Best Chinese dishes to try in 2021

Vanessa StoicovFeb 11, '21

Chinese food is well known for its fragrant aromas and dazzling spices. This cuisine has a long and ancient history that has been adapted to suit contemporary palettes and trends, especially when it comes to the most popular dishes. 

But we get it – sometimes it’s not convenient to go out for dinner and you don’t want to order in. It’s why we’ve partnered with some of Melbourne’s top Chinese restaurants – like Red Cliff Chinese and Secret Kitchen – to bring you a range of heat-at-home authentic popular Chinese dishes. 

Popular Chinese food starters

Chinese food is very diverse, just as diverse as the country itself. But when it comes to starters, nothing beats a serving of spring rolls. The Secret Kitchen Garlic Prawn spring rolls are the perfect way to kick off your meal when plated up with some sweet chilli sauce. 

Or for something a little different, you can try the deep fried bean curd skin prawn and pork roll or Siu Mai. They’re both just enough to wet your appetite but not too heavy to ruin your main meal. 

Another popular starter is a small bowl of soup. We love the Secret Kitchen seafood hot and sour soup which can be dished up with a side of fried rice from Red Cliff Chinese. But if you prefer a slightly sweeter start to your meal, check out the custard buns (also from Secret Kitchen).

Best dumplings to nosh on at home

Chinese dinner ideas don’t get much easier than the humble dumpling. Dumplings are one of the best chinese foods to share and are a great option if you’re dining with people who have different eating preferences.

Our friends at Oriental Teahouse are your new go-to for all things dumplings. They’ve got a big range of flavours to choose from, including wagyu beef and satay chicken. Plus if you’re planning a feast, the mixed pack of 30 dumplings is a crowd pleaser. 

For those of you who like to make your own dumplings but need a little guidance, check out the DIY vegan dumplings pack or the DIY prawn and mushrooms pack. Both come with everything you need to get hands on with your cooking.

Easy Chinese dinner ideas

For when you don’t feel inspired to cook something from scratch, we’ve got a great range of ready-made popular Chinese dishes to choose from. From classic soups and fried rice, to something more ‘out there’, you can order ahead to keep your fridge and freezer stocked so you don’t have to think too hard at meal times.


On a cooler day, the Secret Kitchen corn and chicken soup can help to warm you up. Or for a complex flavour, check out the beef brisket in spicy golden sour soup from Red Cliff.

Fried Rice

This is where Chinese food really shines. A staple for any Chinese banquet would have to be fried rice. We’ve got a few different options here: vegetarian, crispy pork and even BBQ pork and prawn. Fried rice is a great side dish for your meal or perfect on its own (that’s if you’re willing to share).

Meat stir fry

One of the fastest meals to whip up is a stir fry. We’re big fans of Kung Po chicken and the ever-tasty Mongolian beef. We’re also partial to some sweet and sour pork (especially if we’re hungrier than normal!). 

Another option is to choose a main dish and add in other dishes, like steamed veggies, on the side. You might like BBQ pork, some salt and pepper pork ribs or a whole roast duck

Healthy Chinese teas

To aid in your digestion, consider boiling the kettle and serving up some Chinese tea. Drinking tea regularly can improve memory and some types can even help you lose weight. 

Oriental Teahouse, as the name suggests, has a few different flavours you can explore. Our top picks are jasmine pearl, oolong iron buddha, and raspberry and lime. They all come in a tin so you can keep them fresh and protected. Wrapping up your Chinese dinner with a cup of aromatic tea is a lovely way to wind down and relax. 

Get your favourite Chinese dishes delivered with iPantry

To save you time and hassle, if you order before 2pm Monday to Friday, we’ll deliver your food the next day. So if you feel like taking a small trip to the East without leaving the comfort of your home, jump onto our website and start exploring.