Herbs and Spices In Vietnamese Cooking


Fresh and dried aromatics, spices and herbs are vital components when cooking authentic Vietnamese food. They are what give the nations cuisine it’s iconic flavour and freshness. Vietnamese dishes use common ingredients such as salt, sugar, pepper, onion and garlic, but use herbs more liberally than any other cuisine. Herbs are used not only as garnishes in Vietnamese cooking, but as the vegetables themselves as bases for soups, stir fries, salads and stews. Here is a list of common aromatics, herbs and spices you might find in Vietnamese recipes.

Herbs and Spices In Vietnamese Cooking

Fresh Aromatics

  • Galangal 
  • Coriander root
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Green Peppercorns
  • Lemongrass
  • Young Ginger
  • Shallots
  • Spring Onions
  • Chilli
  • Turmeric
  • Kaffir Lime Leaves
  • Lalot (Betel leaf)
  • Lemon Leaf

Fresh Herbs

  • Bitter Herbs
  • Chinese Chives (Garlic Chives)
  • Coriander 
  • Sawtooth Coriander
  • Dill
  • Fish mint
  • Holy Basil
  • Lemon Basil
  • Thai Basil
  • Mint
  • Vietnamese Mint (Hot Mint)
  • Peppermint - Hung Cay
  • Rice Paddy Herb- Ngo Om
  • Sorrel
  • Spearmint - Hung Lui
  • Perilla Leaf - Tia To
  • Vietnamese Balm - Kinh Gioi

Dried Spices

  • Black Cardamom
  • Black Peppercorns
  • White Peppercorns
  • Cinnamon
  • Coriander Seeds
  • Casia Bark
  • Fennel Seeds
  • Cloves
  • Cumin
  • Dried Chillies
  • Star Anise
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