Grilled Baby Bok Choy With Miso Butter 4.000

Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post

Weeknight Vegetarian May 21, 2014

Be sure to keep the temperature moderate so the miso butter will caramelize but not burn.

A grill screen placed on the grill grate will help corral the bok choy stalks.

White or yellow miso is recommended here; the darker the miso, the saltier it will be.


When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 4 servings

  • 6 heads (about 1 1/2 pounds total) baby bok choy (may substitute Shanghai bok choy)
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons white or yellow miso paste (see headnote)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more as needed


Prepare the grill for direct heat: If using a gas grill, preheat to medium-high (400 degrees) with the lid closed. If using a charcoal grill, light the charcoal or wood briquettes; when the briquettes are ready, distribute them evenly over the cooking area. For a medium-hot fire, you should be able to hold your hand about 6 inches above the coals for 4 to 6 seconds. Have ready a spray water bottle for taming any flames. Brush the grill grate.

Meanwhile, cut the leaves off the bok choy stalks, then cut the stalks in half lengthwise. Rinse leaves and stalks well, then shake and pat dry to remove as much moisture as possible. Place the stalks in a large bowl.

Use a fork to blend the butter and miso in a small bowl, then use your clean hands to coat the bok choy (all over) with the butter-miso mixture.

Arrange the bok choy stalks cut side down on the grill (or grill screen, if using). Close the lid and cook for about 5 minutes, until golden brown on the underside. Use tongs to turn over the stalks. Close the lid and cook for 5 to 6 minutes, until golden and crisp-tender.

While the stalks are on the grill, stack the bok choy leaves, then roll them tightly and cut them crosswise into thin ribbons (chiffonade). Arrange them on a serving platter as a bed for the stalks. Drizzle with the oil and lemon juice, then sprinkle with the salt and the 1/4 teaspoon of pepper.

Arrange the grilled bok choy stalks on the dressed leaves, which will wilt a bit. Season the stalks lightly with pepper. Serve right away.

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Recipe Source

Adapted from "Brassicas -- Cooking the World’s Healthiest Vegetables: Kale, Cauliflower, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts and More," by Laura B. Russell (Ten Speed Press, 2014).

Tested by Joe Yonan.

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