Feast Like a Hungry Student at Gongguan Night Market in Taipei

Gong Guan Night Market at night with many people walking down the street and vendors on either side

Gongguan Night Market (公館夜市) is a small but bustling two-block night market in one of the hippest locations in Taipei. It’s a mere fraction of the size of more famous night markets like Raohe and Shilin, but packs a lot of tasty food into a compact space.

Surrounded by university campuses, Gongguan has always attracted a loyal following of hungry students (much like the nearby Shida Night Market). It is especially known for bargain priced street foods, all sorts of pancakes and green onion cakes, and lots of vegetarian street foods.

The foodie masses took note in 2019, when one of the stalls in Gongguang Night Market obtained Michelin Bib Gourmand status (you’ll have to read to the end to find it!)

In this article, I’ll walk you through Gongguan Night Market, recommending some of the best and most famous foods you should consider to try, as well as some tempting ones that you should actually skip, based on my personal experience visiting the night market many times.

Gongguan Night Market Introduction

Looking down a night market street filled with people and food vendors on either side
Gongguan Night Market on a busy weekend evening

Gongguan is a small commercial district (公館商圈) surrounded by universities. These include several campuses of National Taiwan University (NTU, Taiwan’s largest university) and the National Taiwan University of Science and Technology.

Besides many students, the area is also known for its population of veterans from China as well as Southeast Asian migrants.

A fruit vendor in an indoor market, with one customer looking at the fruits
Shuiyuan Market lies between the two main streets of Gongguan Night Market

In 1980, Shuiyuan Market (水源市場), a traditional indoor daytime market, opened on Roosevelt Road, one of Taipei’s largest thoroughfares.

Over time, food vendors appeared on either side of the market, appealing to the many students and shoppers in the area. These two streets came to be known as Gongguan Night Market.

Students, both Taiwanese and international, still flock to Gongguan Night Market, giving it a young and international flavor.

Ever since Hsiung Chi Scallion Pancake, one of the stalls in Gongguan Night Market, made the 2019 Michelin guide, more and more international visitors have been making their way to the night market.

A night market vendor tilting her head forward so we mostly only see her cap, which is yellow and red and has the words vegan on it
Vegan hat worn by a vendor in Gongguan Night Market

Perhaps due to the demand from students and international visitors, there are a lot of vegan and vegetarian food stalls in this night market.

A visit to Gongguan Night Market can be paired with other attractions in the area, including Treasure Hill Artists Village, Taipei Water Park (the city’s best children’s spray park, July and August only), and Gongguan Waterfront Plaza (a cool outdoor drinking venue at night).

Some people walking down a busy street in the evening
Typical night at Gongguan Night Market

How to Find the Night Market

Looking up a crowded market street filled with people and some scooters squeezing through
Lane 78, the First Street of the night market

Gongguan is super easy to get to as it is right next to Gongguan MRT station on the Green Line.

At Gongguan MRT, take exit 1 (escalators and elevators available). Turn right and walk one block along Roosevelt Road to Lane 78 (羅斯福路4段78巷), where you will turn right (see image above). In this guide, I’ve called this the “first street” of Gongguan Night Market.

Looking up a busy market street with a blue building on the left side
Lake 108, the Second Street of the night market

To find the “second” street of the night market, you would continue along Roosevelt Road past Shuiyuan Market to the next lane, Lane 108 (羅斯福路4段108巷).

Besides these two lanes, which are the heart of the night market, you can find numerous clothing shops and restaurants in the surrounding commercial district.

What to Eat at Gongguan Night Market

Now we come to the most important part: what are the best foods at Gongguan Night Market?

To make this easier, I’m going to cover the two main streets separately, in the order you will encounter them from the MRT. We’ll first walk down Lane 78, then return to Roosevelt Road via Lane 108.

The First Street: Lane 78

Looking up one side of a night market street, with lots of food stalls and people in front of them
Looking up Lane 78 from Roosevelt Road

Generally speaking, Lane 78 has more meat dishes, while Lane 108 is more vegetarian-friendly, but there are of course many exceptions on both lanes.

A hand holding a thick pancake cut in half to reveal a layer of black sesame powder in the middle
Thick pancake with black sesame

At the entrance to Lane 108, Martabak Gongguan (回味麵煎餅, #16, here) is the first stall on the left side.

This is a very popular martabak (thick turnover pancake found in many countries in Asia) stall. Taiwanese generally know these as Shandong Da Bing (山東大餅), after the most famous chain of shops selling them.

The pancakes at Martabak are super thick and poofy, with an inner layer of your choice of peanut (花生), black sesame (芝麻), brown sugar (黑糖), or custard (奶油).

Vertical image of a night market stall with giant fried chicken fillets and other fried items on display and person behind preparing more
Huge chicken fillets and other fried foods

On the right side and a few stalls in, there are enormous fried chicken cutlets at Tempura Flavored Chicken Steam (天婦羅口味香雞排, #4, here but the location on GoogleMaps is off).

The stall also has deed fried popcorn chicken, fish cakes, tofu, and other items. But if you’re looking for a better variety fried foods, both meaty or vegetarian, there will be more options to come below.

A hand holding up a white cup with plastic dome lid and purple drink inside on the left side, in front of the stall it was just purchased at
Yummy purple rice milk

Hong Ji Purple Rice Milk (洪記紫米牛奶, #5, here) serves cups of purple rice milk. The purple rice is boiled on the spot. The drink is thick, sweet, creamy, filling, and healthy(ish).

A night market vendor sign showing Mandarin words meaning "cheese waterfall banana pancakes" and picture of that food, with the heads of a few customers below.
These are nowhere near as good as they look on the sign. Skip!

Opposite the purple rice stall, I DO NOT recommend the Waterfall Cheese Pancake Roti (瀑布起司香蕉煎餅).

On the one I ordered, the cheese was not even fully melted, let along substantial enough to be “flowing” like a waterfall. I mean, it wasn’t terrible, but the sign (see pic above) led me to expect much more.

Close up of a pastry bun cut in half with pulled pork and green bell peppers inside on a white paper takeaway bag
Delicious roujiamo

However, I DO recommend the Chinese Burgers at Rojiamo (肉夾饃, #20, not on GoogleMaps). Like gua bao, these items are often translated as “burger” but are totally different than gua bao.

Roujiamo are flaky pastries stuffed with shredded pork (almost like an American pulled pork sandwich) with green bell peppers or beans. This stall also has a beef version. You can add an egg to any of them for TWD 10.

These roujiamo are very delicious, but I did find that the ones in Tonghua Night Market are even better.

Several stacks of Vietnamese take-away meals in plastic bowls, with signs behind showing various bahn mi which can also be purchased
Vietnamese take-away meals

A few stalls down from the purple rice milk, Bich Loan (阿鸞手工法國麵包, here) is a staple for international students in the area.

This physical shop has grab-and-go Bánh Mì (Vietnamese sandwiches – the bread is freshly made in house), rice noodle salads, spring rolls, and Vietnamese desserts.

Several snacks of Vietnamese desserts in to-go packages
Vietnamese desserts
A night market food stall in the daytime, with red signs below and above it, many sticks of meat on display, a vendor working behind, and another vendor to the side dropping more beat sticks into a huge barrel oven
Barbecue meat sticks starting from TWD 10, but poorly rated

On the left side, Qiu Ji 10-Dollar BBQ (邱記10元碳烤, #27, here) is a branch of a popular BBQ chain across Taiwan. You can’t miss the huge barrel beside the stall, which they roast the meats in.

However, the stall gets terrible reviews from locals (just click the “here” link above and read them for yourself). Apparently, after roasting the meat skewers, they just sit out for a while and become cold. What’s more, the 10元 in the name is deceptive, as most sticks cost more than that.

Therefore, I suggest giving this one a miss.

Close up of a small round grill with three strips of beef on it and tongs handling one of them
Meticulously grilled strips of beef

Instead, for your meat fix, head two stalls down to the new Taipei Street Beef (燒肉冠軍侯, #29, here, follow here on IG). The stall operator offers a personalized grilled beef tasting experience.

As you stand at the counter, he’ll cook and perfectly season several slices of beef to your liking for TWD 70. If you prefer rarer or more well-done, just let him know.

He cooks the meat slices one-by-one, so you can taste each one straight off the grill. You can taste them straight up or dip them in your choice of soy sauce, Japanese spices, or cumin.

I’m not surprised whatsoever that this stall maintains a 5-star rating on GoogleMaps reviews. I highly recommend it!

A night market food stall with large horizontal orange sign with menu items in black Mandarin characters, and various foods for sale on display below
Take your pick of foods to be deep fried.

In the second half of the street and also on the left side, A Lang Fried Foods (阿郎鹽酥雞, #38, here) is a Gongguan Night Market institution.

Students have for many years flocked here for cheap and delicious fried foods, which they consider to have “high CP value”.

Like any 鹽酥雞 (fried foods) stall, the many items (vegetables, tofu, meat sticks, offal) are on display. Grab a bowl and set of tongs, then choose the items you would like.

Any piece you take represents one portion of that item (for example, if you grab one little green bean, they will cook you a whole portion of beans). 2 or 3 items is a full meal for one person, so be careful not to order too much!

Several customers lined up and waiting for drinks in front of a Taiwanese iced tea shop, with several orange and white lanterns hanging above
A popular bubble tea shop

Directly opposite A Lang, Bird’s Nest Beitou (燕窩北投紅茶, here) is an iced tea shop that always seems to have a long line, but I’ve never personally tried it. Watch for the hanging lanterns and huge cup.

Looking up three rows of spiral green onion cakes on a flat grill, of varying levels of readiness to eat
Yilan-style green onion cakes

Reaching the end of the block, and again on the left side, Gongguan Liao Family Yilan Green Onion Cakes (公館廖家食記宜蘭蔥餅, #43, here) serves spiral green onion cakes, which are a specialty of Luodong Night Market in Yilan.

These things are always delicious, with a slightly crispy exterior and a filling of peppery green onions in a soft, steaming interior.

While these ones don’t have pork chunks like some in Yilan do, many green onion cake vendors use lard, so vegetarians should always ask first – here’s how to ask if something is vegetarian in Taiwan.

Close up of a tall red lantern with four Mandarin characters written vertically on it in black and a food cart with shelves of food behind it to the right
Traditional luwei (braised foods) stall

Across from the green onion cake stall, there’s a popular luwei stall called Gongguan Countryside Luwei (公館家鄉滷味, #15, here on the right side).

Luwei is a variety of foods which have been braised in a broth of various herbs. Like the fried foods stall, you just pick a few and they dress them up for you.

You can’t miss the traditional-looking push cart with red lantern at the end of the street next to FamilyMart.

The Second Street: Lane 108

Looking down a night market street at night, with only a sprinkling of people visible down the road
Lane 108 is usually a little less busy

From the end of Lane 78, turn left and follow the street behind Shuiyuan Market to Lane 108. From there, we will take Lane 108 back to Roosevelt Road and the MRT station.

This is the street where you’ll find many vegetarian and vegan food stalls. Vegetarians: also see my guide to the best vegetarian restaurants in Taipei!

A couple customers standing in line at a food stall and woman behind the stall wearing mask as she prepares some food
Fried chicken boxes with unlimited cabbage salad

The first stall you’ll encounter on the left side is Long Ge Boneless Chicken Leg Fillet (龍哥無骨雞腿排, #62, here).

This popular stall sells boxes which include bite-sized slices of breaded chicken fillet served with a cabbage salad with two choices of sauce: Vietnamese sweet and sour (越式酸甜醬) or sweet mayonnaise (生菜沙拉醬). Salad comes with free refills.

A hand holding a small white paper bag with 5 orange deep fried sweet potato balls inside it
Gongguan’s famous sweet potato balls

Directly across from it, the second stall in on the right side of the lane is Vegan Sweet Potato Balls (全素地瓜球, #78, here).

This is a very popular sweet potato ball stall – some even claim they have the best sweet potato balls in all of Taipei. If you’ve never tried them, sweet potato balls are a light and airy snack, crispy on the outside, chewy inside, and best eaten while still hot.

There’s usually a line, but every time a new batch is ready, the line moves up very quickly. Have your cash ready – a small portion (9 balls) is only 35, while a large portion (15 balls) goes for 55.  

A deep fried green onion cake with egg on top sitting on a metal cooling rack above a vat of hot oil
Deep fried egg and green onion cake

A few stalls in from the above, Gongguan Fried Egg Green Onion Cake (公館炸蛋蔥油餅, #75, here) does a kind of extra greasy but delicious green onion cakes. They basically deep fry the whole thing, including the egg.

Consider your options carefully, though, because there’s a more famous green onion cake stall below!

Next up, you’ll pass not one but two vegan stinky tofu stalls on the left. It may surprise you that stinky tofu is often not vegetarian! The spicy stewed kind often can duck blood cakes while the deep fried kind sometimes uses meat in the fermentation process.

A night market stall in Gongguan with packs of instant noodles and other foods on it
Vegan stinky tofu in broth with your choice of added ingredients

The first one, Gongguan Vegan Spicy Stinky Tofu (公館VEGAN素食麻辣臭豆腐, #54, here) serves mala stinky tofu, the kind which is stewed in a spicy broth.

The fragrant stinky tofu soup comes topped with pickled mustard greens and fresh Taiwanese basil. Delicious!

You have the option to make it a full meal by adding noodles (5 different types available), mushrooms, seaweed, or other types of vegetarian meats. There’s an English menu.

Looking straight down at a large, white paper bowl filled with cubes of deep fried tofu and topped with pickled cabbage
Vegan deep fried version of stinky tofu

Right next to it, there’s another vegan stinky tofu stall called Gongguan Stinky Tofu (公關臭豆腐, #53, not on GoogleMaps).

This one does the deep fried version of stinky tofu, with cubes of tofu deep fried until crispy and served with pickled cabbage.

When I tried this one, the elderly lady boss (老闆娘) was sporting vegan gear. She was slow, so yes there was a line and it seemed to take ages, but the stinky tofu was worth the wait.

The stinky tofu is super crispy and not as offensively stinky as regular ones. She’ll ask if you want spicy sauce. A large portion is TWD 60.

Looking into a white paper bag filled with deep fried items, some look like meatballs, some like calamari, all covered with spicy powder
Vegetarian fried foods

Continuing with the vegan choices, watch for Vegetarian Fried Foods (素食鹹酥雞, #70, here on the right). This is an all-vegan version of the fried foods stall we saw on Lane 78.

The menu of items you can have deep fried here includes many vegetables, tofu, and vegetarian versions of pig’s blood cake (they call it 紫米糕 or “purple rice cake”), oysters, chicken nuggets, or calamari.

You can find a similar all-vegetarian fried foods stall at Nanjichang Night Market, but the one at Nanjichang often has a very long wait, while this one in Gongguan Night Market doesn’t.

Looking sideways at a night market food stall, with a rack of candied sweet potatoes above a vat of oil and a person's hands cutting a slice of green onion cake behind it
Honeyed sweet potato and green onion pie

Approaching Roosevelt Road, Liu Ji’s Classic Green Onion Pancakes and Honey Glazed Sweet Potatoes (劉記古早味蔥蛋餅蜜地瓜, #45, here) is a very popular stall on the left side – watch for the line.

The stall makes only two things: thick green onion egg pie (蔥蛋餅) and candied sweet potato (蜜地瓜). The green onion pie is what people line up for. The huge, circular cakes are cooked one at a time then served in pie-shaped pieces (that’s why I call it pie rather than cake).

If you just want the candied sweet potato, there are usually in packages ready to go, so if you see a bunch of them on the counter, you can just ask for one without waiting in the line. The stall is closed on Wednesdays and Thursdays.

A grill with several round green onion cakes lined up on it and two hands about to flip one of them which has an egg frying under it
Hsiung Chi’s Michelin-approved green onion cakes

We’ve saved one of the best for nearly last – Hsiung Chi Scallion Pancake (雄記蔥抓餅, #48, here).

This is Gongguan Night Market’s only Michelin food stall (see the entry here), starting from 2019 and bringing more attention to the night market.

The green onion cakes here are as good as they come, with options to add egg, cheese, ham, bacon, corn, or various combinations of the above.

For sauce, you have the option of spicy and/or the more unusual honey mustard, for a winning combination. If this stall is a must for you, then avoid Sunday and Monday, when it takes a break.

Close up of a round green onion cake on a black grill with egg, cheese, spicy sauce, and honey mustard
Fully loaded with egg, cheese, spicy sauce, and honey mustard
A hand holding a Taiwanese gua bao, or white steamed bun filled with two slabs of veggie meat, pickled greens, peanut powder, and spicy sauce
Vegetarian gua bao

Nearly back to Roosevelt Road and on the right side, Little Fatty Gua Bao (小胖刈包, #60, here but I found it’s closer to Roosevelt Road than indicated on GoogleMaps) serves classic gua bao or “Taiwanese hamburgers”.

Usually these consist of a slice of fatty pork inside a steamed bun with peanut shavings and cilantro. While they do have the classic version, I stuck with the vegetarian them of the street and ordered their vegetarian gua bao. It was excellent! (Note: you can also find vegetarian gua bao at Tonghua Night Market).

Since we’re finishing Gongguan Night Market with gua bao, I should also mention that there’s a very famous, Michelin-rated gua bao shop not too far from the night market.

A colorful lively scene of many people walking through Gongguan Night market with lots of food stalls and colorful signs and lights on the sides
Enjoy your night market visit!

Lan Jia Gua Bao Traditional Taiwanese Snack (藍家割包, here about 5 minutes’ walk from Gongguan Night Market) is extremely popular and worth the walk if you want some seriously good gua bao. But do expect a line.

For their gua bao, they offer a choice of fatty meat (肥肉) or lean meat (瘦肉), or a combination of the two. No vegetarian options here.

They also have intestine vermicelli meat stew (大腸肉羹麵線) and traditional rice dumplings (the kind associated with Dragon Boat Destival) with meat (肉粽).

There’s an English menu if you ask. One line is to stay (內用) and one is to go (外帶). They are closed Mondays.

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