How to Eat like a Local in Hue

Two things visitors remember most about Hue are the culinary and its zen, peaceful atmosphere. With that in mind, let’s go on an exciting food tour in Hue!

How to Eat like a Local in Hue
A local food vendor on cyclo. Photo by Hue of Hue

Influenced by the historical and cultural forces, Hue cuisine used to be divided between cuisine for the royals and citizens. Nowadays, the delicacy in both culinary “classes” is maintained and widely available for all people.

Other factors that make Hue food popular are the vibrant flavors, which can be traced back to the city’s unique geography and climate influences.

As Hue has many lakes, lagoons, rivers, and a long beach line, the sauces are formulated from an abundance of ingredients made from aquatic life, including mam tom (shrimp paste), nuoc mam (fish sauce). Hue's cold and stormy winter welcomes a diet rich in spicy foods. You may have to tell the food makers ahead if you cannot eat spicy food.

Buddhism is also a big influence on the cuisine culture. Hue's vegan or vegetarian cuisine has been widely known since the age of Buddhism under the reign of the last Vietnamese dynasty in Hue.

Here is how to enjoy your Hue food tour like a local.


Go to cafes at 5 a.m.

The local cafe opens at 4 a.m. Photo by Tom Hoang

Locations: Vendor cafes on Huynh Thuc Khang Street, Pham Hong Thai Street, in Vy Da village (Nguyen Sinh Cung Street), Chi Lang Street

Price: 5,000 VND to 20,000 VND

You must wonder whether the time is mistakenly typed or not. But if you want to experience daily habits like a local, then you’ve got to wake up before 5 a.m. It's the time local people take their morning walk and meet up at local cafes.

While the flavor of a cup of coffee in Hue is comparable to other places in Vietnam, the vibe of the cafes is way different. Nowhere else will you find the uniquely warm and sweet accent of Hue locals. There’s truly something in the tenderness of the way men treat one another and have conversations with others.

The morning vibe is full of life, though it’s shown in a slow and relaxed way. All you need to do is to sit, enjoy the hot cup of Vietnamese coffee, watch the streets, and listen to the sound of Hue.


Have your breakfast at 6 a.m. with street food vendors

Bun Bo Hue of a street vendor. Photo By Hue of Hue

Sometimes, vendor food tastes even better than the same dish served in a fine dining restaurant, especially when you enjoy breakfast in Hue. Enjoying breakfast from a pot — or “rattan” — from a street food vendor is the most authentic way to taste Hue's flavors.

The most famous breakfast dishes of the local people are bun bo hue (beef noodle soup), banh mi (Vietnamese baguette), banh canh (thick noodle soup),  banh uot (steamed thin rice-flour pancakes).

Bun Bo Hue

Bun bo Me Keo

Address: 20 Bach Dang, Phu Cat, Hue

Operating hours: 7 a.m. – 10 a.m.

Price: 25,000 VND – 60,000 VND per serving

Bun bo Mu Roi

Address: 1- 48 Nguyen Chi Dieu, Thuan Thanh, Hue

Operating hours: 6:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.

Price: 25,000 VND – 35,000 VND per serving

Bun Hue Hem

Address: 17 Hung Vuong, Phu Hoi, Hue

Operating hours: all day

Price: 35,000 VND per serving

Bun Bo Hue ba Tuyet

Address: 47 Nguyen Cong Tru, Hue

Tell: 0234 3815 460

Operating hours: 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Price: Start at 35,000 VND per serving

Bun Bo Hue O Cuong chu Hiep

Address: 6 Tran Thuc Nhan, Vinh Ninh, Hue

Tell: 0359 922 610

Operating hours: 6:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Price: 30,000 VND per serving

Vietnamese baguette. Photo by Hue of Hue

Banh mi

Banh Mi Trang Tien

Address: 8 Hoang Hoa Tham, Vinh Ninh, Hue

Operating hours: 7 a.m. to 12 a.m.

Price: 7,000 to 15,000 VND per serving

Banh Mi Thit Nuong Hue

Address: Le Thanh Ton - Han Thuyen intersection, Hue

Operating hours: 6 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

Price: 10,000 to 22,000 VND per serving

Thao Bakery

Address: 6 Tran Hung Dao, Hue

Operating hours: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Price: 10,000 to 20,000 VND per serving

Banh Mi Chao Mee-O

Address: 18B Ngo Gia Tu, Hue

Operating hours: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Price: 20,000 VND to 60,000 VND per serving

A bowl of Banh Canh Cua Roi (crap thick noodle soup).Photo by Vinpearl


Banh Canh

Banh Canh Ba Doi

Address: 1 Duong Van An, Hue

Operating hours: 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Price: 15,000 VND to 20,000 VND per serving

Man - Banh Canh Bot Lon

Address: 66 Ngo Duc Ke, Hue

Operating hours: 6:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., 2:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Price: 15,000 VND to 33,000 VND per serving

Banh Canh Cua Roi

Address: 30 Pham Hong Thai, Hue

Operating hours: 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Price: 20,000 VND to 30,000 VND per serving

Banh Uot (grilled pork steamed thin rice-flour pancake). Photo by Hue of Hue

Banh Uot

Banh Uot Truoi - Dung Ngo

Address: 54 Ba Trieu, Xuan Phu, Hue

Operating hours: 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Price: 20,000 VND to 50,000 VND per  serving

Banh Uot Thit Nuong - Huyen Anh ( Grilled pork steamed thin rice-flour pancake)

Address: 50 Kim Long, Hue

Operating hours: 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Price: 20,000 VND to 25,000 VND per serving


Cafe again!

A corner of Cafe Chieu. Photo by Hue of Hue

Yes! Sometimes, locals have coffee twice in the morning just for the sake of seeing their buddies.

During this time of day, it's best to find a cafe with good drinks and comfortable space. There are some rustic ones, which keep the old Hue style of housing and architecture. Those cafes are owned by young people and offer good customer service with delicious drinks.

Salted coffee and egg custard coffee are two best sellers!

Afternoon at Giao Cafe. Photo by Giao

Cafe Chieu

Address: 44 Dang Thai Than, Thuan Thanh, Hue

Operating hours: 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Price: 15,000 VND to 35,000 VND

Giao Cafe

Address: 188 Chi Lang, Phu Cat, Hue

Operating hours: 6:30a.m. to 10 p.m.

Price: 15,000 VND to 50,000 VND

Tan Cafe

Address: 14 Pham Hong Thai, Hue

Operating hours: 6:30 to 10p.m.

Price: 15,000 VND to 50,000 VND

T-roastery cafe:

Address: 7 Su Van Hanh, Huong Long, Hue

Operating hours: 6:30 to 8p.m.

Price: 20,000 VND to 80,000 VND


Lunch — it’s all about rice!

Lunchtime means rice time to locals. There is a special rice dish that is available nowhere else: com hen (baby mussel rice).

The mussel has long been a familiar ingredient to locals. The dish is served in two separate bowls of broth and rice. The savory flavor of the mussel broth combines perfectly with the starchy texture of rice, garnished with mint, elephant ear mushroom, stir-fried baby mussels, chilies, grounded pepper, and oily fried peanuts.

After you’ve had this dish, don’t forget to try a traditional central Vietnam meal.

A hearty bowl of Com Hen. Photo by Hue of Hue

Com Hen

Com Hen - Hoa Dong

Address: 64 per 7 Ung Binh, Hue

Operating hours: 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Price: 7,000 VND to 10,000 VND per serving

Com Hen - Ba Cam

Address: 49 Tung Thien Vuong, Vy Da, Hue

Operating hours: 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Price: 10,000 VND to 50,000 VND per serving

Com Hen - Quan Nho

Address: 28 Pham Hong Thai, Hue

Operating hours: 6 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Price: 20,000 VND to 40,000 VND per serving


Enjoy a traditional local feast

Traditional Hue’s meal set in Hue 1986’s Bistro & Cafe. Photo by Tran Duc Huy


Com Nia Hue

Address: 146 Mai Thuc Loan, Hue

Operating hours:  7 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Price: from 40,000 VND per  dish

Hue 1986’s Bistro & Cafe

Address: 67 Vo Thi Sau, Hue

Operating hours:  7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Price: 25,000 VND to 50,000 VND per  dish

Ca Phe Nha

Address: Number 103, Block B, Dong Da Apartment, Le Hong Phong, Hue

Operating hours:  6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Price: 10,000 VND to 45,000 VND per  dish

Com Nieu - Lua Viet (clay pot rice)

Address: 39 Nguyen Thai Hoc, Hue

Operating hours:  8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Price: 20,000 VND to 200,000 VND per  dish


Discover an exotic afternoon snack

Banh Ep Cau Hai. Photo by Hue of Hue

Banh ep (pressed cake) is one of the most common afternoon snacks. The potions are enough to fuel the afternoon craving without taking too much space for dinner. It’s best to enjoy those hot plates in the chilling weather of spring, fall and winter.

To the sweet tooth, come to Linh Mu pagoda for the glamorous sunset on Huong River while enjoying a warm bowl of tofu pudding with ginger syrup.

Banh ep - Gia Di:

Address: 101 Ba Trieu, Hue

Tell: 023 4629 9799

Operating hours: 2:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Price: 2,000 VND to 10,000 VND per serving

Banh ep - chi Hue:

Address: 116 Le Ngo Cat, Hue

Operating hours: 2 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Price: 2,000 VND to 10,000 VND per serving

Banh ep Cau Hai:

Address: 09 Truong Dinh, Hue

Tell: 0935 671 221 or  0766 565,000

Operating hours: 2 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Price: 20,000 VND per dish

Banh ep Cay Su

Address: 31 per 103 Nhat Le, Hue

Operating hours: 2 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Price: 5,000 VND to 30,000 VND per dish


Beo, Nam, Loc - three local specials for dinner

Banh Loc (Rice dumpling cake). Photo by Trip Zone

The must-dish is Hue’s leaf-wrapped steamed cakes, aka beo nam loc. This dish is suggested for dinner because once you start eating those, you will not be able to stop.

Although you can find the dishes elsewhere, the flavors aren’t as authentic and hearty as they are in Hue.

Banh Nam (flat steamed rice dumplings). Photo by Trip Zone

Beo Nam Loc - Thuy

Address: 16 Pham Hong Thai, Hue

Operating hours: 12:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Price: 10,000 VND to 20,000 VND per serving

Beo Nam Loc - Ba Hue

Address: 109 Le Huan, Hue

Operating hours: 1:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Price: 10,000 VND to 40,000 VND per serving

Beo Nam Loc - Mu Cai

Address: 9 per 475 Chi Lang, Hue

Operating hours: 2 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Price: 10,000 VND to 20,000 VND per serving

Beo Nam Loc - Me Le

Address: 104 per 17 per 9 Kim Long, Hue

Operating hours: 8 am to 6 p.m.

Price: 15,000 VND to 25,000 VND per serving


Feed your sweet tooth with a late night snack

If you’re into sweets, sweet soup is the best night snacking choice.

In winter, locals will serve mostly hot varieties such as those with mung bean, red beans, black beans, lotus seeds, sticky rice balls in ginger syrup, and pomelo sweet soup. During summer, you can expect to find a diverse menu of iced sweet soup dishes.

On the other hand, if you crave warm, savory food, night street vendors still serve yummy Banh Mi and Bun Bo Hue until 3 a.m.!

Sweet soup vendor. Photo by Toplist.vn

Sweet soup

Che - Ong Lac

Address: 36 Thanh Tinh, Hue

Operating hours: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Price: 5,000 VND to 20,000 VND per serving  

Che Thach 15 Mon

Address: Dong Ba Market’ gate, Hue

Operating hours: 2 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Price: 5,000 VND to 20,000 VND per serving

Che - Cam

Address: 10 Nguyen Sinh Cung, Hue

Operating hours: 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Price: 5,000 VND to 20,000 VND per serving

Che - Mo Ton Dich

Address: Thuong Bac Park’s entrance, 11 Le Loi, Hue

Operating hours: 4 p.m. to 11 p.m.

Price: 5,000 VND to 20,000 VND per serving

Night vendors serving Bun Bo Hue. Photo by Hue of Hue

Bun Bo Hue

Bun Bo Hue - Ba Bot

Address: 11 Ha Noi, Vinh Ninh, Hue

Tell: 0379 888 770

Operating hours: 5 p.m.- 2 a.m.

Price: 40,000 VND per serving

Bun Bo Hue - Ba Gai

Address: 11A Ha Noi, Vinh Ninh, Hue

Tell: 0835 909 992

Operating hours: 6 p.m.- 2 a.m.

Price: 35,000 VND per serving

Banh mi chan cau

Address: Riverside walking street under Truong Tien Bridge- Nguyen Dinh Chieu Street

Operating hours: 7 p.m. to 3 a.m.

Price: 7,000 to 20,000 VND per serving  

Now’s the time to plan your Hue trip!