Traditional and Flavorful Pho Soup

Traditional and Flavorful Pho Soup plated

Recipe Information

Time 3 hours, 30 minutes
Servings 6 People

Pho is a popular Vietnamese dish that has gained international recognition for its rich flavors and comforting warmth. This traditional recipe has been passed down through generations, preserving the essence of Vietnamese cuisine. The secret to a perfect bowl of Pho lies in the slow-simmered broth, which allows the aromatic spices to infuse their flavors into the soup.

The first time I tasted Pho was at a small street-side eatery in Hanoi, where the fragrant aroma of the simmering broth drew me in. The combination of tender meat, fresh herbs, and spicy condiments created an unforgettable culinary experience that left me craving more.

Over the years, I have experimented with various ingredients and techniques to recreate that authentic taste. This recipe is the culmination of my efforts, and I am excited to share it with you so that you can enjoy the delicious flavors of traditional Pho in your own home.


  • 2 lbs beef bones
  • 1 lb beef brisket
  • 1 onion, halved
  • 4-inch piece of ginger, halved lengthwise
  • 5 star anise
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 1 tbsp cardamom pods
  • 8 cups water
  • 1/4 cup fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 lb rice noodles
  • 1/2 lb thinly sliced beef sirloin
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 1/2 cup Thai basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup bean sprouts
  • 2 limes, cut into wedges
  • Sriracha and hoisin sauce, for serving


  1. Char the onion and ginger on a grill or directly over a gas flame until slightly blackened. Set aside.
  2. In a large pot, toast the star anise, cinnamon stick, coriander seeds, fennel seeds, and cardamom pods over medium heat for 2-3 minutes, until fragrant.
  3. Add the charred onion, ginger, beef bones, brisket, and water to the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 2-3 hours, skimming off any foam that forms on the surface.
  4. Remove the brisket from the pot and let it cool. Thinly slice the brisket and set aside.
  5. Strain the broth through a fine-mesh sieve and discard the solids. Return the broth to the pot and stir in the fish sauce and sugar. Keep the broth warm over low heat.
  6. Cook the rice noodles according to package instructions. Drain and divide among serving bowls.
  7. Top the noodles with the sliced brisket and raw sirloin. Ladle the hot broth over the meat, allowing the heat to cook the sirloin.
  8. Garnish each bowl with cilantro, green onions, Thai basil, bean sprouts, and lime wedges. Serve with Sriracha and hoisin sauce on the side.


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