When traveling in Beijing, be sure not to miss the famous Beijing-style delicacies, such as luzhu huoshao (卤煮火烧, pork lungs and intestines stewed with fried tofu and bread), soy milk (豆汁), seasoned millet porridge (面茶), glutinous rice balls (艾窝窝), and fried cream cakes (奶油炸糕). Below we have listed several famous Beijing shops that provide classic and authentic Beijing food.
Learn how to eat like a local in Beijing with China Highlights.
The snacks at Huguo Temple Snack Stand are a collection of street snacks from all over Beijing. After careful handling, they are shaped to be as pleasing to the eye as they are to the mouth. A great many customers like to go to this snack stand, and the lines can be long. The prices are very wallet friendly. The seasoned millet porridge (面茶) here is very delicious. Also, the sweet flour cake (墩儿饽饽), deep-fried date roll (枣卷馃), stewed ribs with ginger juice (姜汁插排), fried sugar cake (糖耳朵), fried chopped rice cake (驴打滚), soy milk (豆汁) and sweetbread soup (杂碎汤) are strongly recommended. This location is popular among customers young and old. Because of the rich dishes, reasonable prices, and delicious tastes, Huguo Temple Snack Stand is highly spoken of by its customers.
Recommended Dishes: Sweet flour cake (墩儿饽饽), deep-fried date roll (枣卷馃), stewed ribs with ginger juice (姜汁插排), fried sugar cake (糖耳朵), fried chopped rice cake (驴打滚), seasoned millet porridge (面茶), soy milk (豆汁), sweetbread soup (杂碎汤)
Longfu Temple Snack Bar is an authentic old Beijing store and is highly spoken of by its customers. The restaurant is decorated traditionally with old tables, chairs and washbasins. There are a lot of Beijing snacks available including fried crispy donuts (焦圈), honey dough twists (蜜麻花), deep-fried sweet roll dough (甜卷馃, 豌豆黄), cake with shredded coconut stuffing (椰蓉糕), and soybean flour cake (豆面糕), as well as a variety of other foods. If you go to Beijing in the summer, be sure to try the delicious traditional glutinous rice cakes (凉糕) and cold bean jelly (凉粉), a snack that helps to keep you cool. The roasted stuffed chitterlings (灌肠) are also quite famous, with a fresh inside and crispy outside. Add some garlic juice to the chitterlings for an even more delicious treat.
Recommended Dishes: Fried cream cake (奶油炸糕), pea flour cake (豌豆黄), seasoned millet porridge (面茶), fried chopped rice cake (驴打滚), quick-fried tripe (爆肚), lamb haggis soup (羊杂汤), fried cake (炸糕), fried sugar cake (糖耳朵), bean flour balls (豆面丸子), sugar-roasted sesame buns (糖火烧), fried dough drops (炒疙瘩), soy milk (豆汁), deep-fried sweet roll dough (糖卷馃), eight-treasure porridge (八宝粥), bean-curd jelly (豆腐脑), cold mixed noodles (凉面), mutton kebab (羊肉串), and glutinous rice balls (艾窝窝)
This restaurant is quite popular among its customers. The wontons here are famous for a thin skin, as thin as paper, and delicious fillings, with three out of ten wontons with fat meat and the other seven filled with lean meat. Unlike dumplings, wontons are delicious not only because of the stuffing, but also for the delicately cooked wonton soup. It is difficult to have an authentic and classic taste, as just a little too much or too little salt can ruin the wontons. Wonton Hou has really mastered the technique of making this difficult dish. As a superior wonton restaurant, it will surely satisfy you. A bowl of wonton soup, plus a basket of steamed small dumplings, is a delicious and wallet-friendly meal.
The reason why Wonton Hou is so popular throughout Beijing is because of its delicate cooking methods and long history. Throughout its past, the restaurant has specialized in wontons and roasted sesame buns. All wontons are made on site and the chefs are so proficient that they can make more than 100 wontons in one minute. Two chefs can supply 3,000 people with wontons. The soup that the wontons are stewed in contains pork bone that is boiled for about six hours. The soup is thick, fragrant gravy -- but not oily. It is rich with calcium, which is a favorite style of the elderly. The seasonings are also abundant and varied, including seaweed, coriander, winter vegetable, and small dried shrimps among others.
When it comes to the traditional snack luzhu huoshao (卤煮火烧), which is stewed pork lung, pork intestine, fried tofu and bread and is famous in Beijing and over all of China, we have to mention Xiaochang Chen Restaurant. The restaurant has more than 100 years of history. Its fourth-generation owners run the business well and innumerable customers come here daily to enjoy the shop’s specialty. The stew stock here is quite delicious and the roasted sesame buns are stewed for the perfect amount of time. Small as the restaurant is, it has a great many customers, and the boss is very enthusiastic and welcoming.
It is easy to find Baoduzhang restaurant, located in the bungalows on the east side of Shichahai's Front Lake area. You will notice the old Chinese time-honored brands in this antique house. The sheep or cow tripe is fresh because the meat is always prepared within 24 hours of butchering. The tripe is carefully washed and cut using traditional methods into thin strips. The mutton and beef tripe are carefully chosen from certain parts of the animal's tripe. Customers request which part they want, and each part is cooked to different lengths and temperatures.
The cooking techniques used here are developed uniquely by the Zhang family. The quick-fried tripe of Bao Du Zhang is carefully divided, with every 100 tripe making three plates of finished product. The well-cut tripe is quickly boiled in boiling water based on the chef’s intuition and experience, and the taste is remarkably different from that of other restaurants. The Zhang family seasonings were passed down through the generations and are allocated in certain proportions. Go just before dinnertime, around 4:30 - 5:00, in order to avoid the long lines that tend to form.
Qingfeng Baozi is one of the most famous baozi (steamed, stuffed buns) shops in Beijing with a very long history. The baozi here are characterized by a large size and significant amount of stuffing -- quite delicious. There are various kinds of buns which can meet your needs perfectly. The customers think the food here is of a good quality and reasonable price. Besides the baozi, there are also various traditional Beijing dishes such as fresh fried vegetables (素三鲜, fried mushroom with cucumber and cauliflower), fried liver (炒肝) and so on. A bowl of porridge or wontons plus several baozi will certainly satisfy you here.
Ruibin Lou is an authentic Beijing time-honored brand restaurant with a long history. Two waiters named Luo Huxiang and Hao Jiarui in Ruiming Lou Hotel (润明楼) - a large, popular hotel -cooperated together to open this restaurant at Qianmen Doorcase Hutong (前门门框胡同). Today the restaurant is widely known.
It specializes in Dalian fried buns (褡裢火烧, shaped like a satchel) and is cooked delicately. The dough must be kneaded perfectly, neither too hard nor too soft. The buns’ filling is a mixture of fat and lean meat, to which is added leeks and ginger. Finally, the buns are cooked with twice-boiled soup, which is boiled with pork leg and free-range chicken. It is shaped like a satchel, which is pronounced Dalian (褡裢) in Chinese. Once shaped, the buns will then be fried in the baking pan until golden brown. The cooking technique is quite difficult and delicate. The great environment and enthusiastic service of the restaurant are highly spoken of by the customers. There are various kinds of fillings for the buns, the skins are crispy and the filling mixture is not at all oily. Ordering several buns with a bowl of millet congee or hot and sour soup (酸辣汤) is a great experience. You can also find other Ruibin Lou branches at Shin Kong Place (新光天地), Nice Gate Snacks (九门小吃) and the Dazhalan area (大栅栏).
Recommended Dishes: Dalian fried buns (褡裢火烧), pork-and-leek-filled Dalian fried bun (猪肉大葱馅褡裢火烧), three-delicacies Dalian fried bun (三鲜褡裢火烧), millet porridge (小米粥), hot and sour soup (酸辣汤), luzhu huoshao (卤煮火烧), fried stuffed chitterlings (灌肠), quick-fried tripe (爆肚)
Baikui is an old-brand Muslim restaurant that is especially famous for its braised mutton with soy sauce (烧羊肉). Another dish, called yi wo si (一窝丝), is a kind of stretched noodles that are exclusive to the restaurant, with a smooth and chewy taste. When eating Baikui's baked sweet wheat buns, you will taste the intense fragrance of the sesame sauce and brown sugar among its crispy thin layers. Roasted mutton (烧羊肉) is also popular here, with a golden appearance, crispy skin and tender taste. Baikui is like a traditional canteen, and you have to exchange meal tickets. You can return them if you don't use them all. Besides these dishes, there are various other delicately cooked dishes offered.
Recommended Dishes: Fried cream cake (奶油炸糕), roasted mutton (烧羊肉), sweetbread soup (杂碎汤), quick-fried tripe (爆肚), seasoned millet porridge (面茶), pea flour cake (豌豆黄), fried cake (炸糕), soy milk (豆汁), mutton noodles (烧羊肉面), fried sugar cake (糖耳朵), sugar-roasted sesame bun (糖火烧), fried dough drops (炒疙瘩), boiled sheep's head (白水羊头), tender meat (松肉), lamb kebab (羊肉串), Mending meat pie (门丁肉饼), bean-flour meatballs (豆面丸子), millet-flour pancakes (煎饼), cold noodles with sesame sauce (凉面)
This is a small restaurant mainly providing Beijing-style snacks and take-out like sugar-roasted sesame buns (糖火烧), fried sugar cake (糖耳朵), fried cake (炸糕) and so on. What is especially popular is the rich variety of sweet dumplings with more than 10 kinds of fillings, including hawthorn, green plum, sweet osmanthus (桂花), sweetened bean paste, mixed stuffing, cream stuffing and shredded coconut stuffing. At Lantern Festival, expect a long line in front of the window, waiting to buy sweet dumplings. Fried cream cake dipped in sugar plus a bowl of purple rice porridge will certainly satisfy your appetite. Customers give high praise to the restaurant's high-quality food and reasonable prices.
There are a lot of snack stands around Nancheng district, and Nanlaishun Restaurant is one of the best. The restaurant has two floors: the first floor provides snacks and the second provides cooked dishes. The decoration is in the Muslim style, and the environment is clean. Among so many distinctive snacks, which include almost all of the traditional Beijing style snacks, the soy milk (豆汁), seasoned millet porridge (面茶), sweetbread soup (杂碎汤), Mending meat pie (门钉肉饼) and glutinous rice balls (艾窝窝) are quite delicious. The fried dough twists are especially welcome to the customers, and the mutton kebabs are made with a high-quality and abundant quantity of meat.
Recommended Dishes: Soy milk (豆汁), seasoned millet porridge (面茶), sweetbread soup (杂碎汤), Mending meat pie (门钉肉饼), glutinous rice balls (艾窝窝), fried dough twists (馓子麻花)