The Best Chinese Food with Weight Watchers Points
Do you have Chinese food on your mind? I did too, that’s why I created this post, The Best Chinese Food with Weight Watchers Points.
I’ve got you, boo.
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Chinese food is delicious, but it’s not always known as the healthiest food option. Depending on what you order, sometimes it can be worse for us than fast food.
Many Chinese food establishments are privately owned small businesses, so it can be hard for me to find exact nutritional information to list the healthiest options for you.
What I can do is point you to some delicious and better-than-takeout quick recipes you can whip up at home, even if you’re tired!
The best part is that these recipes are a lot lower in smart points than the takeout versions.
You could even try freezing some of the recipes to have on hand when you don’t feel like cooking.
Just reheat and voila! Takeout made at home in no time.
We have a few Chinese restaurants in my city, and I have been able to order take out plenty of times and still stay within my WW points, but I’m not sure which restaurants you have by you, so I’ll just stay with the two main chain restaurants I know of, which are P.F. Chang’s and Panda Express.
Let’s start off with appetizers, starting with Chinese food soups.
Soup Options for Chinese Food
I remember I first fell in love with soup at a Chinese restaurant on the south side of our city.
The restaurant was called The Rice Bowl, and it was one of my dad’s favorites. It was there he introduced me to egg drop soup, which quickly became a favorite of mine. It was a good option for a kid who didn’t like a ton of vegetables and flavors at the time.
I believe the most well-known soups when talking about Chinese food are wonton soup, egg drop soup, and hot and sour soup.
We only have one chain restaurant in our area that offers Chinese food options, Panda Express, and my family loves their food.
They don’t offer any type of soup, so we have to order from the small businesses in our area, which – between you and I – has better food options anyway! I like supporting small businesses anyways.
Most of these recipes are broth-based soups and aren’t much of a creamy texture.
Here are a few Chinese food soup recipes you can make at home:
(These points values are from WW Personal Points. You will have to calculate points for green plan, purple plan, or blue plan separately.)
Hot and Sour Soup from Gimme Some Oven – This soup makes 8 servings and is 2 points per serving. Click here to see the recipe.
Hot and Sour Soup from Damn Delicious – This soup makes 6 servings and is 4 points per serving. Click here to see the recipe.
Wonton Soup from Momsdish – This soup makes 8 servings and is 3 points per serving. Click here to see the recipe.
Wonton Soup from The Woks of Life – This makes 8 servings and is a bit higher in points at 6 points per serving, but the reviews are great. Click here to see the recipe.
Egg Drop Soup from Mommy Musings – This makes 4 servings and is 2 points per serving. Click here to see the recipe.
Egg Drop Soup from Bowl of Delicious – This makes 4 servings and is 5 points per serving. Click here to see the recipe.
Panda Express doesn’t serve soup, but compare these make-at-home recipes with the Weight Watcher points values of P.F. Chang’s soup items:
P.F. Chang’s points values:
PF Chang’s Wonton Soup Bowl – 15 Points
Soup Cup – 3 points
Egg Drop Soup Bowl – 9 Points
Egg Drop Soup Cup -1 Point
Hot and Sour Soup Bowl – 13 Points
Hot and Sour Soup Cup – 2 points
As you can see, making the soups at home will save you a lot of points, and they probably taste even better than take out. The sodium content is incredibly high in the restaurant’s soups, so much so that it’s almost concerning. If I told my doctor how much sodium was in that soup, I’m sure she would tell me that eating that would be against her best medical advice! Sodium can make us retain so much water, which can add to the scale too, and we don’t want that!
Next up for appetizers is eggrolls, crab Rangoon, and dumplings.
I remember eating many of all of these appetizers in college. As a group, we would go to the local Chinese restaurant at least once a month for a dinner out. We all loved the Rangoon and eggrolls! Let’s start off with a few great recipes of Rangoon, dumplings, and eggrolls you can make at home, and then we will compare those points to the points of the popular chain restaurants to see how many points you can save!
Air Fryer Egg Rolls from Simply Sissom – This recipe makes 16 servings and is 4 points for one egg roll. Click here to get the recipe.
Air Fryer Egg Rolls from Wholesome Made Easy – This recipe makes 8 servings and is 5 points for one egg roll. Click here to get the recipe.
Healthy Steamed Dumplings from Taste of Home – This recipe makes 50 and it’s 1 point per dumpling. Click here to get the recipe.
Boiled Dumplings from Oh My Foodrecipes – This recipe makes 20 and it’s 3 points per dumpling. Click here to get the recipe.
Air Fryer Crispy Crab Rangoon from Stay Snatched – This recipe makes 7 servings and if you substitute light cream cheese for the regular in the recipe, it’s 4 points per serving. Click here to get the recipe.
Baked Crab Rangoon from Curious Cuisiniere – This recipe serves 10 and it’s 6 points for 2 pieces. Click here to get the recipe.
Now let’s compare P.F. Chang’s and Panda Express Weight Watchers points for these appetizers to the recipes above.
P.F. Chang’s Hand Folded Crab Wontons – 23 points for 6, or 3.8 points per piece. Sodium is high at 286 mg per piece.
Panda Express Cream Cheese Rangoon – 7 points for 3, or 2.3 points per piece.
P.F. Chang’s Pork Egg Rolls – 20 points for 2, 10 points for one. Sodium high at 790 mg per roll.
Panda Express Chicken Egg Roll – 6 points for one roll.
P.F. Chang’s Pork Dumpling Steamed – 15 points for six, or 2.5 points per dumpling. Higher sodium content at 225 mg per dumpling.
Panda Express Chicken Potsticker (similar to dumpling) – 5 points for 3 dumplings, or 1.6 points per dumpling.
(Remember to round up to the nearest point when counting.)
Wife Mama Foodie has an excellent vegetable dumpling recipe here, if you’re looking for meatless options.
If you’re looking for more appetizers, both P.F. Chang’s and Panda Express offer spring rolls as well. You can find the nutritional information on their websites. If you’re looking for low points when it comes to Chinese cuisine, as you can see, one of the best bets is for you to make it yourself.
As you can see, cooking Chinese cuisine at home is almost always a better choice than purchasing takeout.
Here are some excellent main courses to make at home if you’re looking to make a Chinese meal. If you come across any that I haven’t listed here that you think should be, please email me and I’ll be sure to add them. I’ll be adding new recipes as I come across them myself. I’ve chosen some of the most well-known Chinese cuisine dishes.
General Tso’s Chicken (4 Pts) – Slender Kitchen offers us a 5-star review lighter version here.
Sesame Chicken (6 Pts) – One Lovely Life has a great, healthy sesame chicken recipe here. Bonus: it’s gluten free too!
Fried Rice (11 Pts) – A Pinch of Healthy has a that she claims is better than take out with many, many 5-star reviews here.
Sweet and Sour Chicken (8 Pts) – check out my sweet and sour chicken recipe here.
Orange Chicken (9 Pts) – Simple Healthy Kitchen has a great Skinny Orange Sesame Chicken recipe here.
Beef with Broccoli (11 Pts) – Just a Taste has a delicious Easy Beef and Broccoli recipe here.
Cashew Chicken (8 Pts) – Paleo Grubs has a great, clean recipe here.
Tips to Help Lower Points When Eating Chinese Cuisine
Chinese food doesn’t have to be full of salt, carbs, and deep fried to be delicious. For example, as you know, white rice is a staple in Chinese cuisine.
Switching out the white rice for brown rice is a good option to make a healthier choice. Brown rice isn’t digested as quickly as white rice and you will be satisfied for longer.
Too much sodium isn’t good for us for a variety of reasons, and when writing this Best Chinese Food with Weight Watchers Points post, I really learned a lot about the sodium levels in restaurant foods – yikes.
When ordering Chinese takeout, or making it at home, you can always ask for or add more vegetables yourself. Make sure you go with a lean protein like chicken, and then ask for extra vegetables such as snow peas or broccoli or have them add in some mixed veggies and surprise yourself with what you get!
Make sure to ask them to steam the vegetables and to not cook them in any oil or butter, which will save on points and just be a good choice overall.
Skip the alcoholic beverage with your meal so you can spend your daily points on satisfying that craving instead.
Be mindful of which sauces you eat with your meal as well. Sauces like sweet and sour sauce, garlic sauce, or hoisin sauce can be full of sugar, so stick with low sodium soy sauce, or make sure you check the ingredients in the sauces you choose.
Skip the side dish. Try to fill up on the lean protein and veggies and either skip the rice or noodles all together, or only eat a small portion of the side dish you’ve chosen.
Try to keep any side dish portion to a 1 cup serving or smaller if possible.
You can always skip the fortune cookie too. They don’t taste very good anyways.
No matter what you choose, don’t totally deprive yourself, as that will only lead to failure.
One day at a time, keep good track of your points, and move on.
I hope this Best Chinese Food with Weight Watchers Points post has helped you!
To view more WW recipes, visit my recipes page here.
Let me know if this post has helped you, or if there’s anything I should add. Comment below or contact me here.