Five Tips for Ordering Low-Carb Meals at a Chinese Restaurant

Eating a low-carb meal at a Chinese restaurant is possible, but you have to pay close attention to what you order. Unfortunately, it's hard to get a no carb meal unless you go to a place that lets you freely substitute or hold all kinds of ingredients, and that can be impossible in many kitchens. However, these tips can help to keep the carbs off your plate.

Skip the rice and noodles.

To eliminate carbs, stick with main dishes and have the kitchen hold the rice and noodles. Similarly, avoid eating fortune cookies after the meal or fried wontons as starters as those contain a lot of carbs as well. Finally, if you order a dish such as moo shu pork that comes with pancakes, skip those as well.

Consider stir fries with lots of veggies.

A simple stir fry is often the best direction to go. Vegetables tend to be low in carbs. In particular, stick with capsicums, broccoli, mushrooms, and courgettes, as they are notably low carb, especially compared to potatoes, peas and beans.

Opt for grilled veggies.

If you want a burst of protein with your meal, don't hesitate to order meat. If possible, however, look for grilled meats. Stir-fried meats are fine, but ask if it's possible to not roll them in cornflour. This is a relatively common practice while stir frying, and it adds unnecessary starch to the meat. Definitely stay away from breaded and fried meats.

Choose a thin sauce.

Thick viscous sauces tend to have a lot of cornflour or sugar in them. In particular, the sauce on lemon chicken as well as duck, hoisin and plum sauce tend to have a lot of sugars. If possible, look for a dish with a thin broth or simply skip the sauce altogether. If you like, you can season the dish with soy sauce, which doesn't add many carbs. If you are expressly trying to avoid gluten and not just carbs, you need to be particularly careful with soy sauce. Organic soy sauce is often okay, but many inexpensive brands of soy sauce have some wheat in them.

Remember hidden starches in soups.

Unfortunately, egg drop soup and many other Chinese soups get their delightful viscous texture from cornflour, and if you want to avoid that, you need to stay away from these soups. Instead, look for a meat or vegetable-based broth with vegetables and meat but no noodles.

For more information, contact local professionals like Han Palace.