Delight in Every Spoonful: Our Beef Pho Recipe

Are you ready to dive into the world of Vietnamese cuisine? Look no further than this Beef Pho Recipe. Pho is a traditional Vietnamese noodle soup that has become increasingly popular across the globe in recent years. You may have tried it at a restaurant, but there’s nothing quite like making a batch of homemade pho in your own kitchen. This recipe is both easy and authentic, providing you with the perfect balance of rare beef, spicy sate, and savory broth.

Pho has a rich history that dates back to Vietnam in the early 20th century. It was originally sold by street vendors who would carry large pots of broth to sell to hungry locals in Hanoi. Over time, the dish became more refined and began incorporating new ingredients like fresh herbs and meat. Today, it’s considered one of Vietnam’s national dishes and can be found on menus all over the world.

For this recipe, we’ll be using an Instant Pot to make the cooking process quick and painless. The pressure cooker will help develop the flavors of the broth without needing hours of simmering time. We’ll also be using traditional ingredients like star anise, cinnamon, and cloves to infuse the beef broth with warm, aromatic flavors. And don’t worry if you’re not a fan of rare meat – we’ll show you how to cook your beef to your preferred level of doneness.

Get ready to impress your taste buds and those of your friends and family with this delicious Beef Pho Recipe. It’s easy, it’s authentic, and once you taste it, you’ll never go back to ordering it from a restaurant again.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Beef Pho
Beef Pho

If you’re looking for a perfect bowl of comfort food, then Vietnamese beef pho is just what you need. This noodle soup is packed with flavor and loaded with wholesome ingredients, making it an ideal meal for any time of the day. Here are a few reasons why you’ll absolutely love this recipe:

Firstly, it’s easy and authentic. The recipe calls for a few key ingredients that can be sourced easily at home. Following the recipe instructions to make classic Vietnamese beef pho is super easy and the result is nothing short of delicious.

Secondly, it’s versatile. The beauty of this noodle soup is that it allows for flexibility in ingredients which means you can tailor it to your taste preference or dietary requirements. You can use chicken, egg, sate or even tofu instead of beef.

Thirdly, it’s a quick meal option. This recipe comes with instructions on how to make quick beef pho using a Pressure Cooker instead of simmering for many hours traditionally in a pot. So, even on busy days, you’ll have no excuse not to indulge in a bowl of healthy and delicious soup!

Fourthly, it’s spicy and rare. Who doesn’t love to challenge their taste buds with spicy dishes? With chilies as one of the ingredients in this recipe, this noodle soup packs a delightful kick and the thinly sliced rare beef melts in your mouth making every bite worth savouring.

Lastly, whether you’re trying something new or sticking to tradition- Vietnamese beef pho has stood the test of time as a classic Vietnamese dish that will transport you to Vietnam in just one mouthful! Why wouldn’t anyone love this?

Overall, this dish is both healthy and flavorful—a winning combination that makes the dish perfect for any occasion!

Ingredient List

 Savor the aromatic essence of Vietnam in every spoonful with this Beef Pho recipe!
Savor the aromatic essence of Vietnam in every spoonful with this Beef Pho recipe!

Before diving into the recipe, let’s go through the ingredient list that you will need to make this flavorful and aromatic beef pho. Vietnamese cuisine is all about using fresh ingredients, herbs, and spices that work together to create a symphony of flavors. Here are the ingredients:

For the Pho Broth:

  • 2 onions, peeled and sliced in half
  • 3-inch piece ginger, sliced in half lengthwise
  • 3 pounds beef bones (can use marrow bones)
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 3 whole star anise
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 1 black cardamom pod (optional)
  • 1 fennel seed (optional)
  • 1-2 dried chilies (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • water

For the Beef Pho:

  • 1 pound beef, such as flank steak or top sirloin steak
  • Rice noodles
  • Bean sprouts
  • Fresh herbs (Thai basil, cilantro, mint)
  • Sliced chili peppers (optional)
  • Lime wedges
  • Fish sauce and light soy sauce for serving

These pho recipe ingredients can be easily found at your local grocery store or Asian market. You have the option to adjust spice levels by adding more or less chilies pepper depending on your taste preference. Let’s move on to how to make this satisfyingly delicious Vietnamese dish!

The Recipe How-To

 Indulge in a bowl of comfort with this popular Vietnamese dish.
Indulge in a bowl of comfort with this popular Vietnamese dish.

Now that we have our ingredients prepared, it’s time to get started with making our delicious beef pho soup. Follow these easy steps and enjoy a hearty bowl of Vietnamese cuisine in your own home.

Step 1: Preparing the Broth

Begin by charring onions, slicing ginger and pounding the lemongrass to release its aromatic oils. In a large pot or pressure cooker, add water, beef bones, star anise, cinnamon stick, black cardamom pods, cloves, and fennel seeds. Add the onions and ginger to the pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Skim any impurities that rise to the surface using a spoon. Reduce heat to low and let simmer for at least two hours or up to 12 hours to create a rich flavourful broth.

Step 2: Preparing the Noodles

If using dried rice noodles, cook according to package instructions until al dente. Drain them and run them under cold water to ceases cooking.

Step 3: Cooking the Beef

Heat oil in a separate large pot over medium-high heat. Once hot, add thinly sliced round eye steak or your choice of beef such as sirloin steak or flank steak cut into quick-cooking pieces. Sear each piece on both sides until browned and cooked through. Once cooked, remove from pan and set aside.

Step 4: Finishing Up

Once you have everything prepped and ready, ladle the hot broth over the cooked noodles in a bowl. Alternatively, place noodles in boiling water for 30 seconds then drain before serving. Add beef slices on top of the noodles. For extra flavor add some fish sauce or light soy sauce as desired.

Garnish with bean sprouts, thinly sliced spring onion sticks, herbs such as Thai basil leaves and mint leaves, fresh coriander, and thinly sliced chilies for some spicy kick. Add Wedge of lime for a touch of tanginess.

Enjoy your hearty bowl of pho soup with the perfect combination of tender beef and flavorful broth.

Substitutions and Variations

 Transform your kitchen into a pho-nomenal culinary experience.
Transform your kitchen into a pho-nomenal culinary experience.

If there is one thing I know about cooking, it is that it is all about personalization. Let’s face it: every chef, every family, and every culture has its take on some form of cuisine. And so, there are several variations of Pho that you can explore with this recipe. Here are a few ideas!

– Sate Pho: If you love spicy food, add a slightly different flavor to your beef pho by stirring in 1 tablespoon of Sa-te sauce (a type of Southeast Asian harissa) into the broth.

– Chicken Pho: While beef pho is what typically comes to mind, many Vietnamese make pho with chicken. To replace the beef bones and meat with chicken, just swap out the same amount of chicken legs or thighs for the beef.

– Vegetarian Pho: A vegetarian option which still gives all those delicious Vietnamese flavors is possible. Instead of beef stock use vegetable broth to give your Pho a more earthy flavor.

– Noodle Variations: Traditionally rice noodles are used in this dish, but believe me, pho is also outstanding when made with Ramen or even egg noodles.

Remember that our substitutions and variations are backbones giving us limited options for our Beef Pho soup. It’s said that an endless array of possibilities exists when it comes to making a bowl of perfect pho soup. The key thing is to experiment and find out what suits you best! Don’t be afraid to try something new!

Serving and Pairing

 It's not just a bowl of soup, it's a work of art.
It’s not just a bowl of soup, it’s a work of art.

Ah, the moment of truth has arrived! After toiling in the kitchen, it’s now time to savor your hard work. Sit down, relax, and get ready to experience a true Vietnamese culinary classic.

To serve your beef pho, divide the cooked noodles between bowls and ladle the spicy broth on top. Arrange the cooked beef slices on one side of the bowl and add a few bean sprouts, sliced onions, spring onions and Thai basil on top of the broth. Garnish with fresh coriander, a lime wedge and some sliced red chili for an extra kick.

When it comes to pairing your steaming bowl of Vietnam’s national noodle soup, champagne might be too posh – instead opt for a refreshing Asian beer such as Saigon beer or Tsingtao. And if you prefer wine, stick to light whites like Riesling or Gewürztraminer that won’t overpower the subtle flavors of the broth.

Pho is also served with different condiments such as hoisin sauce, sriracha hot sauce or a mixture called “tuong ot sate” – it’s up to you to explore these choices and find your favorite combination.

Now that you know how to make a bowl of pho that would make any street vendor in Hanoi jealous and how to enjoy it like a true Vietnamese chef, go ahead and invite some friends over – pho is always better when shared.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 You won't be able to get enough of the mouthwatering flavors in this Beef Pho recipe.
You won’t be able to get enough of the mouthwatering flavors in this Beef Pho recipe.

Pho is a perfect make-ahead meal that stays good in the fridge for a few days, and it reheats wonderfully without losing any flavors. Here are some tips on preparing this delightful Vietnamese noodle soup ahead of time and how to store it properly.

For make-ahead, prepare the broth and beef separately. Store them in separate containers in the refrigerator until needed. You can also keep the noodles separately, so they don’t absorb all the liquid from the soup.

When you’re ready to eat, bring the broth to a simmer on medium heat. Add the beef, cook for a few minutes until it’s done, and then reheat the noodles by dipping them in boiling water for 30 seconds or until warmed through. Arrange your toppings nearby so that everyone can serve themselves

If you have leftovers, separate the broth and noodles before storing them in an airtight container. The toppings such as bean sprouts, cilantro, lime wedges, and basil should be stored separately in sealed bags or containers.

To reheat pho after it has been refrigerated requires some effort to bring back its taste and texture. Reheating in microwave is not recommended since it may result in overcooked beef and mushy noodles. The best way is to reheat pho on the stove over medium heat until heated through.

With these simple tricks, serving leftovers will be even more delicious than before! Enjoy your traditional Vietnamese pho any time you crave for it; it’s easy to warm up on any occasions!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Customize your pho to your taste buds' delight with a variety of toppings.
Customize your pho to your taste buds’ delight with a variety of toppings.

As a chef specializing in Vietnamese and Asian cuisine, I’ve had quite a bit of experience making beef pho. Here are some tips to help you perfect your own version:

1. Use quality ingredients: The key to any great dish is using fresh, quality ingredients. For beef pho, this means choosing high-quality beef, fragrant herbs like Thai basil and cilantro, and fresh vegetables like sprouts and sliced onions.

2. Don’t skimp on the broth: The broth is the heart and soul of the pho, so don’t skimp on making it. Take your time to simmer the bones and spices to get all the flavor out of them. If you’re short on time, consider using a pressure cooker or Instant Pot to speed up the process.

3. Char your onions and ginger: To add an extra layer of flavor to your broth, try charring the halved onion and ginger before adding them to the pot. This will give your broth a slightly smoky taste that really sets it apart.

4. Adjust seasoning as needed: Taste your broth before serving and adjust the seasonings as needed. You may need to add more fish sauce or salt for a salty and savory flavor or brown sugar for sweetness.

5. Serve hot with all the fixings: Make sure you serve your beef pho piping hot with plenty of lime wedges, bean sprouts, Thai basil, cilantro, sliced chili peppers, hoisin sauce, and sriracha on the side to customize each bowl according to preference.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to master the art of making traditional Vietnamese beef pho in no time. Happy cooking!


As you prepare your own bowl of delicious and aromatic beef pho, you might have questions and doubts along the way. No worries! This section of the article aims to address some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about the recipe. From “Can I use chicken instead of beef?” to “How long can I keep the leftover pho in the fridge?”, we’ve got you covered. So, let’s get started on this flavorful adventure!

What are the secret ingredients in pho?

Dried peanut worms, also known as sa sung, are often hailed as the key factor in the flavor of delicious pho.

What is beef pho broth made of?

You might be curious about the dish called pho. To put it simply, it is a savory Vietnamese soup made with beef bones, onions, ginger, and fragrant spices. When done right, it is a culinary masterpiece.

What kind of meat is used for beef pho?

To make a delicious beef pho, it’s important to choose the right cut of meat. Some good options include sirloin steak, round eye, or London broil, as they are all easy to cook and won’t require excessive chewing. My personal favorite for this recipe is round eye, which boasts a wonderful lean texture and a naturally beefy taste that complements the overall flavors of the pho.

What makes pho broth taste so good?

When it comes to the flavor profile of pho, aside from the meat, it is quite straightforward. The essential ingredients include burnt onions and ginger or some element of sweetness, smokiness, and spiciness. Additionally, the spices of choice are star anise, cinnamon, cloves, and sometimes other aromatic spices. To add saltiness and savory umami notes, fish sauce is utilized, and to balance things out, sugar adds a bit of sweetness. The dish is then finished off with various toppings that you can mix in to enhance the flavor.

Bottom Line

So, what are you waiting for? Gather your ingredients, channel your inner Vietnamese chef and create a bowl of pho that will transport you to Vietnam.

With this easy and authentic recipe, you’ll be able to make a delicious and traditional Vietnamese beef pho in no time. The rich and savory broth made with star anise, cinnamon cloves, and beef bones combined with fresh garnishes such as cilantro, basil, bean sprouts and lime wedges will tantalize your tastebuds.

There’s something for everyone when it comes to pho – whether you like it rare or well-done, quick or slow-cooked, spicy or mild – the choices are endless! Try various substitutions and variations including sate chicken, egg noodles or even beef tendon to switch things up a bit.

Don’t forget to pair your pho with a cold beer or iced tea and revel in the flavors of Vietnam. Authentic Vietnamese food is all about fresh ingredients, bold flavors and communal meals where everyone can gather around the table.

So next time you’re looking for a hearty noodle soup that’s quick and easy to make but still packed with tons of flavor, give this beef pho recipe a try. You won’t be disappointed. Enjoy!

Beef Pho

Beef Pho Recipe

Vietnamese beef noodle soup. 
No ratings yet
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 6 hrs
Course Main Course
Cuisine Vietnamese
Calories 26.7 kcal


  • any of a combination beef bone, oxtail, beef shin
  • water
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seed
  • 1 tablespoon fennel seed
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorn
  • 6 cloves
  • 3 star anise
  • 4 dries birds eye chilies (optional)
  • 3 black cardamom pods
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 4 -5 lemongrass, stalks
  • 3 inches piece ginger, sliced
  • 1 large onion, quartered
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar or 1 tablespoon rock sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • salt
  • cooked rice noodles
  • toasted sesame oil
  • bean sprouts
  • raw sirloin steak
  • sliced spring onion
  • sliced fresh red chili
  • fresh coriander
  • of fresh mint
  • fresh Thai basil (optional)
  • light soy sauce
  • fish sauce
  • lime wedge


  • Place beef and/or bones in a large stock pot and cover with cold water. Cover and bring to the boil. Boil rapidly for 5 mins and then remove bones and rinse them in a colander. Pour away water and clean stock pot thoroughly. (This steps removes impurities and ensures a clear soup).
  • Place meat/bones back into stock pot and cover with water. Place on a medium heat.
  • Toast all of the dried spices in a dry frying pan until fragrant (2-3 mins) and then lightly crush in a pestle and morter. Wrap in muslin, secure and place into stock pot.
  • Add sliced ginger and bruise lemongrass stalks before adding to stock pot.
  • Blacken onions under a hot grill and then add.
  • Bring to boil, turn down to barely simmering and simmer uncovered for at least 5 hours.
  • Strain and reserve the cooking liquid. Can retain any oxtail or shin meat for the soup and discard the remainder of the stock pot ingredients.
  • Strain the liquid through a muslin cloth into a large sauce pan. Add sugar, 2 tblsp fish sauce and salt to taste.
  • To assemble: add cooked noodles, beansprouts and finely sliced raw steak to a deep noodle bowl. Pour over boiling hot stock (this will just cook the steak).
  • Add the sliced chilli, spring onion and fresh herbs. Add fish sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil  and freshly squeezed lime juice to taste.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 85gCalories: 26.7kcalCarbohydrates: 5.8gProtein: 0.8gFat: 0.3gSodium: 473.9mgFiber: 1.2gSugar: 3.5g
Keyword Asian, Lunch
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Recommended Recipes Just For You