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American Chop Suey

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close up overhead shot of American Chop Suey in a skillet
Our easy American chop suey is hearty ground beef, tomatoes, and noodles are simmered together for this classic comfort food dish that will have everyone going back for seconds.
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Table of Contents
  1. American Chop Suey Ingredients
  2. How To Make This American Chop Suey Recipe
  3. How To Serve
  4. Storage
  5. More Recipes You’ll Love
  6. JUMP TO RECIPE

This New England-style American chop suey is a hearty dish filled with tender pasta, saucy ground beef, canned tomatoes, gooey cheese, and plenty of seasonings. All these ingredients work together in the best way to give this dish a great flavor.

close up overhead shot of American Chop Suey in a skillet

American Chop Suey Ingredients

American Chop Suey raw ingredients that are labeled

You’ll need:

  • 2 pounds of ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 large yellow onion, finely diced
  • 3 cups water
  • 3 beef bouillon cubes
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans of tomato pasta sauce
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans of petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon Italian Seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon seasoned salt 
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 cups large elbow macaroni, uncooked
  • 1 cup Monterey Jack Cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded

SUBSTITUTIONS AND ADDITIONS

VEGETABLES: There are so many ways you could customize this great recipe, especially in the veggies department. Green peppers, red peppers, or mushrooms would also be tasty.

CHEESE: For extra cheesiness, add a sprinkle of parmesan cheese on top before serving. You could also opt for a melty mozzarella instead.

SPICE: To add a bit of extra kick to this dish, you can include a dash of red pepper flakes, chili powder, or cayenne pepper to this classic dish.

PASTA: Elbow pasta is the ideal size for this recipe, but any other bite-sized pasta would also work.

MEAT: The recipe calls for ground beef, but there is no reason you couldn’t use different ground meat in this recipe, such as ground pork, turkey, or chicken.

How To Make This American Chop Suey Recipe

OUR RECIPE DEVELOPER SAYS

This recipe freezes really well. Make up a big batch and freeze the leftovers for another meal later.

STEP ONE: In a Dutch oven or large pot over medium heat, add ground beef. Cook until no longer pink. Drain grease and return to the stovetop. Add onions and garlic. Cook for 5 to 7 minutes or until onions are soft. 

PRO TIP:

You can cook ground beef ahead of time and store it in the fridge or freezer for use later. This would save extra time when you are making this recipe.

American Chop Suey process shot of ingredients being cooked in a skillet

STEP TWO: Add water, beef bouillon, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, Italian seasoning, seasoned salt, ground black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and bay leaves. Stir to combine. Turn heat to low, cover, and let simmer for 20 minutes. 

American Chop Suey process shot of ingredients being combined in a skillet

STEP THREE: Remove cover and stir. Add uncooked elbow macaroni and stir well with a wooden spoon. Cover and allow to simmer on low for an additional 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. 

PRO TIP:

You don’t have to cook the pasta separately, it will cook as it simmers away in the sauce.

American Chop Suey process shot of elbow macaroni being added to skillet

STEP FOUR: Once the pasta is cooked, remove the bay leaves. 

STEP FIVE: Add the Monterey Jack cheese and stir. 

STEP SIX: Sprinkle the cheddar cheese over the top and allow it to melt. 

American Chop Suey topped with cheese in a baking dish

STEP SEVEN: Serve and enjoy! 

How To Serve

Add a fresh green salad or Caesar salad on the side, along with a tasty batch of garlic bread. This is a great meal to whip up when you are short on time during busy weeknights.

For similar recipes, check out our chili mac and goulash. Both are quick and easy choices when you need to get food on the kitchen table fast.

Storage

IN THE FRIDGE: Store in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the fridge.

IN THE FREEZER: You can freeze this dish in an airtight container for up to three months. You can also freeze individual portions for a quick and easy lunch. 

a pot of American Chop Suey with a spoonful overhead

This tasty pasta dish, sometimes referred to as American goulash, is classic comfort food at its best. Delicious ingredients are simmered in a thick tomato sauce for a recipe that is sure to become a family favorite.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is American chop suey?

This simple recipe is a popular dish in New England. While it is not only made in this area, the rest of the country tends to refer to it as American goulash or Johnny Marzetti.

Can I freeze this dish for later?

This dish will freeze well stored in an airtight container for up to three months.

Can I add extra veggies to this recipe?

Some variations of this recipe also include green peppers or mushrooms, but you can add whatever veggies you would like.

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close up overhead shot of American Chop Suey in a skillet

American Chop Suey

5 from 2 votes
Our easy American chop suey is hearty ground beef, tomatoes, and noodles are simmered together for this classic comfort food dish that will have everyone going back for seconds.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 8

Ingredients
  

  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 1 large yellow onion, finely diced
  • 3 cups water
  • 3 beef bouillon cubes
  • 30 ounces tomato sauce
  • 30 ounces petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon seasoned salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 cups large elbow macaroni, uncooked
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 cup Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded

Instructions
 

  • In a Dutch oven over medium heat, add ground beef. Cook until no longer pink. Drain grease and return to the stovetop. Add the onions and garlic. Cook for 5 to 7 minutes or until onions are soft.
  • Add water, beef bouillon, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, Italian seasoning, seasoned salt, ground black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and bay leaves. Stir to combine. Turn the heat to low, cover, and let simmer for 20 minutes.
  • Remove cover and stir. Add elbow macaroni and stir well. Cover and allow to simmer on low for an additional 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Once the pasta is cooked, remove the bay leaves.
  • Add Monterey Jack cheese and stir.
  • Sprinkle cheddar cheese over the top and allow it to melt.
  • Serve and enjoy!

Notes

  • This recipe freezes really well. Make up a big batch and freeze the leftovers for another meal later.
  • You can cook ground beef ahead of time and store it in the fridge or freezer for use later. This would save extra time when you are making this recipe.
  • Make sure to note that you don’t have to cook the pasta separately. It will cook as it simmers away in the sauce.
 
RECIPE ADAPTED FROM: My Incredible Recipes
 
 

Nutrition

Calories: 605kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 33g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 108mg | Sodium: 2177mg | Potassium: 1136mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 954IU | Vitamin C: 19mg | Calcium: 309mg | Iron: 6mg
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