Dining review: Good food, great prices make Jackie’s a local fave

Will Watts

Looking for great Chinese food on the go? Our next dining destination was a quick stop, as it take out. Jackie’s Chinese Restaurant on Marco Island does have a few tables, but the bulk of their business is take away.

Whether you call ahead or stop by to order on your way to Publix, Jackie’s has it all; including great prices.

The fried pork dumplings at Jackie's Chinese Restaurant, Marco Island.

When my review posted for Su’s Garden, the island’s other Chinese restaurant, that island foodies are in two camps – Ford or Chevy, Pepsi or Coke, McDonalds or Burger King, Su’s or Jackie’s. So I hear you. Personally, I like both for very different reasons that I won’t get into here.

For the record, I hate it when reviewers try to compare take out destinations under the same context as the any of the sit-down restaurants. Good take away is challenging. You must consider packaging and shelf life. And oftentimes presentation is a distant third.

Sure, I’ve had bad take out. I’ve also had bad sit-down food. But context is king and comparing one to the other is apples and oranges.

The honey chicken dinner combo at Jackie's Chinese Restaurant, Marco Island.

So what did we order?

Fried dumplings would serve as our appetizer. Too many times at too many places the pork dumplings are oilier than they need to be. Not at Jackie’s. These dumplings are seared to perfect.

For my main entrée, I order the shrimp-fried rice. My partner in dine had the honey chicken dinner combo which comes with fried rice and an egg roll. We also ordered a vegetable stir fry for some sorely lacking greenery.

Like the dumplings, the fried rice does not have an over-abundance of oil and the shrimp are a good size. If anything, I would like to see more veggies in this dish.

If you are ordering the honey chicken and don’t plan on eating it right away, may I suggest you ask for the sauce on the side? That way, when you get ready to eat your thick-battered chicken, it will stand betters odds of still being crispy.

If you are loving the light-on-the-oil theme, bypass the egg roll as it is not. Delicious? Yes. But you’ll regret it almost instantly.

The stir-fry vegetables at Jackie's Chinese Restaurant, Marco Island.

The stir fry, which came with a small side of white rice, was a welcome addition to our entrees. Although not “healthy,” it’ll make you feel a bit better nonetheless.  

Jackie’s is a friendly stop – and longtime Islanders will remember that was not always the case (or so I hear). The food is some of the best Chinese takeout anywhere in Southwest Florida, as are the prices.

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If you go

Jackie’s Chinese Restaurant

1089 North Collier Boulevard, Marco Island