5 Food Museums to Visit in China

Home to more than 140 food museums, China is proud of its rich and diverse food culture. Here, we send you on a food tour to e-visit five such institutions.

Sichuan Cuisine Museum  川菜博物馆


Just an hour’s drive from Chengdu, the Sichuan Cuisine Museum, also known as Chuancais Museum, is located in Pixian Historic Site, an old town with 3,000 years of history.

The museum opened in 2007 and is allegedly the world’s first museum to display a regional cooking culture. With thousands of antiques and relics related to Sichuan cuisine, the museum accepts more than 400,000 visitors every year.

The highlight of the Sichuan Cuisine Museum is arguably the training kitchen where visitors can cook classic Sichuan dishes such as mapo tofu and kung pao chicken under the guidance of professional chefs.

Chongqing Hot Pot Museum  重庆火锅博物馆


Chongqing hot pot is arguably the most famous hot pot style. Its spicy and numbing soup base has found passionate fans worldwide.  The city itself is also known as China’s hot pot capital. As of 2019, there were a total of 26,991 hot pot restaurants in Chongqing.

To learn the history of Chongqing hot pot, step into this museum that exhibits more than 600 pots made with different materials. The most valuable piece is a square bronze pot from the Western Zhou period (1045 BC to 771 BC).

Chinese Royal Gastronomy Museum  中国皇家菜博物馆


Curious about what Chinese royals ate? This museum in Beijing houses more than 1,000 antiques and offers traditional dishes from the renowned Manchu–Han Imperial Feast, a grand banquet from the Qing Dynasty (1636–1912).

Imperial snacks such as rolling donkey (a glutinous rice dessert), fried millet cakes, and jujube buns are also available for tasting.

Peking Duck Museum 北京全聚德烤鸭博物馆


Peking duck has been around for over 1,000 years. With thin and crispy skin, the duck dish is often eaten with spring onion, cucumber, and sweet bean sauce with pancakes rolled around the fillings.

Located on top of a downtown Quanjude restaurant, arguably the most famous roasted duck eatery chain, established in 1864, the Peking Duck Museum opened in 2014 to celebrate the restaurant’s 150th anniversary.

Dumpling Museum  大连饺子博物馆


Boasting a European architectural style mixed with Chinese elements (we admit it’s kinda random), the museum opened in 2017 in North China’s port city Dalian. It was launched by the famous dumpling chain Xijiade, which is also headquartered in the city.

6,666 rolling pins adorn the hallway for good luck. Visitors can make, cook, and eat dumplings after learning the history and culture of Chinese dumplings.

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