Mouth-watering Chinese food can be found around just about every corner in Beijing, and most of it is surprisingly affordable; however, there’s something special about a good homemade meal. In case you enjoy cooking at home or have a craving for some homemade recipes, these are the freshest markets in the city that will totally satisfy.
No foodie in Beijing doesn’t know Sanyuanli Market. Located near the embassy in Liangmaqiao, the market has all kinds of ingredients and spices from all over the world. It’s especially favored by transnational travelers and expats, who hunger for the authentic flavors from their hometown. The market is also frequented by many big and small western restaurants that shop for their daily supply. Don’t worry if you don’t know any local languages, many shops provide multilingual service.
2 Shunyuanli, East 3rd Ring Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing, +8610 64667257
Shengfu Xiaoguan Market
If Sanyuanli Market is the Forbidden City of Beijing’s fresh market, then Shengfu Xiaoguan Market is the Jingshan Park. It’s located within walking distance from Sanyuanli and is much less famous than its neighbor, yet it is a hidden treasure kept well by locals and familiar expats. It keeps a variety of ingredients, as well as ready-to-eat breakfasts, daily necessities and even ornamental fish. Some Beijing locals even take a bus here to buy food.
Jingshen Seafood Market
If you are looking for seafood, then Jingshen Seafood Market is your place. Home to over 1,000 vendors, it has just about everything you could ever hope to find for a seafood dinner. Keep your wits about you though, it’s especially tricky to buy seafood at this market because the vendors are notorious for fiddling with the weights. It’s recommended to bring a local with you, as well as take advantage of the free scales in the market to verify your price.
232 Shiliuzhuang Xijie, Dahongmen, Fengtai District, Beijing, +8610 51228988
Niujie Halal Food Market
With the biggest concentration of Hui people in Beijing, the Niujie neighborhood is the go-to place for halal cravings. It is also home to Beijing’s most famous halal, copper, hotpot restaurant, Jubaoyuan. If you’re looking for mutton or beef slices for your hotpot party, or mutton skewers for your BBQ party, it’s guaranteed that you’ll find the best quality ingredients at the Niujie Halal Food Market.
3 Shuru Hutong, Niujie, Xicheng District, Beijing, +8610 63535434
Downtown Beijing’s northeastern Wangjing area is also known as Beijing’s Korea Town, and that’s all the reason you need to visit there if you are a fan of Korean cuisine. From kimchi to Korean chili sauce to ingredients like dried fish, the Wangjing Market makes sure you’ll return home happy. What’s more, the food there is more affordable than in Korean convenience stores.
Tongzhou Baliqiao Market
As the biggest fresh market in the suburban district of Tongzhou, Tongzhou Baliqiao Market is convenient for those who live in the far eastern part of Beijing and don’t want to bother going downtown in the early morning for ingredients. The market is also one of the first markets to adopt a waste sorting system that keeps the market hygienic and protects the environment.
4 Jinlong Street, Tongzhou District, Beijing, +8610 60511788
The Country Fair was one of the first organic food markets in Beijing. It was initiated by a group of volunteers who wanted to contribute to eco-friendly agriculture and provide a platform for the direct transaction between organic farmers and consumers. The Country Fair has two weekly trading fairs and one monthly fair in three different locations in Beijing. It also holds pop-up markets in town from time to time (you can follow their Weibo account for details as to when and where to find these markets).
Tue: Nali Patio, Sanlitun, Chaoyang District, Beijing, 11am – 2pm
The second Sunday of every month: Fenghuang Shangjie, Sanyuanqiao, Chaoyang District, Beijing, 10am – 1pm (9am – 12pm in summer)