Pho Ga with Kaffir Lime

Pho Ga With Kaffir Lime

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Lori Loucas


A labor of love, truly. In every way. Kaffir lime leaves can be found fresh and frozen at most Asian markets. As can the Pho noodles and the rock sugar.


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45 Min
1 Hr 10 Min
Stove Top


  • 3 lb
    roasting chicken
  • 3 qt
    chicken broth
  • 2 large
    white onions, charred and peeled
  • 2 oz
    fresh ginger, unpeeled and bruised with side of knife
  • 2 clove
  • 2
    star anise
  • 1 Tbsp
    rock sugar or raw sugar
  • 1 Tbsp
    kosher salt
  • 2
    14 oz pkg flat rice stick noodles (banh pho)
  • 5
    fresh kaffir lime leaves (or frozen, thawed)
  • 1/2 large
    red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 c
    green onions, sliced (both white & green parts)
  • 1 c
    cilantro, chopped
  • 4 tsp
    fish sauce

  • ·
    fresh thai basil
  • 2
    limes, quartered
  • 4
    serrano chiles, thinly sliced
  • ·
    chili sauce or oil
  • ·
    hoisin sauce

How to Make Pho Ga with Kaffir Lime


  1. Place the chicken in a large stockpot, along with the onion, ginger, garlic and star anise. Add the broth and about 1 quart of water to cover chicken and put over high heat till it boils. Reduce heat slightly to medium high and cook for 20 minutes, skimming off the excess fat and froth on top, until the broth is clear. Cover and remove from heat. Let sit for 15 minutes.
  2. Remove the chicken from pot. When cool enough to handle, remove all the meat from the bones and return the bones to the broth. Rub the kaffir leaves between your palms to crush and release the oils. Drop them in the broth. Bring back to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes. Stir in the sugar and salt, then cook until sugar dissolves - about 5 more minutes.
  3. Remove the bones, veggies and spices from the broth, then strain through a fine mesh strainer to produce a clear broth. You might have to do this more than once, cleaning the strainer between uses.
  4. Slice the meat. Separate white from dark meat. Set aside.
  5. Soak the rice noodles in warm water to cover, for about 10 minutes or until they are softened. Drain. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the noodles and cook for 20-30 SECONDS until al-dente, stirring constantly. Drain and RINSE them very well with cold water, and again with warm water to remove excess starch. Strain.
  6. Bring the broth back to a boil over high heat. Divide the noodles evenly among 8 serving bowls. Place the chicken on top of the noodles, with whatever chicken each prefers (white, dark, both). Taste the broth and add more fish sauce if necessary (to taste), then ladle the boiling broth into each bowl. Top each with sliced red onions, scallions, cilantro and a pinch of pepper. Serve immediately. Place the platter of fresh herb garnishes on the table for each person to help themselves.

Printable Recipe Card

About Pho Ga with Kaffir Lime

Course/Dish: Chicken Soups
Main Ingredient: Chicken
Regional Style: Vietnamese

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