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30 Ingredients That Sum Up Vietnamese Cuisine

Updated: Nov 5, 2020

Vietnamese food is the perfect mix between healthy and mouthwatering. The dishes are a feast for not just your taste buds, but all your senses.

The subtle but divine flavors form unique combinations that can be smelt from a mile away. Not to mention the array of well-contrasting colors and textures that make Vietnamese dishes nothing less of a masterpiece.

If you want to experience Vietnamese cuisine in Colorado, try Pho 78 Broomfield. They offer takeout, delivery, and catering to all residents of this illustrious city. Hungry? Click here to place your order.

Thirty ingredients are what sum up the entire Vietnamese cuisine. While there may be regional variations and the addition of new ingredients depending on availability and preference, the basic pantry always carries the same items. We might find a lot of these ingredients in our own kitchens.

Let’s have a look at what goes into a traditional Vietnamese dish.


No Asian cuisine is complete without a range of selective spices that define every broth and curry's flavor notes. While Vietnamese food isn't overly dependent on spices like Indian or Pakistani food, it has a handful of widely used items.

1. Star anise

2. Black peppercorns

3. Turmeric

4. Bird’s-eye chile

5. Cardamom


The freshness and clean flavors, along with the delicious aroma of Vietnamese dishes, are all thanks to the avid use of fresh fragrant herbs. No bowl of Pho or salad is complete without them. In fact, in Southern Vietnam, every meal is accompanied by a plate of fresh herbs to be added as pleased.

They aren't just a garnish; herbs are an important flavor note that adds to the experience.

6. Rau răm

7. Thai basil

8. Culantro

9. Rice paddy herb

10. Shiso

11. Mint


Every healthy, well-balanced meal has a generous serving of vegetables that supply flavor, color, and essential nutrients and vitamins. So it comes as no surprise that every Vietnamese dish has a veg element in it.

12. Bamboo shoots

13. Green onions

14. Mung bean sprouts

15. Water spinach

16. Vine spinach

17. Bitter melon

18. Lemongrass

Pantry Staples

The staples of every Vietnamese meal comes from the pantry; the most common ingredients being rice vermicelli or glass noodles and fish sauce. Almost every dish from the farming-based country includes either one or both.

However, a few other ingredients need to be stocked up in the pantry - which isn't as important but still is required to maintain variety in the palette.

19. Rice noodles

20. Jasmine rice

21. Rice flour

22. Rice paper

23. Fish sauce

24. Soy sauce

25. Fermented shrimp paste

26. Hoisin sauce

27. Oyster sauce

28. Tamarind

29. Crispy fried shallots

30. Daikon and carrot pickle

Vietnamese cuisine has several vegan options. However, meat is also present in every meal. Since Vietnamese food is all about balance and health, it doesn't forgo its proteins. Eggs, pork, beef, seafood, tofu, and chicken are all part of their diet.

Unlike the rest of the world, Vietnamese cuisine doesn't go overboard with meat, fats, or sodium, making it perfect for anyone inclined to lead a healthy lifestyle.

The best part; you can pave the basis of healthy eating without putting in the effort or money. Just click here to place your order with Pho 78 Broomfield.

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