Vietnam Travel Guide: Breakfast in Hanoi (like a Hanoian)

When in Hanoi, do not miss your chance to have breakfast like a Hanoian. Around the Old Quarter, there are numerous amazing foodie spots for those early birds who want to wallow in the fantastic street vibe. Here are 5 favorable dishes and detailed addresses suggested by Sens Asia Travel, where visitors can actually buy some of that morning glory! 

PHO BO (VIETNAMESE BEEF NOODLES)

Pho is also a popular breakfast in Vietnam. Everything about this dish is fresh and alluring, from the rice noodles, steamed broth, seasoned beef to various herbs to serve with. In every morning, you can easily catch a glimpse of busy locals sit in simple stools and by a plastic table at random places on the streets, having their first meal in a fascinatingly calm way. And from faraway, the irresistible scent of pho continuously draws passing by people to come and try.

TIPS

  • The essence of pho mostly relies in the broth. At best, enjoy the dish while it is hot and the broth exceeds noodle level
  • Remember to order quay (finger-shaped soufflé batter) and dip it into the broth to enjoy with
  • Tra da (iced green tea) is often ordered afterwards as a matchy all-in-all morning drink

 

WHERE TO FIND A MARVELOUS BOWL OF PHO

PHO BAT DAN

  • 49 Bat Dan, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
  • VND 30,000 – 55,000 (~ USD $2)
  • 6.00 AM – 10.00 AM | 06.00 PM – 10.00 PM

 

PHO THIN

  • 13 Lo Duc, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
  • VND 40,000 – 60,000 (~ USD $3)
  • 6.30 AM – 8.30 PM

 

PHO LY QUOC SU

  • 10 Ly Quoc Su, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
  • VND 50,000 – 90,000 (~ USD $3.5)
  • 6.30 AM  – 10.30 PM 

 

XOI XEO (VIETNAMESE STICKY RICE WITH MUNG BEAN)

Sticky rice, mung beans and fried onions are what xoi xeo made of. This dish is a Vietnamese traditional take-away, wrapped carefully in banana leaves and served warm. The taste for xoi xeo mixture is rich, memorable and worth-craving for.

TIPS

  • Fried onions are must-have ingredient for xoi xeo. If you can’t take the thick scent of fried onion, try the similar dish, xoi ngo (sticky rice with mung beans and corn)
  • Some prefer eating xoi xeo with ruoc (Vietnamese shredded pork) or cha (Vietnamese pork ham) to add extra salty flavors

WHERE TO FIND YUMMY XOI XEO

XOI MAY

  • 31 Ly Thuong Kiet (Crossroad corner of Hang Bai and Ly Thuong Kiet), Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
  • VND 10,000 – 15,000 (USD $1)
  • 6.00 AM – 10.00 AM

 

XOI XEO

  • 1 Hang Bac (Old Quarter Hanoi)
  • VND 10,000 – 15,000 (USD $1)
  • 6.00 AM – 9.00 AM

 

BANH MI (VIETNAMESE BREAD)

More than the name Vietnamese typical baguettes/sandwiches, banh mi is the breakfast spirit for many families and generations living in Hanoi. How convenient, you can just order a banh mi with separate fillings such as ham, pate, marinated meat, sausages with sauces and vegetables up to your personal preference. The taste of banh mi is not at all picky or flowery, just interesting, simple, savory as it can be found anywhere and enjoyed at any time.

TIPS

  • The must-have duo for banh mi is pate and fried egg and omelet
  • There is no rule for filling mixture, just order what you want stuffed in a bread
  • The food-and-drink morning culture including banh mi recipe should be banh mi + ca phe sua da (Vietnamese iced milk coffee)

 

WHERE TO FIND BANH MI IN THE OLD QUARTER

BANH MI PHO CO

  • 38 Dinh Liet, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
  • VND 20,000 – 40,000 (~ USD $2)
  • 7.00 AM – 11.00 AM

 

BANH MI BA DAN

  • 34 Lo Su, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
  • VND 20,000 – 40,000 (~ USD $2)
  • 6.00 AM – 9.00 PM

 

BANH MI NGUYEN SINH

  • 17 – 19 Ly Quoc Su, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
  • VND 20,000 – 40,000 (~ USD $2)
  • 6.30 AM – 10.00 PM

 

BANH CUON (STEAMED RICE ROLLS)

Originated from Northern areas, banh cuon (steamed rice rolls) is one of the most ancient dishes in Vietnamese culture. The skills to create this dish are undeniably admirable. First, the “chef” must pour a thin crepe-like layer of rice flour onto large pan and let it steamed and firm for minutes. Then, in vast moments, he will rapidly and meticulously roll it with cooked minced pork and chopped wood ear mushrooms filled inside. Banh cuon is served with sweetened fish sauce, cha (Vietnamese pork ham) and herbs.

TIPS

  • The dish is best served with a layer of fried onion on top and some extra cha or gio (Vietnamese pork ham)
  • Steamed egg-rolls are available in most shops or vendors
  • In Hanoi, the steamed rice rolls are usually served in two types, with and without the meat

 

WHERE TO FIND BANH CUON WITH FRESH AND CRUNCHY FRIED ONIONS

BANH CUON BAO KHANH

  • 14 Bao Khanh, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
  • VND 25,000 – 40,000 (~ USD $2.5)
  • 7.00 AM – 9.00 PM

 

BANH CUON BA HANH

  • 26B Tho Xuong, Phu Doan, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
  • VND 25,000 – 40,000 (~ USD $2.5)
  • 5.00 PM – 9.00 PM

 

BANH CUON THANH VAN

  • 12 – 14 Hang Ga, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
  • VND 20,000 – 40,000 (~ USD $2)
  • 7.00 AM – 1.00 PM | 5.00 PM – 11.00 PM

 

BANH GIO (VIETNAMESE PYRAMID DUMPLING)

Banh gio is a four-season treat of Hanoi, deemed as a filling breakfast choice and favored by many children. The cake is comprised of pure non-glutinous rice, minced pork, wood ear mushroom, onions and shaped pyramid-mould from banana leaves. Wrapping procedure plays vital role to the success of each cake as it will prevent water to get in while boiled. The smooth and savory flavors of banh gio might linger in your taste buds for a while.

TIPS

  • Chili sauce really adds extraordinary flavor to the cake
  • Banh gio is optionally served with pickled cucumber, cha (Vietnamese pork ham and soy sauce)
  • Let’s finish this dish hot right after removing all wrappings. The taste will be less attractive if banh gio turns cold

WHERE TO FIND BANH GIO

BANH GIO DAO DUY TU

  • 16 Dao Duy Tu, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
  • VND 12,000 – 30,000 (~ USD $1)
  • 6.30 AM – 5.00 PM

BANH GIO THUY KHUE (nearby West Lake)

  • 3 Thuy Khue, Tay Ho, Hanoi
  • VND 15,000 – 25,000 (~ USD $1)
  • 6.00 AM – 9.00 PM
 
PHOTO CREDIT: To the rightful owners, Internet, Blogspot, Pinterest, Facebook

——

HANOI TRAVEL GUIDE

A Day in Hanoi: READ MORE

Drink like Hanoi locals: READ MORE

Walking through Hanoi Old Quarter: READ MORE

BY LE DOAN

 

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