As Chinese cuisine has increased in popularity around the world, many Westerners have become familiar with a wide range of Chinese regional dishes. But Chinese breakfast foods are still relatively unknown outside China.   Through this website, you can see what the average Chinese eat for breakfast and enjoy with them the ambiance, aromas and abundance of China's breakfast foods.

You'll see that the Chinese have a different approach to breakfast than Westerners:

star.jpg (5185 bytes)   They don't eat eggs, toast and coffee.

star.jpg (5185 bytes)    Breakfast with a morning paper is not a Chinese custom.

star.jpg (5185 bytes)    Breakfast is a quick, even on Sundays! 

star.jpg (5185 bytes)    At home, breakfast is rice porridge or soy bean milk soup.

star.jpg (5185 bytes)   Neighborhood street vendors offer cheap, hot breakfasts.

Breakfast food street vendors open around 5:00 AM.  They're gone by 8:00 AM on weekdays and by 8:30 - 9:00 AM on weekends. These vendors congregate at the free markets (farmers' markets) so early morning shoppers can pick up a few prepared breakfast items at the same time they do their daily market shopping.

Breakfast Choices

There's an incredible variety of sweet or savory items available.  But basic choices are:

star.jpg (5185 bytes)   "bing" (pancake)

star.jpg (5185 bytes)    "tang"  (soup)

star.jpg (5185 bytes)   "gao" (doughnut)

star.jpg (5185 bytes)   "bao"   (bun)

star.jpg (5185 bytes)    "zhou" (porridge)

star.jpg (5185 bytes)    "mian" (noodles)

There are too many local varieties for this website to cover them all. But a few snapshots will give you a flavor of the enormous diversity that's available.

Breakfast Vendors

There are 3 types of street vendors of breakfast foods.   Those who cook and sell from:

star.jpg (5185 bytes)   makeshift "stove" on a 3-wheeled bike; 

star.jpg (5185 bytes)   an enclosed portable stand on wheels;

star.jpg (5185 bytes)   a tiny shop with a walk-up window.

Ovens are not used in Chinese cooking. But on the street,  breakfast "biscuits" are baked in a tandori-type clay kiln or in steel drums.

A Word About Tea

Tea, a ubiquitous part of the day for most Chinese, is not usually drunk at breakfast.  A variety of soups provide liquid for the typical Chinese breakfast, and milk has now become very popular, particularly among younger people.

A Note About Oil

Many Chinese breakfast foods are deep-fried.  It takes a good constitution and "slimming" genes working in your favor to eat this type of food without a tinge of guilt.  Through this website you can enjoy the food without the calories!