Located in Northwestern China, Xian cuisine is the mixture between the north and the south. Due to its geographical location, Xian is in between Shanxi and Sichuan. The foods here are both sour (Shanxi) and spicy (Sichuan). Since this region is arid compared to eastern China, rice is not the main crop here. Tourists will find more noodles, bread and dumplings in Xianese restaurants.

As being influenced by the Muslim, mutton and pork dishes are really delicious in Xian. Xianese chefs use salt, vinegar, garlic, and onion for seasonings. The foods are mostly stir-fried, steamed, and braised. Strong flavor, succulent meat, and tasty aroma – You will never regret trying Xian’s cuisines.

Yangrou paomo (Flatbread in mutton soup)

Yangrou paomo is the local specialty of Xian and popular for international travelers. A bowl of vermicelli and shredded flatbread in aromatic mutton broth will warm your body up immediately. The chefs add many seasonings to the broth, for example, shallot, ginger, aniseed, fennel, cassia, etc. to create an appealing taste. The unique feature of this dish is that it is eaten with baked pancakes. Baked pancakes are cut into small pieces and topped in the broth. Yangrou paomo is a Muslim dish, thus, it can easily be found in Muslim Quarter.

Where to try Yangrou Paomo in Xian?

  • Tongshengxiang Restaurant: 5 West St, Lianhu
  • Lao Sun Jia (Xian Lao Sun’s Restaurant): No.78, Dongguan Main Street, Beilin District
  • Tong Sheng Xiang (Prosperity & Fortune Restaurant): No. 52, Shiyuan Road, Beilin District

Liangpi (Cold noodles)

Xian is more famous for delicious noodles than anywhere else in China. Liangpi is a kind of cold noodles that seems not to be appealing when you first hear of it. This food is made from thinly sliced rice noodles which are boiled, then set aside until it is cooled. Chili oil, pepper powder, sesame oil, vinegar and diced garlic will be put at the top of the rice noodles. Beef, pork and egg can be added to Liangpi if you like.

Qishan noodles

This dish has a long history since Qing Dynasty. It is originated in Qishan County of Xian. The soup of this dish is sour and spicy with Sichuan pepper. The noodles are hand-made with wheat flour; hence the taste is really chewy. Pork shreds, chicken, egg, mushrooms and green onion are topped on the top of the noodles.

Biang Biang noodles

Biang Biang is made from thick and savory wheat flour filled with eggs and oil. This dish is served with pepper, diced garlic and vinegar. Topped with meat and leafy vegetables, Biang Biang is extremely delicious with thick chewy noodles and rich broth.

Soup dumpling (tangbao)

People could argue that soup dumpling is the local specialty of Shanghai. However, you can taste a different version of this dish in Xian. The Xian version is made with lamb or beef instead of pork in Shanghai. Inside the dumpling-wrapper, there is a perfect mixture of vegetables, meat and soup that ultimately tantalize your taste buds. Be careful since the soup inside is hot.

Rou Jia Mo (Chinese hamburger)

Rou Jia Mo, which is a kind of Chinese sandwich, is loved by every traveler. This food has been widespread since Qin Dynasty (more than 2000 years ago). You can eat the sandwich with pork, but the Muslims usually choose beef or lamb. The meat is sophisticatedly cooked with 20 kinds of spices and stewed for hours. That’s why it has beautiful red color, appealing aroma and unforgettable flavor.

Hu Lu Ji (Xian Gourd Chicken)

This dish is unique with crispy skin on the outside and tender on the inside. The chicken is poached then deep-fried to create delicious golden skin. Often served with chili, fennel and salt, it is a popular dish for both local people and tourists.

Fenzhengrou (Steamed beef with wheat powder)

The name of this dish refers you to juicy meat wrapped in crispy toasted rice. Pork belly or beef is cut into slices and seasoned with special sauce. Then, the meat is mixed with rice powder and steamed for hours.

Some famous restaurants in Xian

  • Bai Xing Chu Fang: 8, Youyi East Rd., Beilin District
  • Tian Hui Zhen: No. 18, Yan Xiang Lu, Yanta District
  • Su Ji: 26, Ke Ji Lu Street, Yanta District
  • Sichuan Hui Guan: No. 8, Nan Guang Ji Jie Street, Beilin District
  • Ren Ren Ju: 127 You Yi Xi Rd., Beilin District
  • Silk Road Restaurant: 24 to 28 Datang Yitong Lane, Wei’er East Street, Yanta District
  • Guohua Restaurant: 86 Beidajie Street
  • Yue Zhen Xuan: 142 Huan Cheng Nan Lu, Beilin District
  • Prince Restaurant: 2F, Prince Hotel, #5, Fen Xiang, South Avenue
  • Sheng Hao Xuan: Ke Chuang Rd., Yanta District