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Vegetarian Vietnamese Pho

Pho is a Vietnamese noodle soup consisting of broth, rice noodles and often some type of meat. This is a popular street food in Vietnam where it is enjoyed for breakfast or lunch in the south, or during any time of the day in the north of the country. This dish dates back to the early 1900s and Vietnamese war refugees soon popularized it through the rest of the world.

Pho used to be sold at dawn and dusk in Vietnam by roaming street vendors who would carry a mobile kitchen around with them, made by suspending two wooden cabinets on a pole. One had noodles and other ingredients, along with cookware. The other had a cauldron over a wood fire. Recipes varied from vendor to vendor, and either chicken or beef usually featured in the soup. In the following recipe though, we are making a vegetarian version of pho. This makes a delicious, warming lunch or light evening meal.

We are using vegetable broth as the base (switch it for chicken broth if you are not vegetarian) and adding typical Vietnamese flavors such as garlic, ginger, jalapeño and more, to lend that authentic Vietnamese flavor. You can add some cooked beef, chicken breast or shrimp if you like, or else enjoy it in the vegetarian style. Pho can be garnished with cilantro, and some people like to offer Sriracha sauce on the side or another kind of hot sauce. Although it is already spicy thanks to the jalapeño in there, some people like to kick up the spice a notch further. We are using rice noodles here, but if you want to use ramen, soba or another kind of noodles, go ahead. You will still have the distinctive pho flavors in the soup to enjoy.

Vegetarian Vietnamese Pho
Summary: Sesame, ginger, garlic, jalapeño, cilantro, and more are paired with broth and rice noodles to make a hot, delicious bowl of Vietnamese pho. This is such a delicious Asian soup.
Cuisine: Vietnamese
Recipe type: Soup
Serves: 6
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 2 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 chopped baby bok choy
  • ½ finely diced red bell pepper
  • ½ finely diced carrot
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 thinly sliced jalapeño
  • 3 sliced green onions
  • 5 oz uncooked rice noodles
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • Sriracha sauce, to serve (optional)
  • Chopped cilantro, for garnish (optional)
  1. Heat the sesame oil in a stockpot.
  2. Add the ginger and garlic, and sauté for 30 seconds.
  3. Add the bok choy, red bell pepper and carrot.
  4. Add the salt and sauté for 3 minutes.
  5. Add the broth, green onions and jalapeño.
  6. Simmer gently for 15 minutes.
  7. Meanwhile, follow the instructions on the noodles package to cook them.
  8. Drain and rinse with cold water.
  9. Add the soy sauce and rice vinegar to the soup.
  10. Add more salt if needed.
  11. Add the noodles to the soup and serve, garnished with cilantro if liked.

Photo Description:

Pho is distinctive because it boasts rice noodles in a light, clear broth. One spoonful of this fantastic soup will fill your mouth with amazing flavors like garlic, ginger, jalapeño, and cilantro. This soup has been popular in Vietnam for many years, and you can also enjoy it at a Vietnamese restaurant. Did you know how easy it is to make your own pho though? You can whip this delicious treat up in less than half an hour, and it makes a really good lunch or warming treat. Pho recipes vary and you can add chicken or beef if you want, or keep it vegetarian.

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Christine Szalay-Kudra

Hello there, I'm Christine. Welcome to my blog where you will find a comprehensive collection of soup recipes for every season, occasion and palate. There are hundreds of soup recipes for you to try out, those which warm you up during the cooler months, and even chilled soups and dessert soups if you want to try something new.

Try making your next soup in the pressure cooker or crockpot, or prepare it in the conventional way. Choose from classics such as potato and leek soup, beef broth, French onion soup, or chicken noodle soup, or investigate a more unusual dish, like our cabbage bean soup or one of the Chinese soup recipes.

In addition to soups, broths and chowders, I have collected stew recipes, along with low-calorie, low-carb and heart-healthy options, so you can make soups which are nutritious and good for you, as well as fresh-tasting and delicious. Here at Amazing Soup Recipes, there are recipes for every taste, many of which are really quick and easy to make.

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