Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (2024)

Jump to Recipe Jump to Video Print Recipe

Turnip cake/ lo bak go (蘿蔔糕) and nian gao is a classic Chinese New Year dish and dim sum item like lo mai gai, taro bun, siu mai, congee with pork and century egg, custard bun, cheung fun, gai lan, soy sauce noodles. This delicious Chinese turnip cake recipe has both stove top and instant pot methods. Let's learn how to make Chinese turnip cake for your meals with step by step photo instructions and a video.

Love Chinese food? Also, check out these pan fried buns, Chinese hot dog, , claypot rice, sticky rice dumplings, pan fried dumplings,, scallion pancake, mango sago pomelo and sweet potato leaves stir fry recipes.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (1)

What is Chinese turnip cake (蘿蔔糕)?

Turnip cake, also called radish cake, white carrot cake or lo bak go (蘿蔔糕) in Chinese. Turnip cake and nian gao are a traditional Chinese New Year food. Also, pan fry turnip cake is often served in Chinese dim sum restaurants for breakfast, so you can enjoy it throughout the year.

Lo bak go (蘿蔔糕) is a popular Chinese dish and particularly in Cantonese cuisine. Also, it is named turnip cake, because it is made of a specific type of turnip known as "daikon" or "Chinese white radish." Daikon is a large, long white radish with a mild, slightly sweet flavor. Turnip cake is made of grated daikon, rice flour, dried shrimp, Chinese sausage, dried scallops, mushrooms and dried Chinese pork belly to enhance the umami flavor. The ingredients are mixed together, then steam it until it solidifies, like soft and gelatinous cake.

Once the steamed turnip cake is cooled off, usually cut or slice it into rectangular or square and pan fry until the exterior is crispy and golden brown. Lot of people like to pan fry lo bak go because the outer layer is crispy, in the contrast of soft and tender interior. Besides, turnip cake is often served with soy sauce, hoisin sauce, chili oil, xo sauce and chili garlic sauce.

Why do people like to make white carrot cake during Chinese New Year?

White carrot cake is a traditional Chinese New Year food, especially in the southern part of China because the word turnip cake, radish cake or lo bak go in Chinese sounds similar to the phrase “prosperity in every step.” Therefore, eating lo bak go during Chinese New Year believes it will bring good fortune and symbolize success and upward progress. It has the same meaning as eating nian gao.

Besides, Chinese New Year is a time for families to come together to celebrate and honor their traditions. Preparing, sharing and representing the culinary tradition such as shrimp chips, pork jerky, white carrot cake and nian gao is a customary practice which adds joy and togetherness during this special holiday.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (2)

What are the ingredients for lo bak go (蘿蔔糕)?

In this Chinese turnip cake recipe, I try to keep it simple. The ingredients are radish (daikon), rice flour, Chinese sausage, dried scallop and dried small shrimp. However, some people like to add dried Chinese mushrooms and cured pork belly as well.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (3)

How to make lo bak go/ Chinese turnip cake?

There are so many different ways to make lo bak go or radish cake. Hong Kong people like to stir fry shredded radish, rice flour mixture until it thickens and steam them. It’s quite a work.

However, in my father’s village in the southern part of China. People like to mix the shredded radish, rice flour, dried shrimp, scallop and Chinese sausage. Then, they steam the mixture directly because it retains more nutrients and easier.

Personally, I like the simple and easy way. Besides, in this Chinese turnip cake recipe, you can use an instant pot pressure cooker or regular steaming method to make lo bak go.

What kind of turnip is best for Chinese Turnip Cake?

To make traditional lo bak go, we usually use a specific type of turnip known as "daikon" or "Chinese white carrot." Daikon is a large, long white radish with a mild, slightly sweet flavor. The texture is crisp and firm when it’s raw. But, it becomes tender and soft when cooked.

Try to use Chinese daikon, not the Korean daikon because Korean radish is typically shorter and thicker than Chinese daikon, with a pale green at the top and white exterior.They are slightly spicy and have a more pungent flavor compared to Chinese daikon.

Also, look and pick daikon that is firm, juicy, smooth, not wrinkle and free from blemishes or signs of decay. It is very important to pick a good and juicy radish for this Chinese turnip cake recipe.

Cooking tips for how to make turnip cake:

  • Pick a fresh, juicy, firm and smooth skin daikon. You can check on the leaves attached on daikon, look for vibrant and fresh looking not wilting or yellowing leaves. Also, avoid picking radishes with soft, spongy and wrinkled skin.
  • Shred radish (white carrot). I like to shred the radish fine and small. Some like to mix with small and little chunks.
  • Add salt and wait for 15-20 minutes to let the radish juice come out. After that, add rice flour and mix well.
  • Sometimes it’s hard to gauge how much radish and rice flour to use. The best is to use a 1:3 ratio, 1 cup of rice flour and 3 cups of shredded radish (include the liquid).
  • I usually pick a medium sized radish, it's around 2 pounds (2 lbs & 8.7 oz). 3 cups of shredded radish with the liquid is 1 lb & 10.8 oz, 760 g.
  • Add some small dried shrimp, dried scallops, Chinese sausage, and remember to save some for topping.
  • Mix all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and pour into a glass container. Next, put the mixture into an instant pot pressure cooker manual for 25 minutes and natural release.
  • If using the top stove method, wait for the water to boil, put the mixture in and steam it for 45 minutes at medium small heat. Add more water for steaming if needed.
  • It’s easier to cut turnip cake after it’s refrigerated.

FAQs:

What does turnip cake taste like?

Lo bak go has a unique and delicious flavor. The taste of Chinese turnip cake is the blend of earthy, slightly sweet from the daikon. The umami and savory flavors from the dried shrimp, scallops and Chinese sausage. Also, it has a contrast in textures when pan frying them, the outside is crispy and inside is soft, tender, and slightly chewy.

How to pick a daikon?


Pick a fresh, juicy, firm and smooth skin daikon. You can check on the leaves attached on daikon, look for vibrant and fresh looking not wilting or yellowing leaves. Also, avoid picking radishes with soft, spongy and wrinkled skin.

How to eat lo bak go?


You can serve lo bak go after it cools down or still warm. Most people like to pan fry turnip cake because it’s crispy outside and soft inside. Normally, I like to pan fry lo bak go when I have leftovers.

What sauce can you serve with radish cake?

Radish cake is best to serve with hoisin sauce, chili oil, soy sauce, chili sauce, peanut butter sauce or XO sauce.

Can I make turnip cake ahead of time?


Sure, of course! You can make turnip cake ahead of time. After steaming and cooling, you can refrigerate for a few days. When you're ready to serve, slice and pan fry it.

Can you freeze Chinese turnip cake?

Yes, you can steam or cook turnip cake as normal. Let it cool off and slice into desired size. Wrap them with plastic wrap or parchment paper and put them into a freezer bag. It can freeze for up to 3 months.

Instructions for how to make instant pot turnip cake:

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (4)

1. Wash and soak ⅓cup of dried small shrimp (1 oz or 27 g) for 5-10 minutes.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (5)

2. Wash and soak ⅓cup of dried scallops (1.8 oz or 50 g) for 5-10 minutes.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (6)

3. Cut and dice 1 piece of Chinese sausage (1.9 oz).

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (7)

4. While waiting, wash and peel 1 medium sized radish/ white carrot (around 2 pounds, the one I picked was 2 lbs & 8.7 oz). Then, shred it, it's around 3 cups shredded radish (1 lb & 10.8 oz or 760 g). After that, add ¼ teaspoon of salt and 1 tablespoon ofvegetable oil. Then, wait for 15-20 minutes and let radish juice come out.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (8)

5. After that, add 1 cup of rice flour (5.1 oz or 145 g) and mix it well.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (9)

6. Next, add half of dried shrimp, scallops and Chinese sausage from step 1-3. Mix it well. Also, remember to save some for the topping.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (10)

7. Pour 1 cup of water into an instant pot and add a rack.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (11)

8. After that, pour the mixture into a glass container and top with the rest of the dried shrimp, scallops and Chinese sausage.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (12)

9. Put the mixture into an instant pot, cover the lid and close the vent. Next, press the manual button to adjust time for 25 minutes at high pressure and natural release.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (13)

10. After the turnip cake cools down, slice it into pieces.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (14)

11. Pour ½ tablespoons of vegetable oil into a non-stick pan, turn on medium fire to pan fry both sides until it's a little golden brown.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (15)

Enjoy this simple and easy lo bak go or Chinese turnip cake recipe! Also, check out these pork knuckles ginger stew, crab stir fry, wonton noodle soup, almond jello, taro sago and recipes.

Instructions for how to make Chinese turnip cake stove top method:

1. Wash and soak ⅓ cup of dried small shrimp (1 oz or 27 g) for 5-10 minutes.

2. Wash and soak ⅓ cup of dried scallops (1.8 oz or 50 g) for 5-10 minutes.

3. Cut and dice 1 piece of Chinese sausage (1.9 oz).

4. While waiting, wash and peel 1 medium sized radish/ white carrot (around 2 pounds, the one I picked was 2 lbs & 8.7 oz). Then, shred it, it's around 3 cups shredded radish (1 lb & 10.8 oz or 760 g). After that, add ¼ teaspoon of salt and 1 tablespoon ofvegetable oil. Then, wait for 15-20 minutes and let radish juice come out.

5. After that, add 1 cup of rice flour (5.1 oz or 145 g) and mix it well.

6. Next, add half of dried shrimp, scallops and Chinese sausage from step 1-3. Mix it well. Also, remember to save some for the topping.

7. Pour 8 cups of water into a steamer. Turn on the fire to medium high until the water is boiling.

8. After that, pour the mixture into a glass container and top with the rest of the dried shrimp, scallops and Chinese sausage.

9. When the water is boiling, put the mixture into a steamer, cover the lid, turn the fire to medium small and steam it for 45 minutes. (Add more water into the steamer if needed.)

10. After the turnip cake cools down, slice it into pieces.

11. Pour ½ tablespoons of vegetable oil into a non-stick pan, turn on medium fire to pan fry both sides until it's a little golden brown.

You May Also Like These Instant Pot Recipes:

  • LO MAI GAI (糯米雞)
  • CURRY FISH BALL AND RADISH (咖喱魚蛋蘿蔔)
  • SOY SAUCE CHICKEN (豉油雞)
  • BAKED PORK CHOPS AND RICE –HONG KONG STYLE (港式豬扒焗飯)

Subscribe Oh My Food Recipes to get our new recipes delivered straight to your inbox! Follow along on Facebook,Pinterest and Instagram for all the latest updates.

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (16)

Turnip Cake

Turnip cake is a traditional Chinese dim sum dish. Also, pan fried turnip cake often serves in Chinese dim sum restaurants for breakfast. Turnip cake is make from radish and rice flour.

5 from 4 votes

Print Pin Rate

Course: Appetizer, Breakfast, Side Dish

Cuisine: Asian, Chinese

Prep Time: 15 minutes minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes minutes

Servings: 12

Calories: 95kcal

Author: Tracy O.

Equipment

  • 1 Steamer ( For top stove method)

  • 1 Pan

  • 1 Instant pot pressure cooker (For instant pot method)

Video

Ingredients

  • 1 Radish (Daikon) (Around 2 pounds, 3 cups shredded radish 1 lb & 10.8 oz)
  • 1 cup Rice flour (5.1 oz or 145 g)
  • cup Dried shrimp small (1 oz or 27 g)
  • cup Dried scallops (1.8 oz or 50 g)
  • 1 piece Chinese sausage (1.9 oz)
  • ¼ teaspoon Salt
  • 1 tablespoon Vegetable oil (Add to the shredded radish)
  • 1 stick Green onion (For topping and decoration optional)
  • ½ tablespoon Vegetable oil (For pan fry lo bak go)

US Customary - Metric

Instructions

Instant Pot Method:

  • Wash and soak ⅓cup ofdried small shrimp (1 oz or 27 g)for 5-10 minutes.

  • Wash and soak ⅓cup ofdried scallops (1.8 oz or 50 g)for 5-10 minutes.

  • Cut and diced 1 piece ofChinese sausage (1.9 oz).

  • While waiting, wash and peel 1 medium sized radish/ white carrot (around 2 pounds, the one I picked was 2 lbs & 8.7 oz). Then, shred it, it's around 3 cups shredded radish (1 lb & 10.8 oz or 760 g). After that, add ¼ teaspoon of salt and 1 tablespoon ofvegetable oil. Then, wait for 15-20 minutes and let radish juice come out.

  • After that, add 1 cup of rice flour (5.1 oz or 145 g) and mix it well.

  • Next, add half of dried shrimp, scallops and Chinese sausage from step 1-3. Mix it well. Also, remember to save some for the topping.

  • Pour a cup of water into an instant pot and add a rack.

  • After that, pour the mixture into a glass container and top with the rest of the dried shrimp, scallops and Chinese sausage.

  • Put the mixture into an instant pot, cover the lid and close the vent. Next, press the manual button to adjust time for 25 minutes at high pressure and natural release.

  • After the turnip cake cools down, slice it into pieces.

  • Pour ½ tablespoons of vegetable oil into a non-stick pan, turn on medium fire to pan fry both sides until it's a little golden brown.

Stove Top Method:

  • Wash and soak ⅓ cup ofdried small shrimp(1 oz or 27 g) for 5-10 minutes.

  • Wash and soak ⅓ cup ofdried scallops(1.8 oz or 50 g) for 5-10 minutes.

  • Cut and dice 1 piece ofChinese sausage(1.9 oz).

  • While waiting, wash and peel 1 medium sized radish/ white carrot (around 2 pounds, the one I picked was 2 lbs & 8.7 oz). Then, shred it, it's around 3 cups shredded radish (1 lb & 10.8 oz or 760 g). After that, add ¼ teaspoon of salt and 1 tablespoon ofvegetable oil. Then, wait for 15-20 minutes and let radish juice come out.

  • After that, add 1 cup of rice flour (5.1 oz or 145 g) and mix it well.

  • Next, add half of dried shrimp, scallops and Chinese sausage from step 1-3. Mix it well. Also, remember to save some for the topping.

  • Pour 8 cups of water into a steamer. Turn on the fire to medium high until the water is boiling.

  • After that, pour the mixture into a glass container and top with the rest of the dried shrimp, scallops and Chinese sausage.

  • When the water is boiling, put the mixture into a steamer, cover the lid, turn the fire to medium small and steam it for 45 minutes. (Add more water into the steamer if needed.)

  • After the turnip cake cools down, slice it into pieces.

  • Pour ½ tablespoons of vegetable oil into a non-stick pan, turn on medium fire to pan fry both sides until it's a little golden brown.

Notes

Cooking tips for how to make turnip cake:

  • Pick a fresh, juicy, firm and smooth skin daikon. You can check on the leaves attached on daikon, look for vibrant and fresh looking not wilting or yellowing leaves. Also, avoid picking radishes with soft, spongy and wrinkled skin.
  • Shred radish (white carrot). I like to shred the radish fine and small. Some like to mix with small and little chunks.
  • Add salt and wait for 15-20 minutes to let the radish juice come out. After that, add rice flour and mix well.
  • Sometimes it’s hard to gauge how much radish and rice flour to use. The best is to use a 1:3 ratio, 1 cup of rice flour and 3 cups of shredded radish (include the liquid).
  • I usually pick a medium sized radish, it's around 2 pounds (2 lbs & 8.7 oz). 3 cups of shredded radish with the liquid is (1 lb & 10.8 oz, 760 g).
  • Add some small dried shrimp, dried scallops, Chinese sausage, and remember to save some for topping.
  • Mix all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and pour into a glass container. Next, put the mixture into an instant pot pressure cooker manual for 25 minutes and natural release.
  • If using the top stove method, wait for the water to boil, put the mixture in and steam it for 45 minutes at medium small heat. Add more water for steaming if needed.
  • It’s easier to cut turnip cake after it’s refrigerated.

Nutrition

Calories: 95kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 78mg | Sodium: 316mg | Potassium: 28mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 2IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 28mg | Iron: 1mg

Tried this Recipe? Pin it for Later!Mention @OhMyFoodRecipes or tag #OhMyFoodRecipes!

Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕) Lo Bak Go - Oh My Food Recipes (2024)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Kareem Mueller DO

Last Updated:

Views: 5661

Rating: 4.6 / 5 (66 voted)

Reviews: 89% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Kareem Mueller DO

Birthday: 1997-01-04

Address: Apt. 156 12935 Runolfsdottir Mission, Greenfort, MN 74384-6749

Phone: +16704982844747

Job: Corporate Administration Planner

Hobby: Mountain biking, Jewelry making, Stone skipping, Lacemaking, Knife making, Scrapbooking, Letterboxing

Introduction: My name is Kareem Mueller DO, I am a vivacious, super, thoughtful, excited, handsome, beautiful, combative person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.