Slow Cooker American Chop Suey

Slow Cooker American Chop Suey

Diana Rattray

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 5 hrs
Total: 5 hrs 10 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
457 Calories
24g Fat
25g Carbs
35g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 457
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 24g 31%
Saturated Fat 8g 39%
Cholesterol 101mg 34%
Sodium 410mg 18%
Total Carbohydrate 25g 9%
Dietary Fiber 5g 17%
Total Sugars 10g
Protein 35g
Vitamin C 25mg 123%
Calcium 99mg 8%
Iron 6mg 33%
Potassium 1186mg 25%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Despite its name, American chop suey has no connection to Asian cuisine. Instead, it's a tomato-based pasta dish that's popular in New England and similar to goulash, a Midwest and Southern staple.

While Chinese chop suey consists of meat and vegetables stir-fried in a thick sauce and served over rice or chow mein, American chop suey is made of elbow macaroni, ground beef, onions, and tomato sauce. The dish was once served over rice, rather than pasta, which is partly where its name stemmed from.

Some folks might add green bell peppers or cheese to their American chop suey, but neither are traditionally used in the recipe. This particular variation is made in the slow cooker, making it even easier for a weeknight family dinner.


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

  • 1 pound ground chuck

  • 1 medium onion, chopped

  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

  • 6 ounces tomato paste

  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained

  • Kosher salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

  • 1 cup uncooked macaroni, to make 2 cups cooked

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. In a nonstick skillet over medium heat, heat the vegetable oil. Brown the ground beef with the onion. When the ground beef is no longer pink, drain off the fat and transfer to the slow cooker.

  3. Add the garlic powder, Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, and diced tomatoes. Stir to combine. Taste the sauce and add salt and pepper, as needed.

  4. Cover and cook on low for 5 to 6 hours.

  5. Cook the macaroni in boiling salted water following the package directions. Drain thoroughly.

  6. Stir the hot drained macaroni into the slow cooker tomato and beef mixture. Blend well and continue cooking for 10 minutes longer, or until hot.

  7. Serve and enjoy.


  • Serve with crusty bread and a green salad for a well-rounded meal.

Recipe Variations

  • Replace the garlic powder with two cloves of finely minced garlic. Add it to the slow cooker, along with the tomatoes.
  • American chop suey is a highly adaptable recipe. Use whatever shaped pasta you have on hand and mix in vegetable, if desired.
  • Add 1 cup of Cheddar cheese at the end of the cooking process, letting it cook for about 10 more minutes until the cheese is melted.
  • Oven-baked casserole variation: Preheat the oven to 350 F. Sauté the ground beef and onion as directed and pour it into a 9 x 13-inch casserole dish. Cook the macaroni to al dente. Add the remaining ingredients to the casserole dish, including the cooked macaroni, and use a spatula to even it out. Cover the dish with foil and cook for 25 minutes.
  • Instant Pot variation: Set the Instant Pot to sauté. Add the oil and then the beef and onions. Cook until browned, and then add the remaining ingredients, except the macaroni. Cover with the lid, and set the Instant Pot to manual high pressure for 4 minutes. Let it cook, and then quick-release the pressure. Add macaroni, stir to combine, and serve.
  • Goulash variation: Change this dish into a traditional goulash by adding diced celery and green bell peppers and 1 tablespoon Hungarian paprika to the slow cooker.