A chop suey vegan recipe with bok choy, bean sprouts, and tofu in an authentic stir-fry sauce, served with brown rice. It’s a simple 20 minute meal that’s perfect for busy weeknights!
Stir-fry recipes are great for weeknights! They are extremely versatile and pack in tons of veggies, protein, and high fiber carbs into a flavorful and simple meal.
Once you learn a few tricks for making this simple Asian Vegan recipe, you can create your own using the vegetables you have on hand.
Stir-fries are also great because you can basically clean out your vegetable drawer and create an impressive meal in no time! There great for vegan meal prep too!
This chop suey vegan recipe is no different! It’s made with traditional Chinese vegetables like bok choy, and bean sprouts, and is paired with tofu for added protein, and an authentic stir-fry sauce using traditional Chinese ingredients. It’s a new recipe I’ve added into our dinner rotation!
What is chop suey?
American chop suey is a stir-fry that is common in the United States, and one of the more popular Chinese recipes in restaurants.
It is made of finely chopped vegetables, a protein, and served with rice.
It is not, however, a classic Asian dish. There are a few stories of where and when it first developed. It’s an American creation using Chinese cooking techniques and ingredients.
There are a few tales. One says that it was created by a famous Chinese chef in a mining community. He was short on ingredients, and used the vegetables that he had, chopped them into fine pieces, and served them with rice.
Another story says that it was developed in 1890 at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco for the Chinese leader Li Hung Chang, who asked for a dish that consisted of finely chopped vegetables.
Wherever it was first developed one thing we know for certain, chop suey is not a traditional dish in Chinese cuisine.
Why you’ll love this Vegan Chop Suey recipe…
- A quick and simple stir-fry recipe.
- Takes 20 minutes to make.
- Easy recipe for busy weeknights!
- Full of healthy veggies!
- High in protein with the addition of tofu
- High in fiber when served with brown rice
Recipe Ingredients and Notes
Stir Fry Sauce
Corn Starch: This ingredient is key to creating a thick and creamy sauce. Corn starch gives this sauce a nice glossy texture.
Chinese Cooking Wine (Shaoxing Wine): This is key to achieving a true authentic Chinese flavor to your stir-fry sauce. You can find it in Asian stores or you can order it online. It’s that secret ingredient that makes your recipes taste like they come from a Chinese restaurant!
Vegetable Stock: Instead of using a beef or chicken stock, using a vegetable stock keeps this recipe vegan and vegetarian friendly.
Hoisin Sauce: Most chop suey recipes call for oyster sauce. In order to ensure this recipe is vegan and vegetarian, hoisin sauce is used instead. It is a thick sauce with a sweet and smoky flavor.
Garlic and Onion: This stir-fry starts with a sauté of garlic and onions.
Bok Choy: This traditional Chinese vegetable has long thick stocks (similar to celery) with leafy greens on the end. Chop the leafy greens to add to your wok.
Mushrooms: They add flavor and extra meatiness to this vegan recipe.
Mung Bean Sprouts: Another traditional vegetable used in Chinese cuisine, mung bean sprouts are healthy and full of vitamins! Be sure to buy them fresh for best results and flavor!
Carrot: It gives this dish a splash of color and also some crunchy texture.
Protein and Rice
Extra Firm Tofu: I prefer to use extra firm tofu. Be sure to press your tofu before cutting it into cubes and tossing them into the stir-fry.
Brown Rice: One of the key distinguishing features of chop suey is that it is served with rice. I prefer to serve this dish with brown rice for the added fiber and health benefits.
What are the best vegetables to include with vegan chop suey?
The great thing about this recipe is that you can really use whatever vegetables you have in your refrigerator! It’s a great way to clean out the fridge and use up all your extra produce. Here are a few of my suggestions for fresh veggies to use…
- Red Bell Peppers
- Collard Greens
- Water Chestnuts
- Baby Corn or Fresh Corn
- Bamboo Shoots
- Snow Peas
- Green Beans
How to Make this Vegan Vegetable Chop Suey Recipe
Prepare the sauce:
Whisk together soy sauce and corn starch in a bowl until smooth. Add Chinese cooking wine, vegetable stock, and hoisin sauce. Whisk together until combined.
Prepare the vegetables:
Wash and dry the bok choy. Separate the stems and the leaves, and chop into 3 inch pieces. Use the tops of the leaves. Peel the carrot and slice into small pieces. Chop the onion into thin slices.
Stir-Fry the vegetables:
In a large wok or large skillet over medium-high heat, add 2 tablespoon of vegetable stock or water. You can also use sesame oil if you prefer. Add the garlic and onion. Cook for 1-2 minutes or until onions are translucent. Add carrots, and mushrooms. Cook for about more 5 minutes.
Add the bok choy, bean sprouts and sauce. Stir fry for about 5 minutes. Then add the cubed tofu. Cook for an additional minute or two, or until tofu is heated and warmed through.
Serve over brown rice.
Chop suey is made with stir-fried vegetables, and protein much the same was as chow mein. The main difference is that chop suey is served with rice, while chow mein noodles are added to the stir-fry pot.
When you make it at home, chop suey is a very healthy and hearty dish! When you get it from your local restaurant you need to be careful of the added oil, and MSG. However, making your own recipe allows you to control the ingredients. With tons of veggies, lean protein, and high fiber carbs, this is a complete meal that is rich in vitamins and minerals.
It has a flavor similar to Chinese dishes that are served with a mild brown sauce. You can make it spicier if you prefer by adding a bit of spicy ground chili pepper or black pepper.
It’s simple to make chop suey without meat or dairy! There isn’t any dairy added to regular chop suey recipes, however meat such as chicken and beef is often added. Instead, sub the chicken or beef for tofu. You still get tons of protein without the animal meat. You also need to sub the oyster sauce that’s added to the brown sauce for hoisin sauce instead.
How to Store and Keep
Allow the stir-fry to cool completely, then transfer to an air-tight glass container. Store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Can you freeze leftover chop suey?
Chop suey is easy to freeze! Simply allow the vegetables to come to room temperature. Transfer to a freezer safe container. Label with the contents and date. It will keep in the freezer for 2-3 months.
What’s the best way to reheat chop suey?
From the refrigerator: Transfer to a microwave safe dish and heat until warmed through. Depending on how much chop suey you are reheating the time will vary. I’d recommend between 45 seconds and 1.5 minutes.
From frozen: Transfer the contents to a sauté pan on medium heat. Add a teaspoon of oil, vegetable stock, or water to the pan. Add the frozen chop suey. Allow to defrost, and warm through, then serve with fresh brown rice.
This vegan vegetable chop suey recipe is a delicious option when you are looking for a meat-free and dairy-free dinner choice.
Check out these other easy vegan weeknight dinners!
Chop Suey (Vegan)
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ½ onion thinly sliced
- 2 cups bok choy leafy greens (not stems)
- 1 cup mung bean sprouts
- 1 carrot diced
- 8 oz extra firm tofu pressed and cubed
- 2 cups cooked brown rice
- Whisk together soy sauce and corn starch in a bowl until smooth. Add Chinese cooking wine, vegetable stock, and hoisin sauce. Whisk together until combined.
- Wash and dry the bok choy. Separate the stems and the leaves, and chop into 3 inch pieces. Use the tops of the leaves. Peel the carrot and slice into small pieces. Chop the onion into thin slices.
- In a large wok or large skillet over medium-high heat, add 2 tablespoon of vegetable stock or water. You can also use sesame oil if you prefer. Add the garlic and onion. Cook for 1-2 minutes or until onions are translucent. Add carrots, and mushrooms. Cook for about more 5 minutes.
- Add the bok choy, bean sprouts and sauce. Stir fry for about 5 minutes. Then add the cubed tofu. Cook for an additional minute or two, or until tofu is heated and warmed through.
- Serve over brown rice.
- Store vegetables and rice in separate containers.
- Will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
- Freeze in an air-tight freezer safe container. Will keep in the freezer for 2-3 months.
- Reheat from frozen over high heat in a skillet.