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Hutong
Photograph: Jason J Bonello

The 29 best Chinese restaurants in NYC

The best Chinese food in NYC includes classic dim sum destinations and an exciting new flaming Peking duck with limited availability.

Written by
Christina Izzo
,
Dan Q Dao
&
Amber Sutherland-Namako
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New York City has a long lineage of excellent Chinese restaurants showcasing the culinary traditions of nearly every province in China, as well as the fusion fare created by immigrants in the United States. Whether you're looking to sample fiery Szechuan fare at tiny Chinatown restaurants, experience a classic weekend dim sum brunch at an area icon, or grab top-notch takeout and delivery to enjoy at home, the city has an abundance of options. These are the best Chinese restaurants in NYC.

RECOMMENDED: See all of the best restaurants in NYC

Find a Chinese restaurant in NYC

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Chinatown

New York's first dim sum house opened in 1920 and developed a devoted following for its almond cookies and moon cakes. In 2010, the 90-year-old stalwart went through a remodel. The most important tweaks, though, were behind the scenes. Now, the charming old-school institution prepares each plate to order, unlike some of the busy banquet halls that dominate Chinatown's dim sum scene.

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Midtown East

A spectacular, glittering dining room with Art Deco style for days and peripheral design elements like a long glass hallway with rows of wine bottles illuminated like heist-worthy works of art make Hutong an impressive address. Thankfully, the menu lives up to the aesthetic. Rosé Champagne shrimp dumplings sparkle, too, the mapo tofu has a welcome heat and roasted Peking duck skin crackles like it should. Hutong also recently introduced a special flaming Peking duck that’s only available three nights a week. 

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Chelsea

Xiaotu “John” Zhang's expanding Chinese chain has developed quite a cult following. Zhang brought real-deal Szechuan food to Chelsea when he opened a branch there in 1998. His menu passionately describes the history and cooking process behind each dish, providing diners a comprehensive primer on the feast to come. Start with a sinus-clearing bowl of dandan noodles, loaded with dried peppercorns, or opt for the gui zhou chicken, which combines dry-fried hot chilies and tongue-tingling Szechuan peppercorns. If you’re looking for something milder, order a basket of eight succulent pork soup dumplings.

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Flushing
  • price 2 of 4

This slightly upscale restaurant serves its modern dishes, like the Tibetan-style pork rib and orange congee with millet, in a theatrical and playful fashion with bright colors and surprising plating. 

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • East Village
  • price 1 of 4

Chinese hot pot, customarily stewed with thinly sliced meats, vegetables and stock, gets a brothless showcase at this East Village restaurant from owner Ning Amelie Kang and chef Qilong Zhao. Named literally for “numbing" and "spicy" qualities, the restaurant’s starring dish is a variation on Chongqing-hailing dry pot, a stir-fry-like spread built with a choice of 52 add-ins. Meat options include beef tenderloin, pig artery, fish fillets, squid balls and frog. Beyond the pot, diners can pull up to a 15-seat communal table or a marble-topped counter for snacks like steamed egg custard.

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • West Village

Dressed in farm-to-table decor with potted plants in the windows, blond wood pillars and gingham booths, this place has an eclectic, easy to share menu. Head straight for the family-style entrées to mix and match. 

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Chinatown
  • price 1 of 4

This Hong Kong–style institution is a favorite for its late-night hours and consistently good eats. Choose from dozens of noodle variations—available pan-fried or in broth with add-ons like shrimp dumplings, pig’s feet and beef balls. And don’t overlook the rest of the menu: One signature stir-fry features Chinese flowering chives sautéed with your choice of duck, scallops, fish or squid.

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Chinatown
  • price 1 of 4

This Chinese chainlet highlights the mouth-tingling cuisine of Xi'an, an ancient capital along China's Silk Road. This location offers the same short menu of spicy noodles and cumin-spiced burgers in roomier digs. Unlike its sparely appointed siblings, a mix of antique touches and modern effects decorate the 40-seat restaurant.

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Chinatown
  • price 2 of 4

This 1963-vintage Chinatown eatery reopened in 2011 with the original owner's grandson at the helm. Most of the menu's Shanghai classics remain the same—like soup dumplings, crispy whole fish and cold sesame noodles. There is also an extensive array of dim sum and lunch specials.

Lan Sheng
Photograph: Lindsay Taylor

10. Lan Sheng

A newer addition to Midtown's roster of superior Szechuan eats holds its own next to stalwarts Szechuan Gourmet and Wu Liang Ye. Lan Sheng delivers on spice and complex seasoning in dishes like toothsome dandan noodles topped with wilted spinach and a savory crumbling of pork and Szechuan peppercorns. The sautéed green beans with minced pork are tender inside, with blistered, crunchy exteriors, and sliced lamb with Szechuan pickles and celery is a fiery, fatty pleasure.

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Sunset Park

This 450-seat Sunset Park palace is one of our favorite spots in the city for dim sum. Everything is made to order in the open kitchen, like jumbo pork and shrimp shumai, intoxicating crab soup dumplings, crispy suckling pig and soy-sauced duck tongues.

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Sunset Park
  • price 1 of 4

A true mom-and-pop shop, this takeout spot is run by a couple hailing from Kunming, the capital city of the southeast Yunnan province. The local cuisine borrows from the citrus and herb focus of nearby Southeast Asia. Best-sellers include hot-and-sour soup with pork dumplings and skinny house-made rice noodles served cold with ground pork, roasted peanuts, and a bracing, sweet mix of chili oil, vinegar and soy sauce. More noodles are available in a light bone broth, topped with goodies like crispy pig skin or braised chicken.

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • East Village

Known for his fiery Szechuan food, Taiwan native Han Chiang has earned a cult following in the City of Brotherly Love and since marched into NYC. Han Dynasty's cheery yellow walls and Chinese oil paintings surround spiced chicken wings, chilled chunks of bone-in rabbit with peanuts and delicate pork wontons. The much-discussed dandan noodles are springier than most and with a deft balance between throat-buzzing chili oil and mollifying sesame paste.

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Lower East Side
  • price 1 of 4

The best dishes at this noodle-based operation pack the heat and deep, complex flavors of Henan. In a spicy beef brisket dish, a tangy sauce bathes a pile of noodles all topped with chopped cilantro. In the aptly titled big tray chicken, a bright-orange, chili-spiked pool of oily broth is rich with star anise and cumin. Like most of the menu at Spicy Village, it’s best ordered with rusticly-textured hui mei.

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • East Village
  • price 2 of 4

This is Szechuan Mountain House's first expansion outside of Queens, and its ambiance is above-and-beyond. The chili, garlic, fermented vegetables and pork on the string beans is a hat trick of flavor—freshness, spice and umami. The jellyfish salad has a dazzling, refreshing crunch. And overall, if Manhattan won’t go to the Mountain, we’re lucky the Mountain has come to Manhattan.

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Chinatown
  • price 1 of 4

Your waiter parades the roasted duck past your party before placing it on the center show table. A chef brandishes his knives dramatically, then slices the aromatic, crisp-skinned, succulent meat with flair. Folks at other tables drool with envy. (Don’t they know that this establishment doesn’t require you to order the specialty in advance? Pity.) Select the “three-way,” and your duck will yield the main course (complete with pancakes and plum sauce for rolling up the goods), a vegetable stir-fry with leftover bits of meat and a cabbage soup made with the remaining bone.

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Chinatown
  • price 1 of 4
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Opened in 1938, this basement joint doles out old-fashioned Chinese-American dishes like chop suey and sweet-and-sour pork. It has an adjacent operation upstairs and an even more recent outdoor seating area, making it easier to nab a spot at the super-popular NYC classic. 

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Flushing
  • price 1 of 4

Spartan furnishings focus all attention on Little Pepper’s stunning, spicy Szechuan fare. The braised sliced fish comes simmered in a radiating scarlet broth reminiscent of a Thai curry. Dan dan noodles take on new life here, buoyed with fiery minced pork. Come prepared for the Szechuan pepper: Even simple appetizers like the sliced beef blister with firecracker heat.

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • East Village
  • price 2 of 4

Artist and Hunan native Chao Wang opened this slurp shop to bring a taste of his home to NYC. Upon arrival, you'll hear the symphony of slurping noises in the dining room. Join in the chorus with a bowl of Hometown Lu Fen, piled with sliced beef, char siu pork and a jammy soft-boiled egg over tender rice noodles in a rich broth, all served with a fiery bowl of chili oil. You'll leave with full stomachs, burning mouths and outfits covered with chili oil splatter-stains —a small price to pay for the bowled and the beautiful.

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Flushing
  • price 1 of 4

Weave through the throngs of pedestrians outside the 7 train to find this basement-level food court where you can feast on items like hand-pulled noodles at Lanzhou and bubble tea at Kung Fu Tea. Pro tip: Go with a group so you can sample more food.

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Lower East Side
  • price 2 of 4

Dozens of congee varieties aren’t even the tip of the iceberg at this sprawling, delightful LES spot. Order a couple of colorful cocktails and choose from page after page of menu items like sea cucumber preparations, several soup varieties, all manner of seafood, and plentiful beef, pork, poultry and vegetable entrées. 

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Tasty Hand-Pulled Noodles Inc.
  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Chinatown
  • price 1 of 4

Yes, the noodles are hand-pulled at this tiny Chinese eatery, and yes, they're mighty tasty. Wheat-based strands are served in the broth of your choice, with a laundry list of options like fish balls, Fujianese wontons and fried tofu. 

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Lower East Side
  • price 2 of 4

 

Hot pots are the raison d'être of this bi-level joint, decorated with black-lacquered tables and red banquettes. Bases include kimchi, pork-bone and congee broths, loaded with the meat (beef stomach, pig brain), vegetable (seaweed knot, lotus root) and noodle (udon, ramen) of your choice. Dishes like curry chicken breast and beef in black-pepper sauce are also on the menu.

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  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • East Village

This East Village spot serves vegan Szechuan fare like mapo tofu, General Tso's mushroom and dan dan noodles made with Impossible meat. The cozy 6th Street spot has a second location in the West Village. 

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