Top 10 Dishes You Should Try in Xi'an

Xian has some popular snacks you can try that differ from those from other cities. Maybe it is Xian’s history of being a Silk Road terminus or the presence of Muslims, but the snacks seem more familiar to Westerners than snacks further south. 

Popular snacks are Roujiamo, Xian Kabobs, Mutton Paomo, Guan Tang Baozi (Juicy Bun), quick noodle dishes, Muslim fruitcakes, honey cakes, and dried fruit. See must-taste Chinese foods.

Cold Noodles (凉皮)

Cold NoodlesCold Noodles

Cold noodle refers to a kind of traditional noodle food with Korean favor. It is said that people, who eat long cold noodles at noon of the Fourth day of the first lunar month, can be expected with many happy returns. According to this belief, people also called cold noodle as longevity noodle (meaning auspicious).

Traditional ways of preparing this dish require appropriate proportion of flour mixture (buckwheat flour and flour). Another basic ingredient is beef or chicken soup which should be skimmed oil after cooling down. 

Sesame oil, pepper, MSG and other seasoning should be put on the top of the noodle, and then you can add some beef, egg or apple and pear slice as you like. Cooked in this way, cold noodle has unique flavor as well as smooth taste, very popular with all ages.

Eating cold noodles along with mustard and vinegar are better, since the condiments not only give sweet and sour taste but also bring other benefits to human body. To enjoy this traditional food, Hanluoshan Restaurant is a good choice for it is managed by a native Korean.

Pork Sandwiched Between Pita Bread (肉夹馍)


Pork Sandwiched Between Pita Bread, or Roujiamo, is mainly dominated by two categories in two regions. One is bacon stuffed in baked pancake which is popular in Shaanxi region, and the other one is with mutton stuffing commonly in Ningxia region.

Bacon and baked pancake combined properly together to form the celebrated Roujiamo with wonderful flavors. Fluffy bacon plus fragrant baked pancake, with a long and pleasant aftertaste, will satisfy your stomach and eyes. This cate has awarded as the excellent dish in 1989 by the "Golden Tripod Prize"(an award promoted by the Ministry of Commerce to select high-quality foods).

Due to the complexity and specialization of the ingredients (over 30 categories) and the cooking method, the bacon has red color, fragrant smell, and unique flavor. Earning the reputation as “Chinese hamburger “, Roujiamo is deeply loved by people both at home and overseas.

Dumpling in Sour Soup (酸汤水饺)

With a history of over 1000 years, the Dumpling in Sour Soup properly deserves the name as an ancient flavor snack. Mutton dumplings are placed in a special sour soup before serving to the customers, hence the name. The name reflects its distinctive feature: sour taste.

Sour soup boasts for its wide rage of ingredients amounting to over 13 kinds. The most comment ones are sweet vinegar, dried shrimps, cooked sesame, chicken oil and butter, just to name a few. Mixing Vinegar (adding 30% water) with star anise, fennel, and cloves is a necessary process to cook sweet vinegar. 

And when the ingredients boiled, put sweet vinegar (sugar and vinegar as the proportion of 50:1) into the sour. 30 minutes later, this cate will be well prepared.

Tips: You can visit Dengjia Restaurant, a ten years old restaurant located in Fen Lane, to eat dumpling in sour soup.

Pita Bread Soaked in Lamb Soup (羊肉泡馍)

Xi'an foodPita Bread Soaked in Lamb Soup

Pita Bread Soaked in Lamb Soup is the unique local snacks founded in Xi’an, with its history dating back to the 11th century BC. It well cooked with rich ingredients so as to form a pleasant flavor, thick soup and overflowing smell. Moreover, it offers a long and strong aftertaste with rich nutrition.

With functions of hungry-resistance and comforting stomach, Pita Bread Soaked in Lamb Soup has been deeply loved by Xi’an local people and other nationalities for a long time.

Added high-quality beef and mutton with ingredients into the pan, we should reserve the soup after a-long-time cooking. Baked pancake have to be split into small pieces and then be continued cooked in the soup. Finishing the dish, a small bowl of soup will make your mouth filling exceptional fragrance. After eating it, the pleasant aftertaste will make you feel refreshed and you will definitely want another one.

Lao Tong Cured Mutton (老童家腊羊肉)

Lao Tong Cured Mutton has been popular for over one hundred years in China, featuring nice fragrance, crisp meat quality and bright colors with white and red. Made with 6 complex progresses, the smell and the greasy element of the mutton have been cleared up, leaving the essence of the mutton. 

Lao Tong cured mutton even has been praised by Empress Cixi, a empress in the end of Qing Dynasty (1644–1911). In the theory of traditional Chinese medical science, eating mutton is benefit to whet the appetite and enhance the nutrition. Lao Tong Cured Mutton with unique flavor can be worth to taste.

Products for packaged Lao Tong cured mutton are available in Xi’an; visitors also can buy these products and bring home to relish them with family members.

Kabobs (烤串儿)


These are much like Western kabobs and is like the common food in the west. Various kinds of meat is skewered and cooked over fire, and spices and sauce are added. These can come with the familiar vegetables like bell pepper placed in between.

Soup Dumpling (灌汤包)

These are packets of meat and vegetables and spices that are placed on flat tortilla-like pieces of bread and cooked. Baozis are a favorite all over China.

Biang Biang Mian

If you want to try a bowl of noodles, these are a local specialty that is made with wide noodles and served with toppings of eggs, tomatoes, and beef.

Persimmon Doughnuts (柿子饼)

Shizibing Shizibing

These are buns that are made from persimmons. Persimmons are a common and very tasty fruit that is eaten in China. If you haven’t had a persimmon, the fruit itself might be a new favorite snack for you. Shi Zi Bing are stuffed with fillings such as bean paste or sesame paste and then fried. They are sticky and sweet. In the Muslim Quarter, each one costs about 1 RMB.

Zong Zi with Honey (蜂蜜粽子)

If you love honey, Feng Mi (honey) Zong Zi is a regional snack for you. Honey is mixed with glutinous rice. It is popular in the summer because it is sweet and often served cold.

We Can Help You Plan Your Trip to Xi'an

If you want to eat at local restaurants and try real Xi'an food, please see our popular Xi'an tours below for inspiration. we will ensure you sample the best Xi'an food on offer at authentic local restaurants, and ensuring your individual dietary requirements and preferences are catered to.

A Broad Taste of China 13-day A 13-day discovery of Chinese cuisine from the north to the south and from modern to rural areas View more
Start planning your tailor-made China tour by contacting ​one of our specialists... Create My Trip