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Vietnamese Noodle Bowl with Grilled Pork

BEHOLD. Vermicelli noodles topped with chargrilled pork, crunchy veggies, lime and peanuts. A healthy and light meal bursting with freshness and packed with so much yum! Vietnamese Noodle Bowl is the epitome of great flavor and texture.

A top down view of a bowl of Vietnamese Noodle Bowl
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What is Vietnamese Vermicelli Noodle Bowl?

This is a popular noodle dish originated from Vietnam that is served dry with lots of fresh veggies, grilled meats or seafood, and drizzled with a bold flavored fish-sauce-based sauce. Noodles used are thin rice vermicelli noodles that are white in color when cooked, similar to noodles used in Pho.

Today, you can find this dish in almost any Vietnamese restaurants across the United States. It is light, fresh and loaded with amazing flavors and textures.

I wanted to create something that is simple enough for everyday people to make (i.e. most of us who are not professional chefs but still want to make/eat good food at home), yet complex enough to capture the beauty, authenticity and complexity of this beautiful concoction. And to do it justice.

Because this noodle dish is a GORGEOUS blending of flavors and textures. One of the absolute best.

So fire up that grill (or pan fry it because that works too), grab some Vietnamese Egg Rolls should you choose to (talk about a pairing made in foodie heaven), and get ready to put together this delicious Vermicelli Noodle Bowl with Grilled Pork, or also called bun thit nuong.

What type of noodles to use?

Thin vermicelli rice noodles are used for this recipe. You should be able to find this at Asian grocery stores, and some mainstream stores in the Asian section. Here is an affiliate link for it if you want to get it online.

Vietnamese Noodle Bowl filled with vermicelli noodles, grilled pork and veggies, with sauce in the background

These are noodles used for Pho (Vietnamese noodle soup). They are also similar to noodles used for Pad Thai and Pad See Ew, but are thinner in shape. Pad Thai and Pad See Ew use thicker rice noodles.

Do note that they are different from mung bean thread noodles (they look very similar!). Bean Thread noodles are usually clear and transparent when cooked.

How to make Vietnamese Rice Vermicelli Noodle Bowl?

There are a few components to this dish, but don’t let it intimidate you because once you break it down it’s fairly straight forward!

  • Grilled Pork
  • Noodles
  • Veggies + Garnishes
  • Sauce

Grilled Pork

Grilled pork is marinated in a ridiculously flavorful sauce. My husband calls this the star of the dish, I say every component is just as crucial.

Marinate for pork in a food processor
marinate for grilled pork

The pork marinate is made with:

  • soy sauce
  • fish sauce
  • brown sugar
  • garlic – fresh, avoid substituting with garlic powder
  • shallots
  • lemongrass – feel free to omit it if you cannot find it.

Throw everything into a food processor or blender, and blend it up.

If you don’t have a food processor or blender, chop up the shallots, garlic and lemongrass and mix everything together with a whisk.

I typically marinade the pork first as it takes about an hour for the flavor to really sink into the meat.

Grill pork on a grill pan or outdoor grill. If you don’t have a grill, pork can be pan-fried on a skillet as well.

A plate of Vietnamese grilled pork
Grilled pork

Grill under indirect heat (if using charcoal grill), or medium/low heat (if using grill pan, electric grill, or skillet) to make sure the insides of the pork is completely cook.

There is sugar in the marinate, so pork will brown/burn quickly on the outside. So check on it every now and then, and lower heat as needed!

Vegetables and Garnishes

Once the meat is on the grill, go ahead and chop/prep the rest of the veggies and garnishes.

Then pickle carrots and cucumber.

Pickling the carrots and cucumber gives them an extra oomph, and that tangy vinegary flavor goes perfectly with the noodles, pork and the rest of the garnish.

It doesn’t have to be pickled for a long time – about 30-60 minutes is sufficient.

Shredded carrots, peanuts, shredded cucumber, cilantro and mint leaves
Garnishes and vegetables: shredded carrots and cucumber (pickled), chopped peanuts, cilantro, mint leaves

Vermicelli Rice Noodles

As for the noodles, we will be using thin vermicelli rice noodles.

I typically buy them dry, but you can also find refrigerated ones in the Asian grocery stores.

Some will require boiling noodles in water briefly, and some just requires soaking noodles in boiled, hot water briefly. My recommendation is to follow package instructions. All we are trying to do is soften the noodles.


If you think we are just eating the noodles plain, you are very much mistaken. Plain is not the word to describe this dish! In fact, I will argue quite the opposite.

We are about to make a sweet, tangy, salty sauce which comprise of fish sauce, lime juice (squeezed from fresh limes), brown sugar, water and red pepper flakes. And you betcha we are going to smother the noodles with that yum sauce.

How do you eat Vietnamese Noodle Bowl?

So many components!! How do we serve and eat them?

I asked myself the same question when I had this for the very first time!

Pile everything onto the rice vermicelli noodles – grilled pork, veggies, garnishes. Then splash that yum sauce all over it.

A bowl filled with vermicelli noodles, grilled pork and veggies, with sauce in the background

Then you decide how you want to proceed. Mix it all up; Or, mix some portion of it up, eat, and mix more of it up. I suggest pouring lots of sauce to it because that flavorful liquid is GOLD.

Optional, but highly recommended for your pleasure: Savor every bite.

Close your eyes and shut the rest of your senses so you get the full impact of the taste and texture of this heavenly Vietnamese Noodle Bowl with Grilled Pork.

Substitutions and Variations

If you cannot find these ingredients, here’s what you can do!

  • Rice vinegar – use white vinegar instead!
  • Shallots – use white, yellow or sweet onions instead!
  • Lemongrass – simply omit this.
  • Brown sugar – granulated sugar works fine too.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I store this as leftovers?

Store each component separately, and only combine rice vermicelli noodles, veggies and garnishes, meat and sauce, when ready to eat. Store each item individually in a sealed container for up to 1 week in the refrigerator.

What are other ingredients can I add to this noodle bowl?

I love adding some Vietnamese Egg Rolls or fried egg to it as well! Yum!

And that’s all, folks. Vietnamese Vermicelli Noodle Bowl. Just like the ones you get at restaurants. ENJOY!!

If you make this recipe please comment below and let me know how it goes! It would also make me SO HAPPY if you’d take a picture of your creation and tag me on Instagram. Because I WANNA SEE!

DID YOU ENJOY THIS RECIPE? Please comment below and give us a 5-star rating! This will help others find this recipe on Google and Pinterest. We very much appreciate your help! 🤍

More Asian Recipes!

rice vermicelli noodles topped with veggies and grilled pork

Vietnamese Noodle Bowl with Grilled Pork

A classic Vietnamese recipe! Vermichelli noodles topped with grilled pork, crunchy veggies and garnishes, served with a flavor bursting sauce. Make this classic Asian dish at home!
4.89 from 128 votes
Print Pin
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: asian, Vietnamese
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Marinate Time: 1 hour
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 731kcal
Author: MinShien


Grilled Pork

  • 2 lbs pork shoulder
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 3-4 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbsp shallots
  • ~2 inch lemongrass bottom white part
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil


  • 7-8 oz dried rice vermicelli noodles

Vegetables and Garnishes

  • 1 1/2 cups cucumber shredded
  • 1 1/2 cups carrots shredded
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/2 cup hot water
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • A few leaves lettuce
  • A handful cilantro
  • A handful mint leaves
  • 1/2 cup peanuts chopped
  • 1 fresh lime

Sauce (Nuoc Cham)

  • 1/2 cup hot water
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2-3 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes or to taste


Grilled Pork

  • Remove some of the fat from pork shoulders (but it is not necessary to remove all the fat), and slice pork into thin slices. Bring them into a large ziplock bag.
  • Combine and blend the rest of the ingredients listed under "Grilled Pork" in food processor/blender to create marinate, and add to zip lock bag. Make sure pork is evenly coated with marinate. Marinade pork for at least 1 hour, or up to a few hours.
  • Grill pork on a grill pan or outdoor grill. Pork can be pan-fried on a skillet as well. Grill under indirect heat (if using charcoal grill), or medium/low heat (if using grill pan, electric grill, or skillet) to make sure the insides of the pork is completely cook. Note that because there is sugar in the marinate, pork will brown/burn quickly on the outside.

Pickled Vegetables

  • Bring hot water and sugar (see ingredients under "Vegtables and Garnishes") together in a bowl to dissolve sugar. Add rice vinegar. Stir to combine.
  • Add shredded cucumber and shredded carrots to bowl with vinegar miture. Or, if desire, separate vinegar mixture into two bowls and separately pickle cucumber and carrots.
  • Press the carrots and cucmber down so that they are completely submerged in the mixture. Pickle for 30-60 minutes.
  • Drain vienegar mixture.

Other Vegetables and Garnishes

  • Prep/chop the rest of the vegetables and garnishes – lettuce, cilantro, mint leaves, and peanuts. Slice lime into a few wedges.


  • Cook noodles base on package insutrctions. It's usually cooks quickly! If noodles needs to sit for a while before combining with the other ingredients, rinse them in cold water to prevent them from sticking to each other, continuing to cook and turning mushy.

Sauce (Nuoc Cham)

  • Combine hot water and sugar to completely dissolve sugar. Then add the other sauce ingredients. Stir to combine.


  • Bring noodles to bowl, and top with grilled pork, vegetables, and garnishes. Serve with sauce, and enjoy!


Tip: I typically start by marinating pork and pickling the carrots and cucumber. While waiting on the marinate and pickling, I work on chopping/prepping vegetables, creating the sauce, and cooking the noodles.


Calories: 731kcal | Carbohydrates: 103g | Protein: 36g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 93mg | Sodium: 1784mg | Potassium: 1002mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 52g | Vitamin A: 8115IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 117mg | Iron: 4mg
Did you make this recipe?Take a pic and tag me at @joyous.apron, or hashtag #joyousapron on Instagram!

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    This recipe is delicious! I’m planning on making the pork and picked cucumbers and carrots to put on a bahn mi too. I’ll definitely be making this again.

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      I’m so glad you like it, Sam! Bahn mi sounds delicious!!!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      I’m so glad you like it! 🙂

  2. 5 stars
    If I could give it ten stars I would, my husband and I both LOVED this. I subbed coconut sugar for the sugar in it, and still, absolutely delicious! Will be keeping this one on deck next time I don’t know what to make for dinner!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      It makes me so happy to hear that, Lauren!! Thank you so much! We love this recipe as well! 🙂

  3. 5 stars
    THE BEST vermicelli bowl we’ve made..and we have made many over the years. Definitely a new favourite in the house!!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Yay! It makes me SO happy to hear that! 🙂

  4. 5 stars
    This recipe is incredible. It is easy to make and spot-on like I would get at a restaurant. Thanks for sharing it. I can’t wait to try your other recipes! I posted a pic on Instagram – I’m mrc_rex. I made the pickle with carrot and daikon, and put some cucumber separately.

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      That’s awesome! Thank you for sharing on Instagram! So glad you enjoyed it and can’t wait for you to try the other recipes!

  5. I am very excited to try this can I use a white vinegar to pickle if I don’t have rice vinegar on hand?

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Yes! That would be just fine! Let me know what you think of the dish when you try it! 🙂

    2. 5 stars
      I ended up at a store so got the rice vinegar. Recipe was delicious!!! This is one of my favourite dishes eating out and used to eat it all the time in Vancouver. Well we moved back to Ontario and haven’t been able to find a restaurant in last 6 years that really makes it the way I liked. Anyways now I don’t need one cause this was perfect!

    3. Joyous Apron says:

      Yay!! That makes me so happy to hear that! So glad 🙂

  6. 5 stars
    Since most restaurants have closed down and we couldn’t get our weekly fix, I decided to try this recipe. It is amazing! My husband has requested that instead of us going out, that I start to make our weekly meal. This is such a tasty meal. There is a lot of prep work involved but the end result is completely worth it every single time!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      That’s awesome! So happy to hear that! Thanks for leaving the kind review! 🙂

  7. 5 stars
    I made this last night and it was amazing. The only thing I had to add a tip of oil to the noodles to keep it separate. Will definitely make this again. :)) Thanks for this recipe

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      That’s great! So glad you enjoyed it! Thanks for sharing the tip about the noodles! 🙂

  8. Teresa Siebenlist says:

    5 stars
    This recipe is AMAZING and LEGIT! My husband doesn’t get excited about this dish at Vietnamese restaurants like I do, but he loved this. Seriously people…no need to to risk your health going to a restaurant. Make this at home. It’s even better!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      That’s wonderful! Thank you so much for the rave review! Makes me so thrilled to hear that you both enjoyed it so much!

  9. Hi! I’m going to make this recipe tonight and I’m really worried about burning the pork to a crisp because of the sugar in the marinade like you mentioned. If I were cooking this without a grill, would you suggest roasting it in the oven instead of a skillet?

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      You can roast it in the oven or cook it on the skillet too, either way is fine. For the oven, flip it halfway through and reapply marinade. If you want the golden brown texture (which is yummy!), try broiling it for 2-3 minutes at the end. If you are grilling, slow cook it so that the outsides don’t burn before the insides are cooked by cooking it under indirect or low heat on the grill for the majority of the time.

  10. I’ve been wanting to make this again but can’t find shallots in my grocery store for past few weeks! Do you recommend another substitute. Would some regular yellow cooking onions do the job? Thanks.

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Yes! Yellow or white onions should work as well. Let me know how it goes! 🙂

  11. 5 stars
    This recipe came out so well!!! My partner and I live in a small, rural town in Tennessee. We just got a Pho restaurant that we love to support. This tastes just like my favorite dish from there, and it’s a great alternative for the nights when our budget doesn’t support ordering out!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Wonderful! So happy to hear that! 🙂 Thanks so much for sharing!

  12. 5 stars
    So yummy! Made about 5 bowls from the recipe and everyone enjoyed! Thank you 🙏🏻

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Wonderful! Makes me happy to hear that! 🙂

  13. 5 stars
    So, so good! Just what I have been looking for! Everyone loves it! Thanks!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Woohoo!! Always love hearing that! 🙂

  14. 5 stars
    Yessss!! This was so good. The only Thai place I liked made this and I was Obsessed and they went out of business. Imagine how how I am now that I can make it at home! Thank youuu

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      That’s great! I love it when I can recreate my favorite dishes at home too! ENJOY! 🙂

  15. 5 stars
    Delicious. I didn’t have lemon grass so I just shredded some ginger. Just loved all the flavours.

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Yay! The flavors are amazing on this! 🙂

  16. 5 stars
    This was amazing. I loved it so much. Everyone I served it to loved it. It will be part of my regular rotation!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      So glad it was a hit!! 🙂

  17. 5 stars
    This was so yummy! We used chicken thighs since that’s what I had on hand. I threw in Thai basil from the garden (in place of the cilantro) along with the mint. This combination of flavors was incredibly satisfying. Thank you for the wonderful recipe! I will be sure to make this again.

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Thanks for sharing your modifications! So glad you enjoyed it!

  18. 5 stars
    This recipe is a crowd pleaser! I just made it again tonight at the request of my partner. I made it and served it to his family for Christmas dinner. Everyone was pleased. Thank you for sharing!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Thank you, Emily! I am thrilled to hear you all enjoyed it! 🙂

  19. Julie Menghini says:

    5 stars
    This is better than any dish I’ve ever had in an Asian restaurant. We can’t get enough of this one! It’s delicious and so easy to make with your instructions.

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Omg I LOVE hearing that! Made my day!