Chile Pepper

Southeast Asian Pho

May  6, 2015
2 Ratings
Photo by Mark Weinberg
  • Serves 1
Author Notes

A tasty tribute to the Gap Yahs of old, this simple soup can be made with pretty much any crisp vegetable. Adjust the chile quantity according to your spice tolerance level. —Sophie Missing and Caroline Craig

What You'll Need
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger
  • 1/2 red chile pepper, or to taste
  • 3 scallions
  • 1/2 yellow pepper
  • 2 handfuls spinach
  • 2 ounces vermicelli rice noodles
  • 1/2 chicken or vegetable stock cube (or generous pinch of salt)
  • 1 lime
  • 1 handful fresh cilantro and basil
  1. Begin by preparing your bowl at home up to 48 hours in advance. Peel the ginger and mince it. Add it to a large heatproof jar or container with a sealable lid. Finely chop the chile pepper (remove seeds if you prefer less spice) and add it to the minced ginger. Chop the white part of the scallions and slice the yellow pepper lengthwise into thin strips. Add the spinach leaves and rice noodles along with the stock cube. Slice the lime in half and add both halves to the container, then finely chop the herbs and add them on top.
  2. At lunchtime: Boil a pot of fresh water either using your office microwave or kettle. Remove the lime from your jar and pour the boiling water over the soup mix until it just covers everything. Using a fork, stir the soup until the stock has dissolved. Close the lid and give it a good shake. Let the soup rest for a minute then squeeze the lime over top.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • HomeChef
  • Jessica Ho
    Jessica Ho
  • Jenna Gonzales
    Jenna Gonzales
  • Threemoons
  • Dennis Zeh Jr
    Dennis Zeh Jr

28 Reviews

HomeChef February 14, 2020
Yo, this is not Pho. Please call it a "It". You are disrespecting Vietnamese calling this a Pho.
Jessica H. December 15, 2016
rosemarie C. September 11, 2016
This recipe appealed to me on the basis of the its ingredients. Healthy, simple, well chosen. You can improvise as well. Even though I work from home, I prepare 4-6 jars and if I feel like it, empty the finished soup to a bowl. Just terrific.
Jenna G. June 20, 2016
I've made this recipe a dozen times since I found it. It's perfect for lunch! I have never heard of pho but now I'm addicted. Thank you!
Threemoons April 14, 2016
Dennis Z. April 14, 2016
You should just call it rice noodle soup. This isn't pho by any means. You're not even using pho noodles (bánh phở), you're using vermicelli (bún).
Deborah April 14, 2016
Calories per serving ???
Angela C. April 13, 2016
I made this today. It was really good!!! I added cooked rice and cooked turkey kielbasa to it to make it a little more filling.
Sheila Z. April 13, 2016
If you put a metal spoon or fork in the jar before adding the hot water the glass jar should not crack. The metal absorbs the heat.
catalinalacruz October 14, 2015
We take cues from the delicious instant ramen soup cups we found in the stores on a trip to S. Korea. Dehydrated tofu, and our addition of thinly sliced mushrooms provided nourishing meals in our hotel room. (Every Korean hotel provides an electric kettle.) There were also ingredients we couldn't identify, all adding up to gourmet instant ramen soup that puts the Western versions to shame.
Shirley C. June 28, 2015
What size weck jar are you using?
Robyn October 14, 2015
If you go to the weck site it looks like it might be 744 weck 1/2 liter in size.
aeisenhowerturnbull June 18, 2015
Wondering the same thing, do you need to pre-cook the rice noodles??
Sophie M. June 19, 2015
Hello - we use vermicelli rice noodles which are so fine that they cook to al dente very quickly when covered with boiling water, so no need to pre-cook (they'll also continue to cook while you wait for the broth to cool down enough to eat). Brands do vary though, so it could take between 1-3 minutes. You could also use a portion of ready to cook rice noodles. Hope this helps!
Lynda L. June 17, 2015
My only concern is that one would refrigerate this because of the chopped vegetables--but then adding boiling water to a cold glass container can be trouble?
Kat January 11, 2016
Weck jars are canning jars and less prone to cracking when suddenly coming in contact with hot fluid, but I think that if you take these to work, you can let the glass come to room temperature before pouring in hot water. My office doesn't have refrigerators so my lunch typically sits out on my desk until I eat and I don't have an issue with cracking.
Alicia June 17, 2015
I can't wait to try this!

Also, I would love know where to get that container!
Robyn October 14, 2015
If you go to the weck site it looks like it might be 744 weck 1/2 liter in size.
hltruelove June 17, 2015
I share Slimfender's question. Also, do you carry the container shown in the photoshoot? Love it.
HRH June 17, 2015
Looks like one of those adorable Weck canning jars. You can get them online (this site carries them sometimes, I believe) or pick them up at places like Crate & Barrel
Robyn October 14, 2015
If you go to the weck site it looks like it might be 744 weck 1/2 liter in size.
HRH June 17, 2015
if you've got it, the addition of a shake or two of 5 spice powder would really set this off! Thanks for the wonderful lunch inspiration, ladies!
Margaret R. June 17, 2015
Giving it a good shake is a good way to end up with second degree burns.
Sophie M. June 17, 2015
Hi Margaret, we wouldn't want anyone to get any burns and do stress in our guidelines to use an appropriate heat safe container. But you make a good point, and perhaps giving it a good, vigorous shuffle or jiggle while on a flat surface might be a more prudent direction!
OdaO August 10, 2015
Would think it's the spice jar that is in for a shake or two, not the food..
Lovely, lovely pho-post. Not a new thought, but spelled out like this, I have no excuse. This is it!
Slimfender June 17, 2015
Should the vermicelli be pre-cooked? Seems like it might not cook all the way with just a minute or two sitting in hot water. I normally need about three or four minutes over a rolling boil to get to al dente at home.
jadejangmyeon June 16, 2015
Serious Eats has recipes that include shrimp, chicken, and beef jerky!
Kerry June 16, 2015
Wow, what a clever idea! I'm excited to try this for lunch one day (sandwiches, salads, and leftovers can only go so far). I wonder if I could add cooked shrimp or other meat along with it?