At its most basic, pho is a meat-and-noodle soup, but if you’ve ever tasted this Vietnamese specialty, you know it’s so much more. The heart and soul of the dish is the rich and restorative pho broth—a long-simmered stock that absolutely must start with bone-in meats. Our recipe shows you how to make pho stock with bone-in chicken thighs plus a bonus of two kinds of mushrooms for extra-savory, rich flavor. Once the stock is finished and perfectly flavored with pho spices, you’re just baby steps away from bringing it to the table.
PS: Whenever we hear the words “long-simmering,” our slow cooker comes to mind! This recipe shows you how to make pho using this appliance. That way, you get out of spending all day watching the pot.
The first step in learning how to make pho is figuring out where you can buy the ingredients, including the vegetables, fresh herbs, rice noodles, pho sauces, and pho spices. Fortunately, the ingredients for this recipe can generally be found in most supermarkets; look for the specialty ingredients, such as fish sauce and pho sauces, in the Asian-foods aisle.
Here’s what you’ll need for six servings of our Chicken and Mushroom Pho:
* NOTE: Chile peppers contain oils that can irritate your skin and eyes. Wear plastic or rubber gloves when working with them.
Pho sauces, commonly served alongside the steaming noodle soup, include the following:
A few of the ingredients and flavorings for your pho broth require a little extra know-how:
Here’s how to make pho broth the hassle-free way:
TIP: Don’t be tempted to skip the cheesecloth, which helps trap even the smallest solids. A great pho broth is not only rich and flavorful, but it should be clear, too.
While the noodles are boiling in the pho broth, remove chicken from bones; discard bones. Coarsely shred chicken using two forks.