Sometimes a simple sauté is all you need—and this sautéed bok choy proves the point. It lets the delicate flavor shine and keeps your time in the kitchen quick. It’s delish with just about any dish. What’s not to love?
Or try these fried green beans for another super easy side green.
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Better With Bok Choy
I developed this side dish to pair perfectly with my sesame crusted salmon. And it does. It also happens to go with just about anything else. When I realized how often I was serving this with other dinners, I knew that it was worthy of its own stand-alone recipe.
Bok Choy is a Chinese cabbage—so it pairs well with Asian flavors, but don’t stop there. This leafy green is full of healthy minerals like calcium, magnesium, and potassium. Both the leafy greens and the tender white bulb are edible, with a mild and delicious flavor. This is a great swap anytime you might serve spinach.
The gorgeous green deepens a little with cooking—so it’s easy on the eyes. Next time you see it, bring home the bok choy. You won’t be sorry.
I can’t wait to hear which of your favorite meals you make better with bok choy! – Linds x
- Vegetable oil – you want a mild tasting oil with a high smoke point. Avocado oil is my go to, but any vegetable oil will work as well.
- Garlic – grated. Dried/powdered isn’t great for this recipe.
- Ginger – be sure to remove the skin, I find this is easiest to do with a spoon. I like to buy pre-grated ginger–find it in the freezer section of Trader Joe’s!
- Crushed red pepper flakes – add more or less depending on how much heat you like. Psst- it’s easy to add a sprinkle after you’ve sautéed, but hard to take it out.
- Baby bok choy – baby bok choy has a sweet and mild flavor when compared to regular bok choy, which has a stronger flavor. Make sure to dry completely, otherwise it’ll splatter when sautéeing.
- Soy sauce – lite or regular soy sauce will do. Don’t use dark soy sauce.
- Sesame oil – a drizzle at the end adds so much flavor!
How do you clean bok choy?
Due to the tight leaf layers, bok choy has a tendency to trap grit. To remove before cooking, I like to slice off the end and rinse as well as you can under running water. Cook’s Illustrated suggests dunking the leaves in a bowl of water, then spinning them dry before cooking.
How to Make Sautéed Bok Choy
1. Heat oil in a wok or large pan. Once shimmering, add the garlic, ginger, and crushed red pepper flakes. Sauté until fragrant.
2. Add soy sauce and water.
3. Add bok choy and toss to coat in the oil. Cover with a lid and cook until the bok choy is tender.
4. Remove lid, stir, and continue to cook until most of the liquid has evaporated and the stalks have softened to your liking.
5. Place boy choy on a platter and drizzle with sesame oil. Option to sprinkle sesame seeds and/or additional red pepper flakes.
How do you know when bok choy is cooked?
It should be easy to pierce with a fork. I also suggest biting into it to ensure you like how softened it is.
Serve this alongside your favorite protein and starch. I love this with salmon or chicken stir fries and a side of brown rice or cauliflower fried rice.
Sautéed bok choy stores well in an airtight container in the fridge. Reheat in the microwave until warm–I like to place a damp paper towel on top before reheating it to help trap the moisture.
More Simple Veggie Sides
Sautéed Bok ChoyPrint Recipe Pin Recipe
- 1 tablespoon Vegetable or avocado oil (note 1)
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 teaspoons ginger peeled + minced
- 1/4 teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
- 4 bunches baby bok choy cute in half and ends removed (note 2)
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- sesame oil
- sesame seeds optional topping
- Heat avocado or vegetable oil (1 tablespoon) in a wok or large non-stick pan over medium heat. Add the garlic (4 cloves), ginger (2 tablespoons), and red pepper flakes (1/4 teaspoon), and cook until fragrant — about 2 minutes. Be sure to stir constantly so ingredients don't burn. Add soy sauce (2 tablespoons) and 1 tablespoon water.
- Add bok choy (4 bunches) and toss to thoroughly coat. Cover with a lid and cook for 2-4 minutes, until tender. Remove lid, stir, and continue to cook for 3 minutes, or until most of the liquid has evaporated and the stalks have softened to your liking.
- Place boy choy on a platter and drizzle with sesame oil. Option to sprinkle sesame seeds on top. Enjoy!
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- Oil. You want a mellow flavored oil that can take a lot of heat. I use avocado oil, vegetable oil works as well.
- Baby bok choy is sweeter and more tender than bok choy, so I strongly suggest using it. Pay special attention to rinsing this veggie as it holds on to dirt–I like to remove the base and clean each individual leaf (dirt often pools near the base).
- Completely dry you bok choy! Otherwise, it will splatter when it touches the oil.