The British have a wide array of food associated with their country, including fish and chips, shepherd’s pie, afternoon tea, and a full English breakfast. Along with these U.K. delicacies, U.S. TikTok users are discovering that even the Brits have a specific approach to British Chinese takeout (or takeaway, as they call it) that is leaving their jaws on the floor. 

What’s in an American Chinese takeout?

A typical Americanized Chinese meal consists of white or fried rice, crab rangoon, egg rolls, Kung Pao chicken, orange chicken, beef broccoli, chow mein noodles, and a fortune cookie to top it all off.

Of course, these are often packaged in white takeout containers with red writing and a metal handle, and you have your option of a plastic fork or chopsticks for eating utensils. Condiments include soy sauce, duck sauce, and hot mustard, too.

If your mouth is watering right now, you are totally an American, and you can DoorDash all of these dishes to share with your roomies and family. If you are British, we have a few questions about your version of Chinese takeout.

What’s in a British Chinese takeaway?

First off, why are salt and pepper chips (or fries, if you’re from the U.S.) a part of every staple Chinese takeout order in the U.K.? Also, when you get delicious fried rice and noodles, why are you smothering it in curry sauce?

One American on Tiktok, @_mjmcm, explained the main difference between Chinese takeout with the two countries.

In the U.S., we enjoy the aromatics of garlic, ginger, soy sauce, pepper, etc. in our meat and side dishes. Truly, the more garlic, the better. The TikToker shares how most British Chinese takeaway has just a general, plain fried flavor profile.

Instead of savory, spicy, sweet, and sour sauces, British Chinese takeaway centers around vinegar, sweet flavors, or thick curry sauce, described as having a gravy-like texture.

“If you do want a British ethnic food, get Indian. Brits do the most freaking delicious Indian food,” they share.

So, I guess it’s up to you whether or not you’re craving gravy-covered fried rice when you’re visiting the U.K. It might be good, but it’ll never be Panda Express