Immigration from China to the United States has grown exponentially over the years, and as with cultural exchange, this has led to the rise of Chinese cuisine in American society.
One only needs to walk down the street in any major American city to find a Chinese restaurant. These restaurants are in all shapes and sizes, from hole-in-the-wall joints to posh establishments, each with its own take on traditional Chinese cuisine.
Other Chinese restaurants may even veer off from the traditional, creating fusion fare and innovative dishes.
So, where to begin when trying to select the best Chinese restaurants in America?
We’ve compiled a list of some of our favorites, so whether you’re in the mood for dumplings, noodles, or something else entirely, you’re sure to find a pot on this list that suits your fancy.
Without further ado, below are the best Chinese restaurants in America.
Nom Wah Tea Parlor
13 Doyers St, New York, NY 10013
Nom Wah Tea Parlor is one of the oldest dim sum restaurants in America, having opened its doors in 1920.
It’s located in New York City’s Chinatown and has been serving up some of the best dim sum in the country for over a century!
The restaurant is small, so it can get pretty crowded. But in my opinion, that just adds to the charm. It also has a notably vintage and traditional look.
If you’re looking for a lovely dim sum experience, and want the option of ordering either yum cha food like shumai or some more westernized food like steamed vegetables and shrimp fried rice, Nom Wah Tea Parlor is the place to go.
They only take cash or an American Express card, so come prepared!
A Single Pebble
133 Bank St, Burlington, VT 05401
A Single Pebble is a family-style Chinese restaurant in Burlington, Vermont, that is perfect for true foodies.
They offer a chef-tasting menu where you can try a range of different dishes, all of which are exquisite. I think this is the most optimal and efficient way to try out the varying tastes and flavors that this restaurant has to offer.
My favorite dish was the smoked eel, but I also love their dry-fried beans and the scallion bread. The menu may change, so be prepared for anything!
The restaurant has a serene and calming atmosphere, perfect if you want to escape the city vibes.
There’s also a lazy susan on each table, where you can lay the dishes down and spin them around the table, making it an exceptional option for sharing meals with family and friends.
Lao Sze Chuan
2172 S Archer Ave, Chicago, IL 60616
Lao Sze Chuan is a restaurant within Chicago’s bustling Chinatown area. They serve Szechuan specialties and traditional Chinese food.
My favorites include orange chicken, chili chicken, Mongolian beef, and wonton soup with its scrumptious, peppery broth.
I like this restaurant because they tend to have special deals and coupons, such as getting a free vegetable egg roll with a $15+ purchase, free crab rangoon with a $25+ purchase, and even free orange chicken with a $50+ purchase.
If you’re ordering Chinese food with a group of friends and expect a large order, this is certainly a top spot to check out since you might get a free item!
600 N Causeway Blvd, Mandeville, LA 70448
Louisiana has many great Chinese restaurants, but if you’re looking for some delicious Cajun seafood options alongside your Chinese meal, Trey Yuen Cuisine of China is the place to go.
Beyond the food, the atmosphere is incredible at Trey Yuen. Both American and Chinese architects worked together to design a building that resembled Chinese palaces, using antique furniture, traditional artwork, rosewood ceilings, and carved wall panels.
The restaurant also features gardens, koi ponds, pagodas, and even waterfalls! You’ll feel like you’ve been transported to China while munching on sweet and sour chicken and green pepper steak, which are my two favorite items.
Due to the decor, the food, and the cocktails, this is an excellent place for a birthday celebration or reunion.
Sea Harbour Restaurant
3939 Rosemead Blvd, Rosemead, CA 91770
Dim sum is a Cantonese tradition involving small dishes of various food items, often eaten for breakfast or brunch.
If you’re looking for a top-notch dim sum spot in America, Sea Harbour is the place to be.
The restaurant is located in Rosemead, California, serving tasty eats like shrimp dumplings, black truffle shumai, and bao buns.
They also have durian, which has a” smelly” reputation. But the way Sea Harbour incorporates it into their flaky pastries and crispy rolls might make you change your mind about this infamous fruit.
HaiDiLao Hot Pot
Haidilao is a Chinese chain restaurant that began relatively recently in 1994 and is now so incredibly popular that it has locations all over the world, including America.
The hot pot experience is all-you-can-eat, and you can choose from various broths and over 30 different ingredients.
I personally love the beef, mushrooms, and tofu. You cook the ingredients in the broth of your choice and then spoon it into a bowl with some noodles.
It’s an amazing experience, and the service is top-notch.
Ping Pang Pong
4000 W Flamingo Rd, Las Vegas, NV 89103
Located in the Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Ping Pang Pong is a Chinese restaurant serving some of the best Cantonese and other regional Chinese cuisines in America.
I love that the restaurant is open until 3:00 am because sometimes you just need a late-night meal after a night out on the town.
And what better way to soak up all that alcohol than with some dim sum, crispy noodles, har gow, potstickers, and egg tarts!
It also might be a smart idea to go before you begin a day of urban adventure and parties so that you can handle what’s to come.
Finally, I appreciate the setting of Ping Pang Pong, which infuses a modern approach to traditional Chinese decor.
San Tung Restaurant
1031 Irving St, San Francisco, CA 94122
San Tung is a classic, no-frills Chinese restaurant in San Francisco that is best known for its delicious dry fried chicken wings.
They’re crispy, salty, and so addicting that you’ll definitely want to order more than one plate. I also love that San Tung’s noodles are handmade, so all of their noodle dishes are incredible.
I recommend ordering the black bean noodles and beef noodle soup. If you have extra space in your belly, don’t hesitate to add the sautéed green beans on top of that.
An interesting aspect of San Tung is that you must write your name on a whiteboard upon arrival to check-in. You may have to wait around 45 minutes, but the wait is worth it!
X’ian Famous Foods
41-10 Main St, Queens, NY 11355
X’ian Famous Foods is a chain of X’ian-style Chinese restaurants that started in the basement of a mall in Flushing, Queens, New York.
There are now several locations across the Big Apple, and the restaurant is best known for its hand-ripped noodles and burgers.
I love the noodles because they’re not too chewy and are perfectly spicy. I can’t decide which is better between their spicy cumin lamb burger and their stewed pork burger, so I recommend trying them both and deciding for yourself.
I also enjoy their soups, especially during the fall and winter seasons in New York.
One of the most popular restaurants of the chain is on Bayard street, and it’s a very casual setting, with a funky, cute child-like mural on the wall.
Duck House Chinese Restaurant
1968 SW 5th Ave, Portland, OR 97201
Duck House is a Szechuan-style Chinese restaurant in Portland offering a range of delicious noodles, soups, veggies, rice, and wraps.
If you’re looking to find Peking duck here, given the name, you might be disappointed.
However, you will quickly feel assured by the other delectable menu items, such as the cumin lamb, dried green beans, soup dumplings, and Szechuan beef noodle soup
You can also get plenty of American-Chinese food here, such as chicken fried rice and kung pao chicken, but I urge you to try something new!
I was also really pleased with the service at Duck House. The waitstaff was attentive and helpful, and almost all of them could speak perfect English, Mandarin, and Cantonese.
Gourmet Dumpling House
52 Beach St, Boston, MA 02111
Gourmet Dumpling House is a casual Chinese restaurant in Boston’s Chinatown that specializes in, you guessed it, dumplings!
Given the small and ultra-relaxed settings, it’s a cozy space to eat in, but I prefer ordering takeout from here instead.
The best things on the menu, in my opinion, include pork dumplings, sautéed udon, scallion pancakes, and sautéed string beans with beef. They also arguably have the best crab rangoon in all of Boston!
631 Kearny St, San Francisco, CA 94108
Another San Francisco Chinese spot on this list is called R&G Lounge.
They specialize in Cantonese fare and have specialties such as Peking duck, Dungeness crab, black pepper crab, sea scallops, and oven-roasted sea bass.
Those “banquet meals” are lovely; you can eat them while enjoying their more formal seating upstairs.
But if you want to munch on more casual grub in basic downstairs settings, which is more up my alley, you can do that as well.
My favorite items from the casual menu include shredded pork with snow cabbage and vermicelli soup, cashew chicken, and barbecue pork.
328 10th St #101, Oakland, CA 94607
Shan Dong, is a bustling and bright Chinese restaurant with the energy to match the city it resides in – Oakland, California.
You can find hand-pulled noodles with fresh, thick dough that some find a bit too thick and chewy, but I find just perfect.
I also enjoy watching the chefs make the dough and pull the noodles behind a glass screen.
Chow mein, braised green beans, and sesame paste noodles are my favorite menu items, but as long as you add at least one noodle dish to your order, you’ll be good to go!
11057 Santa Monica Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90025
Sichuan Impression is a West Los Angeles Sichuan-style Chinese restaurant with rotating specials.
Sichuan Impression is the perfect place to go if you’re looking for spicy Chinese food, as almost all of their menu items can come out really spicy if you’d like them to.
And if you don’t enjoy spicy foods, be careful. Even when you ask for just a little spice, your food might still be spicier than you expect!
I love spicy food, so I ask for the boiled fish filet in spicy sauce and my kung pao chicken with extra dry chilis!
Shanghai Dumpling King
696 Monterey Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94127
Many Chinese restaurants offer a few dumpling options, especially fried or steamed pork dumplings.
But if you’re interested in trying pork, fish, shrimp, vegetarian, and even lamb dumplings in fried, steamed, boiled, and soup form, then visit Shanghai Dumpling King in San Francisco.
In the unlikely event you get tired of dumplings, they still offer an extensive menu of other popular Chinese foods as well, including an assortment of veggies, rice, and meat.
Mission Chinese Food
2234 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110
Another San Francisco Chinese eatery with thousands of happy customers is Mission Chinese Food. Mission is one of the best Chinese restaurants in America for a fusion menu.
This casual yet hip and trendy dine-in, takeout, and delivery restaurant in the Mission District boast deliciously creative food items and amicable and welcoming staff.
It may be seen as a hipster joint by appearance, but the food can speak for itself. I love the salt cod fried rice, squid ink noodles, lemon matcha noodles, and kung pao pastrami.
Of course, if you’re looking for a traditional, authentic Chinese restaurant, this is not it. But if you’re willing to try an innovative take on your favorite Chinese food, Mission Chinese Food is worth checking out.
Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao
39-16 Prince St #104, Queens, NY 11354
Soup dumplings are notoriously time-consuming and challenging to make. But when done right, they’re absolutely delicious.
If you find yourself in Flushing, Queens, New York, be sure to check out Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao. They have some of the best soup dumplings I’ve ever had!
The skin is fragile and delicate, and the soup is piping hot and flavorful. The pork dumplings are my favorite, but they also offer chicken, crab, shrimp, scallop, and veggie dumplings. They even offer a unique truffle dumpling.
The dough is made fresh for each order, so you may have to be patient, but you know what they say – good things come to those who wait.