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5 from 2 votes

Vegan Lo Bak Gou (Daikon/Turnip Cake)

This vegan lo bak gou is made with simple ingredients and then pan-fried until golden brown. The inside is soft with a crispy outer layer. It's my favorite dish for Lunar New Year or any day of the week.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Resting Time in the fridge1 d
Total Time1 d 35 mins
Course: Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine: Asian, Cantonese, Chinese
Keyword: Alliumfree, Chinesefood, Daikon
Servings: 2
Author: woonheng


  • 1 lb Daikon Chinese or Japanese
  • 10 dried mushrooms (Shiitake or Chinese) rehydrated
  • 1 small carrot finely chopped (about ¼ cup)
  • ½ teaspoon salt or to taste
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • a few shakes of white pepper⁣ optional
  • oil for cooking⁣


  • 1⅓ cup rice flour used Thai rice flour⁣ (Please see notes)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon mushroom seasoning
  • a few shakes of pepper
  • 2 cups room temperature water⁣


  • To make the batter, whisk together flour, salt, mushrooms seasoning, pepper with water in a bowl until all incorporated.
  • Chop the mushrooms and carrots into tiny bits, separately.
  • Peel off the daikon's skin and shred using a box grater (used the large hole).
  • Heat a large non-stick pan with a tablespoon of oil over medium heat. Sauté mushrooms until they turn slightly golden and aromatic, about 2-3 minutes. Then, add the carrot and cook for another 45 seconds or so.
  • Add the daikon and continue to cook until it turns translucent and all water has evaporated (See Notes). Season with salt, sugar, and pepper (if using).
  • Turn heat to low, give the batter a good stir and add to the daikon mixture.
  • Then continue to cook while stirring constantly until the mixture thickens. The mixture should look like a thick paste.
  • Transfer the mixture into a lightly greased 9X5 non-stick loaf pan pressing gently into the pan with the back of the spatula to remove as many air bubbles as possible. Then, cover it with foil, if needed, or cover the steamer's lid with a towel (see video).
  • Steam the cake over high heat for about 30-40 minutes (make sure you have enough water in the steamer). It's normal to have a thin layer of water on the top when you uncover the lid.
  • Let the cake cool down completely/refrigerate overnight. (Note: This savory cake can be served right after steaming - the texture will be soft.)

Pan-fry the cake

  • To make the pan-fry version, run a knife on the cake's edges to loosen it.
  • Slice the cake into your desired thickness. I cut mine into 1.5cm, so I had about 10-11 pieces.
  • Heat a large non-stick pan with enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan.
  • Carefully lower the cake pieces into the hot oil. Pan-fry until golden brown before flipping. Repeat until you get the crispiness that you like. You may also air-fry these.
  • Serve immediately with a side of chili oil and hoisin sauce.



  • The daikon should be moist but not too wet after you cook with the mushrooms and carrot.⁣ If your daikon has lots of water content, reduce the water needed in the batter.
  • Once it's steamed, the top of the cake may have a thin layer of liquid at the top. Let it cool completely before slicing. 
  • The link for Thai rice flour is for 2 bags (that's the best price I could find) and I always recommend that you get them at the store for a better price if you have one near you. 
  • I find that a thick plastic or silicone knife works the best to loosen the cake