Daikon and Fried Spareribs Soup Recipe

Daikon and Fried Spareribs Soup Recipe
Daikon and Fried Spareribs Soup Recipe. Chris Radley Photography
  • 100 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins,
  • Cook: 90 mins
  • Yield: Serves 4
Ratings (4)

Daikon and fried spareribs soup (排骨酥湯) is one of the most popular street foods in Taiwan. The main ingredients of this delicious, mouth-watering soup are diced daikon and marinated and deep-fried spareribs. You don’t need to use any stock to cook this soup as the daikon and spareribs will add more than enough amazing taste to the soup already.


This dish has a natural sweetness from the daikon and is extra delicious with the fried pork ribs. A cooking tip for this delicious soup; meaty ribs are a must! I would go to a butcher and order or purchase some really meaty ribs to prepare this soup. You can also ask your butcher to cut the pork ribs into short lengths for you. The length of the ribs should be around 3cm. If you’re not a fan of ribs, then you can use lean or pork belly without fat and skin in this dish.


I have to admit, despite eating this dish countless times in the night markets in Taiwan, I never personally made this soup before I write my first cookbook “Home-Style-Taiwanese Cooking”. After I signed my book publishing deal, I started to collect and ask for different kinds of Taiwanese home style recipe as well as some Taiwanese street food recipes for my book. I tested and combined different versions of the recipe for this soup and in the end I came up with this version for daikon and fried spareribs soup.


In this recipe, I used sweet potato starch (地瓜粉) to coat the ribs for deep-frying but you can also use corn flour mixed with plain flour to coat the ribs. Sweet potato starch should be available in Chinese and Asian supermarkets.


As this recipe requires you to deep-fry, if you’re not that confident in the kitchen or you’re not familiar with this cooking method, you can check out the article “Deep-fried Cooking Techniques in Chinese Cooking” before you start.


Also if you have interested in my book “Home-Style Taiwanese Cooking” you can check it out here.

What You'll Need

  • 14 1/3 oz./400 g. pork ribs (cut into short lengths)
  • sweet potato starch, as needed
  • 4 cups/1 liter oil (for deep-fry the ribs)
  • 1 oz./30 g. spring onion (cut into 1 1/4 inch/3 cm. lengths)
  • 1/2 oz./15 g. garlic (peeled and finely chopped)
  • 5 cups/1.25 liters water
  • 11 oz./300 g. daikon radish (peeled and cut into 1 inch/2.5 cm. cubes)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt (or to taste)
  • 1/4 tsp. white pepper (ground, or to taste)
  • For the Marinade:
  • 1 tsp. garlic (finely chopped)
  • 1 Tbsp. light soy sauce
  • 1/2 Tbsp. dark soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp​. rice wine
  •  1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. sugar (demerara sugar or caster sugar)
  • 1/4 tsp. white pepper (ground)
  • 1/4 tsp. Chinese five-spice powder

How to Make It


  1. Place the ribs and marinade in a bowl and mix well. Cover and set aside in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour. As a general rule the longer you marinade the ingredients (say from the night before) the better they will taste but this is entirely up to you.
  2. Coat the marinated ribs with some sweet potato starch (地瓜粉) and set aside for 10 minutes.
  3. Heat the oil in a wok over medium heat. Add the ribs and deep-fry until golden brown and cooked through. Drain and set aside.
  1. Leave 2 tbsp of oil in the wok and reheat. Add the spring onion and garlic and stir-fry until the garlic is just golden brown.
  2. Add the water and bring to a boil, then simmer over low heat for 30 minutes. Strain the soup.
  3. Divide the fried pork ribs, white radish and stock among 4 heatproof serving bowls. Place the bowls into a steamer or rice cooker and steam for 45 minutes to 1 hour until the rib and daikon are both soft and tender.
  4. Season the soup with some salt and ground white pepper. Garnish as desired and serve.


  • In step 6, you can also just steam the soup in one big heatproof bowl. You don’t have to steam it in 4 different heatproof serving bowls. It’s just normal when you have this soup in Taiwan. The street vendors or restaurants always steam and serve this soup in a small bowl.