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Chinese New Year Menu

It’s the Chinese Year of the Tiger and a fantastic opportunity to cook a cuisine you may not have attempted before. With a step-by-step guide to creating the ultimate Chinese New Year menu, featuring vegetarian and vegan options to choose from as well as meat, our range of recipes has everything you need for a sumptuous three-course meal. From spring rolls for dipping to crispy duck with plum sauce, they’re dishes everyone will love. 

Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival or the Lunar New Year, is the festival that celebrates the beginning of a new year on the Chinese traditional lunisolar calendar. Seen as a time to focus on family and friends, it’s a wonderful occasion to get everyone together around the table.

Star starters

Fortune Cookies

Usually seen as a dessert, fortune cookies can instead be a fun way to kick off your Chinese New Year menu and get the party started. Why not pair cracking open a bottle with snapping open a cookie. They’re also a recipe that’s great to get the kids involved in making, from helping to mix the batter to writing your “fortunes” on slips of paper to pop inside the cookies. Just make sure to eat the whole cookie if you want it to come true! 

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Hakka Beef Momos

Anyone for dim sum? Try these moreish meaty dumplings influenced by the traditional cuisine of Tangra in China. Packed with flavour and especially delicious dipped in spicy tomato and sesame chutney, they’re a wonderful way to welcome guests and get taste buds ready for the feast ahead.

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Aromatic Crispy Duck Salad

A mouthwatering starter the whole family will love, this crispy duck salad with Chinese five spice and hoisin sauce is an easy recipe for any traditional Chinese New Year menu. Wrap the duck and salad onions into a parcel and drizzle with sauce for an explosion of Chinese flavours.

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Baked Vegetable Spring Rolls

If you’re after a vegetarian starter, these baked vegetable spring rolls, also known as summer rolls, are lower in fat than traditional spring rolls without compromising on flavour. Use thinly sliced mushrooms and a generous amount of fresh ginger for spring rolls worth dipping.

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Coconut Prawn Tempura with Stir-Fried Pak Choi and Homemade Chilli Oil

A food believed to bring good luck and prosperity if eaten on New Year’s Eve, fish is a great choice for a light starter that is still bursting with flavour. Pair these succulent prawns coated in coconut tempura batter with stir-fried pak choi and a piquant chilli sauce for a fantastic option that looks great on the plate, too. 

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(Fire)cracking mains

Cantonese Sizzling Steamed Fish with Soy, Ginger and Spring Onion

Another lucky fish dish, this delicious main from renowned food blogger Shu Han Lee combines sea bass rubbed in rice wine with ginger, sesame, soy sauce and coriander. Garnish with coriander and serve at the table with a drizzle of hot oil for a show-stopping sizzler that’s full of flavour.

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Duck Legs with Plum Sauce

A classic flavour combination, this crispy duck and pancake recipe with a fruity plum sauce makes the perfect main for any new year’s dinner. Ginger and salad onions contrast with the sweetness of spiced duck and plums to give that “sweet and sour” hit Chinese cuisine is famous for.

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Sticky Chinese Pork Belly

Fit for a Chinese banquet, this tantalising recipe features pork with a sticky soy sauce glaze. Pair with salad onions, fried rice and crispy pak choi for a hearty winter dish that everyone will love. The perfect centrepiece for your Chinese New Year celebrations.

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Cashew Chow Mein

A vegan version of this classic stir-fry and noodle dish, it’s also a recipe that takes less than 20 minutes to make (we made it in 10). Combining ingredients such as Chinese Five Spice, tenderstem broccoli and cashew nuts, make sure you’ve got your wok on hot for a seriously smokin’ dish.

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Plant-based Szechuan Beef

Looking for a classic Chinese recipe but want to avoid consuming meat? This plant-based Szechuan beef dish is a great choice. Using pan-fried Moving Mountains Plant-Based Tender Strips paired with an assortment of traditional Chinese flavours from Five Spice to soy sauce, it’s a choice the whole family will love.

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Asian Salad with Lime Vinaigrette

Adding sides to your main dishes can be a fantastic way to up your dinner party game by adding some additional flavour combinations. This Asian salad with lime vinaigrette is a refreshing dish that’s satisfyingly colourful, too. Perfect to add your dinner table.

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Quick Kimchi Recipe

Swiftly gaining popularity in the UK, you may have tried this spicy Asian pickle, so why not make your own? Featuring Chinese leaf or green cabbage, fish sauce and red chilli paste gochujang, it’s packed with flavour. Handily, it can also be made in advance meaning you’ll have one less thing to prepare on the day. 

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Tofu Fried Rice with Savoy Cabbage

An interesting rice recipe is always a winner when it comes to choosing what to cook for Chinese New Year. This tofu fried rice by Meera Sodha is no exception, incorporating Thai ingredients such as jasmine rice and sriracha. You can also find out how to cook the perfect rice here.

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Spirited desserts

Egg Tarts

Influenced by the English custard tart and Portuguese pastel de nata, sweet egg tarts are a popular dessert baked and enjoyed in Hong Kong. So if you don’t have enough time to make a dessert, why not try these delicious M&S egg tarts? With creamy custard, golden pastry and a sprinkling of nutmeg, they’re sure to go down a treat.

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Mango and Saffron Kefir Pudding

Using saffron, an ancient spice traditionally used in Chinese medicine, this sunshine-coloured dessert is a wonderfully refreshing option for the final course of your Chinese New Year menu. Packed with tangy, fruity flavours, it also takes less than 10 minutes to make.

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So what are you waiting for? Choose your Chinese New Year menu from these delicious courses or explore our full range of Chinese recipes here for more inspiration and dishes the whole family will love.

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