Where to get the best Chinese food in Charlotte, NC

At YaMe Asian Noodles, popular dishes include the YaMe Beef Noodle Soup and Chicken Skewers.

At YaMe Asian Noodles, popular dishes include the YaMe Beef Noodle Soup and Chicken Skewers.

We suspect you usually end up eating most of your Chinese food after a Google search for “nearest Chinese restaurant to me” in Charlotte, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But sometimes you’re in the mood to step out of that comfort zone and try something beyond your standard Sesame Chicken order.

To help you out, we dug around in our archives and asked our foodie friends, a few restaurant experts and CharlotteFive readers for recommendations. What we came up with are a few restaurants that offer a more authentic taste of Chinese flavors and fun dishes you probably won’t find anywhere else, along with some familiar Chinese American favorites.

Here are some of the best Chinese restaurants to try in the Charlotte area:

Asian Grill

Location: 3913 Providence Road South, Waxhaw, NC 28173

Neighborhood: Waxhaw

Menu

What to try: The lunch offerings include a rice bowl special with a choice of white, brown or fried rice and your choice of veggies only or protein with teriyaki or hibachi sauce ($7.95 to $9.50).

What to know: This takeout restaurant recommended by the general manager at YaMe Asian Noodles, Karina Li, offers online ordering or takeout by calling 704-843-5888. It’s closed on Sunday.

Chen-Fu

Location: 9623-N E. Independence Blvd., Matthews, NC 28105

Neighborhood: Matthews

Menu

What to try: CharlotteFive reader Omar Montes recommends the Beef with Broccoli ($6.95), saying: “Best in Charlotte!!”

What to know: You can call the restaurant at 704-845-6282 or order online for delivery via ChowNow. Note that spices and sauces can be altered to your tastes, and you can get your order steamed if you’d like. Specialty dishes and seasonal vegetables are also available.

Cherry House II

Location: 7631 Sharon Lakes Road, #C, Charlotte, NC 28210

Neighborhood: South Charlotte

Menu

What to try: CharlotteFive reader Allie McNeal reports that the Crab Rangoon ($5.50) are “AMAZING!”

What to know: Online ordering for pickup is available, but there’s no delivery option. You can also call 704-552-8888.

Fu Shing

Location: 8134 Mt. Holly-Huntersville Road, Charlotte, NC 28216

Neighborhood: North Charlotte

Menu

What to try: Fu Shing’s family meal ($39.99) includes quart-size servings of General Tso’s Chicken, Chicken with Broccoli and Shrimp with Broccoli, plus Crab Rangoon, Egg Drop Soup and three Egg Rolls.

What to know: Call 704-394-9885 or order online at this spot recommended by CharlotteFive reader Ashley Langan.

House of Leng

Location: 2712 W Mallard Creek Church Rd #430, Charlotte, NC 28262

Neighborhood: University

Menu

What to try: CharlotteFive writer DeAnna Taylor’s go-to order is wonton soup ($2.25) and chicken lettuce wraps ($7.25).

What to know: Online ordering is available for takeout via ChowNow or calling 704-510-5081, and the restaurant even has its own app. Delivery is available via GrubHub, Postmates and DoorDash.

Lam’s Kitchen

Location: 3016 Weddington Road, Matthews, NC 28105

Neighborhood: Matthews

Menu

What to try: Charlotte food blogger Kenty Chung’s favorite at Lam’s is the Lobster Hong Kong Style (market price), while food writer Kathleen Purvis has noted the beef tripe ($10), served cold with a fiery red chile oil. Joel Tracey of Raydal Hospitality called Lam’s “the real deal Holyfield Sichuan,” saying it has the best Mapo Tofu he’s had outside of NYC. ($14).

What to know: The restaurant featuring authentic Chinese cuisine, which moved to a larger space in Matthews in March 2021, is temporarily closed on Tuesdays. Online ordering is in the works, but call 704-821-0676 for takeout.

Lam tendon and tripe
At Lam’s Kitchen, beef tendon and tripe is tender and served cold in a fiery mixture of hot chile oil, sesame seeds and cilantro. Kathleen Purvis CharlotteFive

Lee Cafe

Location: 1046 Regent Pkwy., #107, Fort Mill, SC 29715

Neighborhood: Regent Park

Menu

What to try: Purvis has recommended the Bi Feng Tang Fried Crab ($28) on the Cantonese classics portion of the menu. Chung goes for the Salt & Spices Pork Chop, also among the Cantonese classics. ($14.50)

What to know: This strip mall restaurant is widely recognized as one of the most authentic places to eat Chinese food in the Charlotte area, and you can go off-menu if you’re adventurous enough. There’s sushi, too. Call 803-548-8191 to order.

Lee Cafe crab
Lee Cafe’s Feng Tang Crab is a big pile of golden fried garlic (yes, that’s all garlic) studded with chunks of softshell crabs and bits of dried chiles and green onions. Kathleen Purvis CharlotteFive

Open Rice

Location: 9882 Rea Road Suite F, Charlotte, NC, 28277

Neighborhood: Blakeney

Menu

What to try: If you’re eating in person, don’t miss the Bubble Waffles, which are popular street food snacks in Hong Kong, where the restaurant owners grew up. You can customize them with toppings, drizzles and your choice of ice cream (price varies).

What to know: The Blakeney restaurant recommended by Chung and CharlotteFive reader Dr. Megan Ding focuses on updating classic Asian food with modern flare — and fun. There’s a menu of specialty boba drinks, as well. Online ordering is available, or you can call (980) 406-3894.

Open Rice Bubble Waffle.jpeg
Open Rice’s Bubble Waffles are made from a sweet batter, then stuffed with toppings and your choice of ice cream. Courtesy of Open Rice

Persuasian

Location: 2214 Park Road, Charlotte, NC 28203

Neighborhood: Dilworth

Menu

What to order: CharlotteFive reader Duffy-Marie Bengel recommended this spot, which offers entrees you create with a choice of sauce and protein, along with white, fried or brown rice (starts at $9 for veggies and tofu up to $14 for a combo with beef and shrimp or chicken, pork and shrimp).

What to know: You can order takeout online via ChowNow or by calling 704-333-1837 from this restaurant, owned by the former co-owner of Zen Fusion in Dilworth. Delivery is available via UberEats or DoorDash.

Sun’s Kitchen

Location: Inside The City Kitch, 2200 Thrift Road, Suite 2, Charlotte, NC 28208

Neighborhood: Wesley Heights

Menu: Takeout, Delivery

What to try: The Insta-worthy Dumpling Flight ($10.95) comes with a variety of scratch-made dumplings in various colors with your choice of six sauces, including Scallion Garlic and Ma-La Szechuan Style. CharlotteFive reader Michelle Wang also recommends the Ma-La Dried Peppers Chicken ($11.95), Braised Beef Noodle Soop ($11.95) and the lamb skewers ($9.95).

What to know: The City Kitch is a hub for restaurants focusing on takeout and delivery. Orders from the restaurant are available online or by calling 704-218-9691.

Taipei South

Location: 10106 Johnston Road, Charlotte, NC 28210

Neighborhood: South Charlotte/Pineville

Menu

What to try: Chung, who said it’s the “best Chinese American” spot in town, suggests the crispy scallion chicken ($7.75.).

What to know: You can also build your own dish at this Taiwanese restaurant by choosing a protein with veggies or cashews and a pre-selected sauce, or a protein and a specialty sauce such as Sa-Cha, Szechuan, Kon-Bo or Black Bean sauce. Delivery is available via GrubHub or call 704-542-8038 to order.

Taste of SHU

Location: 8418 Park Road, Charlotte, NC 28210

Neighborhood: South Charlotte

Menu

What to try: CharlotteFive writer Emiene Wright recommends a Chengdu style dish, such as the Diced Chicken with Diced Pepper, Chengdu-style ($15).

What to know: You can go off menu if you ask, but there are plenty of adventurous options available at this Szechuan restaurant, such as Frog with Pickled Peppers in Spicy Sauce, lotus root slices and fish balls. Call 704-315-6989 to order or place an order for pickup online.

Wan Fu

Location: 10719 Kettering Drive, Charlotte, NC 28226

Neighborhood: South Charlotte/Pineville

Menu

What to try: CharlotteFive reader Kerwin Pellas orders up House Fried Rice ($13.50) and Sweet and Sour Chicken ($14.95), while Hailey Jerome goes for the Orange Chicken, (called Tangerine Chicken on the menu, $14.95). Fellow CharlotteFive reader Julian Powell opts for Sesame Beef ($16.50) and Honey Chicken ($14.95).

What to know: This reader favorite is closed on Monday and encourages reservations if you’d like to dine in. To order takeout, call 704-541-1688.

Xiao Bao

Location: Inside Optimist Hall at 1115 N. Brevard St. # 14, Charlotte NC 28205

Neighborhood: Optimist Park

Menu

What to try: The restaurant has touted its Pad Kra Pow, with Thai chili beef with basil, rice and a fried egg ($15).

What to know: This Asian fusion restaurant that blends Southeast Asian flavors offers online ordering with pickup from Optimist Hall or by calling 980-309-0670. Delivery is available via DoorDash or UberEats.

XBB_HungryinLA-padkrapow.jpg
Xiao Bao brings Southeast Asian flavors to Optimist Hall, with dishes including this Hungry in LA Pad Kra Pow. Eddie Sanchez / Courtesy of Xiao Bao

YaMe Asian Noodles

Location: 4435 Park Road, Suite 300, Charlotte, NC, 28209

Neighborhood: Montford

Menu

What to try: The restaurant’s chef, Wei Min Liu, recommends the Szechuan Wontons or Shanghai Soup Dumplings ($7 each).

What to know: Takeout at this fast-casual restaurant is available at a separate station in the restaurant by calling 980-498-2006, and delivery is available.

IMG_4756.JPG
The Shanghai Soup Dumplings at YAME Asian Noodles. Chris Goddard/Chrismylesphotos


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Heidi Finley is a writer and editor for CharlotteFive and the Charlotte Observer. Outside of work, you will most likely find her in the suburbs driving kids around, volunteering and indulging in foodie pursuits.

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