8 Lucky Foods to Eat

This Chinese New Year

By Patti Sunio

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When it comes to greeting the Lunar New Year, most of us Filipinos might only be familiar with ‘tikoy’, but there are many other food staples considered lucky by the Chinese. In fact, every food is symbolic of something. Not only are these foods believed to bring in good fortune, these taste great, too!

Here are 8:


Fish is associated with prosperity because its Chinese word sounds like “surplus” when pronounced. The fish can be cooked in many ways, but it should be the last dish served with leftover for the surplus. Also it should be served whole, with the head and tail intact, as this symbolizes a good start and end of the year.



Dumplings are believed to symbolize wealth because it resembles Chinese silver ingots. For the Lunar New Year, it is best to eat it with radish and cabbage for healthy skin and a happy disposition throughout the year. It should have as many pleats as possible because a flat dumpling means poverty. They say that more dumplings one can eat, the more money he will be able to make.



Sweet rice cake or tikoy is a traditional delicacy during Chinese New Year as its Chinese words sounds like “getting higher, year on by year” when translated. For the Chinese, the goal is to always outdo the past year and do better every time, be it in business, in school, or one’s personal life.



Longevity noodles for long life can be fried or boiled and served in a bowl with broth. The longer the noodles are, the better; and it should not be cut. Noodles are also often served with egg for healthy, long life.


Sesame balls (or buchi, for Pinoys) have a red bean paste filling inside, is deep-fried, and covered in sesame seeds. When it is prepared, the dough expands as it is cooked, and thus symbolic of how good fortune is believed to inflate, too.



Good fortune fruits like orange and pomelo, when pronounced in Chinese, are synonymous to luck and success. The more one eats these fruits, the more wealth will come and they will experience continuous prosperity.



Served whole, these leafy green vegetables are believed to be eaten to give long life for parents. Green is often associated with abundance and wealth, and is considered one of the lucky colors by the Chinese.



Spring rolls resemble gold bars and are believed to bring in wealth. It is often served deep-fried. While eating, one should utter the Chinese saying that is a wish for prosperity.


Know of any other such foods? Tell us below!


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