Host your perfect hotpot

Host your perfect hotpot

Hotpot (火鍋), or commonly known in Cantonese as ‘da bin lo’ (打邊爐), is a fantastic way of gathering friends and family around the dinner table for fun-fuelled food antics! Essentially, the centre-piece of the dining table is a simmering pot of broth on a hot plate. Whilst this ‘hotpot’ is kept simmering, food is placed into the pot and cooked at the table. No gourmet chefs here… just simple, easy and fun times where everyone can get involved. Perfect for feeding and entertaining the masses!

What do I need?

  • A Hot plate
  • A big metal pot
  • Water
  • Your choice of stock (we like spicy!)
  • Your choice of food (we like everything!)
  • Your choice of condiments (we like spicy!)

What do I do?

  1. Boil some water and add to the pot, along with your stock
  2. Leave to simmer on the hot plate.
  3. Then the fun part… add food into the broth and cook away!
  4. Scoop out and eat, then repeat!

What food can I cook in a hotpot?

Pretty much anything! Broken down into meats/seafood, vegetarian and starches, typical foods include…


  • Thinly sliced meat e.g. beef, pork, chicken etc
  • Prawns and shrimps
  • Frankfurters and crabsticks
  • Wontons and Sui kow dumplings
  • And of course, don’t forget your choice of Sun Wah fish balls


  • Bak choi and choi sum
  • Spinach and Broccoli
  • Mushrooms e.g. Shitake, straw, enoki etc
  • Tofu, fried tofu or tofu skin


  • Udon
  • Vermicelli
  • Yellow noodles or ho fun


  • Soy sauce, sesame, oyster or hoi sin sauce… or your own mixture
  • Garnish with finely chopped coriander, spring onions or small bean sprouts
  • For a nice aromatic kick, add plenty of Sun Wah chilli oil

Since you can pretty much add anything you want to a hotpot, the beauty is that there isn’t a 100% correct way of doing it. From different sauces, to different ingredients to different stock, as much or as little as you like, everyone’s version is different and this is brilliant! Incredibly simple and highly versatile, and this encourages plenty of experimentation and creativity.

We’d love to hear about your own variations of hotpot! Are there any foods we’ve missed out that you simply must have when hosting a hotpot? How about sauce recipes or your own stock mixes? Do you have a favourite? Feel free to also share your photos.

You can buy all of the ingredients above and more at any good Chinese supermarket such as Wing Yip, Loon Fung and Hoo Hing.

Happy hotpotting!

Sun Wah Foods

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