27 Popular Chinese Dishes You’ll Love Eating in Yangshuo, China

By Mark Wiens 29 Comments

Popular Chinese Dishes

Chinese food…

…is simply one of the word’s most widely enjoyed and most influential cuisines.

Throughout my stay in Yangshuo, China, I was able to sample quite a few dishes – many of them were mouthwatering delicious!

Here are 27 Popular Chinese Dishes!

Popular Chinese Dishes
Beer Fish (Pijiu Yu 啤酒鱼), Yangshuo, China

1. Yangshuo Beer Fish (Pijiu Yu 啤酒鱼)

At first I found it hard to believe that “beer fish” is one of the most iconic dishes served in Yangshuo, China (it just doesn’t sounds too Chineezy?).

Normally the dish is made with an entire fresh water river fish chopped up into chunks and simmered in a sauce filled with tomatoes, chili peppers, onions, and a splash of beer to liven-up the sauce.

Beer fish is one of the most popular Chinese dishes to enjoy in Yangshuo!

Taro, Pork Fat Roll (Lipu Taro Roll 荔浦芋头扣肉)
Taro, Pork Fat Roll (Lipu Taro Roll 荔浦芋头扣肉)

2. Taro Pork and Fat Roll (Lipu Taro Looped Roll 荔浦芋头扣肉)

Another famous dish in Guilin and Yangshuo is the lip-licking Lipu Taro Roll 荔浦芋头扣肉.

The meat-loaf looking blob is a combination of alternating slices of fatty pork belly and soft mashed taro. The thick brown sweet peppery gravy glazes the ingredients and it’s absolutely spectacular.

Yangshuo Eggplant
Stir Fried Eggplant

3. Stir Fried Eggplant in Chili Sauce (Shao Qie Zi 烧茄子)

I have a very soft spot in my heart for eggplant.

In my opinion it’s a wonder vegetable that can be cooked in almost anyway to taste delightful. From Egyptian street food to Sri Lankan food, eggplant is made deliciously across the globe! This is one of the dishes I learned to took at the Chinese cooking school.

Stuffed Chinese Tofu
Pork Stuffed Tofu

4. Pork Stuffed Tofu

Deep fried little balls of soft tofu are emptied out and stuffed with a mixture of minced pork, green onions and oyster sauce. They are steamed until they become perfect little pork balls – perfect with a bowl of rice.

Tomato and Egg Noodles
Tomato and Egg Noodles

5. Tomato and Egg over Noodles

The combination of stir fried tomato and egg was never so appealing until I visited China. It is popular in Guangxi province, China, as a solo dish, or over the top of rice or noodles.

Chinese Food
Tomato and Egg Noodle Soup

6. Tomato and Egg Noodle Soup

Tomato and egg is equally as delicious, if not more tasty, in noodle soup. This particular bowl from Gan’s Noodles in Yanghsuo, was exceptional.

Guilin Food - Bitter Melon and Egg
Bitter Melon and Egg

7. Bitter Melon and Egg

Along with tomato and egg, bitter melon and egg is another one of the popular Chinese dishes to eat in Yangshuo. It goes so well with a fresh bowl of rice and a scoop of Guilin chili sauce!

Stuffed Li River Snails 阳朔酿田螺
Stuffed Li River Snails 阳朔酿田螺

8. Stuffed Li River Snails (阳朔酿田螺)

Many Chinese tourists head straight for the stuffed Li River Snails – one of Yangshuo’s popular speciality dishes. There is actually very little snail meat and most of the shell is filled up with minced pork and spices.

These little guys go down great with a few cups of Chinese tea!

Popular Chinese Dishes
Little Fried Li River Shrimp - Popular Chinese Dishes

9. Little Fried Li River Shrimp

Along with the stuffed snails that come from the Li River are the deep fried bite-sized Li River Shrimp. I think they are the same variety of shrimp that are used in Thai dancing shrimp, but these guys are stir fried up with a little rice wine, some salt and pepper.

Deep Fried Fish Hot Pot
Deep Fried Fish Hot Pot

10. Deep Fried Fish Hot Pot

Hot pots are your best friend in Yanghsuo.

They are cheap, huge, and extraordinarily delicious! Though you can get a choice of meat, I often opted for fish. This pot contained deep fried meaty chunks of river fish soaked in an awesome chili soup that also included bean sprouts and cilantro.

Thin Slice Fish Pot
Thin Slice Fish Pot

11. Thin Sliced Fish Pot

This version of hot pot in Yangshuo included extremely thin strips of raw fish. Everyone grabbed a strip of fish with their individual chopsticks, plunged it into the boiling cauldron of soup and in a matter of seconds it was ready to be drenched in the chili garlic sauce and be devoured!

Popular Chinese Dishes
Popular Chinese Dishes - Sichuan Style Chili Fish Hotpot

12. Sichuan Style Chili Fish Hotpot

There’s not a lot I like better in this world than Sichuan Shuizhuyu – to me it’s the pure form of food generated ecstasy.

While it’s not a dish that is native to Gaungxi Province, luckily a few Sichuan specialities have found their way to Yangshuo!

Clay Pot Rice and Toppings
Clay Pot Rice and Toppings

13. Clay Pot Rice and Toppings

Another Yangshuo Chinese food speciality is rice cooked in a clay pot and served with a choice of stir fried vegetables and meat. The high heat of the clay pot gives the rice a slight crunch along the edges!

Eating Guilin Noodles 桂林米粉 in Yangshuo, China
On of the Most Popular Chinese Dishes - Guilin Noodles 桂林米粉

14. Guilin Noodles (桂林米粉)

One of the local homegrown comfort foods in Guangxi Province and around the Guilin area is Guilin Noodles.

A bowl of these delicious rice noodles loaded with toppings is cheap and available everywhere. The noodles are famous to eat in Guilin and one of the more popular Chinese dishes in the region.

Steamed Dumplings (Jiaozi 餃子)
Steamed Dumplings (Jiaozi 餃子)

15. Steamed Dumplings (Jiaozi 餃子)

Steamed dumplings known as Jiaozi 餃子 are popular throughout Chinese food.

The interiors are filled with a variety of ingredients throughout Chinese cooking, though these were filled with minced pork and chives.

Pickled Young Ginger, China
Chinese Pickled Vegetables

16. Chinese Pickled Vegetables

Around the center of Yangshuo, near the park are a number of street stalls that set up and serve take-away bags of pickled vegetables. They are perfectly vinegary and heavy on glorious chilies. I particularly found the young pungent ginger (pictured) to be incredible!

Yangshuo Barbecue
Yangshuo Barbecue

17. Yangshuo Barbecue

Yangshuo barbecue restaurants serve a selection of skewered meats and vegetables that you self choose and then each stick of food is either fried or grilled.

I choose a few vegetables, some wonderful eggplant, and a pig’s penis (a little chewy..).

Popular Chinese Food
Yangshuo Grilled Spicy Tofu

18. Yangshuo Grilled Spicy Tofu

One of the most delicious little snacks on-the-go is Yangshuo’s spicy tofu pieces. They can be found grilling on the back of bicycles all over town.

After ordering the vendor sprinkles on cumin, green onions, and a choice of a variety of Chinese pickles.

Chòudòufu 臭豆腐
Stinky Tofu (Chòudòufu 臭豆腐)

19. Stinky Tofu (Chòudòufu 臭豆腐)

I was extremely excited to get my first tast of the legendary stinky tofu while I was in Yangshuo. The fermentation of the tofu is how it earned its “stinky” nickname.

The stinky tofu was deep fried and filled with a tasty vinegar and garlic sauce. Each cube of stinky tofu was melt-in-your mouth and absolutely delicious!

Check out a video of eating stinky tofu here.

Foo Jook Bowl
Foo Jook Bowl

20. Sichuan Style Foo Jook Hot Pot (Ma La Tang)

On similar terms with the Chinese self cooked hot-pots is the street food version of choosing your own sticks and letting the vendor boil them in her fragrant soup.

These Chinese street food bowls that are originally influenced from the culinary wondrous region of Sichuan, are awesome!

Chinese Hamburger in Yangshuo, China
Chinese Hamburger

21. Chinese Hamburger

With a “No Good, No Pay” policy, there wasn’t much I could do to avoid the sampling of something known as a the Chinese hamburger.

Though it was no ordinary hamburger, the chili marinated beef filled with vegetables and noodles was quite a flavor packed treat!

Popular Chinese Dishes
Baozi 包子 - Popular Chinese Dishes

22. Baozi (包子)

Popular throughout China and Asia, Baozi (包子), steamed bread dumplings are available as a breakfast food all over Yangshuo.

They can be filled with an assortment of fillings, but I really liked them filled with egg and chives and the ones filled with transparent rice noodles.

Delicious Chinese Food
Chinese Stir Fried Pumpkin

23. Stir Fried Pumpkin

Before visiting China, I preferred to think of pumpkin as something that should only be used as a dessert in things like pumpkin pie. In Thailand pumpkin is used frequently in Thai desserts but also in stir fried dishes.

The best stir fried pumpkin I ate while in China was at the Chinese Farmer’s Market restaurant and the dish included whole chunks of garlic and chives.

拉麵
Lamian Cold Noodles (拉麵)

24. Leng Mian Cold Noodles (冷面)

Chinese lamian noodles are the famous hand pulled noodles of China. This huge plate of hand pulled noodles served cool is known as Leng Mian. It is more of a cool noodle salad, topped with beef tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots and fresh dressing.

These noodles are most commonly eaten in and around Lanzhou, but they have spread their deliciousness throughout all of China.

刀削麵 - Popular Chinese Dishes
Srir Fired Dao Xiao Mian Noodles (刀削麵) - Popular Chinese Dishes

25. Stir Fired Dao Xiao Mian Noodles (刀削麵)

If you’d prefer to eat a plate of stir fried noodles, Da Xiao Mian is a choice option. These noodles are hand sliced with a knife right off a big blob of noodle dough and land in a big pot of boiling water.

After they are finished cooking, the noodles are stir fried up with a few other tasty ingredients.

Candied Deep Fried Taro Bites
Candied Deep Fried Taro Bites

26. Candied Taro Bites (Ba Si Yu Tou 拔丝芋头)

There’s no better way to describe these bite sized pieces of sweet deep fried taro than utterly delicious.

Small pieces of taro are battered in something similar to caramel and then deep fried. They arrive at your table piping hot – the caramel still melting.

They are so hot and sticky that you actually have to dip them into cold water (bottom left) so you don’t leave caramel strings all over the place!

These are good, real good. – no surprise that Ba Si Yu Tou is a one of the very popular Chinese dishes!

Black Sesame Pudding
Black Sesame Pudding

27. Black Sesame Pudding (Zhi Ma Hu 芝麻糊)

Black sesame seeds are spectacular – they’ve got a truly admirable flavor. This Chinese Zhi Ma Hu 芝麻糊 is made with black sesame seeds and a number of other ingredients to turn it into a thick starchy sweet pudding.

29 comments. I'd love to hear from you!

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  • Agnes

    2 years ago

    Hi.. planning to go to yangshuo this week.
    I would like to try no 10 (deep fried hot pot).
    Which restaurant do you recommend?

  • Tracy

    6 years ago

    Mark,
    I love your videos and blog. I most love the Korean videos and thai as well. I also enjoyed the pani puri video, and I went and bought a pani puri kit for four dollars at the local Indian market. It includes everything except the water, and filling (potato/onion/lentil) and Based on the look on your face when u ate them, i can’t wait to try it! I love all korea foods but don’t know much about thai or indian food. Think u so much for these great videos and blogs. It’s almost like I can be there travelling with you :).
    Xoxoxox

    • Mark Wiens

      6 years ago

      Hey Tracy, awesome to hear this and thank you for watching me videos. Glad you went and bought a pani puri kit, hope you enjoy it!

  • Dan

    6 years ago

    Hey Mark,

    I’m going to China for the first time in May and making a stop in Guilin/Yangshou, largely based on your posts! I’m really looking forward to seeing the scenery and eating the local cuisine. I’m a little concerned about communicating. Do you have any tips on how to order food when there is a language barrier? I’m trying to pick up some Mandarin before my trip, but I’m sure it’s not going to be enough. I’ll make sure to memorize “Guilin Noodles”.

    Great job with the website. I enjoy seeing your photos and reading your posts.

    • Mark Wiens

      6 years ago

      Hey Dan, good to hear you’ll be visiting. The area is beautiful, I really enjoyed my time in Yangshuo. Communication is a challenge sometimes, and I sometimes had no clue what I was ordering exactly – that being said, at many restaurants there are picture menus (that sometimes includes English), that makes it easier to order. Other than that, just try to see what others are eating and order the same.

  • Bama

    7 years ago

    Mark, now I am really craving for those incredible-looking delicacies. (As I am writing this comment, I can hear my stomach screaming!).

  • Lane

    7 years ago

    Pork-stuffed tofu? What an interesting combination. I guess tofu doesn’t equal vegetarian in China?

    • Mark Wiens

      7 years ago

      That’s right Lane! Tofu in China is often flavored with pork or other meat – but these stuffed tofu balls were wonderful!

  • Akishya

    7 years ago

    I’m so excited to try all these Chinese dishes even though some of this food looks bizarre. And I love to taste the Chinese Hamburger. I’m curious because it is different than our usual burger. Thanks for the post.

    • Mark Wiens

      7 years ago

      You’re welcome Akishya, thanks for checking out this article and glad to hear that you’d like to try some of these dishes out!

  • Annie – FootTracker

    7 years ago

    OMG I cannot believe you mentioned bitter melon >.< (shivers from past memory) That is one dish I will pass. The others like stir fry noodles and black sesame pudding I might give them a try =D

    • Mark Wiens

      7 years ago

      Haha Annie! No bitter melon? I used to not like it, but now I just love bitter melon!

  • Steve

    7 years ago

    Love all these dishes! Somehow everything tastes better in a clay pot

    • Mark Wiens

      7 years ago

      Thanks Steve, food does taste amazing from a clay pot!

  • Caanan @ No Vacation Required

    7 years ago

    Your food photos continue to get more and more enticing. Well, except for the stuffed snails. 🙂

    • Mark Wiens

      7 years ago

      Thanks… not a fan of snails? These were stuffed with pork though, so there was just a litte trace of a snail in it!

  • tunimaal

    7 years ago

    Most of them seems good and tasty…. I would love to tr few of them such as the bitter melon or the snails…..

    • Mark Wiens

      7 years ago

      Cool, thanks for sharing Tunimaal! Those were both delicious!

  • Laura

    7 years ago

    Yum yum! I really like black sesame pudding.

  • sully86

    7 years ago

    mark: gotta stop torturing me…