Shared by Amy | Leave a comment
Updated on August 4, 2021
In this post, we’ll show you how to make comforting New England-style American Chop Suey. Ground beef is simmered in tomato sauce with a blend of spices, broth, and macaroni. This comfort dish also known as Goulash in some parts of the country makes ample servings and is perfect for any time of the year.
This American Chop Suey recipe is a classic dish that has been around for generations. It is easy, and delicious to make any time of the year, but is especially good when it starts to get cold out. Our recipe is made in one pot which makes clean up a breeze. The best part about this dish is how versatile it can be with different meats and vegetables depending on what you have on hand or your current cravings. So let’s get cooking!
Before starting this recipe, you’ll want to verify that you have the following ingredients:
- Ground beef ( 1 1/2 lbs.) – We used 80/20 but drained the excess grease.
- Beef broth – Adds flavor and moisture to the dish allow the noodles to simmer in this dish’s natural juices.
- Spices – Italian seasoning, onion powder, garlic powder, black pepper, and salt all add a classic flavor.
- Onion – A large yellow onion will add a nice flavor.
- Garlic – 3 large garlic cloves provide a deep, robust flavor.
- Red Bell Pepper – You can use red or green, but I had red on-hand, both will work.
- Celery – Adds a nice crunch and classic flavor. You only need a half cup or about 2 medium sized stalks.
- Canned Tomato – You will need an undrained can of diced tomatoes without flavoring.
- Tomato Paste – 3 tablespoons will add a rich flavor to enhance the tomato sauce base.
- Tomato Sauce – 16 ounces of sauce adds flavor and builds the sauce base.
- Worcestershire sauce – Adds a classic flavor to the dish that is needed for that special zing.
- Macaroni elbows – These are the type typically used, but you can use what you have on-hand.
We used the following equipment and supplies to make this recipe. Items that are optional or can be substituted will be noted.
Equipment and Supplies Needed
- 6- quart Cast Iron Dutch Oven – You will need this size pan to cook this meal in. Additionally, you can use a 6-quart stockpot, but I love the even heating from my Dutch Oven.
- Wooden spoon – To stir/mix the meal.
- Cutting board & knife – You will need this to dice the celery and onion.
- Measuring Cups and Spoons – To measure out the ingredients for this meal.
- Stove top – To cook this meal on.
- In a Dutch Oven, brown the ground beef over medium-high heat and drain any excess grease.
- Add in the onions, peppers, celery, garlic, spices, and tomato paste. Stir well over medium-high heat. Cook for 5 minutes.
- Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, beef broth, and Worcestershire sauce, and stir to combine.
- Turn up heat to high and add in the macaroni noodles.
- Covered, bring mixture to a boil for 5 minutes. Once boiling, remove the lid, reduce heat to medium, and simmer for an additional ten minutes carefully stirring every 3 minutes to prevent anything from sticking.
- Once noodles are al dente, turn off stove, and cover the meal. Allow it to stay warm until serving.
This recipe is easy to make if you know the right tips and tricks! Here are my tips for ensuring your American Chop Suey comes out perfectly.
- Add Cheese – freshly grated cheddar, or parmesan will adds a classic flavor to this dish. You can also use cream cheese to make it a creamier meal.
- Bell Peppers – The colors can be interchanged, but green does provide the dish with more color.
- Fresh herbs – Fresh basil or parsley can add a pop of flavor and color to the final dish.
- Meats – Add sweet Italian sausage, use ground turkey, chicken, or a leaner cut of beef to make this dish.
- Pasta – While elbow macaroni is the classic pasta shape, let’s face it–they all taste the same. Varities like bowtie, penne, or fussiloni work well!
- Broth – You can use chicken or beef broth without changing the flavor of this dish.
If you want to store your American Chop Suey, just follow these easy steps.
- Refrigerator – Simply put the lid on the cooled pan (never hot), and store it in the refridgerator for up to 3 days for best taste.
- Freezer – Freeze up to 3 months in an airtight bag or freezer safe container for freshness after thawing. – Keep frozen until ready to use then defrost overnight in fridge before reheating on stovetop or microwave.
Follow the recipe below to make American Chop Suey! This recipe makes 8 SERVINGS, but you can adjust the recipe card for other serving sizes.
Ground Beef Recipes to Try
If you enjoy this dish, chances are you will also love these ground beef dinners as well!
If you are looking for the best American chop suey recipe then you have come to the right place. It’s a New England classic and this recipe is the best because it was my Mom’s!
A simple tomato-based pasta dish with ground beef, onions, and green bell peppers.
I am pretty sure almost everyone has had this dish before if they grew up around Boston. Budget-friendly and a great go-to for comfort food!
- 1 Onion (chopped)
- 1/2 green bell pepper (chopped)
- 1 lb Ground beef
- 16 oz Elbow Macaroni
- 28 oz Crushed tomatoes
- 15 oz Tomato sauce
- 1/2 tbsp Italian seasoning
- 1 tsp Olive oil
- 1 tsp Black pepper
- 1 tsp Salt
- Frying pan
- Dutch oven
- Chef knife
- Cutting board
6 Simple Steps on how to make American Chop Suey
Follow these simple steps to make what I remember as my Mom’s American chop suey recipe. It is simple and easy and is a great recipe that your children will love!
Some people actually call it chili mac but you will not hear that name in New England that is for sure. You will also see it called American goulash. In the end, I think they are all about the same.
Prepare the ingredients
To get started you will need a bell pepper and a whole onion. Make sure you wash your green pepper before you start. I like to use yellow onion but sweet onion will also work well.
Now you want to dice up your green peppers and onion into 1/8″ pieces.
I like to prepare all the ingredients in their own bowls so they are ready to go when I start cooking. Being prepared really helps with you being able to concentrate on what your cooking.
Brown the ground beef
In a medium saucepan, bring a 1/2 tsp of olive oil to medium heat.
While that is heating up, cut your ground beef up into 1-inch pieces for browning. I cube the beef because the grass-fed beef comes in those square packages now.
Test the oil temperature by flicking a little bit of water into the pan. If it sizzles then it’s ready to go. Once the oil is hot enough, add in your ground beef.
Space out your ground beef into pieces a little bit so that it can brown and release the water that is in it. Let it cook and brown before you break it up. Browning the hamburger is key to bringing out the great flavor. I have a complete recipe that shows how to cook ground beef this way.
To spice up the beef a bit you could add some Worcestershire sauce to it. It is not in my recipe but it very common to use.
Make sure that you check if the ground beef has gone bad.
Cook the macaroni elbows
In a medium pot bring water to a boil, add salt, and the elbow macaroni.
Bring it back to a boil and cook the macaroni al dente. Once it’s cooked go ahead and strain the water out and add a little olive oil to the pasta to keep it from sticking.
Now that your ground beef is browned you can set aside the meat in another dish and return the pan to the burner.
Add a little olive oil to the bottom of the pan and throw in your diced bell peppers and onions. Saute them until the onions start to become translucent.
You could substitute the green bell pepper for a red bell pepper it will taste about the same.
If the fond on the bottom of the pan starts to burn, add in a little of the tomato sauce and stir it around. You will see the fond unstick from the pan. The fond adds great flavor to the sauce.
Make the sauce
Once your green peppers and onions are cooked, add your crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, Italian seasoning, and ground beef to the pan. Stir it all together and let it all simmer for 20-30 minutes.
You also want to add salt to the sauce at this point. Taste it. If it needs more salt then go ahead and add it.
Now if you don’t have any tomato sauce you can make it with a tomato paste. Follow the directions on the can but you typically will be adding water to the tomato paste.
Bring it all together
Once your sauce has simmered and melded all of the flavors from the fond, sauce, meat, and seasonings together add it to your elbow macaroni. Mix it all together well and SERVE!
Don’t forget to add freshly grated parmesan cheese when you serve it. It makes the dish! I have a post talking about if parmesan cheese goes bad or not.
American chop suey is so good reheated the next day. I am not sure what it is but the taste is amazing after it has sat in the fridge.
I have another Pasta Recipe you would really enjoy…. Best Spaghetti Meat Sauce
Where did american chop suey come from?
American Chop Suey is a New England cuisine. Outside of New England, it might be called “Goulash” or “Jonny Marzetti”.
How long can american chop suey last in the fridge?
This dish is good in the fridge for 3-4 days. I actually think that it tastes the best on the 2nd day.
How long can american chop suey last in the fridge?
You can reheat American chop suey in the microwave or on the stovetop. I recommend adding a touch of water or beef stock to help keep it from drying out.
|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 25g||33%|
|Saturated Fat 10g||48%|
|Total Carbohydrate 36g||13%|
|Dietary Fiber 6g||20%|
|Total Sugars 11g|
|Vitamin C 24mg||118%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
You might know this as beef-a-roni, or macaroni and beef, or more generically as goulash, but American chop suey is a beloved and economical mixture of ground beef, elbow macaroni, and tomatoes. It’s appealing comfort food and a highly adaptable recipe that makes the best of pantry staples.
What’s curious about the naming of this recipe is that it’s a far cry from the Chinese-American version of chop suey, which typically includes meat, bean sprouts, mushrooms, and rice. There are many origin stories about this dish that believably position it as Chinese-American, but the most likely genesis comes from a Cantonese dish called tsap seui (chop suey) which roughly translates to “miscellaneous leftovers.”
American chop suey recipes are typically defined by Italian-American flavors. Extra garlic and tomatoes give this version an abundance of flavor. The green bell pepper is optional. Use a yellow or any other bell pepper you might have on hand or skip it altogether. This recipe makes a big batch, and like chili, the leftovers are better the next day. Serve with warm bread or dinner rolls and a tossed green salad on the side.
American chop suey Indian style is a delightful dish of stir-fried vegetables cooked in a sweet and tangy sauce and served on a bed of crispy noodles.
American chopsuey veg is a staple item on the menus of most Chinese restaurants and street-food stalls in India. This immensely popular Indo-Chinese one-pot dish is usually vegetarian.
Our veg American chopsuey recipe is an Indo-Chinese fusion dish that has little relationship to the American chop suey found in the United States of America, supposedly a fusion of Chinese and Italian immigrant food.
American chop suey in the USA is quite different from its Indo Chinese chop suey recipe common in India. While the tomato base and vegetable ingredients added is similar in both versions of American chop suey, the similarity ends there. While our chopsuey recipe is usually vegetarian – a bed of crispy noodles topped with a tangy and sweet tomato and stir fried vegetable sauce, the US version of American chop suey is traditionally made of ground meat, elbow macaroni, and vegetables in a tomato base. The American version of American chop suey is a pasta dish, which is particularly popular in New England.
Chop suey is translated as “savoury mess”, which is an apt description of the dish.
Follow our chopsuey recipe and learn how to make American chop suey at home and enjoy this delicious savoury dish of crunchy crispy noodles and stir-fried vegetables in a sweet and sour-tangy sauce.
Tips on how to make Chop Suey:
Preparing crispy noodles is simple and quick. Follow the instructions on the packet to cook them perfectly in salted water. If making veg American chopsuey, you can use hakka, whole-wheat, or all-purpose flour (maida) noodles, or if you’re not vegetarian, you can also use egg noodles.
Drain the cooked noodles in a strainer or colander. Run cold water over them to stop the cooking and to ensure that they do not stick to each other. Toss with 1 teaspoon of oil so that they do not stick.
Spread the noodles on a large plate or tray to cool. Once cool, toss with a bit of corn flour, and then fry them in hot oil till light golden and crispy. Do this in batches.
To save time, you can prepare the noodles ahead of time and store them in an airtight container. With the noodles ready, you just need to make the vegetable sauce which is fairly quick.
For an interesting texture, combine crispy deep-fried noodles and soft-cooked noodles as we have done in our veg American chopsuey recipe below.
For frying the noodles, you can use peanut oil or sunflower oil or any other neutral tasting oil with a high smoke point – that is any oil that is good for deep frying and one that does not start smoking at low temperatures.
You can add any vegetables of your choice to American chopsuey veg like carrot, green beans, capsicum (green bell pepper), and cabbage as are traditionally used or even broccoli, button mushroom, baby corn, snap pea, celery, and cauliflower. While we prefer our chopsuey recipe traditional, you can also toss in bean sprouts and tofu if you’re feeling experimental.
While stir-frying, the vegetables should be partially cooked as they will continue to cook after adding the sauce. They should be tender but have a slight crunch.
Check the final taste and adjust seasoning of the veg American chopsuey. Be careful not to add too much salt because the soy sauce and ketchup already have salt in them. You can add crushed red pepper flakes for more heat. For a spicier taste, add green chilli sauce or increase the black pepper or red chilli sauce.
To assemble American chop suey, place a portion of the crispy noodles in a deep serving dish, preferably a soup dish. Ladle the vegetable sauce over the nest of noodles and spread it evenly.
Make sure to pour the sauce over the crispy noodles just before serving, otherwise the crispy noodles will turn soft and soggy. Top with more crispy noodles if you like.
You can also garnish with a few spring onions (scallions) and chopped coriander leaves.
Some recipes for American chopsuey call for topping the chopsuey with a fried egg sunny side up (bull’s eye), or even a thin omelette cut into strips. Omit eggs if you want a vegetarian American chop suey. And if you are non-vegetarian, you can try a chicken chop suey recipe as a variation.
Serve American chop suey immediately while piping hot.
Our veg American chop suey recipe is a wonderful option for brunch, lunch, or a weekday dinner. Kids love it too, so it’s a good choice for children’s birthday parties.
Get the step by step Indian style American Chop Suey recipe with all ingredients and cooking method in the recipe and video below.
Introduce a New England tradition at the Friendsgiving table this year! This popular cheesy pasta bake is made with hearty Italian sausage, tomato sauce, McCormick® Garlic Powder, Basil and Oregano – and uncooked elbow macaroni to save time.
SIGN-UP FOR OUR
FREE MEAL PLANNER
It’s your way to plan meals, save recipes and spices, get inspired — and receive special offers and discounts.
Plan your meals, build your digital pantry, save recipes, and more!
- 1 pound ground Italian sausage Substitutions available
- ground beef
Preheat oven to 375°F. Cook sausage in large saucepan on medium-high heat. Remove sausage from pan with slotted spoon. Drain fat in pan. Heat oil in same saucepan on medium heat. Add onion; cook and stir 3 minutes or until tender.
Stir in tomatoes, water, tomato sauce, spinach, sausage, garlic powder, 1 teaspoon of the basil, oregano, salt and pepper. Bring to boil. Remove from heat. Stir in macaroni and 1 cup of the cheese. Pour mixture into 13×9-inch baking dish. Cover with foil.
Bake 25 minutes, stirring halfway through cooking. Remove foil. Sprinkle with remaining 1 cup cheese and 1/2 teaspoon basil. Bake, uncovered, 5 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
- Total Time 30m
- Prep Time 15 m
- Calories 351
If you are looking for a new pasta recipe, then American Chop Suey will definitely be a treat for your taste buds. This scrumptious recipe is made with simple ingredients available in your nearby stores. The amazing flavours of this mouth-watering delicacy will take you to cloud 9. One good thing about this recipe is that it is healthy and requires very less effort from your side. The combination of beef and macaroni makes this recipe even more irresistible. Serve this lip-smacking dish to your friends and family on special occasions and leave them overjoyed. If you are craving for a healthy recipe, try out this delectable American dish. You can also carry it to work or have as your dinner. Your kids are going to love this recipe. So grab your aprons and try out this recipe.
Ingredients of American Chop Suey
- 3 cup pasta macaroni
- 3 cloves garlic
- 200 gm lean ground beef
- 2 medium onion
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 3 tablespoon tomato juice
- 1 red bell pepper
- 3/4 cup tomato ketchup
- 1/4 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 3 1/2 tablespoon butter
- kosher salt as required
- 2 tablespoon tomato puree
- water as required
How to make American Chop Suey
To prepare this delicious recipe, wash onions and red bell pepper under running water and place them on a chopping board. Finely chop the onions and deseed the bell pepper. Slice the bell pepper and mince garlic cloves. Rinse the ground beef under running cold water and then pat dry.
On the other hand, heat 6 cups of water in a deep utensil and add macaroni to it with a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil until it becomes soft. Once done, drain the water with the help of a strainer and keep aside.
Next, heat butter in a pan over medium flame and add onions along with bell peppers in it. Stir until the onions become translucent. Add garlic and saute for 2 minutes.
After 2 minutes add beef stir until it breaks into small pieces and turns brown in colour. Now, add sugar, salt, black pepper, oregano and mix well for 3 minutes.
Once the ingredients mix well, add tomato ketchup, tomato juice along with tomato puree and stir. Simmer for 3 minutes and add macaroni. Stir occasionally and make sure that the ingredients are well incorporated. Remove from heat and transfer It to a serving plate. Enjoy!
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my Disclosure Policy
Tender slices of chicken and a bounty of veggies make this chop suey recipe a favorite of mine to cook for the family. In less than 20 minutes, I can make this tasty-as-takeout version that’s healthier with less oil and fresher ingredients. Plus, my kids just love saying “chop suey” which means they happily eat every last bite!
Best Chop Suey Recipe
If you regularly order chop suey from your local Chinese restaurant, you will want to try this recipe. It’s simple, fresh, and you’ll be amazed that you can make it even better than they can. That’s because you’re making it completely fresh without excess oil or additives to bog down the flavors.
Chop Suey Ingredients
- Thinly sliced chicken breasts – We’re going to velvet them (see below) so they will basically melt in your mouth!
- Baking soda – This velvets the chicken
- Garlic – Mince it up!
- Veggies – The best chop suey veggies are sliced white onion, thinly-sliced carrots, bok choy, sliced mushrooms, and bean sprouts.
- Chop suey sauce – You’ll make this with soy sauce, oyster sauce, Shaoxing wine, sesame oil, cornstarch, white pepper, and water.
Easy Chop Suey Recipe
In 17 minutes flat, chop suey will be ready to serve fresh from your kitchen. All it takes are fresh veggies and chicken plus a few staples you likely have in your pantry and fridge already to whip up the sauce. Once you make it, the whole family will request it again and again!
I love Chinese food. My favorite food is #25.
How do you Make Chop Suey from Scratch
You’ll velvet the chicken by coating it in baking soda and letting it sit for 20 to 30 minutes. While you wait, make your sauce. Then heat vegetable oil in your wok or skillet. Add the garlic and onion and cook for a minute, then add the chicken and cook for an additional minute. When your chicken turns white, add the veggies in except the bean sprouts. Stir fry it together for a minute, then put the bean sprouts and sauce in. When the sauce thickens, it’s ready!
Expert Tips and Tricks for the Perfect Chop Suey Every Time
- Take the time to tenderize the chicken. If you plan ahead, you won’t waste time waiting and you get the most divine texture from the chicken, just like at your favorite Chinese place.
- It’s fine to replace some veggies. Not a fan of mushrooms? You can leave them out. Can’t find fresh bok choy? Try broccoli or spinach instead!
- Customize it your way. Yes, you can make this meatless if you prefer. You can also make it gluten-free by choosing a gluten-free soy sauce and oyster sauce.
What is chop suey made of?
Chop suey is made of tender slices of chicken and a bounty of vegetables that typically include carrots, onions, bok choy, mushrooms, and bean sprouts. This all comes together with a savory sauce.
What is vegetable chop suey made of?
It is made with onions, garlic, carrots, mushrooms, bok choy, and bean sprouts. You can keep it with just veggies or add in chicken as this recipe shows.
What is the difference between chow mein and chop suey?
The biggest difference is that chop suey is an American creation based on Chinese cooking styles. Also, chow mein is all about the noodles whereas chop suey is most often served on top of rice.
What is the difference between lo mein and chop suey?
Lo mein is a noodle dish while chop suey is almost always served with rice. Chop suey is all about the veggies and chicken (or meat) in the sauce while lo mein has a focus on the noodles and discovering treasures of ingredients tucked within them.
Is chop suey healthy?
When you make chop suey at home, it is healthy. This is because you’re using less oil than a restaurant would use. You’re also using fresh vegetables which are great for good health.
Does chop suey have sauce?
Yes, and the sauce is savory, perfect for bringing the chicken and veggies together.
How to Cook Chop Suey
Chop suey is cooked on your stovetop. It’s awesome because it includes plenty of nutrition all in one wok or skillet.
How do you thicken chop suey?
With cornstarch in the chop suey sauce, it will thicken beautifully. If yours is too watery though and your measuring is off, you can add a little cornstarch and water as a slurry to thicken it up.
What goes well with Chop Suey
I love to serve chop suey with steamed white rice but you can top it onto lo mein noodles if you’d prefer. Since it has tons of veggies in it, I often serve egg rolls or a soup like egg drop or hot and sour to add more to the meal.
How to Store Chop Suey
If any leftovers remain, put them in airtight containers in your fridge to preserve your chop suey.
How Long Does Chop Suey Last?
In your fridge, you can safely keep chop suey for about 3 days.
Can You Freeze Chop Suey?
Yes! Simply put it in freezer bags and lay it flat or put in airtight containers. It will keep for about 3 months.
How to Reheat Chop Suey?
From frozen, let it thaw in the fridge overnight. When you’re ready for your chop suey, simply warm it in a skillet on the stovetop.
Watch How To Make Chop Suey (Video)
Well, any noodle dish is Chinese for us, but, this one’s an innovation by the West Chinese Restaurant. For AMERICAN CHOP SUEY have fried noodles, tangy sauces, and vegetables to add on to its delight. The sauce with a combo of veggies just slips smoothly on our tongue and the crisp of noodles just adds on to the pleasure of eating.
I ate Chop Suey in a Restaurant in California and it was very tasty and sumptuous. I asked my friend who is from China about the recipe and I made it at my home.
I am the kind of person who searches for everything and I search about this also on the internet. Chop Suey is an American-Chinese dish and it has many conflicting stories from where Chop Suey came from.
Chicken Shop Suey is far and beyond one of the most popular dishes from Chinese takeaways and also a very healthy one. And this is where to find these healthy takeaways. Even better, it can also be a pretty healthy option. The chicken is usually lean chicken breast – a good source of protein, plus low in saturated fat. ISN’T IT HEALTHY?
Come I will take you to a colourful bowl of eatable is just the outcome of the American Vegetable Chop Suey Recipe. It’s yummy, its absolute pleasure to your taste buds, it’s a delight to watch and amazing to savour.
Also, there are other recipes that you can have as starters, let’s check them out.
1. Sous Vide Potatoes– Sous vide is a great way to perfectly cook one of the most versatile and easily available ingredients; that are potatoes.
2. Grilled Green Tomatoes– Make use of unripened green tomatoes, grilled and dressed with basil sauce, in this simple side that goes well with fried chicken or grilled steak.
3. Grilled Asparagus– The special thing about this recipe is that it’s so simple. Fresh asparagus with a little oil, salt, and pepper is cooked quickly over high heat on the grill. Enjoy the natural flavor of your veggies.
4. Eggplant Napoleon– These eggplant napoleon appetizers are stacked with slices of baked eggplant, tomatoes, and mozzarella cheese. It’s the perfect appetizer for a summer dinner.
Ingredients for American Vegetable Chop Suey Recipe
|Length Chopped Onions||1 unit|
|Diagonal Chopped Beans||½ cup|
|Thin Length Chopped Carrot||½ cup|
|Thin length Chopped Green Capsicum||1 unit|
|White Chilli Powder||¼ tsp|
|Tomato Ketchup||½ cup|
|Red Chilli Sauce||½ tbsp|
|Corn flour||2 tbsp|
|Chopped Cabbage||2 tbsp|
|Crispy Fried Noodles||1 plate|
For crispy fried noodles take dry noodles, boil them and then fry them. Or simply take noodles and deep fry them.
How Much Time it will Take?
|Preparation Time||Cooking Time||Total Time|
|10 MINS||30 MINS||40 MINS|
American Vegetable Chop Suey Recipe
Just as mother serves you as a friend, guide and loves this delightful CHOP SUEY serves you as a pleasured savory and a treat to watch.