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Essential foods for Chinese New Year's Eve

Having an elaborate dinner is key to the Spring Festival celebration. It's a symbol of family reunion and joy. Let's take a look at some essential dishes on the Chinese New Year's Eve dinner table!

Sea bass in scallion oil

Fish is a must dish for Chinese New Year's Eve dinner, because "fish" in Chinese sounds like the character for "prosperity", symbolizing an abundant and comfortable life. The sea bass in scallion oil is steamed to retain the fresh taste of the fish, symbolizing a prosperous day; moreover, sea bass meat is tender and easily chewed, making it suitable for the elderly and children.

Cola chicken wings

Eating chicken during the Spring Festival means good luck and prosperity.

Cola chicken wings are easy to cook and taste sweet and salty. The chicken wings are said to have the meaning of helping to realize one's ambitions in the new year.

Braised prawn

Braised prawn is an essential dish for the Chinese New Year's Eve. Using the unique cooking technique of Shandong cuisine, the prawns are fried and then braised, integrating their fresh, fragrant, sweet and salty taste.

Braised pork

During less economically developed times, people often had to wait a full year to enjoy a meat dish. Braised pork, or hongshaorou in Chinese, is one of the mouthwatering memories of New Year's Eve dinners for many Chinese from the older generation. Chunks of belly pork are simmered with soy sauce, rice wine and sugar. It tastes fat and greasy, but is delicious.

Luweizhai pork trotter

Luweizhai pork trotter is exceptionally fragrant and melts in your month. It is great for all ages.

Home-style tofu

Tofu during Chinese New Year's Eve symbolizes good fortune and happiness. The home-style tofu is red in color, with a salty and spicy flavor. It is a delicious stir-fry dish with a balance of sweet and sour, spices and is fresh. It is also very suitable for cooking on Chinese New Year's Eve.

Fried corn kernels with pine nuts

Fried corn kernels with pine nuts are also known for being "full of gold and jade". The dish comes with corn kernels with green beans, diced carrot and is then dotted with fragrant pine kernels. The dish has a bright color and a sweet taste, making it a firm favorite with the kids.

Candied sweet potato

Candied sweet potato is a dessert dish at New Year's Eve dinner. Its sweet taste symbolizes a sweet life.

Shredded cucumber and egg mixed with sesame oil

Shredded cucumber and egg mixed with sesame oil is a cold dish. The shredded egg tastes chewy and the cucumber tastes crisp. The yellow egg silk cover on the green cucumber silk is like a blooming chrysanthemum.


In Chinese folk culture, eating dumplings when you stay up for New Year's Eve dinner is one of the most important customs. Dumplings -- pronounced jiaozi in Chinese -- means replacing the old with the new, so eating dumplings means welcoming in a new year.

The shape of the dumpling resembles a gold ingot from ancient China. So, eating dumplings also means a wish for treasure and good fortune.

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