Vietnamese Beef and Mushroom Soup

(NC)—Pho soup is very popular in restaurants, so why not make this quick and easy version at home for lunch or light supper. Vary the heat level and toppings as desired.

Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 12 minutes


6 oz (180 g) medium rice stick noodles
6 cups (1.5 L) beef broth
1 (1”/ 2.5 cm) piece fresh gingerroot
2 short cinnamon sticks (optional)
4 tsp (20 mL) each fish sauce and hoisin sauce
1 1.2 – 2 tsp (7 -10 mL ) Asian chili sauce or hot sauce
2 tsp (10 mL) sugar
1 lb. (500 g) whole fresh Mushrooms, thinly sliced
8 oz (250 g) deli style thinly sliced rare beef
4 green onions, sliced
1 lime, cut into 6 wedges (optional)

Toppings: Thai basil leaves or mint leaves, sliced or chopped bean sprouts or chopped coriander leaves

For easier eating, break up the noodles into shorter pieces; soak or cook the noodles as directed on the package for soups, about 10 minutes. Combine broth, gingerroot, cinnamon sticks if using, fish sauce, hoisin sauce, chili sauce and sugar in large saucepan. Bring to boil, then add mushrooms, bring to boil; cover and reduce heat to medium low. Simmer 10-12 minutes. Meanwhile slice beef into narrow strips. Remove gingerroot and cinnamon sticks; discard.

Just before serving drain noodles and stir into hot broth with beef strips. Ladle into warm soup bowls and sprinkle green onions on top. Pass lime wedges to squeeze into soup if desired and pass toppings for guests to add as desired.

Makes 6 servings

Variation: Substitute chicken broth and thinly sliced chicken or pork for the beef.

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Photo © caracterdesign

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