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Low-carb Vietnamese pho



  • 1.8 kg beef bones and pigs’ feet (marrow and joints such as beef knuckles cut in half by butcher, oxtail, short ribs)
  • 2 medium yellow onions, quartered
  • 50 g fresh ginger
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 4 whole star anise
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 60 ml fish sauce
  • 2 quarts water

For the finished pho

  • 1 scallion, finely chopped
  • 225 ml finely slivered green cabbage
  • 125 ml bean sprouts
  • 1 lime
  • 450 g beef, tenderloin filet
  • 75 ml coconut flakes


  1. Broil the onion and ginger until charred, about 4 to 5 minutes on each side. Peel the ginger and rinse to remove charred skin.
  2. Place the cinnamon, star anise, and cloves in a dry stockpot. Heat on medium-low until fragrant, about 1 to 2 minutes.
  3. Add the bones, pigs feet, onion, ginger, salt, fish sauce, and water. Bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat. Simmer for at least 2 to 3 hours.
  4. While the broth is simmering, prepare the ingredients for the pho. Slice the cabbage into thin slivers to resemble rice noodles and divide among four serving bowls.
  5. Slice the beef into thin slices no more than ¼ inch thick and less than 2 inches long and set.
  6. Divide the sliced beef evenly among the 4 serving bowls by placing the beef in a single layer on top of the cabbage.
  7. Thinly slice the scallions and place in a serving dish.
  8. Place the bean sprouts in a second serving dish.
  9. Cut the lime into wedges and set on a serving dish with the scallions and bean sprouts alongside the coconut flakes
  10. Strain the broth, discarding all of the solids. Return the strained broth to a rolling boil. Ladle the boiling broth over the bowls that have been prepared with cabbage and beef.
  11. Top with scallions, bean sprouts, coconut flakes, lime and additional fish sauce as desired.