Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

Street Food in Vietnam

23

Street food, as any Southeast Asia traveler knows, is one of the culinary highlights of the region! Street food in Thailand may be the most famous, but Vietnam has many delicious specialties worth trying, from Hanoi to Saigon.

Here are some of my favorite dishes, shared by region from north to south:

Pho, or noodle soup, is the staple of the Vietnamese diet, eaten morning, noon, and night — and it’s one of the most popular street foods.  Signs that say pho (noodle soup) and com (rice dishes) are omnipresent.

Though pho bo (beef noodle soup) is the classic, try pho ga (chicken), pho heo (pork) or any other varieties, including all types of seafood!

Every pho vendor serves it with his or her own special homemade chili sauces.  My taste buds are tingling just looking at this picture!

Looking for something exotic but not too exotic (like dog, another Vietnamese specialty)?  Go for frog. You can find frogs at open barbecues on the street — just pick your favorite one out and they’ll grill it up for you!

I saw these primarily in the north — stuffed clams!  Absolutely delicious.  I could have eaten ten of these in one sitting.

Don’t even think of passing through Hoi An without trying cao lao heo — wheat noodles in broth with slices of pork, wontons and salad!  Though this version is from a restaurant, you can find it from street sellers as well.

“Mango, pineapple, banana!” this lady sang out, making us laugh.  After that, how could we not buy from her?

Dragonfruit, the pink and green spiky fruit, is grown in plantations all over southern Vietnam. The fruit is white with black seeds and tastes like a mild kiwi fruit — perfect for a hot day on the beach in Nha Trang!

Steamed buns are available on street corners throughout Saigon.  They’re often filled with pork, but you could find others stuffed with eggs or vegetables.  My advice?  Go for the pork. SO good.

Banh mi, or sandwiches, are most popular in southern Vietnam. Grab a baguette loaded up with all the fillings — usually several kinds of pork, including a spread or two, and add tomato, cucumber, and chili sauce, of course!

Pull up one of those impossibly tiny plastic stools and enjoy — no matter where you are in Vietnam, you’re in for a feast!

Comments

23 Responses to “Street Food in Vietnam”
  1. Peter Heck says:

    Love Banh Mi!!! All the rest looks so good. I can’t wait to get to this part of the world and indulge. Cheers!
    Peter Heck´s last blog post ..Newfoundland- Canada – A Photo Essay

  2. Vira says:

    I love Banh Mi !
    Have you tried dao fu? (it’s tofu).. well, that was one of the most memorable food-tasting experience of mine.. not because it’s delicious but because I could even hardly swallow it..! the dao fu was okay, but the sauce.. yeeuuch..
    but that was the only yucky food I tried in Vietnam.. the rest were yummy!

  3. Kristin M says:

    It all sounds so delicious!
    Kristin M´s last blog post ..Savannah Sunday

  4. The food looks great, but it doesn’t seem to be very vegetarian-friendly… What about vegetarian options – sandwiches / noodles?
    Globetrottergirls´s last blog post ..Reflections- 300 days on the road

    • Hmmm. Veggie sandwiches are definitely possible, some steamed buns are filled with veggies and eggs, and and I had a great veggie rice dish with eggplant and black beans. In general, however, I think that most street food options contain meat.

  5. Chris says:

    Stuffed clams would be delicious. I wonder if the frog tastes any different than the ones here in the states…

    Is the Vietnamese street food as spicy as the Thai food?
    Chris´s last blog post ..Trouble in Turkey – eight stories up

  6. ayngelina says:

    Oh how I miss the food in Vietnam, in Toronto I would eat Pho at least once a week.

    Oh and the coffee, please say you’re drinking the coffee with condensed milk.
    ayngelina´s last blog post ..Don’t hate me because I’m lazy

  7. Diana says:

    I winced when I (mis)read that you ate dog. But yes, frog. Tastes like chicken, right? ;) My cousin snuck rat on my plate one night – thought it was pork (that’s what it tasted like). Won’t eat it again, but I would die for some of that dragonfruit right now….

  8. Erica says:

    You just made me want to walk around the corner for some pho…. NOM NOM NOM
    Erica´s last blog post ..Fur Babies- Your Fuzzy Children

  9. I’ve recently been playing around in the kitchen with some Thai dishes. After reading this post I think Vietnamese food is next on the list to try.
    Mama Kelly aka Jia´s last blog post ..Vegetarian Taco Filling

  10. Paul says:

    Pho is the bomb. It’s all the soup: it really makes or breaks your bowl of noodles.

    You should get a I <3 Pho shirt. I kinda regret not getting one…

  11. Rebecca says:

    My fave? Sitting on the beach of Nha Trang while getting fresh seafood cooked by my sunbed on a portable stove!
    Rebecca´s last blog post ..Photo of the Week- Santa Monica Beach- Los Angeles

  12. Kirsty says:

    We were served from the exact same fruit seller in Nha trang – she was even wearing the same clothes!!!!
    Kirsty´s last blog post ..Random Traveller 39

  13. Joe says:

    some of that looks amazing, I was lucky enough to be part of the trip to Saigon a few years back and since being back in the UK I’ve tried my hand at making my own versions of the Steamed buns and Pho Bo…. never quite the sam though, just can’t beat it.

    Thanks for the great pictures and more ideas :)
    Joe´s last blog post ..Dinner Party Recipes

  14. Loving the street food so far!
    Vicky from acoupletravelers´s last blog post ..43 Things You Didn’t Know About China

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