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Typical shaobing. The round shaobing on the right are sweet and filled with sugar and the long shaobing on the left are savory and salted.
Alternative namesHuoshao
Place of originChina
Traditional Chinese燒餅
Simplified Chinese烧饼
Literal meaningroasted pastry
Traditional Chinese火燒
Simplified Chinese火烧
Literal meaningfire roasted

Shaobing (pinyin: shāobǐng; Wade–Giles: shao-ping), also called huoshao, is a type of baked, unleavened, layered flatbread in Northern Chinese cuisine. Shaobing can be made with or without stuffing, and with or without sesame on top. Shaobing contains a variety of stuffings that can be grouped into two main flavors: savory or sweet; some common stuffings include red bean paste, black sesame paste, stir-fried mung beans with egg and tofu, braised beef, smoked meat,[1] or beef or pork with spices.[2]

Shaobing is not very well known in southern China, unlike other northern dishes like mantou, baozi, and youtiao; some unique varieties of shaobing can be completely unheard of in the south. Different types of shaobing are often associated with certain cities and towns.

Shaobing is a common breakfast item. Filled shaobing are usually eaten with soy milk and tea, while unfilled ones are usually eaten with steamed eggs or a breakfast meat dish. In the Mandarin cuisine tradition, shaobing are served with hot pot (huǒguō) in winter or soy milk.


Taiwanese sesame shaobing

Chinese legends claim that the roasted, flat shaobing was brought back from the Xiyu (the Western Regions, a name for Central Asia) by the Han dynasty General Ban Chao, and that it was originally known as hubing (胡餅, lit. "barbarian pastry"). The shaobing is believed to be descended from the hubing.[3] Shaobing is believed to be related to the Persian and Central Asian naan and the Near Eastern pita.[4][5][6] Foreign westerners made and sold sesame cakes in China during the Tang dynasty.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kraig, Bruce, ed. (2013). Street Food Around the World: An Encyclopedia of Food and Culture. ABC-CLIO. p. 92. ISBN 1-59884-955-7. Retrieved 24 April 2014.
  2. ^ Church, Marguerite Chien (2002). Adopted, the Chinese Way. Infinity Publishing. p. 127. ISBN 0-7414-1224-1. Retrieved 24 April 2014.
  3. ^ Huang, H. T. (2000). Fermentations and Food Science, Volume 6. Cambridge University Press. p. 474. ISBN 0521652707. Retrieved 24 April 2014.
  4. ^ Anderson (1988), p. 143, 144, 218.
  5. ^ Simoons, Frederick J. (1990). Food in China: A Cultural and Historical Inquiry. CRC Press. p. 89. ISBN 084938804X.
  6. ^ Charles Holcombe (January 2001). The Genesis of East Asia: 221 B.C. - A.D. 907. University of Hawaii Press. pp. 129–. ISBN 978-0-8248-2465-5.
  7. ^ Schafer, Edward H. (1963). The Golden Peaches of Samarkand: A Study of Tʻang Exotics (illustrated, reprint, revised ed.). University of California Press. p. 29.