Super Easy, Slow-Cooker Vegetarian Pho
When I say easy, I mean it.
It was almost too easy.
This vegetarian slow-cooker pho was so quick to throw together, tasted absolutely delicious, and seriously made a TON of pho!
Like, we had pho all week f or lunches.
And I totally wasn’t complaining.
So, if you need a pho fix and want a super easy-to-put-together meal, this is for you.
Now, if you’re wondering, I have never been to Vietnam. I am not Vietnamese, and have never had anyone teach me how to make authentic Vietnamese pho. I just go to pho restaurants. So, I like it, a lot, but I honestly don’t know what’s “authentic” (although I have been to quite a few pho restaurants, so I had to have something fairly authentic at some point, right?).
Now that we’re clear, let’s talk about this vegetarian slow-cooker pho.
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You’ll need a few ingredients for this vegetarian slow-cooker pho that aren’t standard to every kitchen but are actually pretty easy to get your hands on.
- I get a spice packet from a local Asian market that is called Pho Hoa from Gia Vi and it contains cinnamon, star anise, clove, and ginger. You can find it here on Amazon (just for reference so you can see what it looks like), but if you can’t find it locally it might be more worth it to use whole spices. I only pay $2.99 for a box of 4 at my local market.Even though I haven’t personally tried it, I would think 1 cinnamon stick, 2 star anise pods, 6 ginger slices, and 4 whole cloves would do the trick.
(I’ll try this soon and check the flavor!)I’d keep them in big chunks so you can scoop them out before adding the vegetables and noodles.
- You’ll also need Asian rice noodles. Don’t use rice spaghetti noodles. Don’t. It’s so not the same. I almost cry when I see recipes that should have Asian rice noodles that use rice spaghetti noodles.I can’t even.I’ve found these rice noodles at Walmart. Winco, Kroger, and Safeway have also all carried them. I find the best deal at our local Asian store, but they’re pretty accessible these days!
Everything else you should be able to find in any grocery store.
I know pho is supposed to be a long process, but this vegetarian slow-cooker version is just so easy and tasty, I am completely hooked.
Ok, here’s the recipe so YOU can have a pho-filled life, too 😉
- 6 cups vegetable broth (you can also use all water if you want!)
- 6 cups filtered water
- ½ cup tamari or soy sauce
- 1 whole onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp salt (more or less depending on your taste)
- 2 tsp black pepper
- 1 12 oz package extra-firm tofu, drained and cut into ½ inch-1 inch pieces. You can easily replace tofu with chicken, shrimp, or beef if you are wanting to use meat.
- 2-3 whole carrots, sliced diagonally
- 3 cups cabbage, chopped into 2 inch pieces
- 1 package frozen broccoli (or about 4-5 cups)
- 8 oz rice noodles (like this)
- Optional Add-ins: Mung bean sprouts, fresh basil, Sriracha, mint, peanuts, lime slices
- Pour broth and water into slow-cooker, and add onion, garlic, and spice packet in.
- Set slow-cooker to high for 4 hours (you can do it at whatever setting you need! Low totally works if you need it cooking all day)
- One hour before eating time, add in salt (if needed), pepper, carrots, cabbage, and broccoli, and set slow-cooker to high.
- Add rice noodles to pho and let soak on high for 10-15 minutes.
- While noodles are softening, brown tofu in a skillet with oil so it’s a bit crispy on the outside (if using meat, lightly season with salt and pepper and cook in a skillet until cooked through).
- Add tofu or meat to bowls and pour broth over.
- Use tongs to grab the noodles and vegetables to add to bowls.
- Top with desired toppings (I really can’t imagine pho without bean sprouts, basil, and sriracha).