Renae Diggles

May 26, 2021

Healthy Vietnamese Chicken Pho Recipe

Renae Diggles

May 26, 2021

Vietnamese Pho is a flavoursome and healthy chicken noodle soup. The difference to an American chicken noodle soup is the amazing herbs and spices that make this dish a flavour bomb!  This chicken Pho recipe is not only healthy, but super tasty and healthy too.

In this recipe, we’ve opted for chicken breast instead of thigh to keep the calories and fat content down. And we’ve also gone light on the peanut oil to avoid excess calories from fats. While thigh is a juicier meat, if you don’t overcook the breast, it’s equally as enjoyable and better for your health.

Vietnamese chicken pho soup

Vietnamese Chicken Pho Recipe

A healthy Vietnamese chicken pho soup recipe with rice noodles. This dish is packed with flavour and goodness, and is lower in calories than traditional pho soup recipes.
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine Pan Asian
Keyword chicken noodle soup, chicken pho recipe, healthy pho, healthy recipes, low calorie recipes, pho, pho soup, vietnamese pho soup, vietnamese soup
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 482kcal


Fried Ingredients

  • 2 Chicken breasts cut into strips
  • 3 cm Ginger piece grated
  • 1 clove Garlic crushed
  • 1 Yellow onion diced
  • 1 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil

Pasta, Rice & Grains

  • 200 g Rice noodles


  • 2 L Chicken stock (low salt)
  • 1 tsp Soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp Fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp Xylitol (or sugar free sweetener)


  • 4 Star anise pods
  • ½ tsp Cinnamon stick
  • ½ tsp Cloves
  • 2 tsp Fennel seeds
  • 2 tsp Coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp Chili flakes


  • 1 cup Bean sprouts
  • 2 Red chilies thinly sliced
  • 2 Spring onions diced
  • 1 bunch Coriander leaves
  • 1 bunch Mint leaves
  • 1 bunch thai basil leaves
  • 2 limes wedges


  • 1 tbsp Sriracha hot sauce to taste


  • Cut raw chicken breast into strips. Cut yellow onion into slices. Crush the garlic and ginger (if using fresh ginger). In olive oil on a med/high heat, fry ingredients until cooked through. Don't over cook and remove from heat once cooked.
  • In the same large pot/pan, add the chicken stock, fish sauce, soy sauce, spices & sugar. Simmer very gently with the pot lid on. Simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, prepare the rice noodles as per instructions.
  • Add the chicken mixture into the broth 2 minutes before serving. Add noodles to each bowl. Pour broth & chicken pieces over the noodles and top with garnishes as desired.


Calories: 482kcal | Carbohydrates: 61g | Protein: 39g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 1266mg | Potassium: 1185mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 774IU | Vitamin C: 55mg | Calcium: 107mg | Iron: 4mg

Tips and Swaps

We’ve chosen salt-reduced chicken stock and haven’t added any salt to the soup. There’s no need to add salt because the flavour is amazing without salt. It’s not great for you either.

While it’s great to use fresh ingredients if you want to use garlic powder and ginger powder, swap the ginger for 1 t-spoon of powder, and the garlic for ½ t-spoon of powder.

If you want to reduce the calories more, there are a lot of noodles in the soup. You can always halve the noodles and drop 90 calories from the total.

For those who don’t love chicken, you could substitute the chicken for beef, pork, or tofu. This chicken pho recipe is also really enjoyable as a vegetarian dish. You can replace the chicken with tofu, add some mushrooms or simply leave out the chicken.

We use pad thai noodles, but vermicelli rice noodles are well suited to a Vietnamese Pho as well. It doesn’t overly matter which noodles you choose. You’ll love it no matter what!

Check out some other great, healthy, low-calorie recipes here.

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