my Essential Seasoning ingredients for Easy (Cantonese Style) Chinese Cooking

As there will be increasing Chinese (Cantonese) recipes in my blog over time, I think it will be useful to share with you of what I have in my kitchen, let’s start with seasoning first.


Most frequently use:

  • Cooking oil
  • Salt
  • Sugar
  • Light Soy Sauce
  • Corn flour or corn starch
  • White Pepper
  • Chinese Cooking (Shao Hsing), Rice Wine (see note)
  • Sesame oil
  • Black Bean Sauce
  • Yellow Bean Sauce
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Spring onion


Less frequently use:

  • Shrimp Paste
  • Chu Hou Paste
  • Chili Sauce
  • XO Sauce (see note)
  • Oyster sauce
  • Dark Soy Sauce
  • Tomato sauce (ketchup)
  • Preserved Bean Curd
  • Preserved Red Bean curd
  • Salted Plum
  • Brown Sugar in pieces 
  • Yellow Rock Sugar


  • If you don’t have Chinese Cooking Rice Wine,  you can use other strong spirits instead, I have used Tequila and my dad’s Chivas Cognac, they both worked perfectly for me.
  • A lot of my friends always asked me which brand do I use as they find it difficult to choose when confronting in front of so many different brands. My personal preference brands are Amoy and Lee Kum Kee as they are both long established & reliable brands in Hong Kong. 
  • XO sauce is created in 1980s in Hong Kong, it is a spicy seafood sauce. You can also find it in Wikipedia. You can use it the same as Chili sauce (with noodles or in cooking), e.g. Stir fried broccoli with fresh scallops and XO sauce.
  • Some ingredients you would not have seen in my recipes yet, they will come as my recipes grow.





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