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Vietnamese Pho Chay Recipe – Vegetarian Take On Vietnam’s National Dish

Impulsive Culinarian’s Vietnamese Vegetarian Pho Chay Recipe

Broth Ingredients

  • 4 large Parsnips
  • 2 large Russet Potatoes
  • 1 large Rutabaga
  • 3 medium Yellow Onions
  • 2 Leeks
  • 4 liters Water

Spice Ingredients

  • 1 large chunk (2″ to 3″) Fresh Ginger
  • 2 tbsp Coriander Seeds
  • 1 tbsp Fennel Seeds
  • 4 Star Anise
  • 4 Whole CLoves
  • 3 Cardamom Pods
  • 2 Cinnamon Sticks

Soup Ingredients

  • 1 pound Dry Flat Rice Noodles


  • Bean Sprouts
  • Enokitake Mushrooms
  • Lime Wedges
  • Fresh Coriander, trimmed
  • Green Onions, chopped
  • Sriracha Sauce
  • Thai Chilies, chopped
  • Shallots, thinly sliced


  • Preheat oven to 450°
  • Wash the parsnips, potatoes & rutabagas thoroughly, but do not peel!
  • Chop the parsnips, potatoes & rutabagas into large, equal sized chunks (around 2″)
  • Toss them in a large mixing bowl with 3 tbsp olive oil and a generous amount of salt & pepper
  • Transfer the seasoned vegetables onto a large parchment-lined baking sheet
  • Roast in the center rack for 20 minutes
  • Flip and roast for an additional 15 minutes
  • Fill a large stock pot with 4 to 4.5 liters of warm water and set over maximum heat
  • Add roasted vegetables to to the stock pot
  • Turn off oven and set the broiler to maximum
  • Halve the yellow onions, trim off the ends, and remove any stray peels
  • Trim and cut the leeks in half lengthwise and rinse them thoroughly to completely remove any trace dirt, discarding outer layers as needed
  • Slice the chunk of ginger in half length-wise to create 2 wide flat pieces
  • Lay the onions, leeks & ginger on a foil-lined baking sheet
  • Brush lightly with olive oil and season with salt & pepper
  • Broil in the upper-most rack for 7 to 8 minutes until they start to char slightly
  • Flip them over, lightly brush with an additional amount of olive oil, and broil for an extra 2 to 3 minutes
  • Set the ginger aside for later
  • Add the charred onions and leeks to your stock pot
  • Bring the broth to a gentle boil, reduce heat to low, then cover and let simmer for 2 to 3 hours
  • Using a colander, transfer the broth to a new medium-sized stock pot, discarding the vegetables
  • Place the strained broth back over medium-high heat
  • Place a dry skillet over medium-high heat
  • Toast all of the dry spices in the hot skillet, stirring occasionally until fragrant and just starting to brown, around 3 minutes
  • Transfer the toasted spices into your stock pot
  • Add the roasted ginger to your stock pot
  • Once the broth comes to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 30 minutes
  • Using a large strainer lined with cheesecloth, transfer the broth to a new medium-sized stock pot
  • Cover the strained broth and set over medium-low heat to keep warm
  • Prepare noodles according to package instructions
  • Once cooked, drain the noodles and transfer to a large bowl of warm water until ready to serve
  • Prepare condiments
  • Ladle warm broth into serving bowls, add a portion of cooked noodles, squeeze lime juice into serving bowl if desired, them top with condiments of your choosing and enjoy
Seductively complex vegetarian pho chay with a host of fresh ingredients to choose from
Seductively complex vegetarian pho chay with a host of fresh ingredients to choose from

Paying Tribute To Vietnam’s National Dish

This vegetarian Pho Chay recipe is my own personal tribute to a essential Vietnamese classic. Pho is an important culinary experience that must be savoured at least once to fully appreciate it’s beautiful complexity. I strongly recommend visiting a Pho restaurant to experience the atmosphere and aromas first hand, then try your hand at making a delicious home-made variant of your own. Ngon miệng!

Be sure to drop us a line at your favourite social hangout with any new Filipino recipe suggestions you’d like to see here on IC. Wishing you much delicious success in all of your culinary adventures.

About me: My name is Paul Thibault, an impulsive home chef developing delicious gluten free recipes for family and friends regardless of their allergen restrictions or dietary limitations, visit the About Page to learn more.