This 30-minute simple vegan pho recipe is the ultimate in comfort food. It is a delicious gluten-free spin on the classic Vietnamese noodle soup.
If you’ve never encountered pho (Phở) before it is a beautiful Vietnamese street food consisting of a broth based soup with noodles. While traditionally meat based, I’ve been making a vegan pho recipe for years.
This vegan pho makes a regular appearance in our dinner roster as it’s one of my husbands favourites and mine too.
I love the contrast of the soft noodles with the crunchy snow peas, firm edamame and tender mushrooms. For the mushrooms I’ve used a mix of enoki mushrooms and thinly sliced oyster mushrooms.
I also love that you can customise this vegan pho too. I like a lot of chilli in mine. I also like a big squeeze of lime, adding the lime wedge to the bowl for an extra bit of flavour.
But my favourite, by far, in this vegan pho recipe is the noodles, which soak up all the flavours of the broth. I like to use a mix of flat rice noodles and thin vermicelli (also called glass noodles) as I love the contrast between the more substantial flat noodles to the thin vermicelli.
If you are looking to add a bit more protein to your vegan pho tofu would be a great addition. My Burmese Chickpea Tofu also works wonderfully as well.
The key to this vegan pho, though, is a good quality vegetable stock.
I use homemade stock, as I make 5 litres of it every weekend from the tops of my farmers market haul. But if you don’t have homemade stock you can use store bought. My only suggestion would be to opt for the liquid based stocks rather than stock cubes.
This isn’t a soup that works well as leftovers. So I suggest only cooking the amount you need to serve it straight away. If you do however want to make it in advance, say for a dinner party, follow the recipe to make the broth and then reheat it when you are ready to serve and follow the recipe from there.
So tell me, have you made pho before? What is your favourite part about pho?
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Vegan Pho Recipe
- 200 g rice noodles (7 oz) I like to use a mix of flat rice noodles and vermicelli noodles
- 3 bok choy quartered lengthwise
- 100 g mushrooms (3 1/2 oz) I like to use a mix of enoki and oyster
- 2/3 cup shelled edamame
- 10 snow peas thinly sliced, lengthways
- lime wedges
- 1/2 cup coriander (cilantro) chopped
- 1/2 cup mint leaves chopped
- soy sauce
- If you have a gas cooktop turn on the burner you intend to use for the soup and place the spring onions over the flame. Cook until the spring onions are lightly charred. If you don't have a gas burner cooktop you can skip this step, however I find it adds a lovely subtle charred flavour to the stock.
- Now place a large saucepan over a low heat. Add the star anise, cinnamon stick, peppercorns, and cloves and toast until fragrant. This should take about 30 seconds or so.
- Add the vegetable stock, spring onion, garlic, ginger, coriander (cilantro) roots and the dried shiitake mushrooms. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Strain the stock through a fine mesh sieve into a large bowl and return to the saucepan and place over the heat.
- Add the bok choy and cook for 4 minutes. If using a mix of flat rice noodles and vermicelli add the rice noodles first, wait about 1 minute and add the vermicelli.
- I don't bother cooking the oyster and enoki mushrooms as I find that the heat of the broth, when ladled into the bowls cooks them. If you prefer to cook them add them to the broth when you add the vermicelli.
- Divide the remaining add ins between 4 bowls. Use tongs to divide the noodles between the bowls and then ladle in the stock.
- Serve with the lime wedges, coriander (cilantro), mint, chilli and soy.
1. I like to use a mix of black, green and red peppercorns as they each impart their own flavour. If you only have black they are perfectly fine to use. 2. True cinnamon is easy to break. If you can't break your cinnamon then you have cassia bark, which is fine to use in this recipe. Simply use it whole. 3. Homemade vegetable stock is my preference when making this as you can control the amount of salt. If you are using a store bought stock opt for a low salt version. 4. Coriander (cilantro) roots are lovely and aromatic. When buying coriander I always look for coriander with the roots still attached as I find they freeze well (wrapped in plastic) and I can pop them into this soup whenever I feel like making a batch. I also throw in the stalky ends of the coriander as well to amp up the flavour. Just be sure to wash the roots well. If you don't have any substitute with 2 tsp of coriander seeds. 5. You can usually find edamame in the freezer section of your supermarket.