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Easy Beef Phở with Oodles of Noodles

Tender sukiyaki beef in a flavorful aromatic broth of onions, garlic, star anise, cinnamon, ginger and chili with rice noodles and oodles of fresh herbs and toppings is the perfect healthy soup for those in between seasons.

Easy Beef Phở with Oodles of Noodles _Bam's Kitchen

My youngest son has started school this week and the crazy schedules and homework drama are well underway. Not only are my kids hungry when they get home from school but waiting for dinner to be ready (and all the photography to be completed...smiling...) is just not going to happen.

Easy Beef Phở with Oodles of Noodles_Bam's Kitchen

You need something fast, easy, healthy and delicious. This fast and easy Beef Phở is the perfect  meal for those on the go. Beef  Phở was originated in Northern Vietnam during the early part of the 20th century.  Rice noodle and spices were imported from China. It is believed that phở is derived from pot au feu, a French soup. Vietnamese cooks blended the Chinese, French and local herbs to make a dish that is uniquely Vietnamese. Many of the flavors and additions to the soup have changed many times over the years. However, all I know is that it is super delicious and I think I could eat this at least once a week.

Easy Beef Phở with Oodles of Noodles _Bam's Kitchen

Beef Phở is that perfect soup or dish for those in between seasons. My family, living back in the States, have been telling me they are having a really cool summers in Michigan. As a matter of fact, they need to start wearing a sweatshirt in the evenings as it is so chilly. However, during the day it is sunny and warm and wearing shorts. When summer turns into fall, you need a dish that does not require slaving over a hot stove all day but you want something warm and comforting and beef Phở is sure to tick all the boxes.

Beef Pho

I began looking on-line for a beef Phở recipe that does not require the day long rendering of a beef bones and spices. I found a delightful recipe by Louise Pickford , I of course had to make a few changes as I never have all of the ingredients on hand but she did a perfect job of balancing the flavors in less than 30 minutes. If you want to cut down your dinner prep to 10 minutes then you can most certainly can. Just steep the broth in the slow cooker on low while you are at work and then when you come home all you need to do is soften the noodles and prepare the toppings.

Easy Beef Phở with Oodles of Noodles _Bam's Kitchen

I love all of those fresh herbs. I used cilantro, mung beans and spring onions to garnish but really you can use anything you wish. Maybe you want to garnish with a few fresh heirloom tomatoes, garlic chives or even radishes from the garden, who says it needs to be traditional? It just needs to be fresh and delicious.

Easy Beef Phở with Oodles of Noodles _Bam's Kitchen

The other day, I went to my Chinese' friends home and she made many delicious dishes but one in particular was outstanding was her Chinese vegetable soup. She added winter squash and mushrooms and at the last-minute put in some fresh tomatoes and coriander roots and oh my goodness it was so delicious. Beef Phở really is a blending of the cultures. I added some Malaysian sweet cherry tomatoes to mine as a garnish and the beef and tomato and spices was really like a match made in heaven. The yin with the yang. The cold with the hot. (I am sorry I did not get a photo of my mine as I wanted to eat it whilst it was still hot)

The most important part of the whole process is to eat the dish whilst it is still hot. You pour the hot broth over the raw beef and the broth cooks the thinly sliced sukiyaki beef in your bowl.

Easy Beef Phở with Oodles of Noodles _Bams Kitchen

This week in Hong Kong it has been humid, hot, cool and wet. At this very moment on this damp evening, I am sweaty but still cold. How can this even be humanly possible? All of those huge variations in climate and with the kids back at school sharing all their cold germs you need something therapeutic in your kitchen to keep everyone in the household happy and healthy. The warming spices such as the ginger, chilis and cinnamon warm you from the inside out and the cooling herbs such as the cilantro, mung beans and mint toppings make it all well-balanced for your yin and yang.

Beef Phở is prepared in stages. You first create to the broth with the spices. While that is simmering you can prepare the rice noodles, beef and chop and prepare all the garnishes.

When the kids come home from school starving, all you need to do is have them wash their hands (with soap..wink wink... I have boys). By the time they come back to the dinner table, their beef will be cooked in their soup and a bowl of healthy deliciousness awaits them.

LESS THAN 30 MINUTE DINNERS

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Easy Beef Phở with Oodles of Noodles

By HWC Magazine  , , , , , , , ,   

August 19, 2014

Tender sukiyaki beef in a flavorful aromatic broth of onions, garlic, star anise, cinnamon, ginger and chili with rice noodles and oodles of fresh herbs and toppings is the perfect healthy soup for those in between seasons.

  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yields: 4 Adults or 1 Hungry Teenager

Ingredients

beef broth - 8 cups (about 2 liters)

onion - 1 sliced- medium or about 1/2 cup

star anise - 4 (whole)- if you cannot find can substitute with 1 teaspoon 5 spiced powder

ginger - 1.5 inches fresh (peeled and sliced)

cinnamon - 1 teaspoon (powdered or 2 whole sticks broken in half)

garlic - 3 cloves (bashed on counter to release flavour)

brown sugar - 2 tablespoons (or to taste-can use sugar substitute of choice if diabetic)

fish sauce - 1/3 cup or to taste

rice noodles - 250 grams (or 1-2 of the rice noodle loops)

sukiyaki beef - 1 pound (or about 500 grams) - you can use other cuts of tender beef and cut very thin against the grain of the meat.

mung beans (bean sprouts) - 1 large handful or about 1 cup

cilantro - 1 large handful or about 1 cup- roughly chopped (can also use mint, basil, etc)

green onions - 1/3 cup chopped

chili peppers - garnish (optional)

tomato - 1/3 cup chopped fresh (optional)- I used Malaysian cherry tomatoes

lime - 2 key limes or one large lime cut into quarters

Directions

1Put your beef broth, onion, star anise, ginger, cinnamon, garlic, brown sugar and fish sauce in a large soup pot. Bring to a boil, turn down heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes. (Make sure it is covered so you do not loose all that delicious broth due to evaporation) Taste and adjust seasoning.

2Place rice noodles in a bowl, cover noodles with boiling water just enough to cover. Soak noodles for about 2-8 minutes depending on the size and manufacturer of noodles. Noodles should be cooked just until tender, al dente. Rice noodles with cool water and drain and set aside. (I made this dish with brown rice noodles the other day and it was also delicious)

3Cut your sukiyaki beef strips into 4 sections horizontally. (If you are unable to find sukiyaki beef then use a tender cut of beef such as a filet mignon or if that is not in your budget try eye round, flank, bottom roast, london broil, just remember to cut the beef super thin and against the grain.) Just a quick hint: freeze your beef just until it is slightly firm and then it is much easier to cut super thin.

4Wash and prepare your bean sprouts, cilantro (mint, basil) green onions, chili peppers, (tomato) and lime and set aside. Just a quick hint:  If you wash your bean sprouts and keep them in a tupperware full of water and store in the refrigerator they will last much longer.  I change my water every day. Beans sprouts normally live in water so if you keep them water they will stay fresher longer) 

5Assembly: Bring your beef broth back up to a boil. Divide the beef among 4 bowls and lay out on the bottom of the bowl. Next lay a handful of cooked/soaked rice noodles into each bowl. (You may have some left over noodles it just depends on the size of your bowls) Carefully ladle your steeping hot beef pho broth into each bowl covering the beef and noodles completely. Garnish your beef pho with bean sprouts (Mung Beans), cilantro, (Mint,basil) green onion, chili peppers or even tomatoes on top. Squeeze a little lime juice on top. Stir to allow the beef to evenly cook in the soup bowl with the hot broth and enjoy.

6 

00:00
  • Looks absolutely delicious!! Looking forward to making this when the weather cools down!

  • I love the smell of Pho, it’s the combination of anise and fresh herbs. But I have yet to find a veganized version of Pho – I had a vegan Pho last year but it was just too plain for me, now I’m inspired to make one in my kitchen!

    • Bams Kitchen

      Rika, it there was any one who could make this pho deliciously vegan. it would be you. I think you could make vegan pho easy with a delicious organic vegetable broth and top off with some delicious tofu, maybe even fried tofu… What do you think?

  • Like

  • Carlyn

    Easy Pho! I’m making it! Yum, and thank you, Bobbi.

  • What an absolutely delicious meal 🙂

  • Hi Bobbi,
    This beautiful soup has got my full attention! Love that it’s easy, fresh and healthy! Your pictures make me want to grab a spoon this minute! Gorgeousness! !

  • kitchenriffs

    What a great dish! I can’t eat as much as your boys (although I’ll bet I could when I was their age!) but I’d love a helping of this. Nice, simple, good recipe — thanks.

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thank you John! I really love these one pot kind of dinners. Life is so busy so dinner needs to be very simple.

  • shashi @ http://runninsrilankan.com

    School has started for my daughter too and quick meals are a must! All that studying must make them ravenous! 🙂
    This pho sounds delightful – love all the spices in it!

    • Bams Kitchen

      Hello Shashi, All of the school usual drama is well under way. The kids are grumpy and always hungry when they come home from school. I usually try to feed them first BEFORE I try to speak to grumpy/hungry teenagers and ask them how their day went. LOL

  • This sounds like a wonderful soup–love the spices and herbs in this–it’s so nice and colorful, too!

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thank you Nancy. I love using fresh herbs in my cooking now I just have to figure how to get my herbs to grow in Hong Kong.

  • Pho is that comfort dish I always seek when I’m feeling a bit under the weather. My husband is always eager to eat as soon as he gets home from work as well. I tell him to wait because there are photos to be taken ;). I love this simplified version as I don’t have all day to prepare the broth. Can’t wait to try!! The Chinese vegetable soup sounds amazing too.

    • Bams Kitchen

      Hello Min, thanks for stopping by. Beef pho is a comfort dish that just makes you feel so much better when you are having an “off” day. I think all men/boys must be the same if they are 16, 60 or any number in between as they are always starving when they come home from work and school so it is a good thing that you can get this on our dinner table in less than 30 minutes (minus the photography 🙂
      Have a super day! BAM

  • Beautiful BAM. Good to see you rivalling Richard MCGary and my own pouring shots. Love it!

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thanks Conor and I laugh as my pour shots will never be as good as yours!

  • Wow just look at that broth, it looks like it pack a lot of potent flavours

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thanks Raymund! I love how delicious my house smells as this broth and its spices simmers on the burner.

  • What a comforting bowl of pho! It’s been cool here in Monterey, and chillt makes me crave soups! Perfect timing. Thanks!!

    • Bams Kitchen

      Hello and thank you Sandra. It seems like many places it has been seasonly either warmer or cooler than normal. I don’t think mother nature can make up her mind. I am sure a nice comforting bowl of beef pho will help you make the transition into fall a little easier. Take care

  • Looks so comforting! Bookmarking to make it when Fall comes around.

    • Bams Kitchen

      Hello Zerrin, it is so nice to have you stop by. Thank you very much and I am on way way over to see what you have been cooking in the kitchen.

  • I just pinned this to try. I was skeptical about the “easy” part but it really sounds like one I can tackle! My husband would think I was a rock star if I manage this. : ) It looks so wonderful to us noodle-fanatics. I have been fighting something and I’m really not looking forward to the viruses and colds coming up in the Fall and winter. I better learn to make this quick! And interestingly, I’ve been watching a cooking series with a Vietnamese/Australian chef who’s traveling along France. In one episode, he talked about how pho might derive from pot au feu…it was so surprising! Anyway, another great post!

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thank you Monica. I hope you are feeling better soon! A big bowl of this easy beef pho ought to sort you right out! I can tell you now that all the people have come back to Hong Kong from the summer holidays everybody is coughing and sneezing. We just had a several days in a row of super hot and humid days and now today it is actually cool in HK with showers. That is a recipe for a jump start of the cold and flu season. In addition, the kids are back to school sharing their germs. I might just have to keep a trough of this beed pho broth simmering on the back burner at all times…Take Care of yourself and thanks for the pin.

      • Hi again, BAM! Just wanted to tell you I made this for dinner tonight and it was wonderful! Much easier than I’d dare believe and so neat to be able to re-create this Vietnamese classic in an easy way. My husband alone had 3 servings! :). Thanks for sharing the recipe and tips!

        • Bams Kitchen

          Hello Monica, so glad to hear the Beef Pho was a hit in your home! It is such and easy dish once you gather the supplies. You know my boys are the same way they do not say much but you can tell if they like or or not by how many servings they go back for… Happy Monday to you! Take Care

  • We eat (meaning go out to eat) pho like every weekend between shooting videos. Such a comfort food for me and I am definitely going to try your easy homemade version!

    • Bams Kitchen

      Hello Nami-san, I know that shooting your videos is a lot of work and you do need some major comfort food is in order. I bet the shooting of the videos is okay it is the editing that I would need a major break from as it is so tedious. Keep up the good work as your fans love your videos!

  • I could eat this soup during any season.

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thank you Norma and with the bounty of your garden you could have all the fresh toppings almost all year around. Take Care, BAM

  • Eha

    A lovely version of a very favourite dish Down Under indeed!! I guess I do make it every fortnight or so regardless of the seasons, spending more time and energy, so shall take your recipe apart at the seams and copy 🙂 ! Busy spring coming up!!! Love your photography as always . . .

    • Bams Kitchen

      Hello and thank you Eha. I think maybe it is a good soup in any season. I know that it makes your whole house smell wonderful as the spices are steeping in the broth. My boys and hubby were just Down Under sailing around the Whitsunday Islands. How fun is that?! My youngest is a big sailor and my eldest loves to cook so dad was well taken care of on this fantastic father/son trip. Happy Wednesday to you, Take Care, BAM

  • I love the easiness of this dish, Bam ! I actually tried it at home using store-bought beef stock and it worked a treat too ! I think the secret is in the spices and condiments, and I found that my version also didn’t make me really thirsty as some I’ve tried here in Singapore make me (maybe they use MSG). Given Singapore’s proximity to Vietnam it’s surprisingly difficult to find good Vietnamese here !

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thank you Carolyn! I think the trick is if using store bought beef stock in beef pho to buy the low sodium version of beef broth. (I used a brand called Imagine organic low sodium beef broth) You cannot substitute beef bouillin as it would be way too salty. I am sure that probably the MSG in the restaurant food has something to do with that as well. Have a super week.

  • I am for easy noodles, especially if it’s sukiyaki, yay! Quick but healthy 🙂

    Julie
    Gourmet Getaways

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thank you Julie, I am always up for comfort in a bowl.

  • I love a good bowl of Pho and your looks perfect! I love the flavors in your broth and those bright red chiles on top. Yum!

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thank you Amy

  • I love quick and easy meals. Beautiful photos – love the action shot!

  • I’m adding this to my fall/winter to-do list. I know my husband would love it.

  • I love pho, but never made it at home…your sure look much better than the ones that I had in restaurants…such a comforting meal.
    Thanks for the recipe Bobbi…hope you are having a great week 😀

  • hotlyspiced

    This looks amazing, Bam, and it’s my kind of meal. It looks so clean and fresh and I just know it’s full of wonderful flavours. I’m pinning this so I make it. I have heard parts of the US have had a mild summer and that it’s almost too cold to dine outdoors at night. Amazing because you’d think this would be the hottest time of the year. Meanwhile we’ve been having nothing but rain and grey skies and cold temps so I think this is just the meal for our conditions xx

    • Bams Kitchen

      Hello Charlie, Thanks so much! My boys and hubby were just in the Whitsunday Islands two weeks ago and they said compared to HK it was super cold and my husband only lasted about 10 seconds in the water snorkling… It is your winter there but it is almost coming to an end.

    • Bams Kitchen

      Hello Charlie, Thanks so much! My boys and hubby were just in the Whitsunday Islands two weeks ago and they said compared to HK it was super cold and my husband only lasted about 10 seconds in the water snorkling… It is your winter there but it is almost coming to an end. I hope you can enjoy this quick easy meal soon. Take Care

  • Sounds like our summer in Toronto is similar to your family’s in Michigan – cool and a bit damp. I don’t mind the weather, though, as long as it’s nice enough to be outside. In the meantime, your soup looks great, and I was interested to hear its French background.

  • What a healthy and comforting recipe, a lot of my Vietnamese friends introduced me to Pho and it seemed so family oriented and delicious 😀
    Lovely photos!

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

    • Bams Kitchen

      I bet you could make this vegan with a good vegetable broth and putting some fried tofu in your bowl just before you pour over the broth. Take Care, BAM

  • Gorgeous, glorious photos! It really does look like more than mere soup, but a generous bowlful of comfort. I have yet to work out the ideal ratio of spices and seasoning for my homemade pho, so I’m excited to get your secret formula. I’m trying it out as soon as the temperature drop a bit around here.

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thanks so much Hannah. This is a great little soup for when the temperatures just start to dip a little bit or at least not so humid. I think I would have preferred to have cinnamon quills instead of ground cinnamon but I am all about the philosophy of using what is in your pantry. Have a super weekend.

  • What a beautiful pho! Raw beef is my favorite. I think it’s because the beef is so tender and tasty from just being added to the hot broth and not really “cooking” it. Thank you for sharing an “easy” pho! It’s never something I’ve thought of as easy, so this recipe is greatly appreciated.

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thank you MJ. Have you ever had shabu shabu or hotpot? I think the concept is kind of similar as the cuts of beef, pork, fish are cut super thin so it cooks in a flash and are super tender. This is a great 30 minute meal for those rushed days. Take Care

  • i always love eating pho but have never made it before! inspired to now… thanks for the great recipe!

  • looks delicious. I can smell it from here!

  • Dear BAM,

    I love pho and often cook it at home especially when the weather is cold and wet. Thankfully we have so many good pho restaurants in Sydney too.

  • Liz

    Oh, I MUST put this on my list of dishes to try this autumn! I adore pho, but have never made it at home. Your easy recipe is right up my alley!

  • I am a huge fan of Pho and yours looks absolutely gorgeous. Yum. Lovely post. best Torie

  • Looks so good, I know my son would love it. Thanks for sharing your great recipe!!!!

  • I love a warm bowl of pho as soon as the temperatures start to drop — yours look delicious! And nice and generously filled!

  • I love all the ingredients and flavors in this soup – plus it looks healthy!!

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  • Shirley Pham

    Your Phở looks so stunning and delicious! As Vietnamese, I feel so delight to see that you enjoy Phở so much. In Vietnam, though we don’t really eat Phở daily, it’s still one of our all time favorite comfort food. Your version is quite the Southern style because of the bean sprout and actually we never put tomato in but it’s your food, you are the Queen 🙂 I do suggest that you can try to put a poached egg on top or make some Youtiao/ Kuay/ Quẩy to dip in the broth. It’ll be heaven.

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thanks for stopping by Shirley. Phở really is the perfect comfort food and our family loves to snuggle with a little bowl especially around these changes of seasons. We will be certain to try a poached egg next time and pick up some freshly baked youtiao from a little shop I love in Central, HK. Wishing you a super weekend! Take care

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  • Jesse

    Thank you for writing this recipe!! Pho can be intimidating to make and this recipe was super easy using accessible ingredients.

    Thank you so much!

    • Bams Kitchen

      Hello Jesse, Thanks so much for stopping by to write your kind comment. I agree sometimes many Asian recipes can be overwhelming with a huge list of ingredients and ingredients that you cannot find in many parts of the world. I am glad you like this simplified version of Beef Pho. Have a super week!

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