Easy Sauteed Bok Choy

This is my favorite way to cook bok choy. In under 10 minutes, you can make simple sautéed bok choy recipe with fresh lemon and garlic. This recipe is light, fresh, and delicious!

Lemon Garlic Bok Choy Recipe Video

Bok choy is light, crisp, and crunchy on the bottom, with dark green leaves on top. It tastes mild, and we absolutely love it, especially when we quickly sauté it.

The leaves wilt a little and the white bottoms stay light and crisp. In this sautéed bok choy recipe, we cook bok choy with fresh garlic and lemon. It’s delicious.

10 Minute Lemon Garlic Sauteed Bok Choy

Key Ingredients

  • Bok choy: I love baby bok choy for this recipe. It’s easy to prep and cooks quickly in the pan.
  • Oil: I like avocado oil for this recipe, but olive oil works, too.
  • Garlic: Fresh garlic is excellent with bok choy. I infuse the oil with garlic before adding my baby bok choy.
  • Red pepper flakes: Try crushed red pepper flakes Gochugaru (Korean pepper flakes) for some heat.
  • Lemon: Brightens all the flavors at the end.

How to Cook Bok Choy with Garlic and Lemon

My bok choy recipe is a happy accident turned kitchen staple. I overcooked it once, and the result was so good that it’s now one of my favorite bok choy recipes! The browned, caramelized bok choy and toasted garlic, finished with a squeeze of lemon and a drizzle of olive oil, are surprisingly delicious.

First, remove any discolored outer stalks and rinse the bok choy, removing any grit or dirt. Trim the ends and slice the bok choy in half lengthwise or into quarters if it’s large. Pat them dry.

Next, combine oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes in a cold skillet over medium heat. The cold skillet prevents the garlic from over-browning.

Quickly cooking bok choy with garlic

Cook the bok choy in one layer in the skillet. Sprinkle it with about 1/4 teaspoon of salt, then cook it without stirring until the bottom starts to brown. Flip it and cook until the green leaves have wilted and the white bottoms are beginning to soften but still have some crunch.

Finally, serve it with lemon juice and a drizzle of olive oil on top.

What to Serve with Bok Choy

This easy bok choy comes together in under 10 minutes and works nicely with many dishes. Try with our brown sugar baked salmon, next to teriyaki chicken, baked tofu, or juicy skillet chicken breasts. I also love it with Cajun shrimp or this cilantro lime shrimp!

It’s excellent with other sides like coconut rice, fried rice, fluffy quinoa, and plain Jasmine or Basmati rice.

10 Minute Lemon Garlic Sauteed Bok Choy

Easy Sauteed Bok Choy

  • PREP
  • COOK

One of my favorite bok choy recipes, this easy sautéed baby bok choy takes about 10 minutes and has fresh lemon and garlic. I love baby bok choy for this recipe.

Makes 4 servings

Watch Us Make the Recipe

You Will Need

1 pound (450g) baby bok choy

1 ½ tablespoons avocado oil or olive oil

3 garlic cloves, minced

Pinch crushed red pepper flakes

Sea salt

Half of a lemon, cut into wedges


    1Remove any discolored outer stalks of the bok choy and discard them. Add the bok choy to a colander and rinse it with cool water, removing any grit or dirt between the leaves. Trim the ends, then slice each bok choy in half lengthwise. If they’re large, cut them into quarters. Pat them dry.

    2Add the oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes to a wide skillet at room temperature.

    3Place the skillet over medium-low heat and cook the mixture, stirring occasionally, until the oil bubbles around the garlic. Be careful not to let the garlic turn light brown.

    4Add bok choy to the skillet and spread it out into one layer.

    5Sprinkle over 1/4 teaspoon of salt, then cook it without stirring for 2 minutes or until the bottom turns light brown.

    6Flip the bok choy and cook it for another 2 minutes, or until the green leaves have wilted and the white bottoms have begun to soften but still have some crunch. If the garlic gets too dark, turn the heat to low and cover with a lid (the bok choy will continue to cook).

    7Squeeze over fresh lemon juice. Then, serve with extra lemon wedges. I also love a light drizzle of olive oil.

Adam and Joanne's Tips

  • Garlic: The trick to this recipe is toasting the garlic but not burning it. If you are worried it will burn, toss the garlic into the pan a minute or two after adding the bok choy.
  • The nutrition facts provided below are estimates.
Nutrition Per Serving Calories 60 / Protein 1 g / Carbohydrate 4 g / Dietary Fiber 1 g / Total Sugars 1 g / Total Fat 5 g / Saturated Fat 1 g / Cholesterol 0 mg
AUTHOR:  Adam and Joanne Gallagher
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52 comments… Leave a Review
  • Lina February 7, 2024, 12:00 pm

    Thanks for the recipe! I had to cook it longer to get rid of the bitterness, about 15 min in total, but it turned out delicious!

  • Dave S. August 14, 2023, 7:09 am

    This is a question. If you heat pan with minced garlic until oil bubbles, then keep the bok choy in the ban browning for six minutes, how do you keep the garlic from burning? Minced garlic can burn pretty quickly.

    • Joanne September 18, 2023, 9:16 pm

      Hi Dave, the garlic will take on some dark color, but shouldn’t burn to the point of being bitter. If you are concerned, hold back the garlic until a few minutes before the end of the bok choy cooking time.

  • Rick May 27, 2023, 10:42 am

    The recipe is fantastic, my dish however…….well have you ever eaten pizza with a glass of orange juice after brushing your teeth? yea SO here’s what I did wrong: The chef in me of course wanted to stray away from the recipe DO NOT!. I added lemon pepper and bottled lemon juice to the pan while cooking, Also make sure you use fresh bok choy and I mean from the ground not 1 1/2 weeks old like subway and all the fast food places claim (mine was 1 week)


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