Sapa sui bowl with salad and breadsticks

Sapa Sui: A Taste of Samoa in 30 Minutes

Sapa Sui, also known as Sapasui or Samoan chop suey, is a vibrant island dish that’s both easy to make and bursting with flavour.
Packed with tender meat, crisp vegetables, and springy vermicelli noodles, Sapa Sui is a delicious journey to the heart of Samoan cuisine.

Imagine a stir-fry where savoury meets sweet, with a comforting texture from the vermicelli.
That’s Sapa Sui! While the base ingredients remain consistent, every Samoan family has their own twist on this beloved dish.
This recipe offers a simple yet flavourful version that’s perfect for a quick and satisfying weeknight meal.

Sapa sui bowl with salad and breadsticks

Sapa Sui: Samoan Chop Suey Recipe

Experience the vibrant flavours of Samoa with Sapa Sui! This savoury dish features meat, crisp vegetables, and springy vermicelli noodles in a rich sauce. Dive into island comfort food!
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Samoan
Servings 5 people
Calories 400 kcal

Equipment

  • Large wok or frying pan
  • Cutting board
  • Sharp knife
  • Spoon
  • Spatula

Ingredients
  

  • 500 grams Beef mince or Lamb/Chicken/Pork
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 cup chopped mixed vegetables carrots, celery, bell pepper
  • 200 grams vermicelli Pasta noodles
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 2 tablespoons water
  • Vegetable oil for cooking

Instructions
 

  • Heat oil in your wok or pan over medium heat.
  • Add the onion and cook until softened, about 3 minutes.
  • Add the garlic and ginger, cook for another minute until fragrant.
  • Increase heat to medium-high and add the beef mince. Cook, breaking it up with your spoon, until browned.
  • Stir in the soy sauce, brown sugar, and black pepper.
  • Add the chopped vegetables and cook for an additional 5 minutes, or until slightly softened.
  • In a separate bowl, soak the vermicelli noodles in hot water for 5 minutes according to package instructions. Drain and cut into shorter pieces with kitchen scissors.
  • Add the vermicelli and chicken broth to the wok. Bring to a simmer.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water to form a slurry. Gradually add the slurry to the wok while stirring, until the sauce thickens slightly.
  • Cook for another 2-3 minutes, or until the vermicelli is cooked through and the sauce has reached your desired consistency.

Video

Notes

Recipe Tips:
  1. Feel free to adjust the vegetables to your liking. Other options include green beans, mushrooms, or broccoli.
  2. For a vegetarian version, simply omit the meat and add an extra cup of chopped vegetables.
  3. You can substitute the vermicelli with rice noodles or thin wheat noodles.
  4. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Serving Suggestions and Accompaniments

Samoan Chop Suey is a complete meal on its own, but you can enhance the dining experience by serving it with some delicious accompaniments.
Here are a few suggestions:
White rice;
Samoan Chop Suey is a delicious and flavourful traditional dish that is usually served as a side dish with rice.

Rice helps to balance out the flavours in Samoan Chop Suey, while also providing an extra level of heartiness.
The combination of protein and starch create a balanced meal that can satisfy everyone's hunger.
Potato Salad;
A good potato salad pairs well with this dish.
Adding potato salad to the dish adds a unique flavour and texture to the meal.
Its creamy and crunchy elements add an extra layer of flavour that compliments the savoury flavour of the chop suey perfectly.
Cold rice salad;
A side dish of cold rice salad is great alongside your chop suey.
Cold rice salad is the perfect pairing with Chop Suey because it adds a cool, light and refreshing element to contrast the savoury and hearty flavours in the dish.
The mild yet distinct taste of cold rice salad brings balance to this classic Samoan meal
90 second microwave bread;
Serve with this pancake style 90 second microwave bread.
Chop Suey is a traditional dish that pairs beautifully with 90 second microwave bread.
The fluffy and light texture of the bread adds a delicious contrast to the hearty and savoury flavour of the Sapasui.
It is an ideal match for both flavour and texture plus it's also great for mopping up that sauce.
Samoan Coconut Rice;
Samoan coconut rice is an absolute staple side dish for Samoan Chop Suey and it’s a great way to add a pop of flavour to the dish.
It’s made with coconut milk, jasmine rice and hints of turmeric and curry powder, so it makes for a nice yellow hue with a delicious flavour.
Bread Sticks;
Fresh Crusty breadsticks are perfect for soaking up the delicious sauce.
Coleslaw;
Coleslaw makes for another excellent side dish when having your Sapasui.
It helps add some extra crunchiness due to its cabbage content plus its tangy taste also provides additional balance for this savoury meal too!
All you have to do is mix shredded cabbage/carrots together in a bowl then add mayo or yoghurt based dressing and voila - you got yourself some tasty coleslaw!
Fruit Skewers;
This dish is often served with a side of fruit skewers for added sweetness and a pop of vibrant colour.
The fruit helps to cut through the savoury flavours of the dish and its natural acidity helps to balance the overall flavour profile.
Eating fruit helps provide additional sources of vitamins and minerals that may not be found in traditional Samoan Chop Suey ingredients, as well as dietary fibre for improved digestion.
Tropical Smoothie Bowl;
This addition will help end your dining experience on a sweet high note.
Enjoy fresh fruits blended together in creamy smoothies accompanied by crunchy toppings such as granola and coconut flakes.
Due to how filling these smoothie bowls are their desired reputation as “meal replacement” options are quite deserved!
Toast points;
Toast points, which are slices of toast cut into triangle shapes, are a popular side dish for Samoan Chop Suey.
They provide a crunchy texture and soak up the sauce from the dish, making them an ideal accompaniment to this savoury one-pot meal.
Garnishes;
This step isn't necessary but adding a sprinkle of sesame seeds or green onions brings visual interest as well as flavour enhancement.
This is good, especially if you have picky eaters who need something extra to make them feel special!

Conclusion:

Sapa Sui is a delicious and versatile dish that's perfect for any occasion. With its simple ingredients and quick preparation time, it's a great way to experience the vibrant flavours of Samoa.
So grab your wok and get ready to embark on a culinary adventure!
Keyword samoan chop suey, sapa sui, sapasui

5 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    So easy and it was a winner with the inlaws, who are picky about how their Sapasui is made.

    1. Hi there Rebecca,
      You can substitute with 2 level tablespoons of ground coriander.

      However, it is always best to start with a smaller amount of ground coriander and add more to taste.
      Ground coriander has a stronger flavour than fresh coriander, so you may not need to use as much.

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