If you are a fan of Vietnamese cuisine, you will not want to miss out on these top 13 delicious and refreshing Vietnamese salad dishes. Bursting with bold and flavorful ingredients like fresh herbs, crunchy veggies, and tangy dressings, these salads are the perfect way to indulge in the tastes of Vietnam travel while staying healthy and satisfied.
1. Vietnamese Beef Salad - A traditional Vietnamese salad
Vietnamese beef salad, or Vietnamese steak salad, is a vibrant and tasty traditional salad. The dish typically includes ingredients such as tender strips of beef, lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes, onions, and roasted peanuts, creating a mix of amazing textures and flavors.
The beef in Vietnamese beef salad is typically marinated in a mixture of fish sauce, soy sauce, garlic, and sugar, which gives it a rich, savory flavor that pairs perfectly with the crisp greens and crunchy peanuts. This dish is best served when the beef is still hot.
2. Vietnamese Chicken Salad - A must-try Vietnamese food
Vietnamese chicken salad is a fresh and vibrant dish that bursts with bold and zesty flavors. It typically consists of poached chicken, shredded carrots, sliced cucumbers, chopped mint and cilantro, and roasted peanuts.
The chicken is poached with lemongrass, ginger, and garlic, giving it a fragrant and savory taste. The dressing is typically made with fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, and chili, creating a perfect blend of sweet, salty, and sour flavors.
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3. Vietnamese Cucumber Salad
Vietnamese cucumber salad is a light and refreshing salad perfect for hot summer days, especially when served with grilled meat or seafood.
The ingredients for Vietnamese cucumber salad are super simple and easy to find. You will need cucumbers, carrots, onions, cilantro, and roasted peanuts. The vegetables are sliced thinly to maximize the crunch factor.
The dressing is made with a mix of fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, garlic, and chili, which adds a sweet, tangy, and savory flavor to the salad.
4. Vietnamese Papaya Salad - One of the most popular Vietnamese salads
To make Vietnamese papaya salad, you will need shredded green papaya, green beans, tomatoes, and roasted peanuts. All are combined with a tangy sauce that includes fish sauce, dried shrimp, chili, garlic, sugar, lime or tamarind juice.
The dressing for this Vietnamese salad can take on various combinations and greatly differ in its level of sweetness and spiciness. At many restaurants and street vendors, customers have the option to customize the ingredients to their liking.
5. Vietnamese Lotus Root Salad
This dish features the crispy texture and delicate flavor of lotus root, combined with fresh herbs and a zesty dressing. It can be served with crispy fried shallots and roasted peanuts.
To make Vietnamese lotus root salad, you will need thinly sliced lotus root, carrots, and fresh herbs such as mint and cilantro. You can also add cooked shrimp or chicken for a protein boost.
6. Vietnamese Raw Herring Salad - A special Vietnamese salad
Originating from Phu Quoc Island, Vietnamese raw herring salad is a great combination of fresh herring, onions, greens (cucumber, lettuce, herbs), shredded coconut, mint, and rice paper. To make this dish, you will wrap all the ingredients in rice paper, dip it in the sauce, and enjoy the amazing flavor.
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7. Va Tron - The royal Vietnamese salad of Hue
Va Tron is a traditional Vietnamese salad originally from Hue Vietnam. It was once a Hue food that was only served to royalty. The salad consists of boiled figs, onions, carrots, mushrooms, and either shredded pork or shrimp. This dish is unique to Central Vietnam where the local figs are grown.
Va Tron can also be topped with fried shallots, roasted sesame seeds, and fermented shrimp paste. It is typically served hot on special occasions such as weddings and family celebrations, and sometimes with rice crackers known as bánh tráng.
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8. Vietnamese Jellyfish Salad - A Vietnamese delicacy
Vietnamese jellyfish salad is a unique and refreshing dish that has gained popularity both in Vietnam and worldwide. The key ingredient of the dish is jellyfish, which is thinly sliced and soaked in hot water before being mixed with other ingredients.
Commonly used ingredients in this Vietnamese salad include shredded chicken, onions, basil, coriander, green mango, deep-fried glutinous rice, chili peppers, and roasted crushed peanuts. This dish is typically served cold as an appetizer or side dish in Vietnamese cuisine.
9. Vietnamese Tomato Salad
Vietnamese tomato salad is a simple and refreshing salad, typically consisting of sliced tomatoes, sliced onions, and chopped cilantro, topped with roasted peanuts and fried shallots.
To add more flavor and texture, some variations may include shredded chicken, shrimp, or pork. This Vietnamese salad can be eaten on its own as a light and healthy appetizer or as a side dish to complement a main course.
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10. Vietnamese Duck Salad
The key ingredients in Vietnamese duck salad include roasted duck, mixed greens (such as lettuce, herbs, and cucumber), sliced onions, and chopped peanuts. Some variations may also include shredded carrots and pickled vegetables.
The flavor of this salad is a perfect balance of savory, sweet, and sour. The dressing is typically made with a combination of fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, and chili, which creates a tangy and slightly spicy flavor that perfectly complements the other ingredients.
This Vietnamese salad can be served as is or with a side of rice paper wrappers, which can be used to wrap the salad.
11. Vietnamese Noodle Salad
Vietnamese noodle salad, or Vietnamese vermicelli salad, consists of rice vermicelli, shredded lettuce, carrot, cucumber, and bean shoots, with some fresh herbs like mint, Thai basil, or coriander. You can also add crunchy pickles and toasted peanuts. This dish is satisfying and filling without being heavy, which is a great choice for hot summer days.
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12. Vietnamese Shrimp Salad
Vietnamese shrimp salad is a refreshing Vietnamese salad dish that is typically served as an appetizer or side dish. The ingredients commonly used include cooked shrimp, thinly sliced red onions, chopped scallions, shredded carrots, sliced cucumber, and chopped lettuce. Fresh herbs such as mint, cilantro, and basil are also added for their fragrant and bright flavors.
The dressing for this dish typically includes a combination of fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, and minced garlic. Some variations may include chili pepper or sliced chili for an extra kick of heat. The dressing is mixed separately and then poured over the salad just before serving to ensure that the salad remains fresh and crisp.
13. Nom/Goi - An easy-to-eat Vietnamese salad
Nom, or goi, is a beloved traditional Vietnamese salad made with a refreshing combination of fresh, grated vegetables. The salad often includes a mix of cabbage, turnip, papaya, green mango, and banana flowers, as well as thinly sliced cucumbers and sometimes boiled pork.
To add more flavor and texture to the salad, it is common to add hot chili peppers, roasted ground nuts, and grated carrots for a colorful finish. The dressing used for this Vietnamese salad is typically a sweet and sour dipping sauce made with fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, garlic, and chili.
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From the refreshing lotus root salad to the flavorful duck salad, Vietnamese salads are a feast for the senses. These 13 delicious and nutritious salads are a testament to Vietnam's rich culinary heritage, combining fresh ingredients, complex flavors, and unique textures. Don’t forget to try these flavorsome dishes when you come to the beautiful Vietnam!
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