Kid-friendly san choy bao

Health Agenda
Food Diet

Kid-friendly san choy bao

San choy bao is a delicious Chinese dish, which is great to serve to kids – they can build their own and eat it with their hands.

There are many different versions of san choy bao, including this child-friendly recipe that includes some optional extras for adults.


1 baby cos lettuce
2 tbs soy sauce
2 tbs oyster sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tbs vegetable oil
600g minced pork or chicken
2 garlic cloves, crushed
½ or 1 red chilli, seeded and finely chopped (optional)
5cm piece of fresh ginger, finely grated
2 tsp white or brown sugar
1 large carrot, peeled and cut into matchsticks about 5cm long
75g bean sprouts, trimmed
small handful of coriander leaves (optional)
lime wedges, to serve (optional)


  1. Separate the lettuce leaves, then rinse and pat them dry. Place them on a plate and chill in the refrigerator until needed, to keep them crisp.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, oyster sauce and sesame oil.
  3. Heat the vegetable oil in a wok or large frying pan, then add the meat and garlic and stir-fry for 1–2 minutes until the meat just changes colour – if you’re using chicken, cook it for an extra minute.
  4. Stir in the chilli (if using), the ginger and sugar, followed by the soy sauce mixture. Stir-fry for 2–3 minutes, or until the meat is cooked through.
  5. Divide the mixture between the lettuce leaves and top with the carrot, bean sprouts and coriander leaves (if using). Alternatively, place all the ingredients on the table and get each person to build their own san choy bao. Serve immediately, with lime wedges if desired, and with lots of napkins – the dish can be messy to eat.

This is an edited extract from Dinner Like a Boss by Katy Holder published by Hardie Grant Books RRP $29.99, which is available in stores nationally.

Photographer: © Benito Martin


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