Gluten intolerance and gluten sensitivities can require diners to remove gluten products like wheat, barley, and rye from their diet. This can prove frustrating, as many meals are made with gluten or processed in facilities that also process gluten products, making it challenging to know what is safe and healthy to eat.
When it comes to your favorite Chinese food dishes, however, you have many excellent options for delicious cuisine to match your dietary restrictions without sacrificing flavor or ingredients. Enjoy inexpensive, easy-to-make recipes at home today.
Chinese Food Recipes Without Gluten Products
When you’re ready to enjoy gluten-free dishes, you can look either to recipes without gluten products, or you can enjoy the myriad options for substitutions and alternatives available on the market today. Rice is generally gluten-free, though it’s important to research where your rice is processed to be certain. Swap out your noodles for rice or enjoy steamed vegetables and chicken dishes with rice and your favorite hot sauces, like the kind you’ll find here at Fly By Jing.
Chinese food is a versatile and evolving type of cuisine that is always changing, influenced by new cultures, new ingredients, and new cooking processes, and it can be adapted to meet your dietary needs with ease and creative opportunity. Here are some classic gluten-free Chinese food recipes that you can make at home—and make your own—today.
Golden Fried Rice
One of the easiest and most versatile gluten-free Chinese food recipes you can make is golden fried rice. The main ingredients for this dish are cooked white rice, eggs, and spices. Cooking wine is, surprisingly, not always gluten-free, so check the label on the cooking wine when you’re picking up your ingredients. Choy sum is a commonly used vegetable in golden fried rice, but you can substitute it for your favorite vegetables or what you have available, like asparagus or broccoli.
It’s important to note that golden fried rice has to be cooked at extremely high temperatures, so if you’re looking to make more than two servings, cook them separately, even if you have a wok at home.
Chinese Rice Cake Soup
There are so many varied and unique ways to incorporate rice into your favorite Chinese dishes, and rice cake soup is just one of the excellent options available. Chinese food experts and novices alike will agree that there’s nothing quite as warming and nourishing as hot soup on a cold or cozy evening, and Chinese rice cake soup is a guaranteed hit.
For this dish, you can buy rice cakes from any Asian grocer, in a variety of cuts to your preference. You can enjoy them in multiple ways, including as a sweetened dessert! This dish calls for pork or chicken, cabbage, carrots, scallions, ginger, spices, and oils. It takes less than an hour to make, and you can adjust the heat level with your favorite spices.
Chicken satay is one of those dishes you’ll be dreaming about long after the plate is cleared. It embraces the comforting flavors of peanut butter, ginger, and brown sugar and takes minimal prep and cook time to produce an easy fan favorite.
The chicken will need to marinate in the peanut sauce for at least two hours, though overnight is preferable. If you’re marinating for long, be sure to shift the bag regularly, so the chicken is completely coated. You will need a grill in order to cook these chicken skewers completely, but prep and cook time all-told takes less than 30 minutes.
While there are many excellent options for gluten-free Chinese food dishes, your favorites may include noodles or other gluten products. But don’t worry. When it comes to substitutions and gluten-free replacements for classic Chinese noodles, you have a wide variety to pick from, so you can continue crafting your favorite dishes without worrying about your health.
There are also many available choices for gluten-free flours, both for savory and sweet dishes, that make it easy to produce your own noodles right at home. If that seems like a bit too much work, you’re in luck—Chinese cooking already incorporates a ton of gluten-free noodles! Well-known classics like rice noodles are naturally gluten free, and so are some more unique varieties like fern root noodles, which have a dark color and chewy texture. Experiment a bit and find the ones you love!
Here are a few noodle dishes you’ll want to try with gluten-free Chinese noodles and gluten-free flour today.
Spicy Sichuan Noodles
As if there weren’t enough reasons to love these spicy Sichuan noodles, they can be made in less than five minutes, which means they’re the perfect filling and delicious mid-week meal for when you just don’t have time to cook.
Most of the ingredients you need to make these noodles are likely already in your pantry, and adjusting the heat level to fit your palate is easy. Just explore the available spices and hot chili oils we have here at Fly By Jing and find the flavors you like most. Add your scallions as a garnish and enjoy.
Biang Biang Noodles
Biang Biang noodles have both an interesting flavor and an interesting history. The story indicates that their name comes from the sound of the dough hitting the table during the kneading process. The Chinese character for “biang” is considered one of the most difficult to write, made up of nearly 60 individual pen strokes.
These rice noodles are large and thick, which allows the sauce to cling more easily. That means more flavor in every bite!
Chengdu Sweet Water Noodles
Chengdu sweet water noodles are a dish from Chengdu that you’ll love making at home. If you visit the Wenshu Temple, you’ll spy a noodle shop that you won’t want to miss—and it features these delicious Chengdu sweet water noodles.
These noodles are traditionally made with a high gluten flour, so pay close attention while you’re making them with your gluten-free substitute to ensure that they don’t break apart or become too brittle (or you can make it easy for yourself and just buy them).
The star of the show in Chengdu sweet water noodles is the Zhong dumpling sauce, but it’s important to allow the noodles the time they need to prove and cook properly to ensure that the sauce is enjoyed to the fullest extent. These noodles can be eaten hot or cold, and one recipe usually makes about four servings. We won’t judge if you eat it all at once, though!
Tips for Gluten-Free Chinese Cooking
Many gluten-free substitutions in Chinese dishes can be made with relative ease, but like any recipe, it’s important to know what alternative options work and how to adjust your recipes properly. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when cooking gluten-free Chinese food at home.
Look at Your Options
There are many different options for gluten-free flour and gluten-free noodles, and the type you decide to use depends on the dish you are making. For Biang Biang noodles, for example, you want to produce wide, thick noodles. For baked goods and desserts, certain gluten-free flours rise more effectively than others. Explore your options to determine which gluten-free substitute is best for your dish.
Adjust Your Timing
Gluten-free ingredients can react differently to heat and timing, so pay close attention to your ingredients. In Chinese cooking, timing is essential, and sauces and ingredients need to be combined at the right moment. Adjust your recipe in advance to avoid keeping food on the counter for too long.
Experiment With Spices
At Fly By Jing, we believe in the power of flavor and its ability to help individuals craft their own unique, personalized take on meals with storied and exciting histories. Because gluten-free ingredients traditionally have different textures, they can absorb or interact with spices and hot oils in different ways. Don’t be afraid to try out new flavors alongside your gluten-free ingredients to find your preferred preparation method for the next dish.
Part of the beauty of Chinese cuisine is its adaptability. Chinese food dishes have been around for thousands of years in one form or another, and each generation brings something unique and personal to the flavors and preparation methods of classic dishes.
Whether you need to adjust your favorite recipe to account for a dietary condition or you’re simply looking to explore all that our spices and oils have to offer, these recipes offer the modern twist on the dishes you know you love. Preparing soups, chicken dishes, and even noodles to match a gluten-free diet is easy, and you’ll find you fall for unique and exciting flavors in a whole new way.
Really, the only question is—which one will you try out first?