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Chinese Shaokao BBQ Recipe – The Delicious Secret Is All In The Rub!

Impulsive Culinarian’s Chinese Shaokao BBQ Recipe

Spice Mix Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp Chinese Five Spice
  • 2 tbsp Mixed Peppercorns
  • 6 Cardamom Pods
  • 1 tbsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1 tbsp Kosher Salt
  • 1 tbsp Paprika
  • 1 tbsp Ground Ginger
  • 1/2 tbsp Chili Powder
  • 1/2 tbsp Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 tbsp Onion Powder
  • 1 tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes (optional)

Main Ingredients

  • 3 bunches Green Onions
  • 1/2 pound Yellow or Green Beans
  • 1 large Green Zucchini, cut into 1/4″ rounds
  • 6 Portobello Mushroom Caps
  • 1 pound Shrimp, around 20 size 20/30, peeled, deveined & thoroughly cleaned
  • 1 pound Beef Tenderloin (Filet Mignon), trimmed, cut into 1/2″ strips
  • 1 cup Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp Fine Sea Salt


  • Grind peppercorns, cardamom pods & cumin seeds in a small hand grinder
  • Transfer to a medium sized mixing bowl
  • Add all remaining spice ingredients and whisk until thoroughly combined
  • Skewer the green onions, beans and zucchini with small bamboo skewers
  • Skewer the portobello mushrooms with large bamboo skewers
  • Skewer the shrimp lengthwise with small bamboo skewers
  • Skewer the beef lengthwise with metal or thin bamboo skewers
  • Heat the BBQ grill over high heat for 10 minutes, reduce heat to medium-high
  • Combine the cup of oil and fine sea salt in a medium mixing bowl
  • Before adding any skewer to the grill, brush it generously with the salted oil mixture and sprinkle liberally with the spice mixture
  • Grill the green onions for 1 minute per side
  • Grill the portobello mushrooms for 5 minutes on the top and 10 minutes on the bottom, finish grilling on the bottom so that moisture can escape downwards
  • Grill the zucchini for 3 to 4 minutes per side
  • Grill the shrimp for 30 seconds per side
  • Increase the heat to high on all burners and close the lid to let your BBQ warm up sufficiently
  • Grill the beef for 30 to 40 seconds per side over maximum heat
  • Let the beef rest for 10 minutes before serving
  • Remove all food from the skewers, transfer to serving plates and enjoy

Flavours Of The Silk Road Will Keep You Wanting More

This incredibly flavourful BBQ experience is a mainstay of Chinese street vendors, and for good reason as it is ridiculously delicious. Practically any meat or vegetable can be prepared in this style with fantastic results. Whether you are vegetarian, pescatarian or carnivore, there is most certainly some form of sustenance that will quickly become your favourite Shaokao delight.

About me: My name is Paul Thibault, an impulsive home chef developing delicious gluten free recipes for family and friends regardless of their allergen restrictions or dietary limitations, visit the About Page to learn more.