Vietnamese Grilled Pork bowl.  Simple, healthy, elegant.  To quote Huy Vu at the Hungry Huy website, “This is love in a bowl. If you’ve had bún thịt nướng you know what I’m talking about.”   Huy Vu gives a full, unabridged version of this traditional Vietnamese recipe, along with some history about the dish.

Our version is simplified to make an everyday type meal.  The dressing/marinade is the same one we made for the Serious Foodie Vietnamese Shrimp salad (Goi Tom) which is an amazing sweet & spicy chili dressing that you will want to use over and over again.  It’s got all the notes everyone craves – sweet, spicy, salty, tangy, umami – that is so perfect with the pork traditionally used in this dish, but works equally as well with shrimp, chicken or tofu. The dish is light, healthy, refreshing, and quick to prepare.  Change up the veggies based on what’s fresh right now at your farmer’s market.

As a bonus, we give you the recipe for making a quick pickle. Pickled carrots and daikon are often served with this dish.

For us, we are fortunate enough to have a local organic produce service – Green Door Organics.  We had some beautiful bok choy, multi-colored carrots, and broccoli that we used for this version. Feel free to substitute in your veggies of choice. But fresh is key. Serve with either rice or rice vermicelli, and maybe garnish with some cucumber and chopped peanuts.  Easy.  Delicious!

Vietnamese Grilled Pork Bowl with Sweet & Spicy Chili Dressing

This bowl works equally as well with shrimp, chicken, or tofu.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Asian
Servings 4 servings



  • 1 jar Serious Foodie Vietnamese Sweet Chili Hot Sauce
  • 1 jar Serious Foodie Indonesian Sambal
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 cup neutral vegetable oil safflower, sunflower, or avocado oil are the best for this.


  • 1.5 - 2 pounds pork loin, or pork shoulder excess fat trimmed, then thinly sliced
  • 6 ounces cooked rice or rice noodles
  • 1 medium bok choy small green cabbage, or Napa cabbage, will also work.
  • 1/2 cup cucumber, sliced into rounds
  • 2 green scallions sliced on the bias
  • 1/4 cup cilantro rough chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint rough chopped
  • 1/4 cup Thai basil rough chopped
  • 1/4 cup crushed dry-roasted peanuts rough chopped
  • 1/4 medium red onion thinly sliced (can also be pickled - see below)
  • Pickled carrots & daikon see below for recipe



  • Combine 1 jar Serious Foodie Vietnamese Sweet Chili Hot Sauce, 1/4 cup Serious Foodie Indonesian Sambal (less or more, depending on how spicy you want the dressing), and the fresh lime juice. Whisk in the vegetable oil. The sauces have fish sauce as an ingredient, so it might be salty enough. Feel free to salt and pepper the dressing to taste.


  • Use about 1/2 of the dressing to marinate the pork. Pour the dressing over the pork in a bowl, cover, and keep in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, or up to overnight.
  • Grill or pan sear the pork with about 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil. If you thinly sliced, then this should be fast - about 2 minutes per side at most. Do not overcook.

Bowl Preparation

  • Toss the bok choy, scallion, cilantro, mint, and Thai basil together in a large bowl. Pour some of the reserved dressing over the salad, and gently massage into the vegetables. Save the rest of the dressing as a condiment
  • Add the salad to a bowl, and place the meat on top along with the sliced cucumbers. Drizzle with more dressing, and peanuts. Serve with the extra dressing and pickled vegetables.

Pickled vegetables

  • The trick to making truly delicious, quick pickled veggies is to slice thin (about 1/8-inch), so they soften up and absorb the vinegar quickly. You can do this with a sharp chef’s knife or a mandoline. Place the veggies in a large bowl, preferably glass (which will not react with the hot vinegar solution). You can use carrots, daikon, standard radishes, red onions, cucumbers, etc.
  • Here's what you need: - 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar - 1 teaspoon sea salt - 1/2 cup water - 1 cup rice wine or apple cider vinegar - Fresh ginger - about a one inch square piece, peeled and sliced - 2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed (NOT minced) - 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes optional - for a bit of heat - Your collection of veggies
  • In a small saucepan, combine all the ingredients, except the veggies. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer over medium heat, then carefully pour the mixture over the veggies. These are ready in 30 minutes. Place any remaining veggies and the liquid into a glass container, and refrigerate. They keep for 2 to 3 weeks in the refrigerator.

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