Discover how to cook tender Lemon Garlic Baby Bok Choy with this simple and quick recipe that’s perfect for busy moms looking to add a zesty twist to their family dinners.

Looking to switch up your side dish game? This quick and easy recipe brings together the freshness of baby bok choy with the zing of lemon and the aromatic punch of garlic, making it a tasty little side dish that can brighten up any meal. Whether you’re a busy mom with a tight schedule or you’re looking to impress at a family dinner, this dish balances nutrition and flavor without the fuss. It’s an ideal complement to a variety of mains, from grilled chicken to pan-seared fish, and promises a refreshing change from the usual greens.

Lemon-Garlic Baby Bok Choy on a white plate with a fork on it.

Ingredients and Substitutes

Olive oil: A staple for sautéing, olive oil can be substituted with avocado or vegetable oil.

Garlic: Fresh garlic is preferred for the best flavor, but garlic powder or jarred minced garlic can work in a pinch.

Chicken broth: Provides a savory depth to the dish. Vegetable broth or water with additional seasoning can be used for vegetarians or in case of allergies.

Baby bok choy: The star of the dish, baby bok choy can be swapped for adult bok choy cut into smaller pieces. Ensure thorough cleaning to remove any dirt trapped in the leaves.

Lemon: Lemon juice adds freshness; however, lime juice or a small amount of vinegar can be substituted.

Salt and pepper: Essential seasonings, but feel free to adjust according to your taste preferences.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use regular bok choy instead of baby bok choy?

Yes, you can substitute regular bok choy, just cut it into smaller pieces to ensure it cooks thoroughly. The cooking time may need to increase in order to achieve a tender result.

How do I know when the bok choy is perfectly cooked?

The leaves should be wilted, and the stalks tender but still crisp, not mushy.

How do I select the best baby bok choy at the store?

Look for baby bok choy with vibrant green leaves and firm white stalks. Avoid those with wilted leaves or discoloration.

Is there any special way to clean baby bok choy?

Rinse the baby bok choy under cold water to remove any dirt. If the stalks are very dirty, trim the end and separate the stalks to wash individually.

Do I need to cook the stems and leaves for different lengths of time?

No, baby bok choy is tender enough that both the leaves and stems cook at the same rate, making it very convenient.

How do I cut baby bok choy for cooking?

You can cook them whole or cut them in half lengthwise to ensure even cooking, especially if they are on the larger side.

Cooked bok choy on a white plate with lemon slices on it.


Spicy Lemon Garlic Baby Bok Choy: Add a sprinkle of red pepper flakes or a finely chopped chili pepper to the garlic sauté for a spicy kick.

Ginger-infused Baby Bok Choy: Include a teaspoon of freshly grated ginger along with the garlic for an aromatic depth of flavor that pairs well with Asian-inspired meals.

Citrus-Herb Baby Bok Choy: Instead of lemon, try using orange juice and zest, and add chopped fresh herbs like parsley or cilantro before serving for a fresh, herbaceous note.

Chef’s Tips

  • Wash the bok choy thoroughly to remove any dirt.
  • Cut any larger pieces of baby bok choy in half to ensure even cooking.
  • Adjust the seasoning after adding the lemon juice, as the acidity can affect the saltiness.
  • Be careful not to burn the garlic, as it can become bitter.
  • Use freshly squeezed lemon juice for the best flavor.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

To store leftovers, place them in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days. To reheat, simply sauté in a pan over medium heat until warmed through. Freezing is not recommended, as bok choy can become limp and lose its texture.

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