Recipe for Delicious Spicy Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup

Beef Noodles Soup


For the Broth:

  • 2 lbs beef bones (oxtail and/or marrow bones)
  • 1 lb beef shank
  • 1 onion, peeled and halved
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic, smashed
  • 1 knob of ginger, sliced
  • 2-3 lemongrass stalks, bruised
  • 2-3 dried red chilies
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3-4 cloves
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 teaspoon shrimp paste (optional)
  • Salt and sugar to taste

For the Soup:

  • Rice vermicelli noodles, soaked and cooked
  • Cooked beef shank, thinly sliced
  • Cooked pork blood cubes (optional)
  • Sliced beef tendon (optional)
  • Sliced beef brisket or flank steak, cooked
  • Chopped scallions and cilantro
  • Bean sprouts
  • Lime wedges
  • Banana blossom, thinly sliced (optional)
  • Vietnamese mint (rau ram) leaves
  • Chili sauce or sliced fresh chili peppers


  1. Prepare the Broth:
    • Boil the beef bones in water for a few minutes to remove impurities, then rinse them well.
    • In a large pot, add the beef bones, beef shank, onion, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, dried chilies, cinnamon, cloves, and star anise.
    • Fill the pot with water, enough to cover all the ingredients.
    • Bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat to a simmer. Skim off any foam that rises to the surface.
    • Add shrimp paste (if using), salt, and sugar to taste.
    • Let the broth simmer for at least 3-4 hours, adding more water if needed. The longer it simmers, the more flavorful the broth will be.
    • Strain the broth, discarding the solids.
  2. Prepare the Soup Components:
    • Cook the rice vermicelli noodles according to the package instructions. Rinse with cold water and set aside.
    • Thinly slice the cooked beef shank and brisket or flank steak.
    • If using pork blood cubes, blanch them in hot water and slice into small pieces.
  3. Assemble the Bowl:
    • In individual serving bowls, place a portion of cooked rice vermicelli noodles.
    • Arrange slices of beef shank, brisket or flank steak, pork blood cubes, and beef tendon (if using) on top of the noodles.
    • Ladle the hot broth over the meat and noodles.
  4. Garnish:
    • Top the bowl with chopped scallions, cilantro, and sliced banana blossom (if using).
    • Serve with bean sprouts, lime wedges, Vietnamese mint leaves, and chili sauce or fresh chili peppers on the side.
  5. Enjoy:
    • Mix all the ingredients in the bowl to combine the flavors.
    • Squeeze lime juice and add chili sauce to taste.
    • Enjoy the delicious and flavorful Bun Bo Hue!

Remember, Bun Bo Hue is known for its spicy and aromatic broth. Adjust the level of spiciness and other seasonings according to your preference.