot pot almost every week.

Beijing is a highly cosmopolitan city. Top class chefs from all over the country are happy to make their living here. Therefore Chinese food in Beijing does not limit to Beijing food. It is actually a melting pot of northern cuisine of China. Other than Beijing duck, Sichuan duck is also greatly attractive.

To taste the best Chinese food in Beijing, you can’t just focus at Wangfujing where lots of tourists are. The Chinese food there is somehow modified to suit foreigners’ taste. I am going to recommend some places where you can eat 100% authentic Chinese food.

Lamb Hot Pot 涮羊肉 Shuang Yang Rou
Recommended restaurant: Dong Lai Shun 東來順王府井大街新東安商場5樓
Address: 5th floor, New Dong'an Mansion, Wang Fu Jing Street
Phone: 010-65280932 / 010-65280501
Directions: Dongcheng District

Anna at Dong Lai Shun

This is the number one yummy authentic Chinese food in Beijing.

Dong Lai Shun had a history of over 100 years. It has developed into a chain store nowadays. Be sure you go to its headquarters at Dong’an Mansion on Wang Fu Jing Street.

This restaurant made me unforgettable because it has a unique service here. Waiters use a long-neck tea pot to add water into my cup from across the table. But they won’t drip at all. You would find it extremely amazing.

Dong Lai Shun’s mutton is hand-sliced into very thin pieces to ensure short cooking time. Dip it into the boil water, shake a little bit and watch for the colour change. It could be eaten almost instantly. Other than lamb, you could order some other dishes, don’t forget vegetables.

Lamb hot pot is usually served with plenty of seasoning such as soy sauce, chilly sauce, sesame oil, preserved beancurd, green onion etc. You name it, they’ll serve you. You can even blend them together to make up your own mixed sauce.

If you come do hot pot in the winter season, be sure to wear a T-shirt inside. Why? Beijing restaurants all turn heaters on in winter. Once you are in, you are warm enough. Together with the heat generated by the hot pot, you’ll soon shed off all your warm clothings. The place will become messy but fun.

View my blog - hot pot lunch in Beijing with photos and video

Zhang Cha Ya 樟茶鴨
Sichuan Duck smoked with Camphor Wood and Tea Leaves

Recommended restaurant: Sichuan Restaurant at the Palace of Prince Gong 恭王府四川飯店
Address: 14 A Liuyin Street
Tel: 010 661 56924
Directions: Xicheng District

Sichuan smoked duck

This is another highly recommended yummy authentic Chinese food in Beijing.

This famous Sichuan cuisine is very popular in Beijing. You must love it. It combines the cooking methods of steaming, smoking and deep frying. Skin is crispy, meat is soft, extremely aromatic and tasteful.

Sichuan smoked duck used to be a royal cuisine as it requires many cooking steps and professional skills. Let’s look at its recipe.

A seasoning mixture of wine, pepper and spices are inserted into the duck’s body as well as rubbed through the skin. After 8 hours, the marinated duck has to go through a boil water bath to make the skin shrink and tight. It is then smoked with camphor wood, tea and along with other spicy herbs. When the skin turned brown, it will be sent to steam for 2 hours. After cooling down, it has to go through a quick deep fry before dishing up in order to make the skin crispy.

dan dan noodle

At Sichuan Restaurant, you must try another typical Sichuan snack Dan Dan Noodle. It originates in Sichuan, but has become a famous and popular Chinese food in Beijing. It is usually served in a small bowl good for one person.

Seven kinds of chilly and spicy oil are used. Seasoning includes ginger, green onion, pepper and Sichuan preserved vegetable. Dan Dan Noodle is served with not much soup, minced meat underneath together with diced peanut which adds to the floavour of the dish. Some people like to stir everything before eating. But it is just a personal preference.

You can combine Sichuan Restaurant with a tour to the Palace of Prince Gong as it is just at the Palace. Make your tour ends around lunch time and enjoy a yummy lunch there. You’ll see the restaurant is doing very good business and is full of tourists.

Anna at a dumpling shop

Jiaozi, Chinese Dumpling

It is another extremely yummy authentic Chinese food in Beijing that you can’t afford to miss.

There are several ways of eating Chinese dumplings. A Beijing dumpling shop owner told me the best way to eat dumpling is to have them steamed. You can also have them boiled or pan-fried. Boiled ones are served in plain water (while in Hong Kong served in broth). Vinegar is usually served as a sauce for dumplings.

You can choose among a wide range of fillings, like various kind of vegetable mixed with minced pork, beef or lamb. Or you can choose pure vegetarian filling. Chinese dumplings are wrapped in the shape of a Chinese gold tael. This is why Chinese love dumplings, especially during Chinese New Year.

Beijing dumplings are usually sold at per kilogram. If your group isn’t big enough, you might order for half or a quarter. Otherwise, check if they sell at per dish or per bowl.

BBQ mutton in Beijing

BBQ Skewered Mutton
This is a street Chinese food in Beijing that you must try.

It is the only street food I would recommend.

It is done on fire and is guaranteed good taste and safe to eat.

BBQ lamb in Beijing

In Beijing, there are plenty of BBQ mutton stalls everywhere. I don’t have to tell you where to eat. You’ll find them naturally as they are so fragrant that you can sense from far away.

BBQ mutton is not expensive at all, usually ¥1 for one stick. Beware of overloading as you can’t stop eating it. Some people can eat 10 at a time. If you would spend ¥2 for BBQ lamb tendon, you’ll find it even yummier.

Beijing Salitun


Talking about eating in Beijing, every foreigner knows this place. It is just south of the ambassador district, a very famous place in Beijing. Shops here open through 2am.

The Chinese food here is adjusted to foreigners’ taste. You might want to come here take a look or spend a night relaxingly. But if your aim is for great Chinese food in Beijing, this is not the right place.

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