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AAPI Month

15 Recipes to Celebrate AAPI Month

Cook up a feast to learn about new cuisines!
AAPI Month

May is Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, a time to celebrate the histories and culture of Americans whose families originate from across all of Asia, Polynesia, Micronesia, and Melanesia. One main way we commemorate the occasion is with food, a universal language that can be an eye-opening way to learn about the world.  What we eat is often so tightly connected with a culture that it can feel like you’ve been you’ve been transported  to that place when trying a signature dish. Whether you’re already familiar with some of these cuisines or trying the, for the first time,  trying different cuisines can help everyone learn more and celebrate these cultures. We’ve rounded up 15 recipes  that focus on several AAPI areas to help you find your new favorite foods and that will excite your palate.  

Instant Pot Hawaiian Kalua Pork

This famous Hawaiian showstopper is a staple at special events, parties, and family gatherings. Traditionally slow-roasted in a pit with heated lava rocks, kalua pig is now more easily accessible by making it in the Instant Pot®. Instead of a whole pig, a boneless pork butt is simply seasoned with pink sea salt before being braised with chicken stock and liquid smoke. Cooked green cabbage and steamed rice finish out this recipe, but grabbing a creamy macaroni salad from the deli is another great side to serve.  

Get the recipe: Instant Pot Hawaiian Kalua Pork 

Malaysian-Style Coconut Chicken Curry

A separated sauce in Western cooking is thought of as an accident, but certain saucy stews in Malaysian, Indonesian, Thai, and Indian cooking aren’t complete without the iconic layer of flavorful oil glistening at the top. This coconut milk curry is seasoned with an aromatic mix of fish sauce, star anise, cinnamon, ginger, and cilantro.  

Get the recipe: Malaysian-Style Coconut Chicken Curry 

Filipino Pork Spring Rolls

Crunchy and craveable, Filipino lumpia are a  popular snack and  side dish that evolved from classic Chinese spring rolls. While lumpia can be prepared in a number of ways , this recipe follows the traditional route with a ground pork filling and frying the rolls. Serve these irresistible rolls with a sweet-and-sour dipping sauce for the full experience.  

 Get the recipe: Filipino Pork Spring Rolls

Korean Beef Bulgogi Lettuce Wraps

A homemade marinade made from gochujang and pear transforms a thinly sliced sirloin steak into Korean bulgogi. These lettuce wraps are inspired by the Korean technique known as ssam, where different fillings are wrapped in green leafy vegetables. While ssam is traditionally bite-sized, these wraps are packed with rice, bulgogi, and kimchi for a hearty mouthful.  

Get the recipe: Korean Beef Bulgogi Lettuce Wraps 

Indian Grilled Shrimp Skewers

Indian tandoori cooking is famous for using an open clay oven (a tandoor) that is heated to over 500°F by a roaring fire. While most homes might not have this super-hot oven, a grill can replicate some of the charred flavor that makes this style of cooking so delicious. Combine the grilling with a yogurt-based marinade for these shrimp skewers that are sure to become a regular in your rotation. 

Get the recipe: Indian Grilled Shrimp Skewers 

Shanghai-Style Green Onion Noodles with Bok Choy

While Shanghai is more famous for xiaolongbao soup dumplings, this old-school dish cong you ban mian perfectly showcases how simple ingredients can shine. Green onions are slowly cooked in oil to infuse all their flavor. Toss the oil with soy sauce and noodles for an easy and umami-packed bite.  

Get the recipe: Shanghai-Style Green Onion Noodles with Bok Choy 

Thai Red Curry Eggplant and Tofu

Red curry is one of the most common styles of curry in Thailand. Thai curry differs from other styles because of how thin the coconut-based broth is.  This 5-ingredient recipe uses a store-bought red curry paste that is packed with aromatic elements  like lemongrass, kaffir lime, and coriander root. Add in tofu and cubes of eggplant for a quick dinner.   

 Get the recipe: Thai Red Curry Eggplant and Tofu

Quick Bibimbap Rice Bowl 

In Korea, it’s tradition that any leftover food should not be brought into the new year. Bibimbap is a great solution for this, since it mixes a number of different ingredients with  rice to create a filling, tasty meal. With bibim,  meaning mixed, and bap, meaning cooked rice, this 20-minute recipe is a literal way to use  up any mishmash of vegetables and ground beef into a hearty lunch or dinner.  

 Get the recipe: Quick Bibimbap Rice Bowl

Chicken Yakitori

This popular Japanese street food is meant to be eaten with on the go. Chicken thighs are cut into small  pieces and marinated in a sweet-and-salty mix of brown sugar, soy sauce, mirin, and ginger. While the conventional  method uses a charcoal-fired kongro grill, this version  cooks the chicken and green onion skewers right on your home grill.  

Get the recipe: Chicken Yakitori 

Filipino-Style Slow Cooker Chicken Adobo

The unofficial dish of the Philippines, chicken adobo is a flavorful white vinegar and soy sauce- infused stew. The name adobo comes from the Spanish word for marinade, adobar . A slow cooker makes this slowly simmered meal  approachable to make in any home. Be sure to serve this over plenty of steamed rice to soak up the sauce. 

Get the recipe: Filipino-Style Slow Cooker Chicken Adobo 

Two-Ingredient Scallion Pancakes with Dipping Sauce 

While people might associate scallion pancakes with takeout, they’re a beloved street food across China. Called cong you bing, these crispy bites are traditionally made by layering dough with oil and chopped scallions. This recipe uses dumpling skins instead of a dough to cut down on the folding needed to create those crunchy layers.  

 Get the recipe: Two-Ingredient Scallion Pancakes with Dipping Sauce 

Shrimp Summer Rolls with Dipping Sauce

Vietnamese Gỏi cuốn, otherwise known as summer rolls, get their signature crunch from lots of vegetables and juicy shrimp packed inside. Rice noodles help bulk up the filling while mint and cilantro keep the taste light and fresh. Fish sauce, lime juice, and green onions make a perfect dipping sauce for these delicious rolls, which are best served either cold or at room temperature.   

Get the recipe: Shrimp Summer Rolls with Dipping Sauce 

Pork Satay with Peanut Sauce

These skewers may have originated in Indonesia, but they’re well-loved across Southeast-Asia, especially in Thailand, Malaysia, and Singapore. Thinly slicing the pork into strips helps the  marinade work faster. Dark brown sugar caramelizes when the meat is grilled, creating an even deeper flavor. A homemade peanut sauce finishes off these delicious pork satay skewers. 

Get the recipe: Pork Satay with Peanut Sauce

Shrimp Salad Seaweed Wraps

Shrimp Salad Seaweed Wraps 

Roll out a quick lunch or dinner inspired by Japan with this handheld bite that uses a TikTok-famous folding technique. Creamy shrimp salad, brown rice, avocado, and cucumber add layers of flavor and texture wrapped up in a sheet of savory seaweed. 

Get the recipe: Shrimp Salad Seaweed Wraps 

Indian Spiced Cauliflower and Potatoes (Aloo Gobi)

Saucy curries are what most people associate with Indian cooking, but this Northern Indian vegetable dish has barely any liquid at all. Fresh ginger, garlic, and aromatic spices are mixed into a delicious  paste before frying with potatoes and cauliflower. A sprinkling of chopped cilantro perfectly finishes this vegetarian favorite.  

Get the recipe:  Indian Spiced Cauliflower and Potatoes (Aloo Gobi)


Bahn Mi Bowls 

We ditched the bread, and the meat, in this easy spin on the popular Vietnamese sandwich, bahn mi. Seasoned plant-based crumbles and a rainbow of crisp veggies over brown rice deliver plant-powered protein and fiber with just 260 calories per serving.

Get the recipe: Bahn Mi Bowls 

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