Vietnamese street food is famous throughout the world, here in Vietnam it is simply a way of life. The vast majority of the indigenous population eat on the streets every day. In recent years government intervention has resulted in higher hygiene standards and a general improvement in the way the food is presented. Generally speaking impromptu tables and chairs simply spring up out of nowhere and each vendor has their own favoured pitch. Customers sit on some of the smallest stools imaginable.
Hanoi Street Food
Hanoi of course is famous for the nation’s national dish, pho. The sumptuous stew of succulent beef or chicken and rice noodles is the favoured breakfast dish for millions in the country. The meat is added raw and cooks in the piping hot broth. It is served with fresh greens, chillies and limes. Pho is an example of Vietnamese street food that has travelled around the globe. The dish is now ubiquitous in all areas of Vietnam. In Hue, they have their own version, Bun Bo Hue.
You can find best places for street food in Hanoi here.
Ho Chi Minh street Food
In cities like Ho Chi Minh City the streets come alive every evening as millions of locals hit the pavements for their favourite food. Hundreds can be found in a single street style restaurant and one of the big night-time favourites is the barbecue style way of eating. Hot coals are placed in the middle of your table and you cook the food yourself whilst enjoying some of the cheapest beer in the world. This is a superbly social way of eating and a sight to behold.
You can find best places for street food in Ho Chi Minh here.
Most popular Vietnamese street food
Another example of Vietnamese street food to crop up all over the world is Banh Mi. Influenced by the French, this baguette style sandwich is found in many forms. The Vietnamese have a wonderful flair for combining meat paste, meats, salads and vegetables resulting in One of the most unique and flavoursome sandwiches you are likely to find anywhere.
Other common Vietnamese street dishes are Com Tam which is broken rice served with a piece of pork and Hu Tieu a variation of pho with fatter noodles, mixed meats, sea food and greens. Banh Xeo are delicious pork and prawn pancakes and are a speciality from Hoi An in the central coastal Region of Vietnam.
You can also find squid sausage, nodding cake and many see food in Halong Bay. They can be enjoyed with beer and are at their best taste while cruising through Halong Bay and witnessing the magnificent view on a fancy cruise boat.
street food stall in Vietnam
It is not uncommon to see a Vietnamese street food stall selling just one dish. The local people learn where is best to go for their preferred dish and frequent the same places all the time. This adds to the social connection within cities and people really get to know one another. Some dishes are popular throughout the country whilst other remain ubiquitous just to their own areas. All are adored by the local population and haven’t changed for generations, with recipes passing down through families.
The country has spent centuries fending off incursions from the Japanese, The Chinese, The French, and the Americans among others, yet somehow their local cuisine has survived. It is remarkable that some if not all of these dishes were not lost to us. A truly astonishing testament to the strength of character of this remarkable people.