12 Best Bok Choy Substitutes

Bok Choy

Green veggies a very important part of our diet. The healthy benefits they offer are good for anyone to be even healthier and it will give you more energy.

One of them is the bok choy. It belongs to the Chinese cabbage family, Bok Choy is nice to be included in most of the recipes. This Asian veggie has strong stalks with leaves and it is available throughout the year.

Keep in mind that this is a vegetable that should be used fresh as possible and make sure that you store it properly to keep it fresh afterward. It can last up to 3 to 5 days if properly placed in the fridge.

The flavors of the bok choy are cabbage-like and the green parts have a slightly bitter taste. The white stalk is filled with water and has a juicy texture. However, if you have no bok choy at reach, you probably wonder what comes closest to replacing.

Bok Choy Substitutes

Scroll down to find out more and when to use them.

1. Napa Cabbage

Napa cabbage 

One of the first things that come to mind when you need to substitute bok choy is napa cabbage. The closest way that you can get is by using napa cabbage in your cooking in most of the recipes that call for bok choy.

Another Chinese variation of cabbage, which has long green leaves with fiber. They have crispiness which remains even after the cabbage is cooked. If you should include napa cabbage in your cooking you won’t regret it since it will add a nice touch and sense to your dish. You can basically add it to any recipe which should’ve had bok choy. But don’t boil it. 

2. Swiss Chard

Swiss chard

Swiss Chard should be included in your diet and it can be good for omitting bok choy in the recipe and adding some of it. This is another leafy green veggie with a tender bitter taste that can be eaten raw and cooked.

Actually, once it is cooked the taste gets milder and reminds of the sweet taste of spinach. There will be nothing wrong with your recipe if you add it instead of bok choy.

The key thing to know is that its leaves shouldn’t be cooked together with the stems since there is another way to cook them. Use it in most of the recipes to substitute bok choy.

3. Cabbage


An easily found veggie that is commonly used in our kitchen is cabbage. Bok Choy can easily be substituted by cabbage at any time. Cabbage has low calories and high nutritive value which is good for your health. Also, you should know that it is very common in Asian cuisine.

There are many similarities between the two which makes them perfect for replacing each other in most recipes. If you are making soups or any other recipe do not hesitate to replace bok choy with cabbage at any time. 

4. Yu Choy

Yu Choy

Another leafy veggie that will be good in your food instead of bok choy is Yu Choy. Sometimes it can have dark green leaves with a yellow flower.

A fact that you should know is that bok choy and Yu Choy are related, which makes them good substitutes for each other. However, they are different in many ways.

Both have many nutritious values which can benefit you. Also, the leaves, the stem, and the flowers of the Yu Choy are edible and have a tender texture with a crunchy taste.

The sweetness reminds a bit of the taste of baby spinach with subtle peppery traces. You can cook everything all together and you can use it in dishes with fish or oyster sauce. Also, add it to stir fry recipes.

5. Nan Ling

Nan Ling or also known as Chinese celery can fill in your recipes for bok choy. When you look for it at the sore it may look like coriander but the taste is somewhere between celery and bok choy.

This makes it perfect for replacing bok choy in your cooking. Actually, Nan Ling is very common in many Chinese dishes. You can adapt it in most of the recipes that have bok choy. 

6. Mustard greens

Mustard greens

Green veggies have their way of finding each other as a substitute. Bok choy has yet another substitute and that is the mustard greens. This leafy vegetable has a bitter, mustardy sharp taste. When cooked, mustard greens tend to have a milder taste but still, the flavors remain.

You can use both the leaves and the stalks in your cooking. You can add mustard greens as a way to replace bok choy in frying, stir-fries, or other recipes in which you can adjust the flavors.

7. Spinach

A very healthy and easily found vegetable that can be a proper substitute for bok choy is spinach. The green leafy plant is very healthy and nutritious and can provide you many health benefits if you include it in your cooking habits.

Use spinach in most of the recipes that include bok choy as a replacement. Also, spinach is good for smoothies, salads, soups, or many other Asian dishes. You can either stir fry or boil.

8. Celery


Celery is another veggie that will be good in your cooking. The strong and mild taste that celery provides at the same time is so unique that it will be so good for your dish.

Keep in mind that this taste is not so good for everyone, so make sure that everyone can enjoy it. Celery is usually used in salads, but it can also be used in all of the recipes that call for bok choy. Also, celery is good for soups, mixed veggie sauteed, and in dips as well.

9. Gai Lang

Gai Lang or also known as Chinese broccoli is a veggie that can replace bok choy in your cooking. The name comes since the stem is similar to the texture of the broccoli and the leaves are spinach-like but thicker.

Gai Lang has a stronger flavor than broccoli with some bitter-sweet taste. All of the parts of this veggie can be eaten and cooked. It is traditional in Asian cuisines. You can use it either as a side dish, in soups, or stir-fries. You can add it to most of the recipes that require bok choy. 

10. Leek


Veggies have their way of replacing each other in cooking, so leek can be good in the recipes that require bok choy. They are made of basal leaves (around 15-25 cm long). They have a mild taste and usually, it is referred to as leeks are a milder version of onions.

Their delicate, sweet taste is good for most of the recipes that call for bok choy. The white parts and the light green parts of the leek are edible and the green tops are often cut off before cooking.

11. Broccoli


A healthy variant that can adapt to the other ingredients in your cooking and replace bok choy is broccoli. It is easily found and it is used in many ways in your cooking. When compared, broccoli and bok choy both provide very nutritious benefits.

Broccoli has hints of bitterness in its taste and grassy traces. But besides the healthy benefits that broccoli provides, not many people enjoy it. So, ask if your guests like it beforehand.

12. Kale


Kale is yet another way to fill in instead of bok choy. This is another healthy alternative that contains a lot of vitamins. Also, Kale has a bitter taste and can be used raw and cooked.

Furthermore, there is a saying which gives kale the title of being the king of healthy greens. You won’t regret using it in your recipe. It has a lot of health benefits. Add kale in salads, with fish, chicken, pesto, and many more recipes that call for bok choy.

Related Questions

Can I substitute spinach for bok choy?

Sure you can. Spinach will be a good substitute for bok choy in most recipes. The leaves are very similar and they taste very similar. You can use them both interchangeably in your cooking.

Can I substitute Napa cabbage for bok choy?

Napa cabbage can serve as a good substitute for bok choy in your cooking. However, you have to know that there could be a change in the texture since they have a different one. 

Are Chinese cabbage and bok choy the same thing?

When compared Chinese cabbage and bok choy may look similar but they are not the same. They can be used in most recipes as a substitute for each other. There is a difference in the way they are cooked and you should know that bok choy is more fibrous.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like