I’m sure my family isn’t alone in verbally expressing our passion about certain foods, sometimes to the point of trying to winningly convince each other that our favorite, really is THE best food EVER!
The debate usually starts over dinner with someone asking … “If you were stranded on a deserted island and could only have X number of foods, what would they be” …
Each of us takes a turn, not only expressing what foods we’d choose, but why. Of course, I always try to make a convincing argument about the nutritional value of my chosen foods. While some people (I’m not naming any names), lean toward foods they think taste awesome, but in my opinion would most likely mean they’d be facing scurvy, or some other scary sounding ailment that comes from a lack of nutrition. (ha!)
All this to say, “Pho Ga” is a definite must-have on my favorites list! Once you’ve tasted it, it’s hard not to crave this flavorful bowl of broth packed with delicious and nutritious accompaniments.
What exactly is pho ga, you may be asking?
The simplest answer is … it’s Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup. Traditional pho ga consists of rice noodles, chicken and a flavorful slow-cooked broth, topped with fresh herbs, bean sprouts, jalapeño slices, thinly sliced onion and a squeeze of lime.
Although my Whole30-friendly version of pho isn’t strictly authentic, I do use pre-made homemade chicken broth and leftover shredded roast chicken, which greatly reduces the cooking time while still giving this soup a rich depth of flavor.
Another time-saver is to double the pho broth portion of this recipe, and then freeze the extra broth in individual portions. This makes it super easy to toss the frozen pho broth into a saucepan and let it heat up while you pull together the additions. Talk about a quick-n-healthy meal!
Since rice noodles are off the table when I’m Whole30-ing … it’s zoodles to the rescue! Since zucchini noodles keep well, it’s easy to save time by spiralizing the zucchini a few days in advance. (Simply store zoodles in the fridge in an airtight container with a paper towel to absorb any excess moisture.)
When using zoodles, there’s no need to steam them in advance since the hot broth will cook the zoodles to a nice al dente consistency in a matter of a couple minutes. This means you can simply add the raw zoodles your bowl and pull together the rest of the accompaniments while your pho broth is cooking. Then when the broth is done, you’re ready to put it all together!
How to enjoy pho!
When it comes to pho, it’s all about the accompaniments, so don’t skimp on loading-up your bowl! In addition to the traditional favorites, I like to add a bit of raw shredded carrot and sliced green onion.
Chicken Zoodle Pho is such a symphony of flavors – the rich broth paired with fresh herbs and a squeeze of fresh lime, along with the slight heat of jalapeño slices and the crunch of bean sprouts, zoodles and shredded carrot – it really is amazing! I can’t express the joy and heartwarming satisfaction that comes from a savory bowl of pho! Enjoy!