Chinese food is undoubtedly one of the most popular dishes today with its rich flavor combined with a variety of traditional spices and herbs. Despite being so delicious, most dishes are often high in carbohydrates, fat, and sodium. So what is the best Chinese food for diet? Read our article to discover the best Chinese food for diet and how to change your meal choices to fit a healthier lifestyle.
Best Chinese food for diet
A lot of people think that dishes like deep-fried breaded chicken or pork or sweet and sour sauce eaten with white rice are very unlikely to be suitable meals for the diet. In fact, it’s much easier to identify a “bad” dish at face value than it is to find an option that’s diet-friendly and nutrient-dense. Luckily, we’ve put together a list of the best Chinese foods for diet. These dishes contain fewer carbohydrates and fat than many others along with just the right amount of protein
Beef and broccoli
This dish originated in China with the name “Gai Lan Chao Niu Rou“. Gai Lan is the Chinese name for broccoli. Broccoli Beef Stew is a fairly simple dish consisting of beef stir-fry with broccoli, sometimes with sliced mushrooms or onions with a light sauce. A relatively healthy, low-carb, and high-protein side dish with nutrient-dense vegetables. This dish is usually served with rice, but it is very beneficial to replace it with fresh vegetables or leave the rice completely. One 100g serving contains:
- 10,5g protein
- 5,3g carbohydrate
- 10,6g fat
Mu Shu Lettuce Wraps
Mu Shu lettuce roll is a traditional Chinese dish that originated in Northern China and was introduced to the United States in the mid-1900s, which has since evolved into the dish we know today. This dish usually uses pork, and ground chicken or can also be beef or tofu. The filling consists of various stir-fried vegetables such as cabbage and mushrooms wrapped in butter lettuce leaves or lettuce. People often use crushed cashews or strips of wonton to create crunch and serve with hoisin or plum sauce. Mu Shu lettuce rolls are usually eaten on their own and do not need to be served with rice or other carbohydrate-rich dishes. On average, a 100g serving of Mu Shu lettuce contains:
- 13,9g protein
- 12g carbohydrate
- 15g fat
Moo Goo Gai Pan
One of the best Chinese food for diet, Moo Goo Gai Pan is a dish consisting of stir-fried chicken with some root vegetables like mushrooms, broccoli, carrots, and chestnuts. Translating the dish’s name to “Chicken Sliced with Mushrooms”, it started out as a Cantonese dish but has slowly transformed into the Chinese dish it is today. Because this dish is filled with vegetables and lean chicken, it is relatively low in calories. Furthermore, chicken is a rich source of protein making it a filling dish.
The recipe for this dish is also quite simple, all the ingredients are stir-fried together and topped with soy sauce and oyster sauce, sometimes with a little cornstarch to thicken. It is one of the lowest carb dishes you will find at a Chinese restaurant. A 100g serving of Moo Goo Gai Pai typically contains:
- 9g protein
- 5,5g carbohydrate
- 3g fat
Dumplings are one of the popular and healthy appetizers found in most restaurants serving Chinese or Asian dishes. Dumplings are simply a cake filled with meat and vegetables, usually pork and cabbage, and carrots. The outside is flour that is shaped and wrapped with the filling and then steamed. This dish is usually served steamed or sautéed, but you should choose to steam to cut calories and fat. A medium steamed dumpling has only 40 calories. Sometimes, dumplings will be dipped with hoisin dipping sauce or sweet and sour sauce. We recommend simplifying your sugar and calorie intake by eating them without sauce, or in small amounts. In 100g of dumplings, there will be:
- 11,5g protein
- 9,5g carbohydrate
- 2,6g fat
Happy family is a low-carb dish and is very popular because it is cooked with many readily available ingredients. Jute is a stir-fried dish made from a variety of vegetables and meat or seafood. This food is rich in protein as it contains both meat and seafood, while vegetables add fiber. The variety between ingredients also means that Happy family is highly customizable to your dietary needs.
Happy Family is extremely popular and found at most Chinese restaurants. To prepare, the ingredients will be stir-fried together and mixed with light brown soy sauce and oyster sauce. This dish is usually not served with rice or noodles, so it is implicitly a low-carb option. The sauce is mostly soy sauce, broth, and sugar, creating a savory, smooth sauce that features a combination of different flavors. A 100g serving will contain:
- 26g protein
- 11g carbohydrate
- 15g fat
Mandarin Tea Eggs
Mandarin Tea Eggs aka Chinese boiled tea eggs are also one of the best Chinese food for diet. They were once used to preserve fresh eggs in China, but are now widely consumed as a street dish all over the world. Since this is typically a snack, it can be offered as an appetizer or a dinnertime snack. These eggs are hard-boiled, cracked, and then re-boiled in tea or other flavorings before being peeled. This gives the eggs an interesting cracked color and is as rich as the color of the tea on the inside. A 100g serving of about 2 medium-sized eggs will provide:
- 1,1g carbohydrate
- 12,4g protein
- 10g fat
Another best Chinese food for diet is Chop suey. Many people adore the well-known Chinese dish called chop suey.This is a stir-fry made with meat, eggs, and thinly sliced vegetables such as celery, onions, bell peppers, mushrooms, and peas with a light sauce. It is usually made with pork, although some types may contain chicken, beef, or tofu. Like other stir-fries, this is a healthy option because it’s made from a source of protein and vegetables. In a 100g serving you will get:
- 4,5 g carbohydrate
- 8 g protein
- 3,9 g fat
Egg Foo Yung
Egg Foo Yung is another option suitable for vegetarians when it comes to Chinese food. This dish may have been developed in Shanghai in the mid-1800s, where similar recipes still exist today. This meal can be eaten at any time of the day but is usually dinner. This dish consists of ingredients such as eggs, bean sprouts, green onions, cabbage, and mushrooms. This dish is often eaten with spicy soy sauce sprinkled on top of steamed or fried rice. If you want to reduce carbs, even more, ask for more vegetables. 1 serving of 100g usually contains:
- 9,2 g protein
- 3 g carbohydrate
- 10,3 g fat
When it comes to the best Chinese food for diet, Buddha Delight cannot be ignored. This is a famous vegetarian stir-fry commonly served in Chinese cuisine and has its roots in Buddhist culture, as monks often eat it. Buddha Delight is colorful and packed with nutrients, topped with a light sauce, and served with rice. Ingredients to prepare when you want to cook this dish include tofu, ginger, baby corn, bamboo shoots, broccoli, and mushrooms. This dish has a lot of vegetables and mushrooms so it is easy to replace and suitable for many different tastes.
Because it’s completely plant-based, it does contain some fiber, as well as tofu protein. Additionally, tofu is one of the few complete vegetarian proteins, which means it contains all nine essential amino acids your body needs to make new proteins. A 100g serving of this dish contains approximately:
- 4,5 g protein
- 8,5 g carbohydrate
- 6 g fat
Chinese food should avoid on a diet
If you are aiming for healthy and healthy meals, you should avoid foods such as noodles, rice, breaded meat, fried food …
- Noodles contain a lot of carbohydrates. Some can help add nutrients, but most of them just make you feel heavier. Avoid using noodles in your diet if possible and substitute them with vegetarian noodles or a mixture of stir-fried vegetables.
- Just like noodles, rice is also high in carbohydrates. If you can’t skip the rice, opt for brown rice instead as it provides more nutrients and fewer carbs.
- Breaded meats and fried foods are among the most popular Chinese dishes and are also high in carbs. To reduce your carb intake while on a diet and still enjoy Chinese cuisine is to switch those fried foods to stir-fries or steamed ones.
To conclude, It is important to develop a sustainable diet habit by cutting back on carbohydrates, fats, and sugars. The key to adopting a healthier lifestyle is moderation. You are more likely to achieve results if you can maintain your routine. Hopefully, this article has shed some light on some of the options available to enjoy the best Chinese food for diet that brings beneficial changes to your health.