Food in Hanoi: 13 BEST Local Dishes You Must Try in Hanoi

The food in Hanoi is not only delicious but also tells a captivating story of the city’s rich cultural heritage. From steaming bowls of pho to delightful bites of street food, each dish in Hanoi reflects a unique aspect of its culinary charm. Let’s follow VTJ to explore the list of dishes in Hanoi right now!

>>> Read more: BEST Local Food in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam You Must Try

>>> Read more: Top 10 Vietnamese Food

1. Pho (Vietnamese Noodle Soup)


Pho (Vietnamese Noodle Soup) – The world-famous Vietnamese food in Hanoi

Hanoi’s traditional food reflects the rich cultural heritage of the city. Among these traditional dishes, we must mention the iconic pho. Pho stands out as one of Vietnam’s most famous dishes, offering various regional variations. 

In Northern Vietnam, particularly in Hanoi, chicken and beef pho are popular choices. While international Vietnamese restaurants may serve pho Ha Noi, the experience is often more authentic and affordable in Vietnam.

>>> Read more: Traditional Breakfast Foods in Vietnam

2. Ca Phe Trung (Egg Coffee)


Ca Phe Trung (Egg Coffee) is a unique and indulgent beverage in Hanoi

A must-try in Hanoi is the renowned egg coffee, a unique blend of egg yolk, instant coffee, and condensed milk. Strong Vietnamese coffee lovers will appreciate the intensity of this beverage. 

Giang Cafe in Hanoi claims to be the birthplace of egg coffee, and the story goes that it originated during a time when milk was scarce in Vietnam. Despite its unconventional ingredients, egg coffee has gained popularity among both locals and foreigners. 

>>> Read more: 15+ BEST Coffee Shops in Hanoi, Vietnam (Updated 2023)

3. Banh Cuon (Rice Noodle Roll)


Banh Cuon (Rice Noodle Roll) – A delicate Vietnamese dish

Ideal for a light breakfast or midday snack, banh cuon features a delicate combination of ground meat, minced wood ear mushroom, onions, Vietnamese ham, steamed beansprouts, and cucumbers wrapped in a steamed rice flour sheet. Despite its mild overall taste, you can enhance the flavor by dipping banh cuon into nuoc cham sauce. 


4. Pho Cuon (Pho Roll)


Pho Cuon (Pho Roll) is a delightful Hanoi specialty

Pho Cuon is essentially the ingredients of pho without the broth. It features strips of grilled beef and an assortment of herbs like cilantro, basil, and mint, all rolled up in wide rice noodles. Instead of using a spoon and chopsticks, you simply dip it in a bowl of nuoc cham (sweet fish sauce) and savor the flavors!

>>> Read more: 25+ BEST Restaurants in Hanoi, Vietnam (Updated 2023)

5. Bun Cha (Grilled Pork With Noodles)


Bun Cha (Grilled Pork With Noodles) is a delightful culinary experience not to be missed when visiting Hanoi

Bun Cha Hanoi is a popular dish in the capital, featuring grilled pork patties, rice noodles, and flavorful herbs. Similar to another Vietnamese dish, bun thit nuong, the main distinction lies in the use of minced pork in bun cha and grilled pork belly in bun thit nuong. While both dishes are delicious, bun cha is a specialty of Hanoi and less commonly found outside the region. It’s highly recommended to try bun cha during your visit to Hanoi.

>>> Read more: 10 Best restaurants in Vietnam you must try 2023

6. Xoi Xeo (Sticky Rice With Mung Bean)


Xoi Xeo (Sticky Rice With Mung Bean) – A taste of traditional Vietnamese food in Hanoi

Street food in Hanoi provides a distinctive and tasty dining experience. Among them, one must mention Sticky Rice With Mung Bean. Xoi xeo, or sweet sticky rice, is a Vietnamese delight adorned with green mung bean paste, soy sauce, and dried shallots. 

You can customize it with add-ins like pate, boiled chicken, Vietnamese ham (cha lua), marinated pork belly, or preserved eggs for a heartier meal. Some places also serve xoi xeo as a dessert, featuring toppings such as dried coconut shavings, roasted sesame seeds, and crystallized sugar.

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7. Cha Ca (Turmeric Fish)


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Cha Ca (Turmeric Fish) is unique delicacy from Hanoi

What are some must-try dishes for those seeking authentic food in Hanoi? Surely, it’s Cha Ca! A unique delicacy from Hanoi, cha ca involves white fish seasoned with garlic, ginger, turmeric, and dill, served on a sizzling pan. Accompanied by rice noodles, peanuts, chopped spring onions, parsley, nuoc cham sauce, and red chili slices, the dish encourages diners to mix the ingredients with the turmeric fish. 

>>> Read more: 10+ BEST Bun Cha in Hanoi, Vietnam (Updated 2023)

8. Kem Xoi (Ice Cream With Sticky Rice)


Kem Xoi (Ice Cream With Sticky Rice) is a beloved street food on hot summer days in Hanoi

Hanoi is not just about savory dishes; it also boasts delightful sweets like kem xoi. This dessert features sticky rice topped with coconut-flavored ice cream, usually complemented by pandan sticky rice and a sprinkle of toasted coconut flakes. Whether it’s hot or cooler in Northern Vietnam, treat yourself to this delicious dessert, available in many ice cream shops around the city.

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9. Bun Rieu (Crab Noodle Soup)


Bun Rieu captures the essence of Vietnamese cuisine with its flavors and vibrant colors

A tangy tomato-based soup, bun rieu is a delectable combination of rice vermicelli, pounded freshwater crabmeat, fried tofu, green onion, warm chunks of tomato, and chopped morning glory. The finishing touches include chili sauce, fresh herbs, and a sprinkle of garlic vinegar. This Vietnamese dish, with its rich flavors, is a must-try in Hanoi.

>>> Read more: Top 10 Must-Try Dishes In Hanoi

10. Bun Thang (Rice Vermicelli With Chicken, Egg, And Pork)


Bun Thang (Rice Vermicelli With Chicken, Egg, And Pork) – A delicate and flavorful dish in Hanoi

Enjoyed at any time of the day, bun thang features a flavorful broth made from 20 ingredients, including dried shrimp, squid, shrimp paste, spring onion, coriander, ginger, mushroom, beet, fish sauce, sugar candy, and vinegar. This attractive Hanoi dish carefully arranges noodles, chicken, eggs, pork slices, and a dollop of shrimp paste to resemble a flower. Find it mostly within Hanoi Old Quarter, with Quan Bun Thang Ba Duc being a highly recommended spot.

>>> Read more: Differences between Hanoi vs Ho Chi Minh city

11. Pho Xao (Stir-Fried Pho)


Don’t miss out on trying Pho Xao (Stir-Fried Pho) when exploring the culinary of Hanoi

While pho is commonly known as a soup, pho xao offers a different experience. Stir-fried with onions, beef slices, and assorted greens, this dish features flat pho noodles, crisp on the outside with a smooth glutinous texture. Some restaurants add fried eggs and chili sauce for extra flavor. 

>>> Read more: Buffet Restaurants in Hanoi, Vietnam

12. Banh Mi


Banh mi is one of the most popular food in Hanoi

Banh mi, a Vietnamese sandwich, is renowned globally. It consists of a small French baguette filled with ingredients like liver pate, cold cuts, pickled vegetables, cucumber slices, and cilantro. Often enjoyed as a snack, banh mi is a light and tasty option. Trying local food in Hanoi is an essential part of the travel experience. Therefore, don’t forget to indulge in a banh mi when you set foot in the capital!

>>> Read more: 12+ Spots to Get BEST Banh Mi in Hanoi, Vietnam (Updated 2023)

>>> Read more: 8+ Spots to Get BEST Banh Mi in Ho Chi Minh City (Updated 2023)

13. Trang Tien Ice Cream


Trang Tien Ice Cream is a popular dessert for locals and tourists alike to cool off on a hot day

Wondering what to eat in Hanoi Old Quarter? Try the refreshing Trang Tien Ice Cream! Trang Tien ice cream, a beloved Hanoi dessert for over 60 years, offers rich, creamy textures and unique flavors. 

With its softness and cool flavor, this ice cream, made from natural ingredients without food coloring, captivates locals and tourists alike. A must-try when in Hanoi, Trang Tien ice cream is cherished for its slightly sweet taste and refreshing coolness.

>>> Read more: Shopping For Those Foreign Food Cravings

In conclusion, the diverse and flavorful array of food in Hanoi reflects the city’s rich culinary heritage. Whether you’re indulging in traditional pho or savoring the unique street food, Hanoi’s food scene offers a delightful experience for every palate. Don’t forget to follow VTJ every day to explore more interesting things in Vietnam!

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Vietnam Teaching Jobs (VTJ), which was founded in 2012 is a well-established platform for teachers to find their dream teaching job in Vietnam. Covering the entirety of the country, we have successfully paired thousands of happy teachers and schools. Be part of the thousands of happy teachers working in Vietnam, register and apply for your dream job today!