Chinese Islamic cuisine is cuisine of the Hui (ethnic Chinese Muslims) and other Muslims living in China . Due to the majority Muslim population in western China , many Chinese restaurants cater to Muslims or cater to the general public but are run by Muslims.
A Chinese Islamic restaurant (mandarin: qing1 zhen1 cai4 guan3) can sometimes be similar to a Mandarin restaurant with the exception that there is no pork in the menu. The Chinese word for halal is "pure truth" (pinyin: qingzhen) food (cài), so a Chinese Islamic restaurant is a "qingzhen restaurant" that serves "qingzhen" food.
In most major cities in China , there are small Islamic restaurants typicially run by migrants from Western China (e.g., Uyghurs), which offer inexpensive noodle soup. These restaurants are typically decorated with Islamic motifs such as pictures of Islamic rugs and Arabic writing.
Another difference is that lamb and mutton dishes are more commonly available than in other Chinese restaurants, due to the greater prevalence of these meats in the cuisine of western Chinese regions.
Many cafeterias (canteens) at Chinese universities have separate sections or dining areas for Muslim students (Hui or western Chinese minorities), typically labeled "qingzhen." Student ID cards sometimes indicate whether a student is Muslim, and will allow access to these dining areas, or will allow access to special occasions such as the Eid feast following Ramadan.
- la mian (Spicy noodle soup), or clear-broth stewed beef noodle soup
- nang (Round unleavened breads, topped with sesame - similar to South and Central Asia naan)
- yang rou chuanr (Barbecued mutton skewers)
In the US , Chinese Islamic restaurants are frequented by non-Chinese as well. Pakistanis, Arabs and Iranians are among the regular clientele.