A collection of top-notch restaurants offering a variety of fresh and tasty Chinese fare

Americans have a love-hate relationship with Chinese food. They love it for its rich flavors, satisfying sauces, tender meats, and plump vegetables. The extreme abundance of Chinese restaurants in big cities (and rural villages) proves this. But somewhere along the way, Chinese food became known as a generic, salty, and cheap cuisine. And as much as people adore its flavor spectrum, they gasp at the nutritional content, and grow dehydrated from sodium overdoses.

Good news for those in Salt Lake City: this valley's best Chinese restaurants have figured out how to craft tasty dishes without sacrificing freshness - or relying on MSG as a primary spice. The kitchen of The Szechuan Garden, for example, is led by a five-star master chef, and is staffed with yet more chefs hailing from Hong Kong to San Francisco. This nationally recognized establishment offers creek-side patio dining and elegantly presented dishes. The Shanghai Cafe specializes in vegetarian cuisine, providing non-meat-eaters with more variety than just tofu as a main dish. In fact, the imitation “chicken” used at this restaurant is so tasty that non-vegetarians opt for this in favor of the real deal.

If you feeling like eating at home, call Sampan for delivery or takeout; this reliably good restaurant offers enormous portions for little cost. Or if you prefer to stick with a familiar - though high-end - chain, head downtown and to P.F. Chang's.

Lastly, if you like dim sum as much as I do, then consider heading to Hong Kong Tea House or Ho Ho Gourmet.

Shanghai Cafe
Photo courtesy of Jennifer Boren


For Chinese fans with vegetarian preferences, Shanghai Cafe is the best place in Salt Lake City. And though eating vegetarian in many other establishments means you'll find yourself ordering tofu or strictly vegetables, Shanghai Cafe offers...  Read More

Photo courtesy of Jennifer Boren


Situated along 700 East Street, Sampan enjoys an extremely central location. Whether you live in Sugarhouse or are staying downtown, you'll find that it takes no more than 10 minutes to reach this restaurant. But if you don't feel like leaving...  Read More

Jasmine China Bistro & Sushi Bar
Photo courtesy of LifeSupercharger


Chinese food in America has a reputation for poor nutritional qualities. However, eating Chinese food doesn't mean you must sabotage your health. Jasmine China Bistro & Sushi Bar strives to create tasty - yet nutritionally sound - dishes...  Read More

South Salt Lake City
Ho Ho Gourmet


Few restaurants downtown offer better values for the buck than this casual eatery, whose tempting aroma calls out to passersby day and night. Step in, and you'll notice immediately that Ho Ho does not try to dazzle patrons with kicky decorations...  Read More

P.F. Chang's China Bistro
Photo courtesy of EvelynGiggles


In a sea of generic-seeming, hole-in-the-wall Chinese restaurants, P.F. Chang's stands out. Operating more than 200 branches worldwide, this high-end restaurant offers a level of quality available at few other eateries in the same genre. Serving...  Read More



Located about 20 minutes south of downtown Salt Lake City, but very near the mouths of Big and Little Cottonwood canyons, Asian Star is one of the valley's most modern and popular Chinese and Asian fusion restaurants. Offering a variety Chinese...  Read More

Szechuan Garden
Photo courtesy of Marc van der Chijs


The Szechuan Garden is owned and operated by Master Chef Chang. Originally from China, Chang has been cooking Szechuan cuisine for more than 35 years in elite restaurants around the world. Not only has this restaurant earned the “Best Chinese...  Read More

Hong Kong Tea House
Photo courtesy of Jennifer Boren


Hong Kong Tea House is tucked into the western end of downtown Salt Lake City. Serving exclusively Chinese food, it offers a selection of entrees as well as well an extremely tantalizing dim sum menu. This Chinese equivalent of tapas features...  Read More



Located just ten miles north of Salt Lake City in Bountiful, this restaurant has been named one of the top 25 Chinese restaurants in the USA by a leading travel publication and has won numerous “Best of State” and “Best Chinese in Salt Lake...  Read More


Meet Christine Balaz

Christine Balaz began her unexpected writing career in Salt Lake City with her first book on Wasatch Skiing and Travel in 2006. On the subject of Utah, Christine has written numerous...  More About Christine