• The 10 traditional Vietnamese soups to taste
  • The 10 traditional Vietnamese soups to taste

  • on Dec 28, 2020       By: BN
  • Soup is the star of Vietnamese cuisine. Prepared on a sidewalk or in a small tavern, soup is eaten in Vietnam both for breakfast and for the other two meals of the day. From North to South, each region reveals soup recipes that are as creative as they are tasty. Let’s discover with relish the 10 traditional Vietnamese soups to absolutely try during your next trip to Vietnam.


    1. Pho, the emblematic soup of Vietnam

    best Vietnamese soups pho

    Pho, pronounced almost like “fur”, is arguably Vietnam's national dish. Originally from the Nam Dinh region, South of Hanoi, this traditional soup is characterised by its beef broth with shank and marrow bones simmered for days to which are added star anise, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and cilantro. It is served with flat rice noodles, thin strips of beef or chicken, and fresh chives. On every corner, you can feast on this iconic Vietnamese soup.

    2. Bun rieu, soup with multiple variations

    best Vietnamese soups bun rieu

    Bun (rice vermicelli) Rieu (slightly acidic) is a soup base to which you can add: snails, crab, fish in particular and more rarely beef or pork. The tomato is present in this soup as well as many spices and cubes of fried tofu. It is always accompanied by aromatic herbs, chilli and lime.

    3. Bun thang, traditional Tet soup

    best Vietnamese soups bun thang

    This typical Hanoi soup is traditionally eaten on the 4th day of Tet, the Vietnamese lunar new year. This soup is based on clear chicken broth, pulled chicken, Vietnamese cilantro, pork bologna, fine omelette, marinated turnips, scented mushrooms, rice vermicelli and, depending on taste, salted hard-boiled duck eggs. A delight for the stomach and the eyes!

    4. Bun bo hue, the flavours of the former imperial capital

    best Vietnamese soups bun bo hue

    This spicy beef rice noodle soup with pig's feet is a real treat! A tasty and comforting dish garnished with mung bean sprouts, banana blossoms, chives, soybean sprouts and a little touch of "mam ruoc", a paste made from typically Vietnamese fermented shrimp. An essential dish in the rich gastronomy of the former royal capital, it can be found listed by Unesco.

    5. Bun thai hai san, a soup with salty flavours

    best Vietnamese soups bun thai hai san

    Seafood lovers will set their sights on this incredible Vietnamese soup! Here is a generous bowl filled with a fragrant broth, a tangy touch, where you can smell lemongrass, in which rice vermicelli, squares of tofu, aromatic herbs and a nice variety of seafood: shrimps, squid, octopus, cockles, crab and fish are combined. This dish is best enjoyed on the coast to enjoy the extreme freshness of seafood.

    6. Mi Quang, icon of central Vietnam

    best Vietnamese soups my quang

    This Vietnamese noodle dish from central Vietnam is a tantalizing for all taste buds! Mi quang most often consists of yellow noodles, coloured by turmeric, washed down with a chicken broth where shrimps, quail eggs, crushed peanuts, lettuce leaves, mung bean sprouts, coriander, mint, spring onion, banana flowers and a crispy rice cake with sesame seeds are added. Gorgeous!

    7. Cao lau, traditional soup from Hoi An

    best Vietnamese soups cao lau

    Cao lau marks the gastronomic identity of Hoi An. This soup is cooked with rice noodles, thin slices of pork, a mixture of fresh herbs (lettuce, mint, basil, coriander), all covered with a delicious broth and a crispy rice cake. A signature dish of Hoi An since, according to legend, only water from a certain well in Hoi An could be used to make this special broth.

    8. Bun cha ca, the call of the sea

    best Vietnamese soups bun cha ca

    Further South of Hoi An, in the discreet but charming seaside resort of Quy Nhon, do not miss a taste of bun cha ca. Traditionally, it is a noodle soup with fried fish but there are several variations with seafood and even jellyfish. A dish you won't soon forget!

    9. Hu tieu, the soup from southern Vietnam

    best Vietnamese soups hu tieu

    Originally from My Tho in the Mekong Delta, hu tieu soup is very popular in Southern Vietnam and is particularly popular for breakfast among Saigon people. This soup consists of very fine noodles soaked in a very fragrant broth then placed in a bowl with slices of pork tenderloin, thin strips of pork liver, shrimps, leaves from the heart of a cabbage or lettuce, chives, fried shallots, bean sprouts, celery, and a little garlic. A real concoction of flavours!

    10. Chao, the Vietnamese porridge

    best Vietnamese soups chao

    This is a good soup that we love to enjoy in winter, which warms the heart and stomach. A grandma's soup that brings back childhood memories, it’s easy to eat and is hearty and nutritious. It's a rice soup cooked in a chicken broth with ginger, nuoc mam, cilantro and onions. It is served with pulled chicken and some aromatic herbs. Super delicious!

         Related articles:

    >> The 10 key spices of Vietnamese cuisine

    >> The best Vietnamese pho soup, Hanoi pho or Saigon pho?

    >> "Banh cuon" or Vietnamese ravioli: a dish among our best delicacies


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