Where to Find the Best Chinese Food in San Francisco, CA?

Are you hoping to impress your date with some yummy Chinese food? Or do you hope to find a great restaurant with authentic Chinese cuisine that will allow you to experience the tastes of China as well?

Many people love Chinese food, and many have tried it in other cities--New York Wagyu Burgers, Chicago, and maybe even Beijing. But there's nothing like trying great food here in San Francisco.

If you live in San Francisco, CA, surely you have heard of San Francisco Chinatown. Besides numerous popular attractions and famous stores fronting Grant Avenue, the neighborhood is also home to several Chinese restaurants that offer a range of cuisines.

Let’s have a look at restaurants providing the best chinese food in San Francisco, CA. 

Best Chinese Food in San Francisco, CA

The best Chinese food in San Francisco is found in Chinatown. There are several great places to check out, but there are a few best chinese food in San Francisco, CA, that stand out.

Empress By Boon

Empress By Boon is one of the best chinese food in San Francisco, CA. This restaurant’s structure hosted one of Chinatown's most legendary banquet halls for decades. Following years of inactivity, the beautiful space has been refurbished and revitalized, ready for a new chapter under Chef Ho Chee Boon. His ability for preparing elegant, modern Cantonese cuisine is evident, along with a dash of personality and a hint of California seasonality. 

The prix fixe menu, which is ideal for groups, includes a slew of enticing items. They could be expertly prepared shrimp dumplings with truffle and summer squash, or crispy juicy fried chicken in a Malaysian curry sauce (a tribute to the chef's birthplace), served with fragrant lotus rice with dried scallop and shrimp.

Szechuan Cuisine

Szechuan Cuisine is one of the most popular Chinese restaurants in Chinatown and with good reason. It's the perfect place to go if you're looking for delicious Chinese food at an affordable price. 

The menu has a wide variety of dishes, including both vegetarian and non-vegetarian options. You can get anything from wonton soup to General Tso's chicken. Their Moo Shu Pork is also one of the best dishes on their menu!

Harbo View

Harbo View is another great restaurant in Chinatown that offers delicious Chinese cuisine at an affordable price point. They serve authentic Sichuan-style food, and their menu features crispy fried chicken wings, spicy beef noodle soup, and seafood tofu puffs (which are amazing!).

Hakka Restaurant

Hakka Restaurant is located near Chinatown in San Francisco's Sunset District. It's an upscale restaurant that serves traditional Cantonese cuisine — think dim sum and seafood specials — as well as some more modern dishes like sushi rolls and burgers.

The restaurant has a huge selection of soups, appetizers, noodles, and rice dishes (including vegetarian options), seafood, and meats. Several signature dishes are always on the menu, including salt-baked chicken and shrimp fried rice. 

All entrees of this best chinese food in San Francisco, CA come with a side of steamed white rice unless otherwise noted on the menu; it's up to you whether or not you want brown rice as well!

Dumpling Time

The Dumpling Time restaurant is small and cozy, with an open kitchen that allows you to see the chefs preparing your food. The menu has a wide variety of dumplings and other Chinese dishes, including noodles, rice plates, and soups. Dumpling Time also offers delivery service via Uber Eats.

Hong Kong Lounge II

By day, Dim Sum nirvana by night, Hong Kong-style snacks, and the second Hong Kong Lounge in the Inner Richmond will satisfy your hunger for superb Chinese food. Hong Kong Lounge II comprehensive dumpling menu includes crowd-pleasers such as crispy fried shrimp as well as more traditional selections such as steamed chicken feet. 

Dinner menu items include imperial Peking duck with hoisin and fresh scallions, country-style fried rice with bacon and taro, and some of their greatest daytime dim sum selections under the title 'Asian Tapas'.

Big Lantern

The restaurant is considered one of the best chinese food in San Francisco, CA,and serves traditional Sichuan cuisine in a casual setting. There are many locations throughout San Francisco, as well as Oakland and Berkeley, California. Big Lantern offers a wide range of options for different tastes, including spicy chili oil chicken wings and spicy beef noodle soup.

Henry's Hunan

Henry's Hunan located in an alley between New Montgomery Street and Second Street is a family-run restaurant noted for authentic and flavorful Hunanese food at reasonable costs in a welcoming atmosphere. They've been serving spicy foods since 1974, so don't forget to specify your preferred level of heat. Henry's Special with prawns, scallops, chicken, and vegetables is the most popular dish.

Yank Sing

Yank Sing is in a new window, the best chinese food in San Francisco, CA, landmark since 1958, and delivers internationally regarded, award-winning Hong Kong-style dim sum handcrafted by talented chefs. Steamed pork buns and sesame balls are the most popular dishes.

Shanghai Dumpling King

Shanghai Dumpling King original Outer Richmond location has closed, but the restaurant's delectable dumplings and noodles, including xiao long bao, Hug Zhou crab and pork, spicy chives and shrimp, and pan-fried pork buns, are still available in their Outer Mission site. They also now accept credit cards.

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The Verdict

San Francisco has the biggest proportion of Chinese citizens of any major city in the US, so there's no shortage of delicious Chinese eateries ranging from dim sum to hand-pulled noodles and bakeries to fine dining. Whether you're looking for Szechuan, Cantonese, Hunan, or fusion cuisine, San Francisco's Chinese restaurants have it all.

And one more thing: there are excellent Chinese restaurants all around town, from Downtown to Richmond, so don't be afraid to venture outside of Chinatown.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

San Francisco is home to North America's earliest and oldest Chinatown, as well as a sizable Chinese community. Because of these two factors, there is great Chinese food around every corner.

San Francisco served as a port of entry and a supply depot for miners traveling interior to the gold fields. Chinese merchants began to develop shops in what is now Chinatown; this neighborhood was once approximately a block from the bay and was essentially San Francisco's first port.

Travel & Leisure ranked San Francisco the fourth-best gourmet city in America, after only New York City, New Orleans, and Chicago. 

Isaac Harrington

Isaac Harrington is an active blogger who started his journey as a part-time stint but has now fallen in love with the profession. Sharing heartfelt experiences is close to his heart, and helping people with his content is something that fuels his passion.