Delicious Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup Recipe

Hey there fellow foodies, have you ever tasted the iconic Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup also known as Phở Bò? If yes, then you know howdelicious this dish is. And for those who haven’t tried it yet, let me introduce you to one of the most famous Vietnamese dishes that will transport your taste buds to the streets of Hanoi.

This dish is a perfect fusion of French and Vietnamese cuisine which has been around for over a century. Made with savory beef broth infused with onion, ginger and spices including cinnamon sticks, star anise and cardamom; this soup is hearty, warming and downright delicious.

The star ingredient here is undoubtedly the beef sirloin or brisket which is simmered slowly until it becomes meltingly tender. The soup is served with soft rice noodles and includes fresh herbs like cilantro and basil leaves. A plate of bean sprouts, lime wedges and sliced chili peppers are served on the side to add a lovely freshness and crunch to the soup.

Sharing this recipe with you makes me so excited about how good this soup is! You can easily find all the ingredients at your local Asian grocery store, or even at some mainstream supermarkets.

So why not give it a go? This recipe offers such amazing flavors and truly represents the cultural heritage of Vietnam. Get ready to savor the aroma and taste that has made this soup so famous around the world. Follow along as I guide you through each step to making one of my favorite dishes!

Stay tuned for a detailed step-by-step guide on how to make Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup that will have everyone coming back for more!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup
Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup

Are you in the mood for a comforting and flavorful meal? Look no further than this Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup recipe! Also known as phở bò, this dish is a classic in Vietnamese cuisine and will transport your taste buds to the bustling streets of Saigon.

What sets this recipe apart is its depth of flavor. A combination of beef sirloin, ginger, cinnamon sticks, star anise, and other aromatic spices make for a rich and savory broth that will leave you wanting more. And don’t forget the noodles – tender rice noodles add a satisfying texture to each spoonful.

But just because it’s packed with flavor doesn’t mean it’s difficult to make. With a few simple steps and readily available ingredients like soy sauce, bean sprouts, onion, and fresh herbs like cilantro and basil, you can whip up a batch of this delicious soup in no time.

Plus, this recipe is customizable to fit your tastes. Want to add some heat? Spice things up with some chili oil or sliced jalapeños. Prefer a vegetarian version? Swap out the beef for tofu or mushrooms. The possibilities are endless!

So why will you love this Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup recipe? It’s easy to make, bursting with flavor, and adaptable to your preferences. Trust me – one bowl won’t be enough!

Ingredient List

 A bowl of comfort and flavor: Vietnamese beef noodle soup
A bowl of comfort and flavor: Vietnamese beef noodle soup

Let’s dive into the list of ingredients for this Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup recipe!

Broth ingredients:

  • Beef bones: To make this flavorful soup base, we need to use beef bones. They give a rich taste and aroma to our broth.
  • Onion: We need one medium-sized yellow onion sliced in half. It will help to add a subtle sweetness to the broth.
  • Ginger root: Fresh ginger root adds an earthy and warming flavor to our soup base. We want about 2-inch ginger root, peel it before slicing.
  • Cinnamon sticks: These sticks give a subtle heat and fragrant flavor that complements well the beef broth. We’ll only need one stick.
  • Star anise: The star anise is a tree fruit with strong licorice and slight tangy flavors. It’s commonly used as a pho ingredient adding sweetness, pungency, and characterizes south-east Asian cuisines. We use two pieces of star anise for the broth.

Beef ingredients:

  • Beef sirloin: This cut of beef has excellent meat texture and rich taste but contains low fat. You’ll slice thinly around 1/8 inch for best results.
  • Onion – Ginger Spices Mix: We’re using the same sliced onion and ginger roots from our broth plus 1/2 cup of thinly sliced onions alongside with spices to season our beef sirloin.
  • Fish sauce: Fish sauce gives umami saltiness and depth savory flavors that are essential for Vietnamese cuisine. Two tablespoons are required for this recipe.

Soup ingredients:

  • Water: We’ll use about eight quarts of water in total for both the broth and the noodle soup.
  • Beef broth or stock: Using high-quality beef broth or stock guarantees a tasty final touch on our broth. We’ll pour in four cups of beef broth.
  • Rice Noodles: Rice noodles, 1/4 inch wide, are the staple ingredients of our pho noodle soup.
  • Bean sprouts: Bean sprouts give the perfect crunchiness and fresh yet mild taste that we need in our beef noodle soup.
  • Fresh cilantro leaves and basil: Herbs elevate the overall flavor and aroma of the dish bringing freshness and brightness. We’ll use one bunch of each.
  • Lime wedges: Lime gives a tangy and acidic balance to the broth. We’ll serve two lime wedges for each portion of the noodle soup.

The Recipe How-To

 A steamy delight to warm your soul and your belly
A steamy delight to warm your soul and your belly

Preparing the Soup Base

  • Step 1: In a large pot, I combine 4 quarts of water and 4 cups of beef broth. Then, add 2 pounds of beef bones, 2 star anise, 2 cinnamon sticks, and 1 ginger root that has been peeled and grated.
  • Step 2: Bring the pot to a boil and reduce heat to medium low. Simmer for 4-5 hours.
  • Step 3: Once done simmering, use a skimmer or spoon to remove the bones and spices. Strain the broth through a fine mesh sieve.

Preparing the Beef

  • Step 1: Thinly slice 1 pound of beef sirloin into bite-sized pieces.
  • Step 2: Add the sliced beef to a bowl and add marinade: mix together 2 tablespoons soy sauce and 1 tablespoon sugar. Mix well to combine.
  • Step 3: Let sit for at least 15 minutes before adding to the soup.

Preparing the Noodles

  • Step 1: Soak 16 ounces of rice noodles in cold water for about an hour or until soft.
  • Step 2: Drain the noodles and bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  • Step 3: Cook noodles according to package instructions. Rinse in cold water.

Putting It All Together

  • Step 1: To serve, divide the noodles between serving bowls. Add beef slices on top of noodles along with some thinly sliced yellow onions.
  • Step 2:Pour hot broth over the noodles and beef to cook the beef slices slightly
  • Step 3: Garnish each bowl with some fresh cilantro leaves, fresh basil leaves, bean sprouts, and sliced scallions. Serve immediately.

Remember that this basic recipe is really flexible and you can easily adjust it according to your taste. You can make it more savory by adding more soy sauce or fish sauce, add a little bit of heat by including some pepper flakes, or even add other vegetables like bok choy or carrot slices to the soup. Enjoy!

Substitutions and Variations

 Noodles swimming in a rich and aromatic broth
Noodles swimming in a rich and aromatic broth

When it comes to this Vietnamese beef noodle soup recipe, there are plenty of substitutions and variations you can make to suit your preferences or ingredients on hand.

First, let’s talk about the protein. While beef sirloin is traditional, you can also use beef brisket or rare steak for a different texture and flavor. For a spicy twist, try using spicy beef brisket or even egg noodles instead of rice noodles.

If you don’t have all the spice ingredients on hand or prefer a milder soup, you can omit some of the cinnamon sticks, gingerroot and star anise. You could also add other spices like whole cloves or cardamom pods for an extra kick.

Vegetarian substitutions are easy too! Replacing meat with shiitake mushrooms is a great option for added flavor and texture. You could also use vegetable broth instead of beef broth for a vegetarian version.

Don’t have access to fresh cilantro leaves or basil leaves? No worries! Use dried versions or substitute them with coriander leaves and Italian basil.

Lastly, if pho bo isn’t quite your favorite, there are plenty of other Vietnamese noodle soups to try, such as bun bo or bo hue.

Experiment with different ingredients and variations until you find the perfect combination that suits your taste buds. After all, cooking is all about creativity and making it your own!

Serving and Pairing

 A delightful mix of textures and flavors in every bite
A delightful mix of textures and flavors in every bite

Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup is a hearty and filling dish that can be enjoyed for any meal of the day. Traditionally served for breakfast or lunch, it is the perfect dish to warm up with on a chilly day.

This soup pairs well with fresh herbs like cilantro and basil leaves, which add an earthy and fresh flavor to every spoonful. Don’t forget to add some bean sprouts for a crunchy texture, and sliced onions for some zingy notes.

The soup is also best served with rice noodles or pho noodles, which add a tender texture and easily absorb the fragrant broth. When I make this dish at home, I love using vermicelli noodles or even egg noodles for a change in texture.

In addition to these traditional pairings, you can also serve the Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup with lime wedges on the side. Squeezing some lime juice into the mix adds a tart and refreshing flavor that balances out the warmth of the broth.

Alternatively, you can also serve your soup with some crusty bread or Vietnamese baguette on the side. The bread soaks up the savory broth and makes for a delicious dipping experience.

As for drinks, beer or tea are great choices as they complement the beefy and spicy flavors of the soup. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can even try pairing this soup with a light red wine like Pinot Noir.

Overall, this Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup is versatile enough to go well with a range of sides and beverages. It’s all about finding your favorite combination and enjoying each delicious bite.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 A staple of Vietnamese cuisine that will transport you to the streets of Hanoi
A staple of Vietnamese cuisine that will transport you to the streets of Hanoi

Now that you’ve prepared your Vietnamese beef noodle soup, it’s time to talk about make-ahead, storing and reheating options. This flavorful soup can be enjoyed throughout the week or saved for later. Here are some tips on how to store and reheat it properly:


One of the best things about Vietnamese beef noodle soup is that it tastes even better the next day after all the flavors have had a chance to meld together. You can make a large batch of soup and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. You can also freeze it for up to 1 month.


To store the soup, let it cool down first and then transfer it into an airtight container. If you’re going to freeze it, make sure to freeze it as soon as possible to prevent bacteria from forming.


When reheating the soup, there are a few ways to do so depending on your preference. If you’re reheating just one serving, you can use the microwave by heating it up for 1-2 minutes. If you’re reheating a larger amount, you can use a pot over medium heat until fully heated.

Tips for Best Results:

To keep your meat tender and flavorful, store the broth and noodles separately from the meat until ready to serve. When ready to serve, heat up the broth first before adding in any noodles or meat. This will prevent overcooking of the meat and will retain its juicy flavor.

In conclusion, this recipe is not only delicious but has the option of being stored and reheated for future enjoyment. By following these tips and tricks, you’ll be able to enjoy this flavorful Vietnamese beef noodle soup any time with ease!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Bursting with fresh herbs, spices, and tender beef
Bursting with fresh herbs, spices, and tender beef

When it comes to making Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup, a few tips and tricks can help elevate the dish from good to unforgettable. Here are some of my top tips for achieving perfect results every time:

Firstly, make sure to use high-quality beef broth or bone broth as the base for your soup. This sets the foundation for a rich and flavorful broth.

Secondly, take the time to properly prep your ingredients. This includes thinly slicing the beef sirloin as well as the yellow onions and ginger. In addition, crushing the ginger and spices helps release their flavors into the broth.

Thirdly, use fresh herbs like cilantro and basil leaves to garnish your bowl of soup. These herbs add a beautiful pop of color and depth of flavor to your dish.

Next, don’t be afraid to try different variations or substitutions. For example, instead of using rice noodles you could try egg noodles for a heartier texture. You could also add in additional vegetables like mushrooms or bok choy for added nutrition.

Another tip is to add seasoning gradually throughout the cooking process, tasting often to ensure your soup has the perfect balance of saltiness and sweetness.

Finally, don’t rush the cooking process. Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup is all about slow simmering for hours on end. Allow the spices and flavors to meld together over time, resulting in a complex and deeply satisfying dish.

By following these tips, you can enjoy a steaming bowl of Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup that rivals even the most famous Vietnamese restaurants out there.


As you continue to explore this Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup recipe, it’s natural to have a few questions in mind. In this section, we’ve put together some frequently asked questions (FAQ) and their corresponding answers to help you achieve the perfect Vietnamese noodle soup at home. Whether it’s clarifying some of the ingredients or making substitutions, this FAQ section has got you covered. Let’s dive in!

Is beef noodle soup the same as pho?

Vietnamese cuisine offers a wide range of noodle dishes that are beloved by locals and visitors alike. Among these dishes are Bò Kho, a savory beef stew served traditionally with noodles or bread, and Pho, a popular noodle soup dish made with rice noodles, an assortment of herbs, and choice meats such as beef or chicken.

What is the most famous Vietnamese noodle soup?

One of the most recognized Vietnamese soups to foreigners is Pho Bo or Phở Bò. But the soup is commonly referred to as Pho. Its birthplace can be traced back to Nam Dinh province, situated in the northern part of Vietnam. Eventually, Pho gained popularity and spread throughout Hanoi.

What is beef pho broth made of?

Pho is a savory Vietnamese soup that consists of rich beef broth, fresh ginger, onions, and a variety of fragrant spices. With its umami flavor and comforting texture, it’s an esteemed dish in the Vietnamese cuisine.

Is Vietnamese beef noodle soup healthy?

When it comes to nutrition and protein content, pho can provide several health benefits such as reducing inflammation and promoting joint health. However, it is essential to keep in mind that pho can also be high in calories and sodium, making it crucial to watch your portion sizes. With that said, incorporating pho into your balanced diet can be a wise choice for your overall health.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, the Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup recipe is a must-try for lovers of Asian cuisine. With its unique blend of flavors and spices, this dish is sure to tantalize your taste buds and leave you wanting more. What sets this recipe apart from others is the authenticity of the ingredients and cooking methods used, ensuring that every bite is a true delight.

Now that you have access to this recipe, you have the opportunity to impress your guests with an incredibly flavorful and satisfying meal. Be sure to follow the tips and recommendations provided to achieve perfect results every time. So go ahead and give this recipe a try, let the aroma fill your kitchen as your taste buds transport you to the streets of Vietnam.

As with any new culinary adventure, there may be some trial and error along the way, but don’t be discouraged. With patience, practice, and passion, you can master this Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup recipe and make it a staple in your kitchen. Remember; don’t be afraid to add your own twist on this classic recipe to make it truly unique.

So what are you waiting for? Get into the kitchen, grab those ingredients, and start cooking up a storm! Trust me when I say that your taste buds will thank you for it. Enjoy!

Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup

Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup Recipe

This easy to make, delicious beef noodle soup makes a wonderful lunch. The cinnamon is not overpowering and really compliments the flavor of this brothy soup. Forget chicken soup when you are sick, this one will put you back on your feet in no time!
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Prep Time 45 mins
Cook Time 0 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Vietnamese
Calories 289.5 kcal


  • 28 ounces beef broth
  • 3 cups water
  • 3 inches piece cinnamon sticks
  • 1 tablespoon grated gingerroot
  • 8 ounces beef sirloin (sliced thin)
  • 1 onion (thinly sliced)
  • 1 cup bean sprouts (fresh)
  • fresh basil leaf (to garnish)
  • fresh cilantro leaves (to garnish)
  • 4 ounces rice noodles (dried) or 4 ounces egg noodles (dried)
  • soy sauce, to taste
  • fresh jalapeno (to garnish)


  • Place broth and water in a sauce pan, home made beef stock would be excellent of course.
  • Add a 3" piece of cinnamon and 1T grated ginger.
  • Heat this mixture to a very low simmer and cover for about 30 minute
  • Remove the cinnamon and add a thinly sliced onion, 4oz. rice or egg noodles, and soy sauce to taste.
  • Simmer until the noodles are tender.
  • Add the beef sirloin, and cook until beef is just done.
  • Garnish the finished soup with fresh bean sprouts, fresh basil leaves, fresh cilantro leaves and diced jalapeno peppers.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 517gCalories: 289.5kcalCarbohydrates: 28.2gProtein: 18.1gFat: 11.5gSaturated Fat: 3.8gCholesterol: 40.3mgSodium: 1626mgFiber: 1.3gSugar: 2.3g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Asian, Easy, Low Cholesterol, Vietnamese
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