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Cantonese Vs. Szechuan Chinese Food: A Guide On Differentiating Their Cuisines

Chinese food is a cuisine that has been around for thousands of years.

It is an all-time favorite for many but it is hard to decide what type of food you want to eat because different regions have their own cuisines.

In this article, we will delve into Cantonese and Szechuan Chinese food and learn how they differentiate from each other so that you can make a wise decision on which one seems better to you.

What is special about Cantonese Chinese food?

The Little Cantonese Cookbook (Little Cookbook)
  • Yun, Deborah Lowe Kwok (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 104 Pages - 03/07/2016 (Publication Date) - Marshall...

Cantonese Chinese food is a traditional cuisine that originated in Guangdong province of China.

It is mainly popular in the provincial capital Guangzhou and the surrounding areas like Hong Kong and Macau. 

Cantonese food is considered the most influential type of Chinese food not only across the country but also in the West.

Cantonese people focus on seasonal ingredients, which result in safe and fresh elements in their dishes.

Cantonese food is relatively milder than others, with some famous classics like steamed buns filled with roast pork, roast duck, and char siu bao.

Their recipes are packed with natural flavors and usually low in fat, therefore, if someone is looking for a healthy and tasty meal, Cantonese Chinese food will be a great choice. 

What is special about Szechuan Chinese food?

Szechuan Cooking - Making Favorite Hot and Spicy Szechuan Recipes at...
  • Chang, Lina (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 170 Pages - 09/24/2021 (Publication Date) - Independently...

Szechuan cuisine is a popular regional Chinese cuisine from Sichuan Province.

It is famous for its spicy and bold flavors.

Their dishes typically involve a generous amount of garlic, ginger, and chili peppers, which offer heat and spiciness to the food.

One reason that can explain their habit of adding so many spicy ingredients to their dishes is that Sichuan is known to have poor weather with high humidity and a lot of rain, and the aforementioned spices keep them warm and improve their resistance.

Szechuan people also use a lot of rice wine, soy sauce, and sesame seeds to create an authentic taste experience in their recipes.

This special Chinese cuisine will be suitable for adventurous people who want to explore something new and definitely are not sensitive to spiciness and heat.

What are the differences between Cantonese Chinese and Szechuan Chinese food?

Despite the same country origin, Cantonese Chinese dishes and Szechuan cuisine have numerous differences, as mentioned below:

Cantonese Chinese dishes are more subtle and milder, while Szechuan Chinese food is reputable for its spiciness and intense flavor

The easiest thing we can recognize from these two cuisines is their taste.

Szechuan Chinese food is well-known for its spiciness and intense flavor due to the main use of garlic, ginger, and chili peppers.

This is in contrast to the milder taste of the Cantonese counterpart.

Cantonese food often uses rice as its base while Szechuan cuisine prefers noodles

Over the centuries, China has been a vast land with many ethnic groups.

The Cantonese people of Southern China have their own recipes that make use of rice as its base while in Szechuan cuisine noodles reign supreme on account of how they are made from wheat flour and water which is so abundant there.

Szechuan Chinese dishes are served in smaller portions than Cantonese dishes

Since Szechuan Chinese dishes are really spicy and packed with many heating agents like garlic and chili peppers, they are usually served in smaller portions than Cantonese dishes.

If you are a person who can eat spicy food, don’t hesitate to cook or ask for more.

What are the similarities between Cantonese Chinese and Szechuan Chinese food?

Despite some key differences between Cantonese Chinese food and the one from Szechuan, they have a lot in common.

Let’s check out the similarities between these two cuisines. 

Cantonese and Szechuan food both have some classic Chinese foods like sweet and sour pork or chicken, or egg drop soup

There are some classics that you can find in most regions of China, including Guangzhou or Szechuan.

These dishes are sweet and sour chicken or pork, egg drop soup, or steamed buns.

The flavor of these dishes can be slightly different from each cuisine, but they cannot change the base taste.

They are both popular worldwide now

China is known for its largest population in the world, there is a large number of Chinese immigrants in the United States or other Western countries.

You can easily find American Chinese restaurants or authentic Chinese restaurants in any Chinatown in any country in the world that offer Cantonese food and Szechuan dishes.

Which one is better?

Product ComparisonThe Little Cantonese Cookbook (Little Cookbook)Szechuan Cooking - Making Favorite Hot and Spicy Szechuan Recipes at...
Product ImageThe Little Cantonese Cookbook (Little Cookbook)Szechuan Cooking - Making Favorite Hot and Spicy Szechuan Recipes at...
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So do you tend to stick with the foods that your family grew up eating, or are you willing to try new flavors and dishes? Whatever your preference is, we hope this article has given you a better understanding of each cuisine so that you can make an informed decision.

There is no wrong choice in our opinion because both styles offer something unique as well as delicious.

And now that we know what sets them apart from one another, hopefully making a decision won’t be difficult anymore.

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