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Authentic Bún Chả Hanoi Recipe – Traditional Vietnamese Grilled Pork & Noodles

Authentic Vietnamese Bún Chả Hanoi Recipe - Traditional Grilled Pork and Noodles

Experience the flavors of Hanoi with this mouthwatering Bún Chả recipe. This iconic Vietnamese dish features succulent grilled pork patties and crispy pork belly slices served with refreshing rice noodles, aromatic herbs, and a tangy dipping sauce. Perfect for a satisfying meal that transports you to the bustling streets of Vietnam’s capital.

Bún Chả gained international fame when former President Barack Obama and Anthony Bourdain enjoyed it together in Hanoi. Now, you can recreate this beloved dish in your own kitchen with our authentic recipe. The combination of smoky grilled meat, fresh herbs, and the umami-rich dipping sauce creates a symphony of flavors that will delight your taste buds.

What Makes Bún Chả Special?

The heart of Bún Chả lies in its perfectly grilled meats. Juicy pork patties and crispy pork belly slices are marinated in a flavorful blend of fish sauce, sugar, and aromatic spices. The meat is then grilled to perfection, developing a delicious char that infuses the dish with a smoky essence.

The warm, savory dipping sauce sets Bún Chả apart from other Vietnamese noodle dishes. This light, soupy sauce complements the grilled meats beautifully and ties all the components together. When combined with tender rice noodles, crisp vegetables, and fresh herbs, every bite becomes a delightful adventure in texture and taste.

Ingredients

For the Pork Patties:

  • 1 1/4 pounds (567g) ground pork, 20 percent fat
  • 1 small shallot (35g), finely chopped (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 5 medium cloves (25g) garlic, minced (2 tablespoons)
  • 3 tablespoons (37g) granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Vegetable or other neutral oil, for brushing

For the Pork Belly:

  • 1 pound (456g) skin-on pork belly, frozen for 45 to 50 minutes
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) hot water
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar (1 ounce; 28g)
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) vegetable oil or other neutral oil
  • 2 scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
  • 1 small shallot (about 35g), roughly chopped (2 tablespoons)
  • 2 medium cloves (10g) garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For the Pickled Carrot and Kohlrabi:

  • 1/2 cup (120ml) water
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) sugar
  • 1 small carrot (59g), peeled and thinly sliced (1/2 cup)
  • 1 small kohlrabi (68g), thinly sliced, then cut into small pieces (1/2 cup)

For the Dipping Sauce:

  • 4 cups (960ml) water
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar (5.25 ounces; 150g)
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) fish sauce

For Serving:

  • 8 ounces (227g) uncooked rice vermicelli noodles
  • 1 head butter lettuce, leaves picked and washed
  • 1 bunch Thai basil (húng quế), leaves picked
  • 1 bunch Vietnamese coriander (rau răm), leaves picked
  • 1 bunch perilla (tiá tô), leaves picked
  • 1 bunch peppermint (húng lủi), leaves picked
  • 1 bunch fish mint (dấp cá), leaves picked
  • 8 cloves (40g) garlic, chopped (about 1/4 cup)
  • 2 bird’s eye chiles, thinly sliced

Instructions

  1. Prepare the Pork Patties: In a large bowl, mix ground pork, shallots, garlic, sugar, fish sauce, and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for 4 to 24 hours to develop flavors.
  2. Marinate the Pork Belly: Slice semi-frozen pork belly into 2-inch-long, 1/4-inch-thick pieces. In another bowl, combine hot water, sugar, fish sauce, vegetable oil, scallions, shallot, garlic, and pepper. Add pork belly slices and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 4 to 24 hours.
  3. Make the Pickled Vegetables: Stir water, rice vinegar, and sugar in a small bowl until dissolved. Add carrot and kohlrabi slices. Let sit at room temperature for 2 hours to pickle.
  4. Prepare the Dipping Sauce: In a small saucepan, combine water, sugar, and fish sauce. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Boil for 5 minutes. Keep hot or reheat before serving.
  5. Grill the Meats: Form 2-ounce pork patties. Light charcoal or preheat gas grill to high. Grill oiled pork patties in a metal basket over direct heat, turning every minute, for about 8 minutes. Grill pork belly slices similarly for 5-6 minutes. Keep warm.
  6. Prepare Noodles and Herbs: Cook rice noodles according to package instructions. Drain and rinse with cold water. Arrange noodles, lettuce, and herbs on a platter. Place chopped garlic and sliced chiles in separate bowls.
  7. Serve: Divide grilled meats among 4 bowls. Add pickled vegetables and ladle hot dipping sauce over. Serve immediately with noodles, fresh herbs, raw garlic, and bird’s eye chiles on the side.

Recipe Notes

Use a traditionally made fish sauce for the best flavor; Red Boat brand is recommended. For rice vermicelli, Three Ladies is a good choice. Green papaya can substitute for kohlrabi. Use any combination of the listed fresh herbs available to you. Cilantro may replace Vietnamese coriander (rau răm).

Make-Ahead and Storage Tips

Prepare rice noodles a few hours before serving. Marinate meat overnight. Make dipping sauce a day ahead and reheat when ready. Pickled vegetables can be made up to 48 hours in advance and refrigerated.

Nutrition Information

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
813 Calories
39g Fat
68g Carbs
48g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 to 6
Amount per serving
Calories 813
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 39g 50%
Saturated Fat 13g 67%
Cholesterol 153mg 51%
Sodium 3022mg 131%
Total Carbohydrate 68g 25%
Dietary Fiber 4g 15%
Total Sugars 49g
Protein 48g
Vitamin C 56mg 278%
Calcium 216mg 17%
Iron 6mg 35%
Potassium 1212mg 26%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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