If there’s one city that’s absolute heaven for food lovers, it’s Hue. With a French influence in many of the dishes here, the food is fragrant and full of flavour. You’re sure to see a lot of tempting things here but there’s some classic Hue dishes that you simply have to try.
From steaming chicken noodle soups to crispy savoury pancakes and frothy coffees, here’s the essential dishes to try in Hue. Happy feasting!
The traditional dishes in Hue you need to eat
Probably one of the most famous dishes in Vietnam, pho is a steaming noodle soup dish that’s traditionally eaten for breakfast. It’s made with rice noodles, bone broth and plenty of fresh herbs. You then add chilli, limi and hoisin sauce to taste. You can either get Pho Ga (chicken) or Pho Bo (beef).
2. Banh Beo
This tasty snack originally comes from Hue, so you know it’s going to be at its absolute best here. Banh Beo is one of the must-eat dishes in Hue. It’s small, thin rice paper ‘pancakes’ that come piled high with chopped up shrimp, scallions, mung bean, fried shallots, and fish sauce.
3. Mango Cake (banh xoai)
You will see these tasty cakes at the markets, sidewalks and street corners all over Hue. Don’t be fooled by the name – there’s actually no mango in this cake! It’s so-called because of its shape. It’s glutinous rice with sugar and crushed peanuts on the inside and is an unusually delicious treat.
4. Bánh mì
All bow down to the mighty bánh mì. You’ll see banh mi stalls over the country, serving this simple-yet-delicious sandwich. This is where the French influence comes into play: it’s a soft, fresh baguette, with pate, pork, fresh herbs, pickle carrots and chilli.
It’s the perfect snack for breakfast, lunch or dinner and is perfect drunk/hangover food.
5. Banh Xeo
This famous street food is a crispy Vietnamese take on a savoury pancake. The batter is a mix of rice flour and coconut milk with turmeric. They then fill it with pork strips, shrimp, bean sprouts and spring onion and fry it to perfection. There’s a certain way to eat ban xeo: you place a piece of it on a rice paper roll, add fresh veggies and dip it into sauce after each bite.
6. Bun Bo Hue
This spicy beef soup is legendary in Hue. It’s a meaty broth made from pork and beef, with lemongrass, shrimp paste and herbs. Local cools then throw in tender sliced brisket, crab balls and, in some cases, cubes of congealed pig’s blood. It’s not for the faint-hearted, but it’s full of flavour.
7. Banh Trang
Banh Trang also goes by the name ‘Vietnamese Pizza’. It originates from Dalat, but is popular on street food stalls all over Hue. The base is rice paper; toppings such as eggs, shrimp paste, dried beef, shallots and cheese are then added, and the ‘pizza’ is grilled until crispy.