New York is a diverse and multicultural city, which makes it a foodie hotspot! It is a particularly good place to enjoy Asian food, with a wide variety of restaurants in Chinatown and other areas across the city.
Dim sum has always been popular in New York, but there are more dim sum restaurants to choose from than ever before. Some have been around for decades, and others are new and fresh with exciting twists on traditional dim sum dishes.
Whatever you are looking for, you will find your ideal dim sum in New York. To help you narrow down your choice, we have put together a list of the best places in New York to get dim sum, and our recommendations of what to order when you get there.
This reasonably priced Michelin Star restaurant in the East Village is part of a global chain with locations like Hong Kong, Indonesia, Australia and Thailand. The decor is minimalistic and it’s quite a small space, which contributes to the long lines, but the food is certainly worth the wait. We love the Char Sui Bao – barbeque pork buns which are the perfect balance of sweet and savoury.
The shrimp dumplings are also delicious, plump and translucent with an oniony flavour, and the deep-fried eggplant is a definite crowd pleaser. Even the rice is exciting served in a silky steamed roll, or sticky rice wrapped in a lotus leaf.
This restaurant is a bit out of the way, on an industrial estate in Flushing, but it is worth the trip. Inside, the decor is luxurious which contrasts with the more basic method of serving dim sum from baskets on carts that are pushed around the restaurant.
The menu has a good variety of good quality dim sum, like vegetarian rice balls, salt and pepper fried anchovies, slow braised eggplant with seafood paste, and shrimp dumplings. There are even tasty sweet options, like fresh banana rolls with custard and red bean paste, dusted with toasted coconut. The presentation might lack elegance, but the flavours more than make up for it.
This Two Bridges restaurant has been going for a long time. It’s no longer shiny and new, but it still draws in plenty of customers with Chinese dishes that have been slightly Westernized to suit the tastes of newbies and dim sum enthusiasts alike. They have over 24 types of dumplings, but if in doubt then just order the dim sum platter with 10 dishes to try.
We love the pumpkin pan fried dumplings, and the duck and mushroom steamed dumplings. Their prices aren’t the most competitive, but if you order before 4pm then everything on the menu is one dollar cheaper.
Ping’s seafood in Chinatown has traditional tightly packed communal seating where regular customers squeeze in next to tourists to enjoy their favourite dim sum dishes. When you walk in you will see the array of fish tanks, so you know the seafood is going to be fresh. We recommend the steamed oysters with XO sauce – a spicy sauce of dried shrimp, garlic and scallops.
We also love the sauteed conch with snow peas and fermented shrimp sauce. This is the perfect place to experiment with something you haven’t tried before, because the range of fish available is extensive, but you also can’t go wrong with the crispy fried shrimp balls which are nice and light.
If you would rather avoid fish, then order the pork shumai or the Ma Tai Gou- a pan fried water chestnut cake. As well as delicious dim sum, you can get other Hong Kong style dishes like fried soft shell crab and garlic eggplant.
This spot in Chinatown is the oldest Dim Sum parlour in New York. It is much more quaint and charming than some other Dim Sum restaurants in Chinatown with communal seating. The decor is a crossover between Art Deco and cozy kitchen, with fancy furniture, checkered tablecloths and old posters on the walls. You can also settle down in their lovely outdoor seating area.
The dim sum itself is fresh and flavoursome, and served late into the night. Some of the most popular menu items are the fluffy roasted pork buns, eggplant stuffed with shrimp and squid, and the fried crepe egg roll with a flaky texture. They also cater for different dietary requirements with a range of gluten free dim sum
This popular Dyker Heights restaurant provides the typical chaotic dining experience of busy, bustling dim sum parlours. Once you have battled the crowds for your table, squeezed in next to local families and regulars, the steam cart comes around and you have to be quick with your decisions. Don’t be afraid to try something new- you might discover a new favourite dish.
We love the sticky flour dumplings filled with pork mushrooms and peanuts, or the braised bean curd rolls drenched in sweetened soy sauce. One of the most sought after dishes is Ji Si Fen Juan- fresh noodle wraps stuffed with chicken, celery and carrot.
This well known establishment has been open since 1989, serving up delicious Cantonese food including dim sum on carts. The menu options are traditional and well made, and with a choice of two dining rooms there is plenty of space.
We recommend the braised chicken feet which are tender and tasty, or the shrimp siu mai topped with crunchy roe. If you want something vegetarian, then try the earthy turnip cake or the translucent vegetable dumplings.
If you are looking for some classic dim sum dishes in a nice setting, then head over to Jing Fong on the Upper West Side. It has all the old favourites that you know and love, along with a few innovative menu items like honey walnut prawns with a creamy sauce. The presentation is neat and attractive, making this a more luxurious dim sum experience.
They are open into the night and have an impressive range of alcoholic beverages, making this an ideal place to come for a late night date or a swanky evening out with a friend. The restaurant was originally located in Chinatown, but they moved to a larger space that can accommodate up to 800 diners at a time. They are still serving up the old Chinatown favourites like chewy sesame balls and shrimp wrapped in bacon.
If you don’t judge a book by it’s cover and presentation isn’t your priority, you will love Dim Sum Garden Express. The menu is extensive and not very elegant, but extremely delicious.
Try the steamed rice noodles topped with stewed beef brisket, or pork ribs in black bean sauce. If you fancy something fishy then order the curried fish balls, or chillies stuffed with shrimp paste.
More and more Chinese restaurants are opening in Forest Hills, and One East Ocean Palace is one of the best. For Dim Sum, it is best to go at lunchtime as the menu changes in the evening to include a wide variety of other types of Cantonese dishes. The fish and watercress dumplings are incredible, and we can recommend the fatty pork riblets steamed with black beans. Regulars also love the Beef rice noodles with cilantro and shrimp har gow.
This iconic restaurant in Chinatown is a firm favourite with New Yorkers. Choose from a wide range of menu items including pea shoot dumplings, shrimp rice noodle rolls, braised tripe.
They also have excellent fresh tofu, and sweet custard pies. The food is authentic, the atmosphere bustling, and the dim sum will not disappoint!
Bamboo Garden is a popular restaurant in Brooklyn that closed for refurbishment in 2017. It reopened with a fresh new look and a better menu, and is still drawing in many customers.
The shrimp rice noodle rolls are a firm favourite, along with the chicken and mushroom hot dish. They serve delicious giant dumplings floating on a bowl of soup, and have even designed a dish called pig custard buns for children. The restaurant is family friendly, but still provides a luxurious dining experience.
Ma Peche is an American Asian fusion restaurant in Midtown. You will be surprised at how much you enjoy this menu – it isn’t just Westernized Asian food, but original dishes that have been carefully planned out.
We love the beef cheek dumplings and fried oyster buns, but make sure you get a taste of the smoked trout dip.
This Chinatown restaurant has a great dim sum section on the menu packed with Shanghai style dishes. We love the crispy scallion pancake, crab soup steamed dumplings, and the spicy wonton with peanut sauce and chilli oil.
It doesn’t look like much from the outside but you will be impressed by the tasty food at Deluxe Green Bo.
The Bao in the East Village do the most delicious chocolate bao- a steamed bun filled with fudgy chocolate and fresh banana. They also have a great menu of savoury options, like their tasty soup dumplings.
The inside of the restaurant has a lovely, relaxing ambience with dimmed lighting and polished natural wood tables. When it fills up with diners, the chatty background provides a great atmosphere for a casual catch up with friends.
Dong Yi Feng
Dong Yi Feng is hailed as the best dim sum restaurant in flushing. It is large and busy, with a bustling atmosphere. Their menu is impressively big, with plenty of choice.
The shrimp rolls wrapped in bean curd are particularly good- crispy and flavoursome with nice fresh shrimp. If you have room for dessert then try the boh-loh buns with sweet pineapple.
The New Spring Garden in Sunset Park has excellent service, so you can relax and enjoy your dim sum experience. They also happen to do the most amazing egg yolk custard buns, oozey and delicious.
You can also order food to go, if you would rather enjoy that indulgent treat from the comfort of your own home.
There are so many great dim sum restaurants in New York, it was difficult to narrow them down to make this list. There are still a few others that didn’t make the list but would make an excellent back up option if the others are full or the lines are too long.
RedFarm in West village does a particularly good pastrami egg roll. If you want a dim sum place with an unusual menu, then try out Pacificana in Sunset Park, with dishes like soy sauce duck tongue, sea cucumber, and fish maw. Joe’s Shanghai in Flushing is a real taste of chinatown. Their speciality is the soup dumplings- a meatball surrounded by broth inside a dumpling.
The soup dumplings come in various flavours, with pork and crab being the most popular, and they are very reasonably priced. Buddha Bodai is a kosher vegetarian Chinese restaurant with a plant based menu that includes sim sum.
We recommend trying the sweet and sticky sesame rice balls. Red Egg is a contemporary dim sum restaurant which is warm and welcoming. They have happy hour 4pm until 7pm, when they offer a discounted menu. Make sure you order the taro cilantro dumplings- they are excellent!
Whether you want traditional dim sum, fusion dim sum, seafood, or vegetarian, you will be able to find something on this list that you like. The dining experience is also important- some people love the hustle and bustle of communal dining and steam carts, but others prefer relaxing table service in a more decadent setting.
If you want to search for some more dim sum restaurants, then our advice is that looks can be deceiving. Don’t write somewhere off based on what it looks like on the outside- it’s the hidden gems that are often the best!