Chinese food delivery, paradoxically, is an incredibly American phenomenon. There is something about those red and white paper cartoons stuffed to the brim with delicious food that, incidentally, is very difficult to replicate, that is comforting to most people. Chinese take-out has become a symbol of working late in movies, a hangover cure in many circles, and a convenient way to serve dinner to almost everyone else.
Every city needs at least one amazing Chinese take-out place. So whether you are looking for a lunch special, dinner for a group, or a late-night meal, Chinese Food delivery is there for you.
Here are the best Chinese Food places in Tampa, FL.
Nestled deep along the bay coast in South Tampa sits the unassuming Shang Hai restaurant. The humble restaurant is nothing more than a room with three tables and a couch, connected to the bustling kitchen. It sits in an often-abandoned strip mall, yet puts out the absolute best Chinese Take-out in Tampa Bay. The menu is nothing spectacular, featuring Chinese Take-out favorites like Beef with Broccoli, Sweet and Sour Pork, and Szechuan Chicken, but the food is always fresh, seasoned well, and piping hot. There is not risk of munching on some bland, chewy meat out of a luke-warn stirfry at this place. Everything they dish out is the absolutely best version of whatever it is meant to be. This part of town doesn’t have much beyond residential properties, but it is worth the drive over from nearly any other part of the city.
Recommended Dishes: Hot & Sour Soup. Beef with Broccoli.
This next restaurant is significantly farther north, sitting in a strip mall off of MLK in Riverside Heights. The restaurant is slightly difficult to get to. It is located in a miniscule strip mall on Rome Ave, but looks from the road like it is on MLK. Make sure you commit to your turn into the parking lot before you go over the bridge, or you will have added at least five minutes to your ETA. Also, there is only about one designated parking spot. Once you battle all of that, you will be rewarded with some truly fantastic Chinese Take-out. If you want to avoid all of that hassle, just plan to order for delivery! Like Shang Hai, their menu is comfortingly familiar, featuring delicious dishes like Moo Shu, Egg Foo Toung, and Chow Mein. The food is always cooked fresh to order, and their final products are genuinely spectacular. The sauces here really shine. Anyone who has ever had a mediocre Chicken with Broccoli understands how that brown sauce can make-or-break a dish, and I am happy to say that China Moon understands that too! This is a fantastic place to order from if you are hanging out anywhere north of Kennedy.
Recommended Dishes: Crab Rangoon, Chicken Lo Mein.
For this next entry, we head South again! All the way to Gandy Blvd. China Taste is another no-frills take-out and delivery restaurant. Conveniently located just a few doors down from the corner of Gandy and West Shore Blvd, the parking lot is always a turnstile of customers driving in hungry, and departing with bags of delicious smelling food. The family running this joint is incredibly effusive and friendly, and they always cook their food to order. The menu items are, again familiar, but familiar items done well are a hit with any crowd.
Recommended Dishes: Pork Egg Roll, Sweet and Sour Chicken.
If you are looking for something slightly more elevated….
American-style Chinese Delivery, while delicious, is not really what authentic Chinese cuisine is all about. If you are looking for something a bit more elevated in the Tampa area, you cannot go wrong with Yummy House. This incredible restaurant was started by founding partners from Toishan, China. The original location is on Waters Ave in Jackson Heights but has since expanded to an incredible seven locations in five different Florida cities. The Yummy House website describes the overall vibe perfectly:
“[John and Tommy] believe in satisfying the customer at all times, however never fear offering the authentic cuisine of Chinese cooking and educating the consumer.
This quality has set them apart from every other Chinese restaurant in the Tampa Bay area. They have set the bar high where others have been loathe to tread.
John and Tommy can be seen in the kitchen or dining room at Yummy House Tampa or Yummy House China Bistro (on Hillsborough) creating the magic that evolves from their woks! Additionally, watch their staff members and see their faces to know the kindness of their owners who instill respect and happiness amongst their clients and peers alike. This culture is pervasive within the Yummy House Family and leaves an indelible mark on your heart when you leave. Come in and ask to meet them at anytime, but don’t be surprised if they speak with their hands on a wok and their eyes darting around the room to keep the mastery of their product to perfection! Would you want it any other way?”
This Chinese Food is so good that the Yummy House was actually named one of the top 50 restaurants in Tampa Bay in 2018 by a Times Food Critic!
Here is an excerpt from her write-up: “The first Yummy House on Waters Street, opened in 2008, was no reservations, no booze, no frills, an instant hit on the strength of its authentic Hong Kong-style food. Owner John Zhao realized he was on to something. He followed that with the Hillsborough Avenue location in 2011, a Sarasota outpost in 2012, Gainesville in 2013, Ocala in 2014, then Orlando and, finally, South Tampa at the end of 2017.” (source)
This is an incredible place to go for Dim Sum or Dinner, so decide what you want your experience to be and show up with an empty belly – you are bound to have a fantastic experience.
Recommended Dishes: Salt & Pepper Calamari, Seafood Fried Rice with Spicy XO Sauce.