By Mary Parsons, MS, RD
Pho is known for its delicious broth, but this is where the healthy diner needs to exercise caution: the exact numbers vary widely depending on the recipe, but a standard bowl can easily supply thousands of milligrams of sodium.
Q: What’s the Best Pho to Order at a Restaurant
A: The number of Pho fans is growing, pho sure! Flavorful spiced broth, rice noodles, thinly sliced meat, and fresh veggies make up pho, the Vietnamese street food that has taken the world by storm. While it’s important to be aware of certain pitfalls, pho is easy to customize to suit both your tastes and your healthy inclinations. If you play your cards right, a hot bowl of pho can be one of the healthier “fast food” choices you can make.
Pho restaurants offer a variety of options for your choice of meat, so this flexibility works in the favor of health-conscious diners.
- Chicken pho generally has the least fat and is a good source of lean protein.
- If you’re just here for the beef, round cuts are the leanest, followed by brisket and flank.
- If you like pho with the more traditional tripe, you’ll be happy to know that it’s quite lean and low in calories.
If you’re not familiar with the cuts of meat on the menu, most restaurants will be able to help you identify the leaner choices.
Pho is known for its delicious broth, but this is where the healthy diner needs to exercise caution: the exact numbers vary widely depending on the recipe, but a standard bowl can easily supply thousands of milligrams of sodium – and that’s before adding any extra condiments like hoisin sauce or Sriracha. If you’re looking to consume less sodium, we recommend eating your fill of meat, noodles and veggies, and going very light on the broth!
Since you took the time to “Ask the RD,” you probably won’t be surprised that our favorite part of pho is the generous plate of fresh vegetables that accompanies your order! Take full advantage and load up on crunchy bean sprouts, spicy jalapenos, and mountains of fresh herbs. They’re low in calories and rich in nutrients, and they fill your bowl with the authentic flavors of Vietnam!
Use HealthyDiningFinder.com to make the best choices for your foodie adventures!