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Jul 13, 2009 05:43 PM

Healthier way to order sesame chicken or lo mein?

Look, when I get take-out style Chinese, my favorite things to get are sesame chicken and lo mein, which just happen to be two of the unhealthiest things on the menu. I'm trying to get healthier, and especially take in less oil.

Is there anything I can ask them to do when I order, aside from asking for no MSG, to make those dishes a little healthier?

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  1. the sesame chicken is a lost cause, because it's battered & fried. the lo mein depends on the restaurant - some places pan-fry the noodles in a ton of oil. you could ask them to go light on the oil, but depending on how heavy their sauce is, that might be an exercise in futility anyway.

    if you want "healthier" Chinese, food, you'll probably either have to order different dishes, or learn how to make healthier versions of your favorites at home.

    1 Reply
    1. re: goodhealthgourmet

      Well, you could order the Sesame Chicken with Sliced White Meat only and request it also not to be battered and fried.

      As for the lo mein, there is a soup known as Yat Gar Mein....usually made with red roast pork, but can easily be substituted with chicken, also requested with white meat only. YGM is chicken soup with mixed vegetables and lo mein noodles. Ask you restaurant of choice to include any vegetable of you choice, e.g., snow pea pods or bok choy, and also request the soup to be served on the side so the noodle do not get too soft before you get home to enjoy it. You can have the soup separately.....and you can take the vegetables, meat and lo mein noodle....and mix them with your favorite store bought sauce, like a Mr. Yoshida, or you can add soy sauce, hoisin sauce or other.

      Remember to give me credit for probably saving you 50% off your bill, as lo mein dishes are probably near $8-9 dollars. Yat Gar Mein is rarely over $5 for a quart serving.

    2. Order a separate order of steamed noodles and vegetables, then when you get home mix these with the chicken or lo mein. You'll get twice the meals for the amount of oil used.

      2 Replies
        1. re: greygarious

          now THAT's using your noodle, gg!

          sorry, i just couldn't resist ;)

        2. One of our local American-Chinese places had sesame chicken on their diet menu (no oil or cornstarch, sauce on the side). Basically stir-fried in aromatics and broth and served with a side of white or brown rice.