American Chop Suey

A hearty dish that goes by many different names, but is delicious all the same! You will love this amazing dinner recipe for American chop suey.

American chop suey with ground beef and rice on a platter.

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What is American Chop Suey?

This American chop suey recipe can go by so many names. Some that you might have heard of before are either goulash or hamburger casserole. It honestly depends on what part of the country you live in.

But essentially American chop suey is a savory blend of pasta or rice, ground beef, a tomato-based sauce or creamy sauce, and anything else the cook wants to add in, sometimes even vegetables.

What is the Difference Between Chop Suey and American Chop Suey?

Chinese chop suey is generally known to be savory and spicy in flavor. It is a recipe that is filled with rice noodles, steamed rice or fried rice, vegetables like cabbage, bean sprouts, and carrots, along with protein like chicken, beef, or fish. It is served in a spicy sauce that is more clear or light in color.

American chop suey is vastly different, even though the name is not. For American chop suey, the sauce base will be more sweet and spicy and have an orange-like tomato base or cream of chicken or mushroom sauce. It is filled with rice or macaroni noodles (other noodles will work too!), and plenty of ground beef. This has been a comfort food for generations.

Why This Recipe is So Good

The very best reason this American chop suey recipe is so good is that it is so simple. You can make this recipe with items you already have at home and it will not take a long time to finish. You might even think of this dish as an American goulash.

Plus, whenever I make this recipe it brings back all of the nostalgia of when my mom would make family dinner and we would be able to sit around the dinner table and just enjoy being a family.

Easy On the Budget and a Great Way to Use Pantry Staples

One of the best things about American chop suey is that you can make this recipe generally with what you have in your pantry and it will always taste delicious. You can spice it up or leave it the way it is. Either way, it will taste great.

American Chop Suey Ingredients

To make this American chop suey recipe, you will need:

  • Ground beef – I like to use ground chuck.
  • Celery
  • Onion – you can use either a white onion or a yellow onion.
  • Mushrooms
  • Cream of Chicken Soup
  • Water
  • Soy sauce
  • Rice – cook according to package directions .
  • Chow Mein Noodles
American chop suey ingredients.

How to Make American Chop Suey

Making American chop suey is easy! Here are the recipe steps:

  1. Brown beef over medium heat, then add celery and onion to simmer in a pan.
browned ground beef and chopped vegetables for American chop suey in a pan.
  1. Stir in the mushrooms, soup, water, soy sauce, and rice.
adding rice, cream of chicken soup, and water to a pan for American Chop Suey.
  1. Pour the mixture into a casserole dish.
  2. Bake at 350°F for an hour.
  3. Remove the dish from the oven and sprinkle chow mein noodles on top.
  4. Return the dish to the oven and bake for another 15 minutes.
American chop suey serving on a plate and a fork.

How to Modify This Recipe to Your Preferences or Diet

  • If you do not like celery, try replacing it with another vegetable like chopped carrots.
  • Instead of using soy sauce, you can always substitute it for coconut aminos to cut back on the sodium a little bit.
  • You can use frozen cauliflower rice in place of the actual rice and it will still taste just as delicious.
  • If you aren’t a fan of cream of chicken soup you can always replace it with cream of mushroom soup.
  • Switch out the protein. Substitute ground chicken or ground turkey for the ground beef.
  • Add a teaspoon or two of Worcestershire sauce for a boost of flavor.

How to Store American Chop Suey

For this American chop suey, you will want to store it in an airtight container in the fridge. It will last up to 5 days in the fridge, so it’s perfect for leftovers!

How to Freeze American Chop Suey

The American chop suey recipe might be a little tricky to freeze with the noodles already cooked. But, if you want to freeze it, store it in either a freezer-safe container or zip lock bag after it has cooled down.

This recipe will stay fresh for up to 2 months in the freezer.

Best Way to Reheat American Chop Suey

The best way to reheat this chop suey recipe is in the microwave. It is quick and simple and you will be ready to eat in no time.

When you reheat it in the oven it can dry it out a bit. Consider adding a little bit of chicken broth before you reheat it if you choose to use the oven.

overhead view of American chop suey with rice on a platter.

Great Recipes with Rice

Favorite Ground Beef Recipes

Check out more of my easy dinner recipes and the best ground beef recipes here on CopyKat!

The recipe source is Lynn Ordorf, Pueblo, CO. This recipe was given to my mom back in 1976.

American chop suey with ground beef and rice on a platter.

American Chop Suey

American Chop Suey with rice is a dinner classic from the 1970s.
5 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate Add to Collection
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: American Chop Suey
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 468kcal


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 2 cups chopped celery
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 4 ounces canned mushrooms
  • 10 ounces canned cream of chicken soup
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 4 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup rice
  • 1 can chow mein noodles


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F
  • Brown the ground beef in a skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add the celery and onion, and reduce heat to simmer.
  • Add mushrooms, soup, water, soy sauce, and rice.
  • Pour the chop suey into a casserole dish.
  • Bake at 350°F for 1 hour.
  • Top with chow mein noodles and bake for 15 minutes more.


Calories: 468kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 86mg | Sodium: 1627mg | Potassium: 652mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 355IU | Vitamin C: 3.5mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 3.8mg

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of's Dining Out in the Home, and's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Ashley D

    5 stars
    My grandma used to make hamburger chop suey when I was a child. I recently asked my mom for the recipe, attempted to make it at home, and was incredibly disappointed. I figured I’d give it one more go when I found your recipe. Thank you for giving me a taste of my childhood. It’s like I’m 8 years old again and my grandma is still around.

  2. Lisa

    American Chop Suey in New England is a little different but also diner food and popular in homes and school lunches in the 70s. Hamburg, onions, macaroni and tomato sauce. If you want to get “fancy” you might add garlic or other seasonings. And yes, no actual resemblance to any Chinese dish.

  3. Stephanie Manley

    This recipe was one given to my Mom about 40 years ago. It’s what Kathy Perez called American Chop Suey.

  4. Forgetaboutit

    How is that even chop suey? Do you know what chop suey is? Where’s the vegetables: the bok choi, the broccoli, the bamboo shoots, the onion, mushrooms, baby corn?

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