What do you get at Chinese take-out?

Hey folks,

Just curious, we talk about a lot of different food here but the humble American Chinese takeout rarely gets discussed. I’m sure everyone has their favorites, my go to are Beef w/ Broccoli and Curry beef. I seem to get these like 90% of the time I get something at Chinese takeout.

What are your favorites?

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I’d have to say good ol’ General Tso or Orange Chicken.

If I’m feeling extra fancy, I like Honey, Walnut, Mayo Shrimp. :slight_smile:

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Pick-up or delivery? As for the latter:


Cool topic

I call them gangster wings…fried chicken wings fried in oil that is probably days old with tons of pork lard to enhance the flavor

Hot and sour soup

Beef sticks

Twice cooked pork if they do roast pork

Roast pork lomein

Around here the places can’t do many dishes well so you kind of have to go from one spot to another. I’ll go to one joint then motor to another just to get another dish or two. So yeah, you have to learn what is good and what is bad.

Joon have you ever had the sultan wok family specials? They aren’t great but they will deliver to you from Eatontown and you get a lot of food. Good stuff when lit up. I think if you’re on their mailing list you get the best family deals. It is like the domino’s of Chinese but they deliver much farther than any domino’s that I know of lol

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The place closest to my apartment i most often just stop to buy rice! Haha. $1 small white rice or $2 for brown
The less sketchy half decent other spot i go to i like the tofu and eggplant in black bean garlic sauce, their chilled sesame noodles aren’t that great but hit the spot when I’m too lazy to make my own. Oh, and those blistered green beans.

Nobody in nyc has the chinese chicken salad that’s on all the menus in CA, to this day my mom loves that and their chinese takeout spot will make it with tofu instead which is my go to (but without the crunchy noodles- they use super thin fried glass noodles for some reason and they turn to moosh almost instantly)

I feel like General Tso/Orange Chicken need to be consumed right then and there. It’s never the same when you bring it home! But yes those are great for eating in. The mayo shrimp… I didn’t even know takeout places had that. I’ve only had that at “real” Chinese restaurants actually.

@BoneAppetite Always pickup. I ain’t paying no delivery charge+tip for a 5 minute drive!


I do love the Chinese takeout wings. For years I wondered what their secret is and I think I finally figured it out. CHICKEN POWDER. They put that shit in the batter! Fucking genius.

Hot and sour soup - almost always my choice when getting a combo.

Twice cooked pork - funny you mention this one, because I only get it when it’s not roast pork. At some point pretty much all of the takeout places in our area stopped doing regular pork in their menu, all of the pork is roast pork now. Last I checked the only takeout place that has regular pork on the menu is Far East Taste.

I haven’t eaten at Sultan Wok in a while, I didn’t find them to be any different from the other Chinese places, and they’re quite a bit out of the way for me. I never do delivery because I hate paying tip + delivery charges. For some reason Chinese takeout is never on my mind when I’m lit. :slight_smile:

@Ttrockwood I’ve never heard of Chinese chicken salad. Hmm. Tofu/Eggplan/Black Bean sounds great, haven’t seen it on any local menus…sounds fancy for takeout!


Not all at the same meal, but most commonly ordered:
Mongolian Beef or Asparagus Beef
Chicken Satay
Ha Gow
Siu Mai
Spicy Basil Chicken
Vegetable chow fun
Chinese chicken salad
spicy mustard to mix with soy sauce
And, before my husband went gluten-free, crab cheese puffs and crispy shrimp rolls, General Tso’s chicken, green onion pancakes

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I Def don’t recommend driving to sultan. It is like ordering from dominos. You pay to have them come and not get arrested at the same time :smile:

What the hell is chicken powder? Lol. I will Google that now. If you didn’t see my chicken post, check out the seasonest sampler on amazon. I think you’ll like it. 29 for 5 flavors and free shipping on prime. I’ve been moving my way through these…good stuff. Great on chicken, ribs and veggies.

Hot & sour Soup
Shrimp EggFoo Yung
Shrimp LoMein
General Tso’s Chicken
Skinny WoTons
Kung Pao Chicken
Chicken & Broccoli
Happy Family

You lost me at the unneeded f bomb.


We seldom do Chinese takeout. When we do, it’s mostly Hong Kong style roasties on rice, eg, cha siu/roast duck/pork/boiled chicken/soy sauce chicken on rice with boiled cabbage side.
We live an easy walking distance to San Francisco’s Chinatown, and do indulge in the 3 plate “family style” dinners now and again. Comes with soup of the day, rice and 3 mains of your choice. Used to be quite the bargain at $18 ~ $20, enough for dinner for four. The price has gone way up to $23 ~ $24 now, still a bargain for the variety and quantity.

Looking over the takeout menu, we like the following:

• Scrambled egg with prawns (wet scramble)
• Beef with gai lan (Chinese broccoli)
• Peking spareribs
• Salt and pepper deep fried whole flounder
• Lotus root with sliced pork
• Bitter melon and spareribs
• Boil beef tripe
• Crispy fried pork intestines
• Seafood tofu clay pot with XO sauce
• ½ boiled chicken with green onion and ginger
• String beans with XO sauce
• Salt and pepper tofu
• Braised oysters in clay
• Salt and pepper squid
• Beef tongue in XO sauce
• Sautéed pork liver and kidney

To answer the OP’s question of favorite takeout, we usually order 2 of the first 3 items, and the 3rd item is one of the remaining.

Great post! The issue is the east coast stuff we are working with can’t hold a candle to SF area food lol.

Our best Chinese food here probably can’t even compare to the crappiest food you guys have. China town does have good food but sf kills it for Asian eats.

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Oh, we have crappy Chinese food here in SF, trust me. Its just that our crappy food probably costs less, so easier to stomach. :wink:

Sometimes, crappy Chinese-American food hits the spot. Sweet/sour pork, tomato beef chow mein, yee foo won ton, yang chow fried rice, egg rolls, etc…

It’s really simple, the place we like uses shredded thin nappa cabbage and lots of shredded thing carrot and chices that’s tossed in a bit too much of this sesame oil rice wine vinegar delicious mystery dressing, and as it sits it wilts a bit. There’s sprouts and those fried glass noodles ontop of that (lots of each), then the chicken which looks like its thin and fried and sliced or for the tofu they cube and roll in sesame seeds cuz i ask they don’t fry it (learned the hard way, it was like a grease sponge and not in a good way)

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You can find YC fried rice in China though. I have to say, there is a style of fried rice American style.

Lol…I’m sure there is some garbage out west too.

when I said China town, I meant NYC China town. I think you probably understood that but I wanted to make it clear :slight_smile:

I think this thread needs some pics!

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We live in the suburbs north of San Francisco, and the Chinese food options here are very limited. The menus of the few Chinese restaurants aren’t very interesting, but I have to say that the quality of the ingredients is good. Also, since there are generally two of us, we can’t order much of a variety without having too many leftovers.
Hope this doesn’t make me sound too whiny and Marin matrony!

What are those if you don’t mind me asking? I’m just picturing two slim jims.

Essentially chicken boullion (aka, msg lol).

Beef sticks are London broil in its best possible form lol. I’m not a London broil fan, but when you marinate them and load them with msg, you get the famous Chinese beef stick seen here. They run about a dollar to 1.25 per stick here in nj.


Elsewhere these are usually called satay. Interesting, I haven’t seen it called that in NYC places - I will look.

Limiting my answer to the classic bulletproof-glass-counter NYC Chinese takeout places, I can’t get enough of the fried chicken wings either. I especially love that they always give you the entire wing, not cut up into pieces. Also any of the soups, hot & sour, egg drop, chicken corn. Eggplant with black bean sauce, and that would be about it, I guess. And Mr Rat always gets LoMein.

I would get shrimp egg fu yung too, if any place around here (Astoria) made it. The classic version for me is the kind they had at all the chinas comidas joints (which are becoming fewer and farther between). The last time I got it from my favorite chicken wing place the gravy tasted like BBQ sauce and the omelet had broccoli and carrots in it - WTF?