Chinese New Year Traditional Food – What We Eat During This Celebration


Chinese New Year is the BIGGEST event of the year for many Chinese people. In fact, in China, it has a 4-day vacation days for many people who live and work in the big cities to travel back to their villages for a big family gathering. Many of these hardworking people who may not able to see their families until this very big celebration. Imagine you don’t see your parents or other family members until once a year?

Many different Chinese families eat different traditional Chinese food that they only eat during Chinese New Year. In fact, many people buy certain food items coz the pronunciation of the words in Chinese sounds good luck. For example, people will buy green onions coz it sounds “smart” and they hope their children are smart when buying green onions. Another example is “fat choy”, which is a black moss that the people believe this food item will bring them “great fortunes”. Trust me, there are so many Chinese rituals and customs that it’s insane.

I personally can’t keep up with the large list of customs or food items that we need to buy traditionally. I feel that we need to keep up with our modern time and just be happy and not stress out about fulfilling all the traditional customs. As long as we are a good person, luck and good things will eventually come.

Anyhow, below are some of the food items that I want to show you that you can purchase at your nearest Asian groceries stores that you can purchase and enjoy.

NOTE: We normally eat out for our traditional family gathering, but due to the pandemic, we are doing our part and eat at home.

Nian Gao – Glutenous Rice Cake (Brown Sugar)

Nian gao, sometimes translated as year cake or Chinese New Year’s cake, is a food prepared from glutinous rice flour and consumed in Chinese cuisine. My usually cut this rice cake in thick slices and then dip them in egg yolk before putting them on the wok or frying pan to stir fry them. This dish is usually only being served once a year during Chinese New Year. No one hardly eat them year round.

Radish Cake

Radish cake or as commonly referred to as turnip cake. It’s made with shredded radish and plain rice flour coupled with bits of pork and stir fry. You most likely see this dish at a Chinese restaurant that serves dim sum.

Taro Cake

Taro cake is a Cantonese dish made from the vegetable taro.

Gluten + Bean Curd Tray

A tray of this vegetarian gluten includes bean curd, sweet & sour gluten, curry gluten and other varieties of bean curds. It’s usually served cold. It’s a good snack.

Vegetarian Dish

Chinese traditional vegetarian dish that consists of the following:

– fat choy
– ken Choy
– Bak Choy
– broccoli
– Lin Zhi
– white fruit
– fungi
– bean curd
– vermicelli
– red paste

Some also put black fungus and cloud ear. My dad, aka Chef Daddy is very good at making this dish.

Tong Yuen

Tong Yuen are mini rice balls that either has black sesame or peanuts fillings in sweet liquid.


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