how to prepare baby bok choy for stir fry | Family Cuisine

Baby bok choy is a type of plant that is often used in stir fry dishes. It's best to prepare it by washing and drying the leaves and stems before cooking, since this will help with the texture of the dish.

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How to prepare baby bok choy for stir fry

Pair this 4-ingredient baby bok choy stir fry with your favorite main and some steamed rice to complete a nutritious meal. This dish takes 15 minutes to whip together. The baby bok choy is cooked until tender, then soaked with a garlicky sauce that’s savory and lightly sweet. It’s such a great way to enjoy vegetables. {Vegan, Gluten-Free Adaptable}

Baby bok choy stir fry

Reading: how to prepare baby bok choy for stir fry

As I mentioned in a previous post, the Chinese dinner table usually consists of several vegetable courses, one or two protein dishes, and a staple course such as rice, dumplings, or noodles. Vegetable courses are the main component of a family meal. They are usually cooked with a small amount of meat or a rich sauce, to make them just as enjoyable as a meat dish.

This super quick and easy baby bok choy is one of my favorite dishes. It takes 15 minutes to prepare and cook, and it tastes so good!

Stir fried baby bok choy

How to prepare baby bok choy

There are many ways to cut baby bok choy. For stir-frying, this is my favorite method, to yield a well seasoned and evenly cooked result.

  • I start the process by setting up a colander in the sink and placing the baby bok choy directly in the sink.
  • Rinse the baby bok choy with running tap water while removing the outer leaves, leaving only the bite-sized stem intact.
  • Use a paring knife to slice off the tough ends and leave them on the other side of the sink.
  • Transfer the peeled bok choy to the colander to drain.

Read more: how to keep leftover stir fry vegetables crisp | Family Cuisine

This method will make the baby bok choy easy to cook through and creates an even texture.

How to prepare baby bok choy for cooking


  • When I get extra large baby bok choy, I further chop the outer leaves, leaving the green leafy part, and cutting the white part into smaller bite-size pieces, so they will be cooked through faster.
  • Sometimes baby bok choy has dirt between the stems. Make sure to rub the bottom end of the stem to remove the dirt once you separate the leaves.

What kind of pan to use

It’s best to cook the baby bok choy stir fry in a wok, if you have the setup. Like I mentioned in a previous post, wok cooking makes a bigger impact on simpler dishes such as vegetable stir-fries than on very saucy takeout-style dishes.

However, if you don’t have that setup, a cast iron pan or carbon steel pan is your next best option. The baby bok choy will get nicely charred with this setup.

Lastly, you can also use a nonstick pan to cook this dish. I used a lot of fresh aromatics in this recipe, so your baby bok choy will turn out just as delicious, minus the charred surface.

Cooking process

Cooking baby bok choy is so easy that I usually skip measuring the sauce.

  1. Heat up the pan until hot and quickly stir in the garlic to release the fragrance without browning.
  2. Stir in the baby bok choy. It will look like the bok choy is spilling out of the pan. Don’t worry, it will shrink a lot at the end.
  3. Add the soy sauce and sugar, then cover to steam. This process helps the bok choy turn tender.
  4. Cook uncovered for a bit more, to let the bok choy absorb more sauce.

Read more: how to blanch frozen broccoli for stir fry | Family Cuisine

The garlic, soy sauce, and sugar work perfectly together to create a rich and aromatic sauce that’s well balanced. If you’re using a wok or carbon steel pan, the sugar and soy sauce also help the bok choy caramelize, creating an even better texture.

Taste the cooked baby bok choy. You’d be surprised how addictive a plate of veggies can be.

How to stir fry baby bok choy step-by-step


No matter whether you’re looking for a side dish for your Chinese takeout-style meal, or you’re hosting a dinner party, this baby bok choy stir fry is a great option to add color, texture and nutrition to your dinner table.

It’s one of my favorite Asian side dishes because it’s so easy to prepare and it tastes so good. To learn more about Chinese greens, check out my ultimate guide to Chinese greens.

Baby bok choy stir fry close-up

More delicious Chinese veggie recipes

  • Chinese Pickled Cabbage (A Quick Pickle Recipe)
  • Easy Chinese Cucumber Salad
  • Chinese Cauliflower Stir Fry
  • Stir-Fried Pea Shoots with Garlic
  • Steamed Eggplant in Nutty Sauce

If you give this recipe a try, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it (once you’ve tried it), and take a picture and tag it @omnivorescookbook on Instagram! I’d love to see what you come up with.

Read more: how to stir fry with chili garlic sauce | Family Cuisine

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