10 Must-Try Vietnamese Dishes for a Delicious Culinary Adventure

Vietnamese cuisine is a delightful and vibrant blend of flavors, colors, and textures, shaped by its history, geography, and cultural diversity. With its fresh herbs, bold spices, and healthy ingredients, Vietnamese food is increasingly gaining popularity all around the world. From the hearty noodle soups of the North to the spicy seafood dishes of the South, Vietnamese cuisine is a diverse and exciting experience that offers something for everyone.

Whether you are a meat lover or a vegetarian, a spice addict or a fan of mild flavors, Vietnamese cuisine has a dish to tantalize your taste buds. In this post, we will explore the rich culinary world of Vietnamese food, highlighting some of the most popular and delicious dishes that you should try on your next visit to this beautiful and fascinating country.

Bun Cha – Grilled Pork Noodle Soup: Best Vietnamese Street Food

Bun Cha is a traditional Vietnamese dish that originated in Hanoi, the capital city of Vietnam. It is a popular dish for lunch and is loved by locals and tourists alike. The dish consists of rice vermicelli noodles served with grilled pork patties and slices of pork belly, all of which are marinated in a delicious blend of fish sauce, sugar, vinegar, and other spices. The dish is typically served with fresh herbs, lettuce, and a bowl of sweet-savory dipping sauce made with fish sauce, vinegar, sugar, and chili.

Bun Cha - Grilled Pork Noodle Soup: Best Vietnamese Street Food
Bun Cha – Grilled Pork Noodle Soup: Best Vietnamese Street Food

The combination of tender and juicy pork, chewy rice noodles, and refreshing herbs creates a perfect balance of flavors and textures that makes Bun Cha a must-try dish when visiting Vietnam. In fact, Bun Cha became internationally famous when President Barack Obama visited Vietnam and enjoyed this dish with the then President of Vietnam, Mr. Nguyen Phu Trong.

Pho Bo – Rice Noodle Soup: Classic Dish of Vietnamese Food

Pho Bo is a classic Vietnamese dish that has become popular all around the world. This dish is a type of Vietnamese noodle soup that is made with a flavorful broth, rice noodles, and slices of beef. The broth is prepared by simmering bones, spices, and herbs for several hours to create a rich and aromatic flavor. The rice noodles used in Pho Bo are flat and soft, and they soak up the delicious broth, making each bite a burst of flavor. The beef slices are added to the soup just before serving, and they cook quickly in the hot broth, becoming tender and juicy.

Pho Bo is typically served with a plate of fresh herbs, lime wedges, and condiments like chili sauce and hoisin sauce, which can be added to customize the flavor to your liking. This dish is not only delicious but also nutritious, as it is low in fat and high in protein. Whether you’re looking for a hearty breakfast or a satisfying lunch, Pho Bo is a great choice that will warm your soul and delight your taste buds.

Banh Mi Vietnam

Along with Pho, Vietnamese baguette sandwiches, known as Banh Mi, are gaining popularity across the world. The originality of Banh Mi resides not only in the light and crispy baguette but also in the range of Vietnamese Banh Mi tastes to bring out the most wonderful sensations.

Banh mi Hoi An, Vietnamese foods
Banh mi Hoi An, Vietnamese foods

This baguette sandwich with greens and a variety of toppings, including pâté and freshly prepared omelet, is so wonderful that it’s been copied all over the world. Chefs in the north keep to the fundamentals of carbohydrates, fat, and protein—bread, margarine, and pate—but in the south, your banh mi may have a more colorful blend of cheese, cold cuts, sausage, fried eggs, pickled vegetables, fresh cilantro, and chili sauce.

Xoi – Sticky Rice

Xoi, a traditional Vietnamese dish, can be easily found at street vendors in the morning. In Vietnam, sticky rice is a common breakfast item that provides you with a boost of added energy. Originally, the dish only included steamed sticky rice that was colored by turmeric, fried shallots, and some mung bean paste. Nowadays, Xoi is offered with diverse types of meat, sausages, and eggs.

Goi Cuon – Vietnamese Fresh Spring Rolls

Goi Cuon, one of the must-try street foods in Vietnam, is very light and healthy. This dish is made with salad greens, a slither of meat or seafood, and a layer of coriander. All are neatly rolled in transparent rice paper and dipped in Vietnam’s favorite condiment – fish sauce. Goi Cuon has a very fresh and nutritious taste, and you can eat as much as you want without gaining weight.

Che (Vietnamese sweet desert soup)

Vietnamese food is famous all over the world, from substantial bowls of Pho to flavorful Banh Mi, but the distinctive dessert recipes are kept a secret. And the most popular dessert in Vietnam is a sweet soup called Che, which is made with several types of beans, rice flour, coconut, and cornstarch. There are hundreds of different types of Che waiting for you to come to enjoy them.

Ca Phe Trung – Egg Coffee

Ca Phe Trung, also known as Vietnamese Egg Coffee, is a unique and delicious coffee drink that originated in Hanoi, Vietnam. This coffee is made by whisking egg yolks, sugar, and condensed milk together until they become frothy, then adding hot coffee to the mixture. The result is a creamy and sweet coffee that has a unique texture and flavor. The egg mixture gives the coffee a rich and velvety texture, while the condensed milk adds sweetness and creaminess.

Hanoi Egg Coffee - Ca phe trung
Hanoi Egg Coffee – Ca phe trung

The coffee itself is typically strong and robust, with a bold flavor that pairs perfectly with the sweet and creamy egg mixture. Ca Phe Trung is traditionally served in a small cup, and it is a popular drink for breakfast or as an afternoon pick-me-up. While it may sound strange to some, Vietnamese Egg Coffee is a must-try for coffee lovers who are looking for a unique and unforgettable culinary experience.

Banh Trang Nuong – Grilled Rice Paper

Banh Trang Nuong (also known as Vietnamese Pizza), is a new creation of street vendors by grilling a piece of rice paper and filling it with eggs, sausage, beef jerky, fried shallot, scallion oil, cheese, chili sauce, and mayonnaise. The dish is so crispy, full of flavor, and rich in all ingredients that make you addicted to it right after the first bite.

Banh Xeo – Crispy Vietnamese Crepe

Banh Xeo literally means sizzling cake in English due to the noise when cooking. This pancake is a  combination of crispy crepe bulging with pork, shrimp, bean sprouts, and fresh herbs. To taste Banh Xeo in an authentic way, wrap a piece in a lettuce leaf with some fresh herbs, dip it into a bowl of the sweet-savory fish sauce and take a big bite. This is the ideal snack for a hot summer afternoon.

Com ga Hoi An

Com Ga Hoi An, or Hoi An chicken rice is a distinctive cuisine of the residents of Hoi An, a  peaceful ancient town in the heart of Vietnam. The rice is seasoned with chicken broth, like with other chicken rice in Singapore or Malaysia, but at some places, Com Ga additionally includes a trace of turmeric in the rice, making it slightly brighter yellow than other chicken rice in the region. Of course, fresh greens and herbs are offered on the side. This gives the meal a fresh, healthy, and Vietnamese flavor. Don’t forget to try it when you visit Vietnam.

These are just the 10 best-rated dishes in Vietnam that you should try when traveling here. If you wander around, you will see something even more fascinating. Let Viland Travel help you plan a wonderful vacation with the most unique culinary experiences in the S-shaped country!