Vietnamese Vermicelli Recipes

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Banh Hoi Chay Recipe (Vietnamese Thin Rice Vermicelli Noodles) Recipe

Bánh hỏi is a Vietnamese specialty dish. It's composed of very thin rice vermicelli noodles, often steamed and seasoned with fried green onions. They’re usually served with barbecued beef or pork but for my husband who's a vegetarian, I accompanied them with a combination of sautéed tofu, bamboo, jicama, carrots and straw mushrooms. That's why I call this dish bánh hỏi chay (hint: chay means "vegetarian" in Vietnamese).

As a child, I remember having this dish at celebrations, though I don't really know why. I make it pretty regularly in our home because in my opinion, it's very simple to prepare and always enjoyable.


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Vegetarian Spring Rolls Recipe

Vegetarian Spring Rolls

08.20.12 by Jackie

Spring rolls are traditionally made of sliced pork, boiled shrimp, rice vermicelli noodles and Vietnamese herbs wrapped in rice paper called bánh tráng. Since I cook for a vegetarian crowd every day, today I made “salad” rolls with sauteed carrots, beech mushrooms, shredded white cabbage, soybean sprouts, fried tofu and the usual rice vermicelli noodles, lettuce and Vietnamese mint.

Served at room temperature with a vegetarian dipping sauce, they make the perfect summer entree. And speaking of summer, wrapping almost anything is a really great way to exercise portion control, which will do wonders for your bikini bod!


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Vegetarian Spring Rolls: Bi Cuon Chay Recipe Recipe

For this dish I made a traditional  bì chay with jicama, tofu, a protein element and soy sauce dipping sauce. Then I wrapped the tofu mixture in rice paper disks, forming tasty and healthy spring rolls. Rice vermicelli noodles, shredded lettuce and cucumber were added to form the rolls as well.

Once you master forming the spring rolls, you can experiment with many different combinations of noodles, vegetables and protein. Just try to maintain the same ratio of ingredient types as in this recipe. 


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Bun Bi Chay Recipe Recipe

Bun Bi Chay Recipe

05.24.12 by Jackie

Bun is a popular Vietnamese meal, which consists of rice vermicelli noodles, shredded lettuce, bean sprouts, cucumber, a protein element and dipping sauce. Bun bì chay is a vegetarian version that replicates shredded pork by using fried sliced jicama and fried tofu.

This is an ideal and very refreshing hot weather dish. The preparation is labor intensive, especially with chopping and frying, so I usually make a large quantity. It's delicious and keeps for a few days, so it's definitely worth the effort.


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Bi Chay (Vietnamese Vegetarian Recipe) Recipe

If you're looking for tasty Vietnamese vegetarian food, this bì chay recipe is just for you. This version respects the true Buddhist vegetarian diet, which states no onion, garlic or shallots allowed. The flavors of the dish are mainly from the toasted jasmine rice ground into a fine powder, blended with very thinly shredded fried potatoes, taro, tofu and jicama. Jicama is a sweet turnip that is used quite often in Vietnamese cuisine (as well as in Mexican food) and it mimics the texture of pork skin.

I served this tofu dish with rice noodles, aromatic Vietnamese green herbs and a soy sauce-based dipping sauce made with coconut. The result is a simple, refreshing dish that is packed with flavor. It just proves that with the right ingredients and cooking techniques, even food made for a restricted Buddhist vegetarian diet can be satisfying. Don't believe me? You'll have to try it to for yourself!


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