Hue is indeed a cultural hub for street food enthusiasts. Just stepping onto its streets allows you to savor some unique dishes. Let’s explore with!

Hue’s street food has always captivated travelers. The intricate preparation methods make Hue’s street food truly praiseworthy. It’s also a part of Hue’s culture—subtle, refined, and irresistibly appealing.

Chè Hẻm (Sweet Soup)

A visit to Hue would be incomplete without trying Chè Hẻm. These sweet soups are usually found in the narrow alleys, locally called “Kiệt.”

There are various types of chè, including hot varieties like chè đậu ván (mung bean sweet soup), chè đậu quyên (adzuki bean sweet soup), chè bắp (corn sweet soup), and chè khoai tía (sweet potato sweet soup). Cold options include chè đậu đen (black bean sweet soup), chè đậu đỏ (red bean sweet soup), chè đậu xanh đánh (green bean sweet soup), chè ngự (coconut sweet soup), and chè bột lọc bọc dừa (coconut-wrapped tapioca sweet soup). A bowl of chè typically costs around 8,000 to 10,000 VND.

Chè Hẻm, a distinctive dish of Hue’s street food cuisine.

Some Chè places in Hue:

  • Mobile chè vendors near Tuổi Trẻ Park.
  • Chè Cung Đình at 31 Nguyễn Huệ, Hue City.
  • Chè Sao on Phan Bội Châu Street, Hue City.
  • Chè stalls on Trương Định Street, Hue City.

You can participate in a motorbike tour to enjoy street food and visit some famous attractions in Hue, such as the abandoned Thuy Tien Water Park, Thanh Toan Bridge, and the royal tombs of the kings in Hue. The “Sunset Sightseeing and Street Food Motorbike Tour” by is one of the tours that many tourists choose when visiting Hue.

Nem Lụi (Grilled Lemongrass Skewers)

They say that you can’t visit Hue without trying the flavorful and aromatic nem lụi. Many claim, “Nem lụi is one of Hue’s specialties.” These skewers are made by grilling marinated lemongrass-infused ground pork on charcoal grills. What makes them special are the accompanying herbs and a complex dipping sauce prepared from various ingredients.

Hue's grilled nem lụi, rich in the flavors of the ancient capital, Hue
Hue’s grilled nem lụi, rich in the flavors of the ancient capital, Hue

The herbs include fragrant herbs, starfruit, bean sprouts, and green bananas. The sauce is meticulously crafted, made from pork liver, oil, roasted rice powder, sugar, soybean paste, shrimp paste, cinnamon, anise, coconut essence, and more. Once you try nem lụi, you’ll want to have it again and again, and every visit to Hue will include a search for a place that captures the authentic flavor of Hue.

Recommended nem lụi spots in Hue:

  • A stall outside Đông Ba Market.
  • On Phú Quý – Nguyễn Huệ Street.
  • Hạnh Restaurant at 11 Phó Đức Chính Street.

Moreover, you can also visit Dong Ba Market to enjoy all the street food dishes.

Bánh Bột Lọc (Tapioca Dumplings)

Bánh bột lọc, steamed tapioca dumplings, entice with the fragrance of spring onions, fresh chilies, and the harmony of translucent tapioca skin with tasty fillings. These dumplings are a quintessential Hue dish, wrapped in layers of banana leaves. They also make great gifts as they are easy to package and transport without compromising their flavor.

Bánh bột lọc, the essence of Hue’s street food cuisine.

Recommended addresses: Streets specializing in bánh bột lọc, such as Võ Thị Sáu, Lê Thánh Tôn, Phạm Hồng Thái, Trương Định, Nguyễn Huệ, or mobile vendors near Tràng Tiền Bridge.

Bánh Bèo (Water Fern Cake)

Bánh bèo is a popular dish in the central region, with variations in flavor depending on the location. In Hue, you’ll find two types of bánh bèo: bánh bèo chén (small cup-shaped water fern cakes) and bánh bèo dĩa (water fern cakes served on a plate). These cakes are white and thin, topped with shrimp, fried shallots, and a bit of lard, making them visually appealing.

When you visit Hue, remember to savor some bánh bèo

A plate of five bánh bèo typically costs around 10,000 VND. Suggested locations include Nguyễn Huệ Street, Nguyễn Bỉnh Khiêm Street, Phạm Hồng Thái Street, among others.

Mì Hến (Baby Clam Noodles)

When it comes to Hue street food, people often think of cơm hến (baby clam rice), a dish combining sour, spicy, salty, sweet, and savory flavors. Mì hến, on the other hand, is a variation of cơm hến, replacing rice with thin noodles.

Mì hến is a unique and intriguing dish that many travelers enjoy when visiting Hue. Its key ingredients include baby clams, shrimp noodles, some greens, and spices. The dish may appear simple, but its preparation is meticulous. The clams used in this dish come from Cồn Hến, a silt island in the Perfume River, belonging to the Cồn Hến village in Vĩ Dạ ward. A bowl of mì hến typically costs around 20,000 VND.

Huế-style noodles, a delicious Hue dish that’s quite appetizing.

Recommended locations to savor mì hến:

  • Street food area under Tràng Tiền Bridge.
  • Vĩnh Lộc Street, Trần Phú Street, Hàn Mặc Tử Street.

Bún Bò Huế (Hue Beef Noodle Soup)

For the people of Hue, bún bò (beef noodle soup) is not just a dish; it’s a way of life that embodies Hue’s character—humble yet elegant, joyful yet tinged with sorrow, calm on the surface but turbulent within, reflecting not in a mirror but in the eyes of loved ones, friends, and neighbors.

Bún Bò Huế (Hue Beef Noodle Soup)

Over time, Hue’s bún bò has evolved with different spice combinations while maintaining the essence of Hue’s flavors. The broth is simmered from beef bones and meat. It’s incomplete without mắm ruốc (fermented shrimp paste), a key spice that defines the soup’s deliciousness. Round, chewy noodles are served with herbs like basil, bean sprouts, and banana blossoms.

Each bún bò place in Hue has its own unique twist. Some use only beef, while others add tendons, trotters, brisket, and even crab sausage. The addition of purple shallot vinegar and chili paste, unique to Hue, elevates the dish.

As time goes on, bowls of bún bò continue to be cherished by the people of Hue and visiting tourists. The aromatic and flavorful bún bò bowls leave an unforgettable impression on those who taste them, making it hard to resist their allure.

Recommended places to enjoy bún bò in Hue:

  • 13 Lý Thường Kiệt Street, near Công Đoàn Guesthouse.
  • “Mụn Rớt” near Diệu Đế Pagoda.
  • Bún Lệ on Điện Biên Phủ Street.
  • Bún Bà Phụng on Nguyễn Du Street.
  • Bún Bà Mỹ at 71 Nguyễn Công Trứ Street.

Visiting different regions, experiencing local culture, and enjoying authentic cuisine are true pleasures. Have you made plans to visit Hue, Vietnam? If you have, then’s believes this is a great recommendation for you. Enjoy your culinary journey!

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