Asian Veggies Guide - Choy VS Tips

Asian Veggies Guide - Choy VS. Tips

To shop like a pro, keep an eye out for Purvey'd Asian veggies guide for making the best choy-ce. For those not familiar with Asian greens, the names look similar even though the appearance and flavor vary greatly. Asian vegetables are great alternative for stir-fry, sauté, stew, and even pickled. Carry on to discover how to differentiate the most common Asian greens and the best ways to use them.


Bok Choy VS. Bok Choy Tips

Bok choy is a Chinese leafy green with thick off-white stalks attached to the bottom of the leaves. Bok choy is the mature form of this variety characterized by an enormous size and large wavy dark green leaves. They are older and taste a bit tougher but crisp enough to enjoy with a crunch. The stalk to leaf ratio is higher than the bok choy tip. Bok choy tip is the baby and younger form of bok choy. The milky white stalks are thin and are more tender than the bok choy, attached to small, green oval leaves. Bok choy and bok choy tip have a spinach-like flavor amidst a mild sweetness. The stalks taste pretty mild even though the leaves have a dose of mineral flavor with peppery undertones. Bok choy and bok choy tip are enjoyed similarly in stir-fry, sauté, and braise.


Naiyou Choy VS. Naiyou Tips

Naiyou choy is in the same family as bok choy but stubbier. The curly leaves are medium to dark green-color joined with short off-white stalks. Naiyou choy is the mature form of this hybrid variety with thick stalks and big leaves. Naiyou choy is extremely large compared to naiyou tips with a size similar to an adult's hand. On the other hand, naiyou tip only reaches the height of an adult finger. Naiyou tip is the immature form with small dark green leaves and thinner whitish-green stalks. As one will imagine, the naiyou tip is more tender due to its younger structure. The naiyou variety has a mildly sweet flavor similar to swiss chard. Best suited for stir-fry, braise, and stew.


Shanghai Choy VS. Shanghai Tips

Shanghai Choy is a special bok choy variety with jade green stalks instead of white. The size is a bit smaller than the regular bok choy, hence the reason why you can often spot them in the market labeled as baby bok choy. Shanghai choy has wide pale green stalks shaped like a soup spoon and smooth oval-shaped leaves. Shanghai choy is the mature form of this variety with a height similar to naiyou choy. On the contrary, the Shanghai tip is the baby form of Shanghai choy with thin stalks and small, oval leaves. The Shanghai(s) has a mild sweet cabbage-like flavor that goes well in stir-fry, braise, and steam. The stalks cooked almost as quickly as the leaves. A terrific choice for a quick toss in whole or halved.


Chinese Broccoli VS. Chinese Broccoli Tips

Chinese broccoli comes from the same family as the regular broccoli but looks nothing alike. Chinese broccoli has thick, long green stalks attached to large dark green leaves with some flower buds visible from time to time. Chinese broccoli is the mature form of the variety; therefore, the stalks may be more dense. Utterly trim off some of the stalk's end, and the tough outer skin of the bottom stalks will take care of it. Chinese broccoli tip is the younger form of Chinese broccoli with thin green stalks and medium green flat leaves. Chinese broccoli tip is more tender and less bitter than the Chinese broccoli. The Chinese broccoli(s) has a slightly bitter and earthy flavor that goes hand in hand with oyster sauce. Popular application includes stir-fry, sauté, and quick steam. 


Big Mustard Green VS. Small Mustard Green

Big mustard green is part of the mustard family with a head-shaped. The thick, crunchy stalks and green leaves curl up into a small head. Big mustard green is known for its stalks which make up most of this vegetable. The stalks are custom for pickling. The leaves can also be used for pickling but are frequently clipped and cooked fresh in soups. Small mustard green is leafy mustard with long, delicate thin stalks. The stalk to leaf ratio is lower than that of big mustard greens. Small mustard green is salted and preserved likewise in conjunction with stir-fry. The Chinese mustards have a bitter flavor with a peppery kick, and small mustard green has an even more bitter taste.


Yu Choy VS. Yu Choy Tips

Yu choy resembles Chinese broccoli but do not be confused. Yu choy also has thick long green stalks but is thinner than those of Chinese broccoli. The difference continues with the oval-shaped leaves and mild sweet flavor with subtle peppery notes. Yu choy is the mature form of the yu choy variety but is more tender than the Chinese broccoli. Yu choy tip is the baby form of the yu choy with thin stalks and small leaves. The texture is more delicate and tender than those of yu choy. The yu choy(s) can be stir-fry, braise, and blanched. You can regularly find yu choy cooked with oyster sauce or with noodles.


There are more Asian veggies than the ones we mention in this guide. Purvey'd look at some of the most common Asian vegetables you can easily find in your local markets. If you live in New York City, Purvey'd offer wholesale delivery to parts of Manhattan, Queens, and Brooklyn. Our prices update daily. Check back to our website for the most current pricing. If you do not see what you are looking for, contact us through our live chat or email us at We will find it for you.

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