Healthy Chinese Food Recipes

Many people love Chinese food for its unique flavors and delicious taste. However, some Chinese dishes can be due to the use of excessive oil, salt, and sugar. Fortunately, there are many healthy Chinese food recipes that you can prepare at home to enjoy the fantastic flavors without compromising your health. Whether you are looking for stir-fries, soups, stews, or steamed dishes, there are plenty of healthy Chinese recipes to choose from that can help you eat healthily and enjoy all your favorite dishes.

What Makes Chinese Food Healthy?

Chinese cuisine is renowned for its rich cultural heritage, diverse flavors, and health benefits. The secret to the health benefits of Chinese food lies in the use of high-quality ingredients such as vegetables, lean protein, and healthy oils in their cooking.

Vegetables: A Staple in Chinese Cuisine

One of the hallmarks of Chinese cuisine is the emphasis on fresh vegetables. Vegetables are a staple in Chinese cooking, with array options available in almost every dish. Vegetables like bok choy, Chinese broccoli, Chinese eggplant, and snow peas are all common in Chinese cooking. Not only are vegetables packed with essential vitamins and minerals, but they are also low in calories and high in fiber. In addition, the variety of vegetables used in Chinese cuisine ensures that your diet is well-balanced, providing you with the nutrients your body needs.

Lean Protein: A Key Component of Chinese Food

Lean protein is another essential component of Chinese food. Chicken, fish, tofu, and lean cuts of meat are all commonly used in Chinese cooking. Compared to Western-style Chinese food, traditional Chinese cuisine uses less meat and more plant-based sources of protein. For example, tofu is a staple in Chinese cuisine, providing a healthy source of vegetarian protein. Adding lean protein to your diet can provide you with sustained energy, help to reduce hunger, and maintain your overall health.

Healthy Oils: Choosing the Right Cooking Oil

The type of oil used in Chinese cooking is also a key factor in determining its health benefits. Unlike Western-style Chinese cuisine, which often uses vegetable oil or other highly processed oils that are high in saturated and trans fats, traditional Chinese recipes use healthy oils like sesame oil, peanut oil, and canola oil. These oils are rich in unsaturated fats, which can help to lower cholesterol levels and reduce inflammation in the body.

In conclusion, the secret to healthy Chinese cuisine lies in the use of high-quality, fresh ingredients. Choosing whole, nutrient-dense foods like vegetables, lean protein, and healthy oils can help to improve your health, increase your energy levels, and give you the strength and vitality you need to lead a happy, healthy life!

Top 5 Healthy Chinese Food Recipes to Make at Home

Chinese cuisine is known for its deliciously savory and aromatic dishes. But not all Chinese food is healthy as some are loaded with sugar, sodium, and unhealthy fats. But that doesn’t mean you have to completely avoid Chinese food when trying to eat healthily. Here are some top 5 healthy Chinese food recipes that you can prepare easily at home and enjoy guilt-free.

Shrimp and Broccoli Stir Fry

Shrimp and Broccoli Stir Fry is a nutrient-dense dish that is low in calorie, rich in protein, and high in fiber. It’s also loaded with vitamins and minerals that are great for your health.

  • Ingredients:
  • 1 pound of shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 cups of broccoli florets
  • 1 tablespoon of minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon of grated ginger
  • 2 tablespoons of low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil

To prepare, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and stir-fry the garlic and ginger. Then add the shrimp and stir-fry until pink. Add the broccoli, soy sauce, and honey, and stir-fry for another 2-3 minutes. Serve and enjoy.

Vegetable Dumplings

If you’re looking for a plant-based Chinese dish, then vegetable dumplings are a fantastic option. They’re easy to make, delicious, and packed with veggies.

  • Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 cups of chopped vegetables, such as mushroom, cabbage, carrot, and onion
  • 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon of grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon of minced garlic
  • 30 dumpling wrappers

To prepare, mix all the ingredients in a bowl except for the dumpling wrappers. Place a tablespoon of the mixture in the center of a dumpling wrapper, and fold the wrapper in half to enclose the filling. Steam the dumplings for 5-7 minutes or until they’re cooked through. Serve and enjoy.

Hot and Sour Soup

Hot and Sour Soup is a classic Chinese soup that is easy to make and healthy. It’s a perfect appetizer or light meal that is loaded with vegetables and protein.

  • Ingredients:
  • 4 cups of chicken or vegetable broth
  • 3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons of low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon of sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon of grated ginger
  • 2 cloves of minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup of shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 cup of firm tofu, diced
  • 1/2 cup of bamboo shoots, sliced
  • 1/2 cup of carrots, julienned
  • 1/4 cup of green onions, chopped

To prepare, whisk together the cornstarch and 2 tablespoons of water in a bowl. Then mix all the other ingredients except the tofu and green onions in a large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5-7 minutes. Add the cornstarch mixture and stir until the soup thickens. Add in the tofu and green onions, and simmer for another 2-3 minutes. Serve and enjoy.

Moo Shu Chicken

Moo Shu Chicken is a protein-packed dish that is loaded with vegetables, and it’s low in calories and fat. It’s also gluten-free and low in sodium, making it a great option for people with dietary restrictions.

  • Ingredients:
  • 1 pound of boneless, skinless chicken breast, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons of low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of grated ginger
  • 1/4 cup of cilantro, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 cup of shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup of Napa cabbage, shredded
  • 1 cup of carrots, julienned
  • 1/2 cup of green onions, chopped
  • 8-10 whole wheat tortillas

To prepare, whisk together the hoisin sauce, soy sauce, ginger, and cilantro in a bowl. Heat a skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil. Add the chicken and stir-fry until cooked through. Add the mushrooms, cabbage, carrots, green onions, and sauce mixture, and stir-fry for another 2-3 minutes. Serve with whole wheat tortillas.

Steamed Fish

Steamed Fish is a simple, classic, and healthy Chinese dish that is easy to make and delicious. It’s low in calories, high in protein, and loaded with vitamins and minerals.

  • Ingredients:
  • 1 pound of white fish fillets (such as tilapia or cod)
  • 2 tablespoons of low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon of grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon of minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup of green onions, chopped

To prepare, combine the soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger, garlic, and green onions in a bowl. Place the fish fillets on a plate, and spoon the sauce mixture over them. Steam the fish for 10-15 minutes or until cooked through. Serve and enjoy.

How to Make Healthier Choices When Eating Out at Chinese Restaurants

Chinese cuisine is one of the most popular choices for takeout and dining out. However, it can be difficult to make healthy choices when eating Chinese food. Here are some tips to help you make healthier choices when eating out at Chinese restaurants, so you can enjoy a delicious meal without compromising on your health:

Avoid Deep-Fried Dishes

Many of the popular dishes on a Chinese menu are deep-fried, such as sweet and sour pork and fried rice. These dishes are often high in calories and unhealthy fats, and can lead to weight gain and other health problems. Instead, try ordering dishes that are steamed, boiled, or stir-fried. This will help you avoid consuming excess calories and unhealthy fats.

For example, you can order steamed dumplings or vegetable spring rolls instead of deep-fried ones. Steamed dumplings are usually filled with lean protein and vegetables and are a healthier option than their fried counterparts. Similarly, steamed or stir-fried seafood dishes can be a great source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids, which are important for heart and brain health.

Avoid Sugary Sauces

Many Chinese dishes are prepared with sugary sauces, which can be high in calories and lead to a spike in blood sugar levels. These dishes include sweet and sour chicken, General Tso’s chicken, and orange chicken. Instead of ordering dishes with sweetened sauces, you can ask for the sauce on the side or order dishes that are prepared with non-sugary sauces.

For example, you can order dishes that are made with vinegar-based sauces or spicy sauces, such as Szechuan or Hunan-style dishes. The spicy sauces can aid in digestion, and research shows that capsaicin, the active ingredient in chili peppers, may help with weight loss by boosting metabolism.

Choose Whole-Grain Options

Chinese restaurants often serve white rice, which is high in carbohydrates and low in fiber. This can cause a rapid surge in blood sugar levels and lead to weight gain. Instead of white rice, try ordering brown rice or quinoa, which are higher in fiber and will keep you feeling full for longer.

You can also opt for dishes that are made with whole-grain noodles or rice noodles. These options are typically healthier than dishes made with white rice or wheat noodles, as they contain more fiber and nutrients.

By following these tips, you can enjoy a delicious and healthy meal at your favorite Chinese restaurant while sticking to your health goals.

The Health Benefits of Eating Chinese Food

Chinese cuisine is renowned for its diverse ingredients, cooking techniques, and flavors that appeal to people all around the world. Not only is Chinese food delicious, but it can also offer various health benefits as it primarily consists of balanced, whole foods that are rich in essential nutrients and low in calories. From lowering cholesterol levels to reducing inflammation, and aiding in digestion, here are some of the health benefits of consuming Chinese food.

Lowering Cholesterol Levels

High levels of cholesterol can lead to various health risks such as heart disease and stroke. Fortunately, Chinese cuisine contains a wide range of ingredients that can help you maintain healthy cholesterol levels. For instance, regular consumption of ginger can reduce serum cholesterol and triglycerides levels, while garlic can inhibit the oxidation of cholesterol. Furthermore, the use of tofu, soy milk, and soy-based products instead of meat and dairy can lead to lower cholesterol levels.

Fighting Inflammation

Inflammation is a natural response of the body to harmful stimuli, but it can also lead to chronic diseases if not controlled. Chinese food can help to reduce inflammation due to its use of many anti-inflammatory ingredients such as ginger, turmeric, garlic, and green tea. Gingerols, compounds found in ginger, has been found to decrease inflammation and improve joint health, while curcumin found in turmeric has potent anti-inflammatory properties. Additionally, the high antioxidant content of green tea helps to combat inflammation by reducing oxidative stress.

Aiding in Digestion

Chinese cuisine emphasizes the consumption of fiber-rich foods, which promotes digestive health. For example, whole grains like brown rice and quinoa provide ample amounts of dietary fiber, which helps promote regular bowel movements and prevent constipation. Moreover, soup-based dishes and stir-fries that are cooked with vegetables and lean proteins can aid in digestion due to their nutrient-dense nature, which ensures adequate intake of vitamins and minerals that support proper digestive function.

Promoting Weight Loss

Chinese food can also aid in weight loss due to its focus on whole, nutrient-dense foods and cooking methods such as steaming, stir-frying, and boiling that reduces the use of oil and fat. These cooking techniques help retain the natural flavors and nutritional value of the ingredients, making them more satisfying and filling, which can lead to reduced calorie intake. Moreover, Chinese cuisine contains many low-calorie foods such as vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains that help maintain a healthy weight.

How to Substitute Ingredients in Chinese Recipes to Make Them Healthier

Chinese food has been a favorite for many people for ages, but it’s not always the healthiest choice. Most Chinese recipes are high in salt, have high calorie counts, and contain unhealthy ingredients like refined sugars and added fats. Making conscious changes to your diet can help you enjoy your favorite Chinese dishes without putting your health at risk. In this article, we’ll show you ways to make simple substitutions to Chinese recipes so you can enjoy healthier, more satisfying meals.

1. Using Whole Grain or Brown Rice Instead of White Rice

White rice is a staple in many Chinese recipes. It’s easy to cook and tastes great, but it’s not the healthiest option. White rice has been stripped of its natural minerals and nutrients during processing. Whole grain or brown rice is a good substitute that is packed with health benefits. Brown rice has more fiber than white rice, and it takes longer to digest, making you feel fuller for longer periods. Add brown rice to your diet for a healthier option.

2. Swapping Out High-Calorie Condiments and Sauces

Most Chinese dishes come with high-calorie condiments and sauces like hoisin and oyster sauce. These sauces may add flavor to your dish, but they’re high in calories, sugar, and salt. Substitute these unhealthy ingredients with healthier ones like low-sodium soy sauce, rice vinegar, or chopped herbs like cilantro or parsley.

3. Choosing Steamed or Baked Dishes Instead of Fried

Fried food is a no-no if you’re trying to eat healthily. Chinese cuisine has many fried dishes like egg rolls and dumplings. Instead, choose dishes that are steamed or baked. Steaming your food preserves its nutrients, and baking it adds a crunchiness that can mimic that of fried foods. Some healthier options include steamed dumplings, baked spring rolls, or steamed fish with vegetables.

4. Using Lean Meat or Plant-Based Protein Instead of Fatty Meat

Chinese food often contains fatty meat like pork and beef, which can be high in saturated fat. Substitute these unhealthy options with lean meat or plant-based proteins like tofu. Tofu can replace protein in Chinese cuisine, and it works well in various dishes. Bonus: It’s high in protein, low in fat, and has plenty of health benefits like reducing bad cholesterol levels.

5. Add Vibrant Vegetables or Nutrients to Your Dishes

Chinese cuisine includes vibrant vegetables like shiitake mushrooms, bok choy, and Chinese broccoli, and they are all packed with nutrients. Find ways to add more vegetables to your Chinese dishes. Cut back on starchy ingredients like noodles and opt for vegetable stir-fries. You can try adding seaweed to your dishes, as it contains health benefits like antioxidants, iodine, and fiber.

  • Another way to add more nutrients to your dishes is by using ginger, which has anti-inflammatory properties and is an excellent source of vitamin C. Add a slice of ginger to your vegetable dishes for added health benefits.
  • Garlic is also beneficial, and it has health benefits such as being packed with antioxidants that help to fight off free radicals, and it helps to protect your immune system.


Chinese food is a popular cuisine around the world, but it often gets a bad reputation for being unhealthy. However, with the right choices and preparations, you can enjoy delicious and nutritious Chinese food. Here are some frequently asked questions about healthy Chinese food:

1. Is it possible to eat healthy Chinese food?

Yes, it is possible to eat healthy Chinese food. The key is to choose dishes that are made with fresh ingredients and cooked in a healthy way. Look for dishes that are stir-fried, steamed, or boiled, instead of fried. You can also ask for less oil and salt when ordering your food.

2. What are the healthiest Chinese dishes to order at a restaurant?

There are several healthy Chinese dishes to order at a restaurant. Some examples include:

  • Steamed fish with ginger and scallions
  • Hot and sour soup
  • Steamed or boiled dumplings
  • Stir-fried mixed vegetables
  • Shrimp or chicken dishes with vegetables

3. Are there any Chinese foods that are particularly unhealthy?

Some Chinese dishes can be high in calories, sodium, and fat. Avoid dishes that are deep-fried, crispy, or coated in sauce. Some examples of unhealthy Chinese dishes include:

  • Sweet and sour chicken
  • General Tso’s chicken
  • Egg rolls
  • Crispy fried noodles

4. Can I make Chinese food healthier by cooking it at home?

Yes, you can make Chinese food healthier by cooking it at home. Use fresh ingredients and choose cooking methods that are healthier, such as stir-frying, steaming, or boiling. Avoid using too much oil or salt in your dishes.

5. Can I still eat Chinese food if I’m on a diet?

Yes, you can still eat Chinese food if you’re on a diet. Choose dishes that are low in calories and fat, and avoid those that are high in sodium and sugar. You can also ask for dishes to be cooked with less oil and salt.

6. How to make healthy Chinese food at home?

Making healthy Chinese food at home is easy and fun. Here are some tips:

  1. Choose fresh and colorful vegetables, such as broccoli, bok choy, carrots, and bell peppers.
  2. Use lean proteins, such as chicken, shrimp, and tofu.
  3. Use healthy cooking methods, such as stir-frying, steaming, or boiling.
  4. Avoid using too much oil, salt, or sugar.
  5. Experiment with different spices and herbs to add flavor to your dishes.

Here is a simple and healthy Chinese recipe to try:

Steamed Fish with Soy Sauce Ingredients:
1 lb. white fish fillet, such as cod or tilapia 1 tbsp. grated ginger
1 tbsp. chopped scallions 2 tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce
1 tbsp. rice vinegar 1 tsp. sesame oil
1 tbsp. cornstarch 1 tbsp. water
1. Rinse the fish fillet and pat dry. 2. In a small bowl, mix together the soy sauce, rice vinegar, and sesame oil.
3. Place the fish fillet in a heatproof dish. 4. Sprinkle the ginger and scallions over the fish.
5. Pour the soy sauce mixture over the fish. 6. Mix together the cornstarch and water to make a slurry.
7. Pour the slurry over the fish and sauce. 8. Steam the fish for 8-10 minutes, or until cooked through.
9. Serve with steamed rice and vegetables.

Thanks for Reading!

We hope you’ve found our healthy Chinese food recipes article helpful and inspiring! Remember, healthy eating doesn’t have to be boring or complicated – with the right ingredients and techniques, you can create delicious and nourishing meals that support your health and fitness goals. Keep exploring our website for more tips and recipes, and don’t forget to come back for more – we’re always cooking up something new and exciting!

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