Snacking in Chinese! 小(Small) + 吃(Eat) = 小吃 (Snack)


Snacking is one of the most important life skills. You need to know where to look in the fridge and the cupboards at home to find your next snacking session. The art of opening your fridge and staring at it for 15 seconds is something that cannot be mastered in a day.

Snacks are universal and Chinese snacks are some of the best! In Chinese they are called 小吃 (xiǎo chī), which literally means “small eats”. This is clearly aptly named because you’re basically shoving a bunch of smaller foods into your mouth.

If you’re at home and you want to know if there are any snacks you can ask this all important phrase, 有没有小吃? (yǒu méi yǒu xiǎo chī). This means, “are there any snacks?”.

If there aren’t any at home, you can find a load of Chinese snacks! Here are a few of our favorites:

Siu Mai

You will see these little yellow snacks at many food stalls. They are a quick and easy snack to make and is often served with soya sauce. If you want something salty and chewy this is an easy choice.

Wong Wong Snow Cookies

A childhood favorite, these crunchy circular crackers combine sweet and salty flavors. The white stuff on top are sugary while the cracker itself is salty.

Ask most Chinese people and they had this snack when they were a kid.

Pan Fried Onion Pancakes

These pancakes are mainly found in mainland China in many local shops. These savoury pancakes are similar to savoury crepes found in Europe or America.

They have a chewy texture with a light flavor that doesn’t overwhelm your mouth. The simplicity of this dish will surprise you.

Thai ice cream rolls

These are not as common in Hong Kong or China, but you definitely can find them. These made are made right in front of you with whatever fruit or ingredients you choose. It’s made on a cold plate with the ice cream mixture and ingredients poured on top which will freeze over.

Egg waffle with ice cream

This is modern twist on a classic Chinese snack, gai daan zai. This sweet and chewy snack is a local favorite and it can be found at many street stalls as well. Some stalls also serve ice cream to add even more flavor!

These are just some example of street food. There are many more yummy and new exciting street food in the world.

Mixed Instant Noodles

These may look ordinary but they are anything but that. There is greatness is simplicity and this is the perfect example. The garlic and sauce mixed together with crispy yet soft noodles is a staple at many street food stalls.

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