If you plan to visit Vietnam, do not miss the opportunity to enjoy the exquisite flavors of Vietnamese chicken rice. You will encounter this dish everywhere during your Vietnam travel, from Hanoi to Hoi An, Nha Trang, and more. Vietnamese people have created various delicious versions with just two basic ingredients: chicken and rice. This article reveals 7 irresistible and fragrant versions that you cannot ignore.
1. Vietnamese chicken rice Hoi An
Visiting Hoi An without trying Hoi An chicken rice is a missed opportunity. Hoi An chicken rice is one of the famous Vietnamese chicken rice specialties that has been around since the 1950s and remains popular to this day.
The dish is a combination of tender and flavorful poached chicken with fragrant and sticky rice, served with pickled vegetables and spicy garlic chili sauce. The poached chicken is mixed with onions, cilantro, and lime juice for added aroma. The rice is cooked in a unique style in Hoi An: first stir-fried before being cooked with chicken broth, creating an impressive aroma and unforgettable richness.
You can find this Vietnamese chicken rice in both street stalls and upscale restaurants in Hoi An. Here are some recommended places for delicious and authentic Hoi An chicken rice:
- Com ga Ba Thuan Hoi An: No. 17/4, Hai Ba Trung, Hoi An
- Com ga Xi Hoi An: No. 47/2, Tran Hung Dao, Hoi An
- Com ga Ba Buoi Hoi An: No. 22, Phan Chau Trinh, Hoi An
- Com ga Ba Nga Hoi An: No. 8, Phan Chau Trinh, Hoi An
2. Hainanese chicken rice Vietnam
Hainanese Vietnamese chicken rice is not one of the traditional Vietnamese foods but originated in Hainan, China. However, thanks to its delicious and rich flavor, it has become popular in Vietnam. The essence of Hainanese chicken rice lies in three elements: the dipping sauce, rice, and chicken. Although the chicken is simply poached, when combined with the special brown dipping sauce made from soy sauce, sesame oil, and chicken broth, it creates an explosion of flavors in your mouth. The unique aspect of the rice is that it is cooked with fragrant rice that has been lightly stir-fried with chicken fat, lemongrass, ginger, shallots, and garlic, then cooked with chicken broth. This creates an unforgettable, rich, and aromatic taste.
You can enjoy Hainanese Vietnamese chicken rice at:
- Kampong Chicken House: with multiple locations in Hanoi
- Hainanese Chicken Rice–Calmette: No. 205-207, Calmette Street, Nguyen Thai Binh Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
- Yummy Hainanese Chicken Rice: No. 184, Nguyen Thai Hoc Street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
3. Phu Yen Vietnamese chicken rice
When visiting Central Vietnam, you cannot miss Phu Yen chicken rice. What guests will always remember about Phu Yen chicken rice is the tender and flavorful boiled chicken that remains firm and juicy. Additionally, the dipping sauce made of garlic, chili, fish sauce, and other distinctive flavors adds a savory, spicy, tangy, and sweet touch to the dish. A plate of Phu Yen chicken rice features fragrant and golden rice and succulent chicken served with cucumbers, cilantro, Vietnamese mint, and sweet and sour pickled onions, creating a flavorful and nourishing meal.
To try the delicious Phu Yen chicken rice, here are some recommended addresses:
- Tuyet Nhung Chicken Rice: No. 189, Le Thanh Ton, Tuy Hoa, Phu Yen
- Thieng Huong Phu Yen Chicken Rice: No. 211, Le Thanh Ton, Tuy Hoa, Phu Yen
- Phuong Phu Yen Chicken Rice: Tran Quy Cap Street, Ward 3, Tuy Hoa, Phu Yen
4. Vietnamese grilled chicken and rice in a bamboo tube
Originating from the Northwest and Central Highlands provinces, bamboo tube rice with grilled chicken is a delicious dish in Da Lat with a unique flavor, representing the mountainous style. The rice in this Vietnamese chicken rice dish is cooked inside bamboo tubes and grilled over the fire, giving the rice a chewy texture and a refreshing aroma of grass. Meanwhile, the chicken is marinated with various spices and then grilled over the fire, creating a crispy, golden skin and tender, juicy meat.
When enjoying the dish, diners will separate each fragrant and chewy bamboo tube rice, hand-shred the crispy and succulent grilled chicken, and dip it in the special herbal mountain salt. This distinctive way of eating reflects the cultural beauty of the highland ethnic groups and enhances the deliciousness of the dish. Here are some recommended restaurants serving the best bamboo tube rice with grilled chicken:
- Nam Anh Phat Restaurant: No. 36, Mac Dinh Chi Street, Da Lat
- Huong Que Restaurant: Alley 27, Hai Ba Trung Street, Da Lat
- Huong Rung Restaurant: No. 6B, Ankroet Street, Da Lat
5. Nha Trang Vietnamese chicken rice
Chicken rice with egg yolk butter sauce is one of the best foods in Nha Trang that you must try when visiting this place. Essentially, Nha Trang chicken rice is similar to Hoi An chicken rice, with its main ingredients being fragrant and rich golden rice, shredded chicken mixed with fried shallots, and cilantro. However, the special feature of Nha Trang chicken rice is the butter sauce made from egg yolk. This sauce is not easy to make, so it brings an explosion of flavors and connects all the ingredients in the chicken rice dish. Mixing the shiny and creamy sauce, the tender rice, the soft chicken, and the accompanying side dishes will make you unable to stop eating.
Here are some recommended restaurants to enjoy Nha Trang Vietnamese chicken rice:
- Tram Anh Nha Trang Chicken Rice: No. 10, Ba Trieu Street, Nha Trang City
- Ha Nha Trang Chicken Rice: No. 75, Ngo Gia Tu Street, Nha Trang City
- Number 1 Nha Trang Chicken Rice: No. 19, Ngo Gia Tu Street, Nha Trang City
6. Waterfall fried chicken rice Vietnamese
Another must-try specialty of Vietnamese chicken rice is waterfall fried chicken rice. If you visit Ho Chi Minh City and want to explore Saigon cuisine, you definitely have to try this dish. Different from other chicken rice dishes, the chicken in this dish is prepared by deep-frying it in hot oil to ensure that the meat is tender and the outer skin is greasy, crispy, and melt-in-your-mouth. The rice is stir-fried to a golden color to enhance its fragrance and flavor. This dish is often served with tomatoes, cucumbers, spicy chili sauce, or savory soy sauce. The combination of crispy chicken with a tender interior dipped in spicy chili sauce, along with flavorful fried rice and refreshing cucumber slices, will create a delightful feast for your taste buds.
Here is a list of recommended restaurants to visit if you want to try delicious waterfall fried chicken rice:
- Thach Lam Vietnamese Chicken Rice: No. 217, Thach Lam Street, Tan Phu District, Ho Chi Minh City
- De Nhat Chicken Rice: multiple locations in Binh Thanh District, District 12, District 2, District 7, etc.
- Ba Luan Chicken Rice: No. 82/1, Chu Van An Street, Binh Thanh District, Ho Chi Minh City
7. Hanoi Vietnamese chicken rice
The culinary map of the capital city, Hanoi, is incredibly rich and diverse, but stir-fried rice with chicken still holds a significant position. This dish simply consists of fried rice with eggs, accompanied by savory stir-fried chicken seasoned with fish sauce and ginger, served with pickled vegetables. The crispy, fragrant rice grains, combined with the tender and flavorful chicken and the savory aroma of the stir-fried chicken broth, create a simple yet irresistible dish. Adding a piece of pickled vegetables to balance the flavors will surely make it a memorable and unforgettable meal on your Hanoi travel.
In Hanoi, there is a famous restaurant known for this chicken rice dish located on Tong Duy Tan Street:
- Address: No. 24, Tong Duy Tan Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi
In addition to Vietnamese chicken rice, there are several other delightful specialties to try, including mi Quang, bun dau mam tom, Vietnamese bread, spring rolls, pancake, steamed rice rolls, Pho rolls, and more.
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Vietnamese chicken rice stands as a beloved and iconic dish in Vietnam's culinary heritage. Its simplicity in ingredients, combined with the artful preparation and distinct flavors, creates a harmonious symphony of tastes that tantalize the taste buds. Whether you savor the flavorsome Phu Yen chicken rice, the yummy Hoi An chicken rice, or the unique textures of Da Lat's rice cooked in bamboo tubes, each variation offers a delightful culinary experience. Pack your bags and start your food tour with Vietnamese chicken rice today!