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Updated by Joanna James on Jun 23, 2019
Headline for Top 05 Traditional Cuisines to try in Beijing - Experiencing culture one dish at a time
Joanna James Joanna James
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Top 05 Traditional Cuisines to try in Beijing - Experiencing culture one dish at a time

Beijing, China, is a popular tourist destination for both its culture and its food. As nothing speaks more about a culture like its food, here are the top 5 dishes you must try when in Beijing.


Peking Roast Duck

They say that there are three things that every visitor to the city must tick off from their to-do list if they are to say that they truly visited Beijing: climb the Great Wall, walk the fancy streets of Panjiyuan Antique Market, and try the Peking Roast Duck. While there are many places to try the duck, the best is probably found at Quanjude. The establishment opened in 1864 and has over a hundred years of experience to its name. They also have over 20 outlets spread all over Beijing, so finding an outlet near your hotel or service apartment in Beijing should not be a problem.



Wandouhuang is arguably the most famous snack in all of Beijing. Translating to Pea Cake, it is known by its golden hue reminiscent of the imperial rule and the sweet freshness of mashed peas. They are served cut into squares of about one inch each. One thing is for sure, though, having only one Wandouhuang is not going to be enough.


Stewed Liver

If you are not that adventurous when it comes to food, this may not be the dish for you. If you are a lover of unique dishes, then this will be right up your alley. In fact, if you happen to stay at one of the more comfortable accommodations like Ascott Riverside Garden Beijing, you can order this dish to take away, so you can sit snugly in your apartment and enjoy the stewed pig liver that has been a part of the local culture since the times of the Song Dynasty.


Xiao Diao Li Tang

Xiao Diao Li Tang is a traditional drink in Beijing made out of pears. It is the perfect beverage to wash down the heavy goodness of most local dishes. The Old Beijing Pear Drink is made by boiling down sweet pears. An edible white fungus, green plums, and rock sugar are then added to it to make the drink. Xiao Diao Li Tang is said to be a nutritious drink, one that is soothing and healthy for your entire body - especially for the lungs and throats. If you try this drink at a traditional Beijing restaurant, you would have it served in a brass thermos flask.


Qianlong Cabbage

If you are a vegetarian, Beijing still has plenty of options to keep your taste buds interested as well. The Qianglong Cabbage is one such dish. It is made of cabbage leaves, vinegar, sesame sauce, and honey. The dish has been named after the Qing Dynasty Emperor Qianlong, who is supposed to have discovered it at a small nameless restaurant when he was outside the palace in disguise. He was so taken by the dish, that it was then made popular, and named after him. You can find this at most restaurants in Beijing without any problem.