What Is In Beef Pho?

A spoonful of pho with a slice of chili, cilantro, and lime held over a bowl in Vietnam.

Beef pho, also known as pho bo, is a popular Vietnamese noodle soup that is beloved for its rich and flavorful broth. This dish is made with beef bones, spices, and herbs that are simmered for hours to create a delicious and aromatic broth. In addition to the broth, beef pho also contains several other key ingredients that give it its signature taste and texture.


One of the main ingredients in beef pho is, of course, beef. Thinly sliced beef is added to the hot broth just before serving, allowing it to cook quickly and remain tender. The beef adds protein to the dish and complements the savory flavors of the broth.

Rice Noodles

Rice noodles, also known as banh pho, are the traditional noodle used in beef pho. These noodles are thin and flat, and they have a chewy texture that pairs well with the rich broth. Rice noodles are gluten-free and a great option for those with dietary restrictions.

Herbs and Spices

Herbs and spices are essential to the flavor profile of beef pho. Common herbs and spices used in the broth include star anise, cinnamon, cloves, coriander seeds, and ginger. These ingredients add depth and complexity to the broth, giving it a warm and fragrant aroma.


Condiments are often served on the side with beef pho, allowing diners to customize their soup to their liking. Common condiments include hoisin sauce, sriracha, lime wedges, and fresh herbs like Thai basil, cilantro, and mint. These condiments add an extra layer of flavor and freshness to the dish.

Bean Sprouts and Jalapenos

Bean sprouts and jalapenos are often served as garnishes for beef pho. Bean sprouts add a crunchy texture to the soup, while jalapenos provide a spicy kick. These fresh and vibrant ingredients help to balance out the richness of the broth and beef.

In conclusion, beef pho is a delicious and comforting dish that is made with a combination of beef, rice noodles, herbs, spices, and condiments. The result is a flavorful and fragrant soup that is perfect for warming up on a cold day or satisfying your craving for Vietnamese cuisine. Whether you enjoy it at a restaurant or make it at home, beef pho is sure to become a favorite in your culinary repertoire.