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About a month ago a friend brought me to a Vietnamese restaurant to try pho for the first time. I knew the place was legit when I saw a couple of robed Buddhist monks eating there. From the first time I was hooked and have been back at least 8 times. Thought I’d give it a try at home with this recipe and was very pleased. Took me longer to make the first time but I could see how after a couple of times making it you could get it down to 30-40 minutes time all in. Didn’t have coriander, clove or fish sauce so threw a little nutmeg in and it was still awesome. Thank you very much for posting this outstanding recipe.
Thank you so much for the quick recipe. Love pho
I have been waiting for a copy of The Pho Cookbook from my library since February! And they have 9 copies!?! I finally got my hands on it yesterday! Oh my! You are so right Emma! Get the book people! I was hesitating because I have a huge cookbook collection. But, it’s such a well written book that keeps me wanting to try that one, and that one and so forth! By the way, the library copy has obviously been well used! I could probably dip it in boiling water and have instant pho! Pho is such an easy way to shake me out of my weekly dining habits without throwing my diet under the bus. I’ve been enjoying the ‘Quick Chicken Pho’ and now really looking forward to new home made versions of Pho! My own copy of The Pho Cookbook is on it’s way!
This was so good my husband and I couldn’t believe it. Better than any restaurant we’ve been to. I added extra chicken broth and vegetable broth. Also when serving added a little soya and fish sauce on top. I also put more of the green onion in the original broth as well.I will be making this more often.Thank you.
The best pho I’ve made! I love this recipe! I spent some time trying to find the best main pho recipe, and this one hits the good pho points! After I cooked this tonight, my husband couldn’t get over it, and I am definitely making it again soon. I pretty much followed the recipe, but added and tweaked a few things just guessing on past pho taste experience. So I tripled the recipe because pho does not last long in our house. My ingredients: 4 chicken breasts, 3 whole cloves, 2 inches fresh ginger. 7 green onion strips for topping. 6 green onion pinky strips added to 3 times ginger. I used culantro instead of cilantro, I just used what looked right for how much I liked cilantro (a lot). 3 and 1/3 teaspoon of ground coriander seed and 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, and 5 star anise, which was added during the addition of the chicken and broth. 8 cups chicken stock unsalted. 10 cups chicken broth, regular. 8 tsps of fish sauce, we added this at the end of the broth to check the taste. 1/2 onion, cooked in pan to remove moisture and added at the end in 2 bowls. Tons of Thai basil! Lime juice. Bean sprouts. Salt to taste as it goes, but more towards the end because the ingredients can be salty already. I salted lightly in the beginning with pink himalayan salt. And I used 2 layers of cheese cloth in a colander to drain the broth. This recipe is actually easy and tastes better than my favorite pho restaurant! P.S. I made this in a Le Creuset 28.
Hi would this recipe also work well in a Crock-Pot? And if so how long do you recommend and would you just throw in all the ingredients at once or what do you advise?
Hi, Brittany! Hmmm…. yes, I think you could do it in the slow cooker. I’d probably throw everything (except the noodles and toppings) into the slow cooker and try cooking on high for 2 to 4 hours, or low for 6 to 8 hours. Give that a try and let us know how it works!
I made this tonight for dinner. I have to agree that I found the layout of the steps confusing along with the headings to each step. BUT I thought the spices were very good. One thing I always add to my bowl of pho is Sri Racha sauce and a bit of soy sauce, along with the garnishes mentioned. After I added those things, I thought the soup tasted identical to the pho I’ve had at many restaurants. I should add that I didn’t have fresh ginger or a whole clove, so I used ground ginger about the size of a silver dollar in my palm and maybe three dashes of ground clove. This may have made it a bit spicier than the original recipe, but I have to say it was perfect to my family’s taste… I liked this recipe a lot, but a better layout to the recipe would be helpful.
Thanks for the feedback! I’ve edited the recipe some more, so hopefully the order of steps makes more sense.
Broth was bland and not very authentic tasting. Chicken needs more seasoning.
I was SO excited to find an easy pho recipe, as there was a Thai restaurant in the town where I went to college (and it closed every July for the family to go back to Thailand), and their pho was one of my favorite foods ever! So I was disappointed in the results of this recipe. It was just so bland, and we used double the amount of chicken the recipe called for! I guess I was expecting the flavorful bowl of soup I was used to.
I think I’m the future, I’d use all broth instead of the water, and maybe have half of it be regular instead of low sodium. And then I’d maybe double the amount of fish sauce.
Also, as a note to people who want to try this recipe: read the directions thoroughly beforehand. They aren’t in order of time necessarily. For instance, one step says to let the chicken and spices and broth simmer for 30 minutes, but two steps later, it says to take the chicken out after 10 minutes. Luckily, I caught this before we overlooked the chicken!
I’m eager to try this again with a few tweaks to see if I can get the pho that I love so much!
Hi, Mariah! Thanks for the feedback. Your adaptations sound great! Also, re-reading this again, I agree that the method steps are a little confusing. I updated the steps, so hopefully the recipe is a little easier to follow now!
I made this and it was awesome! Will certainly make it again! Thanks so much for sharing!
Can’t wait to try this! We had Pho in a Vietnamese restaurant in Dallas recently and i absolutely loved it!
Emma thank you for all of your insights. I made this recipe last night and am totally delighted with the results. Such a nice fresh flavor! A complete break from the celery/onion/carrot flavors I usually add to chicken, to say nothing of fats/butter/oils! This recipe will be taking me to new places with chicken. And that’s just for starters. I have placed a hold on Andrea’s book at our library. (All 9 copies are checked out!!) Can’t wait to see it!!
How would you adjust this recipe if you used fresh noodles instead of the dried?
Hi, Blair! No adjustments, really. Just soak the fresh noodles in hot water until pliable, and make sure your broth is steaming hot when you pour it over the noodles in the bowls. I’ve made pho with fresh noodles many times — it’s such a treat!
This was a wonderful introductory phō recipe! Had to substitute fresh ginger for powdered and it still turned out really flavorful. Definitely a repeat recipe!
I served this to my family last night and my husband who is a traditionalist when it comes to chicken soup declared ,”Photastic!”
Thank you for a truly authentic yet simple recipe. My family eats take out Pho once a week but with this recipe I am.sure i can make it for them. They loved it!! I added Star Anise and bay leaves to the ingredients and my husband and i added green chillies to the garnish for a spicy, sinus cleansing kick.
Please, please do not put maple syrup into a Vietnamese Noodle Soup. And sugar isn’t strictly necessary either but if you absolutely must, try rock sugar (Asian stores have this)
I agree. To make the pho sweet authentically, you can add a baked onion into the broth and remove it when serving.
My husband called me at the office to tell me how much he liked this recipe. It must have been awesome because he seldom calls to compliment the Chef!! Thanks so much for the recipe. I really thought this would be more difficult than it was.
I’ve been using Better Than Bouillon for a while now to substitute canned or carton broths. It comes in a little glass jar and a little goes a long way. It tastes much better. I think it would work well in this recipe. I’m also thinking using a rotisserie chicken would add more flavor.
Are is there any replacement for the fish sauce? Allergic to fish
Hi, Lyn! In her vegetarian “chicken” pho recipe, Andrea uses nutritional yeast to give the broth its savory depth. You could give that a try! Her method is to mix 2 1/2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast powder (or 3 1/2 tablespoons if you have the flaky kind) into 2/3 cup hot water. Let stand until the solids separate from the liquid. Pour the liquid off the top and add to the broth; discard the solids.
Another alternative is Bragg’s Liquid Aminos or Maggi Seasoning Sauce (Andrea uses 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons in her vegetarian “beef” pho recipes).
Would you suggest adding the nutritional yeast technique along with the fish sauce or would that be “too much”.
Hi, Shannon! I think it would still be pretty good if you’re using vegetable broth and want to amp it up. Not sure it would be necessary with chicken broth, but… I also don’t think it would hurt! Let us know how it goes if you try it!
I use soy sauce or Worcestershire sauce! Preferably soy, then I add hoisin sauce and sriracha
I love pho and make my own version of it at least once a week. Currently I am on the FODMAP diet. Let me say my dietitian is not my friend this month. Anyway I will be trying this recipe as soon as I can. Here in Australia it is often served with the chilli sauce, chilli slices, Vietnamnese basil and hoisin sauce.
What is the Fodmap Diet? Have you been successful? Always looking for a new diet to try.
I made this a few days ago. We loved it! I never before considered making pho because I thought it would take too much time and have too many fussy ingredients. I’m so happy to have been proved wrong!
This recipe gives me confidence that I could actually make this in my own kitchen! Looks delicious
The Chicken texture & color is beautiful! Its Saucy & tempting. Thank you so much for Emma sharing this with us.
I put the spices in a large tea ball (3″diam), that I hang in the broth.
I absolutely love pho! It’s always so fresh and yet so comforting, I really need to check out Andrea’s book