Best Lemongrass Pork Vietnamese Noodle Salad. Some days you just need a pick-me-up and one of my favorite dishes for those days is Vietnamese Pork Noodle Salad. This recipe makes one of the biggest and most comforting bowls of food you can imagine!
I don’t call this Vietnamese Pork Noodle Salad “best” for nothing! This recipe really has it all. From notes of crunch and sweetness to bites of savory and chewy pork. This is a layered and complex dish that will win your taste buds with every bite!
What is Vietnamese Pork Noodle Salad
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This is a traditional Vietnamese dish made up of many different elements that work together to make a harmonious dish. Generally, this salad includes fresh greens, rice noodles, and pork. My elevated version of the dish turns up the volume on the classic by using simple techniques like marinating the pork, to produce a sensational salad!
Why You Will Love the Best Lemongrass Pork Vietnamese Noodle Salad
- Marinade Magic-Complex and delicious Vietnamese Pork Noodle salad use an easy-to-make marinade to bring out the most flavor possible. It takes a few ingredients but the steps are so simple you will be amazed at how flavorful the pork comes out!
- Pickled Paradise-The quick pickled veggies in this recipe are an awesome technique to keep in your back pocket. It allows you to get a tangy pickled flavor without the wait time. The pickled veggies in this salad bring notes of sweetness and sourness that cannot be beaten!
Ingredients for Best Lemongrass Pork Vietnamese Noodle Salad
Making this flavorful salad takes a lot of ingredients so keeping organized is key. Here are the different ingredients for this recipe and what they are used for.
- Soy sauce-Soy sauce makes the salty base for this marinade. You can always substitute for the low-sodium option.
- Fish sauce- fish sauce brings an amazing umami flavor along with salty oceanic notes.
- Honey-To balance the salty soy and fish sauces in this marinade.
- Dark Brown Sugar-Brown sugar adds wonderful sweetness along with the syrupy flavor of molasses. Dark brown is better for this because it has a stronger molasses flavor, but light will work in a pinch.
- Shallots-This aromatic botanical is excellent for adding notes of onion and garlic to dishes.
- Lemongrass- This ingredient has a wonderful citrusy flavor with bright notes of ginger. The stalks should be broken to extract the most flavor from this plant.
- Garlic-Garlic is the trick to making savory dishes simply irresistible. Fresh cloves are excellent but refrigerated and frozen varieties also work well.
- Green Onion-Sometimes called scallions, green onions have a great spicy and sweet onion flavor for adding to this marinade.
- Cilantro-Cilantro adds a wonderful level of herbaceousness and freshness to the marinade.
- Ground Black Pepper –For reasoning.
- Pork Shoulder-Pork is the star of this dish. Choose a pork shoulder with bright pink color and not too much fat. It will be sliced down into strips before cooking.
Pickled Carrots and Cucumbers:
- Carrots-Carrots pickle well because they are so sweet. The result is a tart and tangy balanced treat.
- Cucumber-Fresh cucumber soaks up pickling liquid so well and adds a great crunch to this salad.
- Rice Wine Vinegar-Rice wine vinegar has an excellent flavor for this dish, but apple cider vinegar would be an excellent substitute if you cannot find rice wine vinegar.
- Granulated Sugar-Pickling liquid needs a little sugar to create balance.
Seasoned Fish Sauce
- Fish Sauce-This wonderfully briny liquid adds so much to this Pork Noodle Salad. It has notes of seaweed and brine that work so well with fresh veggies. There are many brands of this condiment available so choose your favorite.
- Water-For dilution.
- Granulated Sugar-Adds a balancing sweetness to the fish sauce.
- Distilled White Vinegar-This sauce needs an acid. You can choose your favorite, but white vinegar and lemon are commonly on-hand options for an acidic addition.
- Garlic-Brings a sweet aroma to the fish sauce.
- Thai Chiles-Thai chilies are so full of spice and heat they bring excellent warmth to this salad.
Green Onion Oil
- Canola Oil-Used as the base on the scallion oil. In a pinch, any other neutral oil, like vegetables, would work.
- Green Onions-Cooking the scallions in hot oil allows their flavor to bloom and develop into something exceptional.
- Rice Noodles-Traditional Vietnamese rice noodles are best for this dish. They should be prepared and chilled in advance of using them in this recipe.
- Lettuce-Lettuce adds some bright green flavor to this dish. Be sure to choose a fresh and crispy type of lettuce like romaine or basic iceberg.
- Bean Sprouts-Bean sprouts have an excellent chew and neutral flavor to add to this salad. Since this is a fresh salad, I like to use fresh bean sprouts over canned ones. Canned will work, though.
- Cilantro-Fresh cilantro has such a bright and herbal aroma it is irresistible in fresh salads.
- Roasted Peanuts-Peanuts give this dish a gourmet finish with notes of salt and smoke that round out the complex and interesting flavors in this epic salad.
To prepare the pork marinade:
- In a large bowl or large Ziploc bag, combine soy sauce, fish sauce, honey, and brown sugar. Mix in shallots, lemongrass, garlic, green onions, cilantro, and black pepper. Add the pork, tossing to coat thoroughly.
- Refrigerate for 30-45 minutes. I highly recommend that you marinate the pork overnight in the fridge.
To prepare the carrots and cucumber:
- Toss the julienned carrots and cucumber in a medium bowl. Add enough rice wine vinegar to cover. Sprinkle it with sugar. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
To prepare the nước chấm:
- In a medium bowl, whisk together fish sauce, water, sugar, and vinegar until the sugar dissolves. Whisk in garlic and chiles. Cover and refrigerate until ready to assemble.
To make the scallion oil:
- In a small skillet, drizzle canola oil over low heat. Once heated, add the chopped scallions and cook just until the green parts begin to wilt, but are still bright, 2-3 minutes.
- Place a grill, grill pan, or large skillet over medium-high heat. Lightly grease with oil. Remove the pork from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for 5-10 minutes.
- Once the grill/skillet is heated, grill the meat in a single layer in batches until browned, 1-2 minutes. Flip to brown the other side, another 1-2 minutes. Repeat with remaining pork.
- Divide cooked rice noodles among serving bowls. Top with lettuce, cilantro, and bean sprouts, then carrots/cucumber and grilled pork.
- Brush the pork with green onion oil.
- Sprinkle it with peanuts and serve immediately with nuoc cham.
Expert Tips and Tricks
- This recipe involves a lot of moving parts. To make things easier on yourself, set up all your ingredients before you get started.
- The long ingredient list is actually deceptively complicated. If you are organized, the steps in the recipe are super easy, so just do your best to stay calm in the kitchen and you will have a wonderful salad!
- While the pork is marinating you can tackle all the other elements like the pickles and fish sauce. This makes the most of your time.
When to Enjoy Vietnamese Pork Noodle Salad?
This dish is a wonderful all-in-one stop for your dinner or lunch. It has everything you need so I love to make this on a Sunday so that I can have leftovers for the week!
Can I Store Leftover Vietnamese Pork Noodle Salad?
Absolutely! Leftovers of this salad make great weekday lunches, so be sure to save any extra. Place the salad in an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator for up to three days.
More Recipes You’ll Love
I absolutely love cooking Vietnamese-inspired meals. If you enjoyed this salad try some other tasty Vietnamese recipes:
- Vietnamese Beef Meatball Soup
- Vietnamese Style Spring Rolls and Peanut Dipping Sauce
- Banh Bao
- Salmon Belly Rice Bowl
This recipe was adapted with changes from Tara’s Multicultural Table
Best Lemongrass Pork Vietnamese Noodle Salad
- 1 Skillet
- 1 instant pot duo crisp plus air fryer 8 quart
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 tbsp dark brown sugar
- 1/4 cup red onion chopped
- 1 stalk lemongrass finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 stalks green onions chopped
- 1 lb pork shoulder thinly sliced to one-fourth of an inch
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 4 stems green onion chopped
Pickled Cucumber and Carrots
- 2 carrots shredded
- 1 cucumber shredded, seeds not included
Vietnamese Fish Sauce
- 1/2 cup fish sauce
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup white vinegar
- 2 tbsp garlic minced
- 1-2 pieces Thai Chiles finely chopped
Assemble Noodle Bowl
- 12 oz Rice Stick Noodles
- 1 bunch Cilantro chopped
- Ground Turkey Lumpiang Shanghai please see notes for the recipe
- 1 stalk Lemon grass Pork finely chopped
- Green Onion Oil
- Carrot and Cucumber Pickles
- Lettuce chopped
- Slice the pork into one-fourth-inch pieces and place in a medium-sized bowl. Add in the marinade ingredients and mix to coat the pork meat, Cover and marinate overnight.
How to Cook in the Instant Pot
- Place the air fryer tray in the Instant Pot base. Spray with nonstick oil. Place the marinated lemongrass pork and spray with nonstick oil. Cover using the Instant Pot lid. Set the temperature to 390 F and set the time to 8 minutes. Turn the meat as required.
How to Cook stove top
- When ready, heat a small amount of cooking oil and fry the pork until cooked through. Drain excess oil in the paper towel and set aside.
Cook the Green onion oil
- In a skillet, heat the cooking oil and add the chopped green onions. Fry the green onions until wilted. Let cool and transfer in a container.
Cucumber and Carrot Pickles
- Shred the carrots and cucumber. Place them in a medium-sized container and add salt. Let it sit for thirty minutes and squeeze out excess fluid. Transfer to a heat-proof container or plastic. Please see the notes for Daikon and Carrot Pickles Recipe.
- Mix water, vinegar, and sugar in a medium-sized saucepan. Boil and pour the mixture into the carrots and cucumber. Let cook and store in the fridge.
Assemble the Noodle Salad Bowl
- Place the chopped lettuce at the bottom of the bowl. Top it with the noodles, pork, pickles, and green onion oil. Pour the Vietnamese salad dressing. Embellish with cilantro, green onions, and peanuts.
Hi, my name is Shobee. Welcome to The Skinny Pot, where we cook Easy Recipes from the available ingredients from our pantry and fridge! We’re your go-to source for simple and delicious recipes that make the most of what you already have at home. Talk about the pantry challenge. Read more...