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A-Z Chinese Ingredients for all Chinese Foods, Sauce and Brands

Updated on June 9, 2011

Some of the ingredients is what you store in your kitchen, others you may not have heard of and tried without knowing. The list shows all chinese ingredients with short descriptions.

Apple Cider- it is not common but sometimes used in Chinese food for aroma and taste.

Bok Choy- this is a popular vegetable you have probably eaten in your stir-fry without knowing, it is a leafy vegetable that grows frequently. A healthy option

Chilli Flakes – This is chilli that has been dried and broken down to flakes, you can buy this in bulk and use it to create chilli oil and sauces or just throw it in the wok with some nice Seafood.

Chilli Oil- These are more commercial and can be bought at retailer, you can use it for an extra kick in your food or as a side sauce for your prawns. However they are different in restaurants, they are often bits of chilli in oil and can be very hot depending on the chilli the restaurant uses so have a taster before pouring it in your plate.

Chilli Powder- This is the best for marinating food such as adding it to barbeque chicken to make it spicy barbeque chicken.

Chinese Barbeque Sauce- this is good for marinating the ingredients depends on the make find one you love and stick to the brand

Chinese Hot Sauce- usually consists of the hottest chilli and oil, best to keep in your fridge in case you have an emergency need for hotness in your food!

Cabbages- in Chinese foodit is better chopped in small bit cooked in a wok to keep crunchy and healthy.

Choy Sum- thisis related to the above it is part of the cabbage it comes with yellow flower similar to Boy Choy

Cornflower/ Corn Flour/ Corn Starch- this give Chinese foods the crunchy coating like fried chicken this is a must for some of the most popular dishes.

Eggs/ Egg Whites- this is an essential ingredient in Chinese cooking for things such as egg fried rice and countless others.

 Egg whites are often used on its own for its stickiness and holding foods together, however the rest of the egg shouldn’t be wasted it can be used for egg noodles and so on.

Seafood- this stuff is great for your health and it a big part of Chinese foods it comes in soups, stir fry and so on. However only buy it fresh or keep it frozen until a day before use.

Fish sauces- this comes in many form whether it for marinating, frying or as a sauce but it always taste good there are many so dabble and pick your favourite and store it.

Gai Choy – this is a type of mustard cabbage and its quite bitter it goes nicely in soups and stir fry however and its healthy.

Garlic and Ginger- I wouldn’t be biting into a ginger or garlic anytime soon but it’s an all time favourite because it taste damn good in Chinese food including soups, stir fry and stocks.

 It is also very healthy and makes your kitchen smell nice. Make sure you peel and cut into small pieces when using for cooking this release it flavour and it is also overwhelming in big chunks because of its strong flavour

Hoisin Sauce- probably seen this one in your menu right next to duck simply because it goes well together, it is also versatile it is equally as good for marinating as it is cooking.

Malt Vinegar- vinegar fermented from wheat’s and barley

Meats- all sort of meat from different animals are used in Chinese food in dogs! Yes dogs but it is not very common in other countries the more popular meats are pork, chicken, duck and beef.

Monosodium Glutamate- they come in more commercial names but they are small white crystal like, they are used to intense flavour and is immensely popular, it is used in meats, sauces and soups to enhance flavour.

Noodles- they taste good and cook in a few minutes apart from rice it is very popular choose of carbohydrate to go with the sauce and meet. It is easy to store and last a very long time so buy in bulk if you eat it a lot.

Oyster sauce- the sauce is brown and medium thick it is popular and rightfully so because it taste good in meats and fish alike, it is good for marinating and cooking. It can also be used as the sole sauce in whipping up a nice meal.

Peanut Oils-  Do Not Use if allergic to peanuts, it seems obvious enough however some believe it doesn’t have enough peanut trace for an allergic reaction this is a myth.

Is heats in high temperatures so is good for deep frying foods, it has a nice flavour popular in Chinese food.

Rice Noodles- this is white sheets of noodles made from rice, they are popular in soup but are great for frying and steaming as well.

Rice Vinegar

Sea Salt- This is a bit different from normal everyday salt in texture and purpose, it is a little more crystal like and bigger grains. It is used to extract  natural flavour from food, they are preferred by some to normal salt in cooking Chinese food

Sesame Seeds- they are common look good and taste good, it also has a crunch making them popular in starts such as Prawn Sesame Toast.

Sesame Oil- popular and used sparingly to add the extra kick of flavour and aroma to a meal.

Sherry (drink)- it is used as flavour in Chinese cooking to add a nice aroma and taste to stir fries and soups

Shao Hsing – This is wine used for aroma and flavour during cooking particularly in china.

Sichuan Pepper- like other peppers it is used to sprinkle and heighten the taste of Chinese food

Soya Sauce- it is very popular and is a common household item it comes in Dark Soy Sauce and Light Soy Sauce, the dark sauce is the stronger of the two and is used before cooking and Light soy sauce is used during cooking.

Squid Fish- Not commonly prepared at home but a popular choice for some in restaurants it goes well in sauces and soup.

Tamari Sauce- a type of dark soy source

Tofu- if you don’t eat it, you will know a vegetarian that does, it is popular because of its high protein and replace for meat in vegetarians because of its strong texture, it is a bean cake. It can be steams, deep and stir fried. A versatile and popular choice

Vegetable Oil- commonly used because it is always in our kitchens come in many forms and is always reliable.

Vegetables- vegetables doused in the sauce and meat becomes invisible to kids and blends in the taste and its good for you proving fibre and vitamins. It provides a crunchy taste in stir-fry  and a nice aroma and support taste in soups.


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