The Best Gua Bao’s in Taipei
Wind through the intertwining alleys at Gongguan Night Market and land at Taipei’s most famous gua bao stand: Lan Jia Gua Bao (藍家割包). It’s hard not to snack on everything on the way there, stinky tofu, takoyaki balls, and scallion pancakes tempting you, but save it, it’ll be worth it.
After a 5 minute walk from the station, at the end of the alley, you’ll notice two long lines. One for Chen San Ding (apparently the best bubble tea in Taiwan) and one for Lan Jia (apparently the best gua baos in Taiwan).
What Is Guabao?
A guabao is a traditional Taiwanese ‘sandwich’ made with steamed mantou buns that are thick and fluffy, pork belly, a mix of ground peanuts and sugar, pickled mustard greens, and cilantro. Of course each stall will have a variation of ingredients, but those are the staple ones.
What Makes Lan Jia The Best?
It’s all about consistency and quality. Lan Jia uses fresh mantou, you can see them steaming on the stall. Then a big vat of fatty and lean pork belly. I usually get a mixture, so you can get a bite of the delicious fattiness without it being overwhelming. They’re also always well-prepared, so a line of people goes by in a minute. There’s one person collecting your order and your money, one manning the buns, and one serving the meats and garnishes.
The making of the perfect gua bao. A mixture of lean and fatty meats, then a generous layer of pickled mustard greens.
I’ve only lined up for take out so that I can walk around the nightmarket while devouring my gua bao, but there is seating behind the stall where you can order different types of soup, sticky rice, and intestine noodles! (more about that in a later post)
What’s your go-to night market snack?
Lan Jia Gua Bao in Gong Guan Nightmarket
Address: No. 3, Alley 8, Lane 316, Section 3, Roosevelt Rd, Zhongzheng District, Taipei, Taiwan
Open: 11 am – midnight from Tuesday – Sunday (closed on Monday)
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