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HANOI FOOD WITH ONE DOLLAR (OR EVEN BELOW)

With many praises and recognitions from many well-known media channels all around the world, Hanoi is truly the food capital of Vietnam. One-point surprising many tourists when visiting Hanoi is that there are many delicious local dishes in Hanoi costing (under) one US dollar. How amazing the fact is! In fact, you can be still on a budget but can taste the dishes from one of the best cuisines in the world. In this article, let us guide you through the list of Hanoi food with one dollar (and a bonus with the list of recommended restaurants that are local favourites or only locals know).

BANH MI – HANOI FOOD WITH ONE DOLLAR

Talking about Hanoi Food with one dollar only, we cannot miss Banh Mi. Banh Mi is a famous Vietnamese sandwich that was inspired by the French baguette and transformed into a more localized flavour in the early 1900s. Different from the European bread or baguette, the crumb of Vietnamese baguette is airier and the outside is crunchier. Hence, with only 25,000 VND (approximately one US dollar), you can have the Vietnamese Banh Mi with the full topping of char siu pork, fried egg, pate, pickles, coriander, and cucumber. You can have more flavorful Banh Mi by putting different sauces into yours but the most popular and recommended one is chilly sauce (if you can handle the spicy of course).

Banh Mi – one of the national dishes in Vietnam (Source: VnExpress)
A vendor selling Banh Mi in Hanoi (Source: VnExpress)

Diverse choices

Apart from the traditional format, there are tremendous alternative versions of Banh Mi that you can try. For example, Banh Mi Sot Vang (Banh Mi with ragu) is a dish with the inspiration by French beef ragu, but Vietnamese people modified the recipe with the use of different Vietnamese herbs. Hence, the taste changed into a more oriental and stronger flavour than the original version. Another example is the Banh Mi Chao (baguette pan) which is the Vietnamese baguette served in a hot pan filled with pork, egg, sausage, potato and vegetables. Depending on the type of restaurant, the range varies from one to two US dollars only per serving. If you choose to eat in a local restaurant close to a residential neighbourhood, it only costs you around one US dollar only. This is a good deal for both price and taste for a breakfast and pre-dinner meal.

Banh Mi with ragu beef (Source: Foody)

Recommended Addresses

Banh Mi is a common food in Hanoi that you can find anywhere at any time. Typically, Banh Mi is served for breakfast, but also for a quick afternoon snack. Also, there is no standard type of restaurant to sell Banh Mi. The format can be a street vendor, small restaurant, or event with a small stand on the corner of an alley. Below are the suggested locations where you can find some of the best in town.

  • Banh Mi Hang Ca, 25 Hang Ca Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi
  • Banh Mi Dinh Ngang, 1 Dinh Ngang Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi
  • Banh Mi Chao Thai Thinh, 35 Thai Thinh Street, Dong Da District, Hanoi
  • Banh Mi Pho Co, 38 Dinh Liet Street, Dong Da District, Hanoi

BUN OC – HANOI FOOD WITH ONE DOLLAR

When translating the main ingredient of this dish into English, the name might make some of the tourists feel hesitant at first. But if you take look closer, smell the sweet and sour scent of the broth, and taste the fresh ingredient, you can understand why Antony Bourdain loved this rustic dish of Hanoi with a passion.

Antony Bourdain enjoyed his bowl of Bun Oc on the street in Hanoi (Source: CNN)

Bun Oc (Sour noodles with snails) is a simple dish with three highlighted ingredients: sour noodles (bun), snails, and tomato. The most popular version of Bun Oc is the hot broth version. The alternative versions are Bun Oc Nguoi (the noodles served with snails and cool broth), Bun Oc Bo Gio (additional topping with beef and Vietnamese ham), and Bun Oc Chuoi Dau (more toppings with green banana, fried tofu, and pork ribs and this version can serve with rice as an alternative carb for sour noodles).

A delicious bowl of Bun Oc (Source: Foody)

Recommended Addresses

From a simple dish, the creative cooking method and the use of ingredients, Bun Oc can satisfy many guts regardless of the season. Below, you can find the best restaurants to try out in Bun Oc according to the local opinion with only approximately one US dollar.

  • Bun Oc Co Hue, 43 Nguyen Sieu Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi
  • Bun Oc Ganh Co Hue, Alley 17 Nha Chung Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi
  • Bun Oc Ganh, 38 Luong Ngoc Quyen Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi

BANH RAN – HANOI FOOD UNDER ONE DOLLAR

Continue in the list of Hanoi food with one dollar is Banh Ran. Banh Ran, as known as Banh Cam (the name in the Southern part of Vietnam for Banh Ran), is one of the most favourite Vietnamese doughnuts. Also, it received many positive reviews and appreciation from many popular food reviewers, travel bloggers, travel magazines and newspapers all over the world.

Banh Ran (Banh Cam) with sesame (Source: Foody)

Even though it has the name “Banh Cam” (in Vietnamese, “Cam” means orange), there is no orange in the list of ingredients. However, the name is from the appearance of the doughnut as an orange. Banh Ran has a gorgeous orange wrapper made from rice flour, glazed with sugar or sesame, and mung bean fillings. There are two additional versions of Banh Ran: one sweet and one savoury. Another sweet version – Banh Ran Mat – has the brown glazing from the caramelized brown sugar. Another option, for the ones who do not have a big sweet tooth, is the savoury version of Banh Ran. The difference in this version is the filling including meat, vermicelli, onions, and different types of mushrooms. You can enjoy the savoury Banh Ran with two options: eating directly or dipping it in sweet and sour fish sauce.

The diversity of Vietnamese sweet doughnut – Banh Ran (Source: Kenh14)

Recommended Addresses

Banh Ran is a very popular snack in Hanoi, and you can literally find this simple and dedicated treat on every corner of the streets in Hanoi. With one dollar, actually you can have five to seven doughnuts depending on the vendors. However, AVT definitely lets you know some good addresses that the locals in Hanoi normally get into for the real good Banh Ran.

  • Banh Ran Gia Truyen, 52 Hang Chieu Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi
  • Banh Ran Hai Xe Pho Co, 5 Luong Ngoc Quyen Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi
  • Quan Goc Da, 52 Ly Quoc Su Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi
  • Banh Ran O Quan Chuong, 1 Hang Chieu Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi

A small wrap-up

In brief, those are some of the kinds of food that you can have with just one dollar or below for excellent quality and delicious treats. Street food culture is essential in Hanoi culture specifically and Vietnamese culture in general. What I can is that Hanoi’s real gourmets are the things you see on the street. Surprisingly, they are so affordable but tremendously delicious and know well how to keep you hungry for them continuously.

Good news for you. If you would like to eat these types of food at the good local restaurants, plus with the interpretations about the dishes and transportation service to move you around the city through the gastronomic tour, here AVT goes. A unique and fantastic food tour exclusively for Hanoi is available with the assistance of the best Hanoi foodies who will bring the most exciting food experience of your life through the local lens.

So what are you waiting for? Check out the tour with this link and book it today. Or, if you have some personalized requests, no worries, let AVT know via the Build Your Own Trip session.

We will come back with the next recommendations on the list of Hanoi cuisine as well as from other destinations in Vietnam so stay tuned for the next blog on this series. I am Younary, a passionate traveller and enthusiastic foodie. See you in the next blog.

For more information, please send your travel request to [email protected] or [email protected].

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