11 Tasty Local Foods in Hue City to Check Them Out

Hue City is considered the culinary capital of Vietnam, standing out with many delicious dishes. Enjoying the flavorful foods of this Ancient Capital is an activity that almost all tourists coming to this city like to do.

Here are the top 11 tasty dishes in Hue, rich in flavor, that Vietnamdrive selected carefully. Besides, you can find addresses to taste the food under each part.

1. Hue Beef Noodle Soup (Bún Bò Huế)

hue beef noodle soup
Hue Beef Noodle Soup. ©Vietnamdrive

Standing at the top of delicious Hue local foods certainly belongs the beef noodle soup. A dish combines nutritional ingredients, proteins, and vitamins, including starch in vermicelli, pork, beef, crab, green vegetables, and fresh lemons.

The highlight that appeals to Hue beef noodle bowl is the way of seasoning and the ability to skillfully combine common spices with many fresh herbs and spices, bringing harmonious flavors to each bowl.

Hue beef noodle bowl also shows the unique culture of processing and using a variety of fish sauces of Hue people. Specifically, in this dish, besides using the normal Vietnamese fish sauce, the ability to use shrimp paste shows unique skills in flavor and taste. It is like an indispensable spice, creating an unmistakably delicious taste for this dish.

A bowl of beef noodle soup can provide enough nutrition and energy for an adult to function for many hours. As a tourist to Hue, this dish is suitable for you to use in main meals or to start an active new day.

Address to taste Bun Bo Hue:

  • Bun Bo Hue: 19 Ly Thuong Kiet Street, Hue City
  • Bun Bo Cam: 45 Le Loi Street, Hue City

2. Hue Pancake (Bánh Khoái)

pancake in hue
A tasty pancake in Hue City

From Bánh Xèo, a popular dish, to suit the meals of the nobility of the Nguyen Dynasty, Bánh Xèo has undergone Royal changes to become the famous pancake of Hue.

Hue Pancake is much smaller than Banh Xeo, and the base is golden and crispy, while the filling has various kinds of shrimp, meat, eggs, rolls, and bean sprouts.

When eating, diners dip a piece of fragrant cake into a cup of greasy broth, which can add more taste to the pancake, enough to give diners an unforgettable culinary experience.

The only minus point of this dish is that it is greasy. Therefore, if you don’t like a lot of oil, talk to the staff when ordering. The chef will help you adjust the amount of oil when frying the cake.

Address to taste Banh Khoai:

  • Hong Mai Restaurant: 110 Dinh Tien Hoang Street, Hue City
  • Lac Thien Restaurant: 06 Dinh Tien Hoang Street, Hue City

3. Grilled Pork Rolls (Nem Lụi)

nem lui hue
Nem lui is one of the flavorful local dishes here. ©Vietnamdrive

In Hue, grilled pork rolls are often available at most pancake shops. The diners usually order the pancakes and grilled pork rolls together to enjoy their local tastes.

The sophistication of the Hue people is reflected in every dish they make. Spring rolls are no exception. To make the grilled pork rolls fragrant and tasty, in addition to carefully selecting ingredients and marinating, each spring roll will be skillfully rolled on each standard fresh lemongrass stick.

Thanks to that, the rolls will catch a lemongrass scent after being grilled. Bite a piece of the roll, and the eater can feel the lemongrass stalk still retains its warmth and spreading sweetness.

Nem Lụi Hue is served with raw vegetables, thinly sliced ​​young figs, a few slices of green mango, and some sweet and sour pickled papaya and carrots. All are rolled up in thin rice paper and dipped in a typical broth.

The broth used to dip these rolls is also the same type used for the pancake. Maybe for this reason, wherever pancakes and grilled pork rolls often go together.

A few grilled pork rolls, a disk of pancakes, and a can of local Huda beer is a perfect dinner.

Address to taste Grill Pork Rolls:

  • Hong Mai Restaurant: 110 Dinh Tien Hoang Street, Hue City
  • Madam Thu Restaurant: 45 Vo Thi Sau Street, Hue City

4. Hue Steamed Dumplings (Bánh Bèo, Bánh Nậm, Bánh Lọc)

banh beo hue
Banh Beo

These are three completely different dumplings, but they usually go together like a set as default.

To explain this connection, many people think that it is because the ingredients or processing steps are somewhat similar. Good! These are three typical snacks of Hue people from ancient times.

From the writer’s perspective, I believe the reason lies in the royal origin of all three cakes. If banh loc appears less frequently in other areas of the country – but frequently in Hue City, Banh Bbeo and Banh Nam are almost present in most rural areas of Vietnam.

However, when arriving in Hue, both Banh Beo and Banh Bam were shrunk to a small and thin size. The fillings on top, becoming the toppings, are elaborately prepared from fresh shrimp and lean pork. These little cakes are fit for a royal meal.

The dumpling size is thin and small, so the chef often serves all three cakes together to make them rich and more attractive in the snack menu.

banh nam hue
Banh Nam is small and very thin.

At the same time, when combining enough Banh Beo, Banh Nam, and Banh Loc, diners do not have to eat one type too much but still have enough food necessary for a light meal.

For many foreign tourists, the flavors of all three cakes are not appealing. But, if you have come to Hue, why not allow yourself to taste the delicacies of the Nguyen Dynasty’s nobles once? It is a simple way to learn better the beauty of Hue and the feudal royal culture still imprinted on the land of the Ancient Capital.

Addresses to taste Hue Dumplings:

  • Ba Do Restaurant: 8 Nguyen Binh Khiem Street, Hue City
  • Huong Restaurant: 31, Alley 177 Phan Dinh Phung, Stree, Hue City
  • Ba Cu Restaurant: 23, Alley 177 Phan Dinh Phung Street, Hue City

5. Grilled Pork Vermicelli (Bún Thịt Nướng)

grilled pork vermicelli hue
Tasty Grilled Pork Vermicelli

If Hue beef noodle soup stands out with the image of all the noodles, meat, and pork cake submerged in protein-rich soup, then Grilled Pork Vermicelli makes an impression because this food has a lot of green vegetables, white vermicelli, and fragrant grilled pork. This tasty dish is more flavorful when adding a few spoons of typical sauce (Nước Lèo), and chili sauce, and mixing them well.

The deliciousness of grilled pork vermicelli is also very different. It is the rich aroma of carefully marinated pork belly grilled over a charcoal fire. It is the taste of soft white noodles mixed in a rich sauce, in addition to the fresh, crunchy, and natural sweet taste of raw vegetables. They all blend together to give diners the feeling of wanting to continue taking another piece, then another.

Grilled pork vermicelli is suitable for lunch or dinner. And when eating, remember to pay attention to the raw vegetables in the vermicelli bowl. In some street stalls, the vegetable seems to prove to be unreliable in terms of food hygiene and safety standards.

Therefore, as an international tourist, it is better to look for neat restaurants that are large, airy, and specialize in serving tourists. Or, the local shops with frequent and crowded customers can also be a good choice.

Addresses to taste Bun Thit Nuong:

  • Lac Thien Restaurant: 06 Dinh Tien Hoang Street, Hue City
  • Tai Phu Restaurant: 02 Dien Bien Phu Street, Hue City
  • Huyen Anh Restaurant: 50 Kim Long Street, Hue City

6. Mussel Noodles (Bún Hến)

hue clam noodle
Clam Noodle

Besides the royal dishes that make up the reputation of the Ancient Capital’s cuisine, Hue City is also known for its famous dishes for “poor families”: Mussel Vermicelli.

This dish is said to come from a poor neighborhood living in the Cồn Hến area, a small oasis in Vi Da ward, Hue City today.

The river area surrounding Con Hen had many sweet and delicious mussels. People here often went to the river to collect mussels to sell and make food for their families.

Because their families were poor, they often used cold rice from the night before and mixed it with herbs and taro stems from the garden. After that, add a spoonful of mussel meat, shrimp paste, chili powder, peanuts, cooking oil, and fried oil. After mixing the ingredients together, you will get a delicious mussel rice dish.

From this original rice dish, many people gradually replaced rice with white vermicelli to create the famous mussel vermicelli dish of today.

However, for foreign tourists coming to Hue for the first time, mussel vermicelli does not win much love. The cause may lie in the messy appearance of the vermicelli, the original fishy taste of mussels, or it may also be due to the strong smell of shrimp paste.

But, even if you are not sure whether you like this dish or not, you can still give it a try. A bowl of mussel vermicelli in Hue is cheap, only about 10,000 VND to 20,000 VND.

And if it’s your first time enjoying it, you can ask the shop owner to give you a smaller amount. Doing this helps you not feel guilty if you don’t like this local dish.

Address to taste Bun Hen:

  • Ba Hoa Restaurant: 11A Truong Dinh Street, Hue City

7. Hue Sweet Soup (Chè Huế)

hue sweet soup

Taking your time to try the uniqueness of Hue Sweet Soup is great for enriching your cuisine. A cheap and fresh snack is enough to conquer your taste.

The first impression is that a sweet soup shop in Hue gives you a variety of sweet soups on sale. At each shop, there are at least 20 different types for customers to choose from. They include bean sweet soup, tapioca starch sweet soup, sticky rice flour, potatoes, fruits, jelly, and herbs.

The common point of Hue’s sweet soup is its light sweet taste. The ingredients are absorbed evenly but, at the same time, retain their own characteristic aroma that makes the difference between various types of sweet soup.

Standing in front of a sweet soup shop, many people feel confused about ordering a certain type. It is because the appeal of various types of this dessert is hard to deny.

If you also encounter confusion, choose a cup of mixed sweet soup. This perfect choice allows you to try different ingredients in one cup.

In addition, when you want to enjoy the sweet soup that has the unique Hue characteristics, try ordering tapioca sweet soup, lotus sweet soup, lotus longan sweet soup, and corn sweet soup. The most special is roasted pork sweet soup, a dessert only available in Hue.

Roasted pork tapioca soup has a seemingly absurd combination of a chewy tapioca dough piece, wrapping a crispy roasted pork inside, then cooking it in sugar water to create a unique snack.

When eating it, you will first feel the sweet taste often found in sweet soup. Bite the dough ball to feel the chewy taste. Finally, there is the fatty and salty taste of the roasted meat.

It is a strange dessert that contains adventurous mysteries. Roasted pork sweet soup is a name that contributes to enriching the Hue sweet soup menu while leaving many unforgettable impressions on diners.

Address to taste Hue Sweet Soup:

  • Che Hem Restaurant: 1, Alley 29 Hung Vuong Street, Hue City
  • Che Cam Restaurant: 10 Nguyen Sinh Cung Street, Hue City

8. Press Cake (Bánh Ép)

banh ep hue

With just a few simple ingredients, including tapioca, fatty pork, eggs, green onions, and a specialized pressing pan, the people in Hue City create incredible pressed cakes.

Normally, people use flour made from fresh cassava roots (tapioca) that is soft and wet enough to press the cake. Some people use dried cassava starch, kneaded with water to form a smooth, flexible mass used to make pressed cakes.

The cake press pan consists of two flat pan sides connected by a flexible joint. Both sides of the pan are tightly attached to a long, sturdy handle used to press the cake.

The chef puts a ball of dough about the size of a thumb into the pressing pan. Then, she uses the force of her hand to press the two pan handles tightly so that the dough is rolled out thinly and spread evenly between the two sides of the pan.

When the cake is cooked, it will be clear, thin, and supple. Eat the cake while it’s still hot. Diners will roll the cake with laksa leaves, sweet and sour papaya and carrots, and thinly sliced ​​cucumbers. Then, dip them in spicy chili fish sauce.

Bite a piece of cake, and you will feel the chewy taste of Banh Ep and the crunchy taste of vegetables. These things are mixed with the salty, sweet, and spicy chili sauce. All create an irresistible feeling.

Pressed cake is a delicious and cheap snack, and it is popular with local youth. The price of each cake is about 4,000 VND – 5,000 VND. These cakes are usually sold in the afternoon to late evening.

Although the pressed cake is attractive, in the writer’s opinion, food safety and hygiene is an issue that makes us lack confidence. We can confirm this cake is a worthwhile snack, but we do not encourage international visitors to try it. However, you can consider your stomach’s ability to adapt to this and decide whether to try it.

Addresses to taste Banh Ep:

  • Banh Ep Gia Di: 04 Phung Chi Kien Street, Hue City
  • Banh Ep Trang: 03 Le Viet Luong Street, Hue City

9. Wet Rice Paper with Roasted Pork (Bánh Ướt Heo Quay)

This food is a famous dish in Hue, consisting of a combination of a thin wet cake with a slice of sweet, crispy-skinned roasted pork. When eating, people add a few stalks of raw vegetables and sour bean sprouts. The diners dip them in spicy chili fish sauce to make the dish more delicious.

A delicious wet rice paper requires to be thin and smooth but supple. To meet this requirement, cooks are proficient in mixing dough and coating rice papers. Depending on each person, the recipe for mixing flour is more or less different, but the core of flour ingredients requires rice flour, tapioca starch, and wheat flour.

Roasted pork must be pork belly that meets the criteria of 2 parts lean and 1 part fat. A delicious piece of roasted meat is when the outside is golden brown, the skin is crispy and fragrant, while the meat inside is soft, sweet, and not dry or tough.

Although this local dish is appealing to the taste buds, for many foreign tourists who try it for the first time, it is difficult to avoid being a little confused because of the method of eating. It makes the eater’s mouth look bigger.

Only when combining all ingredients together: Vegetables, bean sprouts, meat, and wet rice paper, the taste becomes delicious. However, combining various things, it is oversized for a normal bite, making the mouth bigger.

Please ignore this discomfort because everyone will eat the same way. Enjoy your delicious food, and you will see that Hue roasted pork with wet rice paper can be eaten until your stomach is full without feeling bored.

Addresses to taste Wet Rice Paper with Roasted Pork:

  • Donald Trung Restaurant: 28 Hoang Van Thu Street, Hue City
  • Huyen Anh Restaurant: 50 Kim Long Street, Hue City

10. Stir-fried Turmeric Noodles (Bún Nghệ)

turmeric noodles hue

Perhaps this is one of the “horrible” dishes for many foreign tourists. It is because, besides the rice vermicelli, this dish includes pureed fresh turmeric and pig organs.

The pig organs must be fresh, including various parts of organs, such as liver, blood cake, young and old intestine, stomach, liver, and kidney. All will go through many steps of soaking and washing with raw salt and clean water. After that, the chef cut these organs into small pieces and carefully marinated them before stir-frying.

Puree fresh turmeric and divide it into two parts. One part is stir-fried with cooking oil until fragrant and used to add directly on top of the vermicelli bowl. The remaining portion is used to stir-fry with noodles.

After being stir-fried with hot cooking oil, the vermicelli will be seasoned with cooked pork intestine water and ground turmeric to give it a rich taste and an eye-catching yellow color.

When eating, people will put the vermicelli in the pan and heat it again, add coriander and chopped green onions, and stir well. Finally, put the vermicelli into a bowl, pour over the stir-fried pork organs, and a spoonful of fragrant fresh turmeric.

If you have never tried animal offal before, you will be surprised. Rounds of pig intestines are twisted, and the greasy membrane of fat is still pulled out. The liver, blood cake, stomach, kidneys, and heart stand out on the yellow vermicelli base, making it easy for first-timers to give up.

However, the highlight of the food, when you taste it, is the pungently spicy taste of fresh turmeric. The strong turmeric taste makes this local dish well-known to the locals but not very friendly to international tourists.

The price of a bowl of turmeric vermicelli is only from 15,000 VND to 20,000 VND. If you find it interesting, you can still try it a little bit.

But remember, if you’re not sure if you can finish a bowl of stir-fried turmeric vermicelli, you should ask the restaurant owner to prepare a smaller portion than usual. This will help you avoid feeling guilty about leaving leftovers in the bowl.

In addition, we also recommend that you do not try turmeric vermicelli from street vendors or sidewalk traders. It is because we do not have enough confidence in the food safety of these goods.

Address to taste Bun Nghe:

  • O Ket Restaurant: 10, Alley 154 Ba Trieu Street, Hue City

11. Snakehead Fish Noodle Soup (Bánh Canh Cá Lóc)

Snakehead fish noodle soup is a familiar and delicious dish for most Hue people. However, it is not very attractive to international tourists because of the typical taste of fish and shrimp.

In terms of appearance, Banh Canh Ca Loc can be considered a noodle dish. The main ingredients include noodles, braised snakehead fish meat, and soup.

The noodles of Banh Canh can be made from rice flour, wheat flour, or tapioca flour. Depending on the type of dough, the cook will knead the dough with boiled or filtered water to get a firm, flexible, and smooth dough. Next, the chef rolls the dough into thin sheets, cuts it into fibers, and boils it.

The chef often selects snakehead fish that live naturally in fields, ponds, and lakes. Using the typical technique, the cook separates the meat and bones of fish into two parts. The fish meat will be marinated to absorb the spices and processed into fragrant braised fish.

The fish bones will be stewed with the pork bones for many hours to create a naturally sweet soup. At the same time, the cook does not forget to season the soup with a certain amount of shrimp paste in addition to the usual spices. The taste of shrimp paste gives snakehead fish soup its unique flavor of Hue City.

When eating, people put boiled flour into a bowl, add a few spoons of braised fish meat, a pinch of chopped green onions, and a little pepper powder, then cover with boiling soup on the stove.

The bowl of Banh Canh is brought out while it’s still hot, with the green color of green onions, the white color of the flour, and the shiny yellow color of the braised fish. Everything is mixed in the wavy soup that emits thin smoke, blowing into the eater’s nose with a flavor that makes the hungry stomach even more hungry.

Although this local dish is not attractive to foreign tourists, you can still try it once. Who knows, it could bring you unforgettable experiences.

Addresses to taste Banh Canh:

  • Banh Canh Di Thuy: Road 10, Huong Thuy district, Hue City
  • Hang Restaurant: 136 Ba Trieu Street, Hue City

Try the rich flavors of Hue with our top picks of local dishes! These culinary delights from this city promise to tantalize your taste buds and offer a savory experience unlike any other.

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