Vietnam TravelThe Differences Between Northern and Southern Vietnamese Cuisine

Kaylin12 months ago30
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There are many differences between Northern and Southern Vietnamese cuisine, the most notable being the use of fresh herbs and vegetables in Northern Vietnamese cuisine versus soy sauce and fish sauce in Southern Vietnamese cuisine. Another difference is that Northern Vietnamese cuisine is typically less spicy than Southern Vietnamese cuisine. However, despite these differences, there are also many similarities between the two cuisines, such as the use of rice as a staple food.

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Northern Vietnamese cuisine is characterized by its use of fresh herbs and vegetables. This is due to the climate in Northern Vietnam, which is cooler than Southern Vietnam and thus conducive to growing these types of ingredients. Northern Vietnamese cuisine also typically uses less soy sauce and fish sauce than Southern Vietnamese cuisine. This is because the cooler climate in Northern Vietnam means that these ingredients are not as readily available. As a result, Northern Vietnamese cuisine often has a lighter flavor than Southern Vietnamese cuisine.

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Southern Vietnamese cuisine, on the other hand, is characterized by its use of soy sauce and fish sauce. This is because the warmer climate in Southern Vietnam is ideal for producing these ingredients. Southern Vietnamese cuisine also typically uses more spices than Northern Vietnamese cuisine. This is because the spicier flavors are more suited to the warmer climate. However, despite these differences, Southern Vietnamese cuisine still relies heavily on rice as a staple food.

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Some dishes that represent Northern Vietnamese cuisine include Pho (a noodle soup with beef or chicken), Bun Cha (grilled pork with rice noodles), and Goi Cuon (spring rolls). Southern Vietnamese cuisine, on the other hand, is represented by dishes such as Banh Mi (a sandwich filled with meats and pickled vegetables), Cao Lau (a noodle dish with pork and vegetables), and Cha Ca La Vong (fried fish with turmeric and dill). Despite these differences, the two cuisines share many similarities, such as the use of rice as a staple food.

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There are many differences between Northern and Southern Vietnamese cuisine, but the best way to experience them is to try them for yourself! The dishes we’ve listed represent just a small sampling of what each type of cuisine has to offer. So why not head over to your favorite Vietnamese restaurant and give them a try? You won’t be disappointed!

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Larsay
Member

Very little difference except that sea-food products are ore numerous and cheaper in the South than in the North

Starlight32
Member

No worries, Southern Vietnam is indeed recognized for its plentiful seafood and more budget-friendly prices compared to the North. It’s a seafood enthusiast’s dream down there! As Anthony Bourdain once stated, The South has an abundance of seafood that influences their cuisine. So if you appreciate seafood, be sure to treat yourself to Southern Vietnamese cuisine. Enjoy!

Starlight32
Member

I’ve always been a fan of Vietnamese cuisine, and it’s interesting to learn about the differences between the Northern and Southern regions. It’s amazing how the use of different ingredients and cooking techniques can create such distinct flavors and dishes. I can’t wait to try bun cha and hu tieu on my next trip to Vietnam!

BenjaminNgo
Guest
BenjaminNgo

I never realized that there were such significant differences between Northern and Southern Vietnamese cuisine! It’s fascinating to learn about the contrasting flavors and ingredients used in each region. For anyone traveling to Vietnam, I would highly recommend trying dishes from both the North and South to fully appreciate the diversity of Vietnamese cuisine.

Larsay
Member

The differences are so little, except that you will get more sea food products, less pork meat and more fresh vegetables and mainly fruits  in the south, and the contrary in the north. 

Dreamy_Adventurer7
Guest
Dreamy_Adventurer7

I love learning about different cultures and their cuisines! It’s so fascinating to see how the land and climate can affect the flavors of the food. I can’t wait to try both Northern and Southern Vietnamese dishes and see the differences for myself.

AskMeAnything88
Member

I love trying different kinds of food from all over the world. I’m definitely going to have to try both Northern and Southern Vietnamese cuisine when I visit Vietnam. I’m sure they’ll both be delicious!

HippoLover902
Guest
HippoLover902

It’s amazing to see how different flavors and ingredients are used in Northern and Southern Vietnamese cuisine. Even though both styles are unique and delicious, it’s fascinating to learn about the subtle differences between them.

HuyenLe2007
Member

The differences between Northern and Southern Vietnamese cuisine are fascinating! I love learning about how different regions of the world have such different takes on similar dishes.

ConicalHatCrew
Member

@HuyenLe2007 It’s interesting to see how the climate and geography of a region can greatly influence its cuisine. Northern Vietnamese cuisine’s focus on savory and hearty flavors contrasts well with the sweet and spicy flavors of Southern Vietnamese cuisine.

TealTulip92
Guest
TealTulip92

@HuyenLe2007 As a food enthusiast, I find it intriguing how the Northern Vietnamese cuisine is heavily influenced by Chinese cuisine, while the Southern Vietnamese cuisine is more influenced by Cambodian and Thai cuisine.

Larsay
Member

Greasy if you order fried food in  a bad restaurant, such as fried eggs or omelet, which the Viêt do not know how to cook. 

BuonMaThuotBadass
Member

I’m not a big fan of Vietnamese food. I tried it once and it was too greasy for me.

HoaMai18
Member

@BuonMaThuotBadass I’m sorry to hear that your first experience with Vietnamese food wasn’t great. Maybe you could try some dishes that are less oily next time, as Northern and Southern Vietnamese cuisine have a wide variety of options to choose from.

Umph
Guest
Umph

There are many different types of Vietnamese cuisine, but the two most common are northern and southern. The northern Vietnamese cuisine is more seafood-based, while the southern Vietnamese cuisine is more meat-based. There are also many variations, such as the ubiquitous pho, which can be made with beef, chicken, pork, or shrimp.

LeShin
Guest
LeShin

I love northern Vietnamese cuisine! It has a really hearty flavor and is reallycomplex.

bookworm99
Member

I’m from the north and I love the flavor and texture of southern Vietnamese cuisine! It’s a great way to experience different flavors and textures.

FiredFox20
Guest
FiredFox20

@bookworm99

I’m from the north and I love southern Vietnamese cuisine! It’s a great way to experience different flavors and textures.

amandagibbs
Guest
amandagibbs

There are many different types of Vietnamese cuisine, but the two most common are northern and southern. Northern Vietnamese cuisine is more hearty and savory, while southern Vietnamese cuisine is more sweet and delicate.

BanhMiFan
Guest
BanhMiFan

Vietnamese cuisine offers a diverse range of flavors and styles, with northern and southern cuisine being the most prominent. When it comes to northern Vietnamese cuisine, you can expect a heartier and more savory experience. On the other hand, southern Vietnamese cuisine tends to be sweeter and more delicate in its flavors. These regional differences are influenced by various factors such as climate, available ingredients, and cultural influences. It’s fascinating how Vietnamese cuisine can vary so much within the same country!

1988TQ
Member

Comforting, flavorful. Southern Vietnamese cuisine: delightful, refined. Embrace the distinct flavors and relish in the joy of discovering both!

lemondrops777
Guest
lemondrops777

Funny how people can get so passionate about food! Reading some of the comments on this article about which region has the “better” cuisine almost feels like a competition. Personally, I think both the north and south have their unique and delicious dishes.

Jack
Guest
Jack

I never realized there were such distinct differences between Northern and Southern Vietnamese cuisine.

Larsay
Member

Very few differences, except that sea-food products are more frequent and cheaper in the South (for example, shrimps are very expensive in the north).It is true that they cook more spicy in the south, but, basically, Vietnamese food is not spicy.

NomNomNom
Member

I think both are very similar in most cases. It is only certain dishes you will taste a difference. I think for the most part both areas use the same ingredients, vegetables, meats, and so on. 

kikosan
Guest
kikosan

Correct me if I’m wrong but I’ve heard that the difference between the north and south is that Northern food tends to be less spicy, while Southern food is spicier.

1988TQ
Member

@kikosan This is only true for certain dishes. You can find spicy food up north and not-so-spicy food down south just the same. 

SoVintage
Member

I always considered northern dishes to be more vegetable forward and southern ones to be more protein forward. That seems to be the case from the places I have been and eaten at but it likely comes down to traditions. 

Caphezilla
Member

I agree with you, but I think it’s important to note that this is a generalization. There are a lot of exceptions, and there are also many differences within each region. For example, in southern Vietnam, there are tons of different types of noodles that people eat on a regular basis. I’m not sure if the same is true for northern Vietnam

ElizabethGardner
Guest
ElizabethGardner

I’m so glad someone wrote about this! I’ve always been curious about the difference between northern and southern Vietnamese cuisine. The two regions share a lot in common: rice, noodles, fish sauce. But there are some differences that are just so interesting.