Phở Bò Instant Pot (Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup)

  • Servings: 6 or more bowls
  • Difficulty: medium
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Author: Katie Le | Katie’s Test Kitchen

Broth for 8-quart IP (For 6-quart adjustment, please see FAQ #3 before proceeding with the recipe below)
  • 3 lbs of beef marrow bones or oxtail
  • about 1/2 lb of daikon, optional, peeled and halved, optional but highly recommend to give the broth a natural sweetness
  • 1 large onion, white or yellow, peeled and toasted to slightly charred
  • 1 large knob of ginger, about 1/4 lb, peeled and toasted to slightly charred
  • 1 bag of Spice Pho Seasoning, toasted in the oven or on stove top pan on medium heat for about 1 minute to release fragrance
    • If you are collecting the spices separately here is a list:
      •  1 cinnamon stick
      • 1 piece of casia bark (aka Saigon cinnamon)
      • 4-5 star anise
      • 2 Amonum Costatum (Thảo quả)
      • 2 tbsp of coriander seeds
      • 2 tbsp of fennel seeds
      • 1 tsp of cloves
  • about 2 tbsp size of  rock sugar, roughly 16 grams
  • 6.5 tbsp of Quốc Việt Beef Pho Soup Base (see FAQ #9) OR  2 tbsp of sea salt
  • 18 cups of boiling water, using boiling water will help speed up pressure building time
  • mushroom seasoning
  • 3 green onion, use white bottom part only to add to broth at the end

Protein Options (pick one or all, more or less of each depending on what you like):
– 1-2 lbs of eye round beef or fillet mignon, “Tái”,  (thinly sliced)
– 1 package of beef balls, typically found in frozen section of Asian stores, “Bò Viên
(halved, added to broth, bring it to a boil before serving)
– 1/2 lb beef omasum, “Sách“, (washed well with salt, add to IP and cook before cooking the Pho broth or cook in 2nd IP if you have one, add 4 cups of water and 1 stalk of lemongrass, High Pressure,  4 minutes, NPR, rinsed with cold water before thinly slicing)
– 1-2 beef tendons, “Gân”, (parboiled for 5 minutes on stove top, add to the bones and cook using the same time, removed from broth once it was done and wait for it to cool down before slicing)

Condiments and Garnishes:
  • 2 bags of fresh Pho noodles, typically in the refrigerated section at Asian stores (1 bag makes 4 bowls), boiled/blanched according to package instruction
  • 2 limes, cut to wedges
  • green onion and cilantro, chopped
  • 1 large white or onion, thinly sliced
  • basil and culantro, washed well
  • bean sprout, washed well
  • jalapeño pepper or your favorite fresh chili pepper, thinly sliced
  • black pepper, optional
  • Hoisin sauce
  • Sriracha sauce


1. Wash then parboil beef bones on stove top pot for 10 minutes. Rinse well and add to inner pot.
2. Toast onion and ginger until lightly charred.  For the Pho Seasoning, toast for about 1 minute and add to the filter pouch.  Add toasted items to inner pot along with rock sugar, 6.5 tbsp of Quốc Viet Beef Pho Soup Base, daikon and 8 cups of boiling water (just enough to cover the ingredients).  If you are omitting Quốc Việt Soup Base please add 2 tbsp of sea salt instead.  Close lid and make sure knob is on Sealing.  Select Manual/Pressure Cook, High Pressure, 30 minutes.  Allow 30 minutes NPR or full NPR.  It would take a little more than 30 minutes for the IP to fully NPR with the ingredients above.
3. Release remainder pressure if you are doing a 30 minutes NPR and open lid. Cancel Keep Warm and switch to Saute mode.  Remove onion, bones, daikon then add 10 cups of boiling water.  Use a fine mesh strainer to remove any bits from the broth.  If you are using the soup base cater to your taste if needed by adding mushroom seasoning and/or more rock sugar to balance out the taste.  If you are omitting the soup base please add 3 tbsp of mushroom seasoning.  Taste the broth again and add more as needed.  Lastly, add the white part onion.  If you use beef ball slowly drop them in now and bring broth to a boil again.

4. To assemble the bowl, add cooked Pho noodles then top with your protein options from above. Pour boiling broth, add sliced white onion and sprinkle chopped green onion and cilantro.  Add a few dashes of black pepper if you like.  Serve with basil, culantro, bean sprout, lime wedges and sliced jalapeño pepper. The broth is so good we rarely add Hoisin sauce to our bowl!

TIPS: IP extracts all the goodness from the bones very well so therefore the broth will be fatty/oily looking.  When I cook for my family after releasing the pressure in Step 3 I’d wait for the broth to cool down then put it into the refrigerator overnight or 6-8 hours.  The fat will form a thick white layer at the top and it’s very easy to remove.  Then I’d add additional water and continue with the remaining items in Step 3 and on.



129 Comments on “Phở Bò Instant Pot (Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup)”

    • Hi katie,
      Thank you for the recipe, I am going to try it. Could you please recommend good brand of beef meatballs( with tendons) for m? The one you have looks so good in the picture. thanks again.

  1. I can’t wait to try this recipe! You should have your own YouTube station Katie. Your recipes have inspired me to cook again after having a baby! Thanks Chi 🙂

  2. Hi how come you removed the solid ingredients after is done cooking and add 9 cups of water after is done?

    • Hi Jess,

      Sorry for the delay in responding. Add only enough water to cover ingredients is to speed up pressure building time. If you do a full pot of water (especially cold) it will take over 30 minutes for it to build pressure. It can’t cook until the water is at boiling, to build steam and create pressure. If you are not in a rush just fill it with water. Also, the IP will have difficulty building pressure if water is at the max, usually I stay an inch or so below the max line. So adding water post cooking is a better option.

      • Hi if you only pressure cook the ingredients for 30 mins with water above the ingredients how do you get the rich flavors from the bones when you dump another 9 cups of hot water? Doesn’t that watered down the taste from the bones even though you are adding additional seasoning?

        • Hi My-Linh, the broth from the initial cooking is liquid gold! It’s extremely concentrated so you are not losing flavor by adding more water. You are just bringing it down to what it normally should be. If you prefer or not in a rush to cook then feel free to add all the water up front. Only draw back is it takes the IP a lot longer to build pressure with that much water. But if you are not in a rush then that is not a problem. Hope that helps!

  3. I’m new to your site today. You have this listed as one of the ingredients:

    1 bag of Pho Seasoning***

    Usually asterisks denote additional information to be found somewhere at the bottom of the recipe and there are none. Where do I find this seasoning? Do you use a specific kind?

  4. Hi Katie, was thinking of you as I make this today. Hope all is well and thanks for sharing your awesome recipes on your blog, makes it so much easier to find.

    • Hi Winnie, you don’t need to use soup base. I do and I share with others because it makes it very easy to season your broth without the need for MSG. You can omit the soup base, just seasoning normally with salt, sugar, fish sauce, MSG (mushroom seasoning or chicken bouillon) how how you would with other Vietnamese broth dishes.

  5. This recipe says for 6qt, what changes do I need to make for an 8qt ip and if I want to make for more servings?

        • It’s also available on Amazon. You can click on the link in the recipe and it will take you there. The price on amazon isn’t bad consider it ships directly to your door.

      • When you measure the soup base in tbsp, do you weigh out the grams on a food scale according to the nutrition facts or just using the spoons? Either method will yield different measurements.

    • Hi Kimberlin, I changed the recipe to 8-quart. Usually the difference between recipes using 6 or 8-quart is just the amount of water and seasoning. You can add more bones of course to make sweeter/more flavor broth.

    • Hi Jeanette, in the 3rd step just add about 6-7 cups of water. And reduce the soup base to about 4.5… and adjust the taste accordingly if needed.

    • Hi Nancy,
      For Pho, I prefer to use marrow bones. You can find them at most Asian markets. If you can’t find marrow bones, neck bones are fine too.

  6. Hi Katie,

    Thank you for the recipe! Can’t wait to try and make it. If I don’t have rock sugar is there an alternative ?

    At the risk of sounding dumb, I’m just learning to cook so not sure what it means by beef bone? If im at the asian market, what am I looking for to buy exactly?

    • Hi Chelsea, if you don’t have rock sugar just use granulated sugar or brown. I can’t exactly how much but season to your taste. For Pho, I prefer to use marrow bones. The Asian market can slice them for you. If you can’t find marrow bones, neck bones are fine too.

  7. Hi,
    Is there a way to make this with chicken instead? Would putting the chicken in with the broth for 30 min high pressure overcook it?

  8. Thanks for the recipe – can’t wait to try!

    How much mushroom seasoning do you typically use? I have no idea where to start with amount there.

    • Hi Jennifer, I usually add mushroom seasoning at the end to make small tweak of taste. I’d start with 1 tbsp first. Usually add just 1-2 tbsp. Hope that helps!

  9. Thank You for sharing your recipe. This is definitely an amazing recipe. I have a 14 quart pressure cooker and I am aiming to make 12 quart worth of broth using your recipes.

    • Hi Teresa, tendons cook longer. On average about 40 minutes high pressure. I’d set a about 40 minutes cook time.

    • Hi Anh, please use same time. My technique to add hot water is to help speed up pressure building time which could take awhile if you have cold and a lot of water. But if you are not in rush feel free to use cold water. Hope that helps.

  10. Hi there is a seasoning pack that comes on top of the pho base seasoning in a bag… are we suppose to use that in this recipe also?

    • Hi Jane, that’s the Pho dry spices. That bag is too thin for pressure cook so I don’t use. The dry spices I recommend in the recipe is sufficient.

      • I just made the recipe tonight and it was very very salty… was that the 5 tablespoons of pho base that has a lot of salt in it? And what should I do to make it less salty… just add more water? Thank you!

        • I’m sorry it didn’t work out. Did you add 9 more cups of water in step 3? Total water for this recipe is about 16 cups. The soup base is concentrated so it does have salt. Try to add more water. That’s the only way. Sorry it didn’t work out for you. Hope you’ll find a better recipe. 😊

        • I have used the bag that came with the soup base and it didn’t not break in the IP. Phew!

  11. Hi Katie, I’ve made many recipes in the IP with your guidance. I love each of them! ❤️ I’ve always been intimated with Pho Bo but you’ve inspired me to try. Can you let me know if the ox tail can be cooked with the bones or should I cook it in a separate in the IP? Or do you think I should cook it with the tendon and ox tail together in the IP? Or separate it altogether? Thanks so much! 🥰 Look forward to trying other recipes inspired by you!

    • Hi Jen, oxtails can be cooked together with the bones. If there is room you could add tendons as well. Those 3 share the a similar cook time.

  12. Katie, need your help! The Quốc Viet Beef Pho Soup Base container includes a filtered pouch and also yellow seasoning in the round container. When you say 6 tsp, is that the seasoning in the pouch or the yellow seasoning?

  13. Hi! Do you slice the beef for the soup yourself (or ask the butcher bc it’s so thin?)
    Also- do you put the beef in your soup bowl at the end RAW? And let the hot broth cook it or?

    • Hi Jenny, I usually cut it myself. It’s easier to cut if it’s frozen :). I have also purchased sliced beef for cheesesteak. You can buy sliced beef for hot pot/shabu shabu as well. I do put raw beef on top of the noodle then pour boiling broth over. Hope this helps.

  14. I am making this for our family Christmas dinner Sunday. Not a traditional Christmas meal for us, but we all love Pho. DIL is making Butter Chicken too. Odd match I know, but foods we love with people we love is what matters to us! CAN’T WAIT!!!
    Was surprised the beef was not mentioned in the ingredient list and thankfully I saw it in the directions just now as TODAY is grocery shopping day. LOL
    As well, was surprised it was the very LAST question here that even mentioned the beef as I wasn’t sure what beef to buy. Will probably have to settle for cheesesteak type beef as you suggested with the insanity I am expecting at the store. LOL. WISH ME LUCK! I am going to follow your recipe to a T…and pray my family is pleased. Thank you for sharing the recipe.

    • Hi Karen, the beef (sliced eye round) is in the ingredient list under “Protein Option”. If budget allows I’d recommend filet mignon. It’s so good with Pho! Good luck! Happy Holidays!

  15. Hi Katie. I couldn’t find the Pho seasoning you mention. I bought star anise, coriander, cinnamon, and fennel. Do you happen to know how much to use?
    Also, I found Mushroom soup base not the same right?

    • Hi Rosalinda, about 2 tablespoons Coriander, 2 tablespoons Fennel Seed, 1/2 tablespoon Whole Cloves, 1 fructus Amomi, 4 Star Anise, 1 Cinnamon stick

      • Hi, what do you recommend to adjust for 6qt IP? Perhaps adding that info and list of pho seasonings from scratch under Notes or FAQ in the post might be useful. In case people can’t read through all comments. Thank you 🙂

      • Whoops, just saw the FAQ link after searching. I think adding the link again in this post might make it more noticeable (if people don’t use the navigation menu on top) Thanks, I hope to try it soon!

    • Hi Tuan, You can try to cut the recipe into 3? Only use a 1/3 of the dry spices as well. I actually have not used the 3 quart for a brothy dish. Let me know how it turns out!

    • Hi Ashley, sorry I didn’t specify the quantity for the meat toppings. Usually it depends on the family’s preference on meat. But I’d say for this recipe, I’d get 1 to 2 lbs of eye round and 1 to 2 packages of beef ball. Halve the beefballs and add too boiling broth.

  16. the recipe doesn’t state cooking time, I have not used my Insta Pot yet, could you please let me know, also can you buy Pho Seasoning at the any asian store?

    • Hi Resty, The cook time is stated in Step 2 (last 3 sentences), 30 minutes High Pressure. Please see below. If you have a questions on NPR please see the FAQ page. Most Asian stores would carry Pho spices. Hope that helps!
      2. Toast onion and ginger until lightly charred.  For the Pho Seasoning, toast for about 1 minute and add to the filter pouch.  Add toasted items to inner pot along with rock sugar, 6 tbsp of Quốc Viet Beef Pho Soup Base, daikon and 7 cups of boiling water (just enough to cover i ingredients).  Using boiling water will help speed up pressure building time.  Close lid and make sure knob is on Sealing.  Select Manual/Pressure Cook, High Pressure, 30 minutes.  Allow 30 minutes NPR or full NPR.  It would take a little more than 30 minutes for the IP to fully NPR with the ingredients above.

  17. Hi!

    If I wanted to cook with brisket and tendons do I cook it with the bones too, and does that need to be parabolic?

    • Hi, I have not cooked brisket for Pho but I’ve seen others who have done it for about 30-35 minutes. So in this case, I’d add brisket and tendon with the bones and use the cook time in this recipe of 30 minutes HP and let it NPR. You can add more water initially (in step 2) to cover the ingredients. Once the IP NPR, remove brisket and tendons and allow them to cool before slicing. Hope this helps!

  18. I’m looking forward to making this recipe. I do have a question. If I added a chunk of frozen beef and cook it with the bones, will it turn out okay? Or do you suggest thawing the meat first? Will I need to add additional time for the frozen meat? Thanks!

    • Hi Viva, what kind of cut is the frozen beef? We need to know to estimate cooking time as it might not share the same cook time as the bones.

      • I’m not exactly sure the cut of meat since my mom gave it to me, but I’m thinking something like chuck roast so the meat is going to be a little more tough. Would you parboil with the bones? Thanks!

        • Hi Viva, in that case you can cook with the bones, same time. I’d also parboil with the bones with get rid of the impurities.

  19. What do you consider a large knob of ginger? I don’t cook with ginger often and usually go by measurements like grams lol.

    • I can say with confidence that IP broth is very rich. But if you want to cook via stove top with beef bones it’s usually take 6 to 8 hours of simmering. You should babysit the stove to add more water if needed. The spices are usually added toward the end otherwise the broth will be very dark.

      • Yes I only have 6 qt and want way more soup! What spices specifically do I add at the end? Base and the pho packet only?

  20. Hi Katie! I know this recipe is for an IP but I headed out of town to escape the crazy of the virus and did not bring my IP! Any idea if this will still work in a giant pot? Just a longer boil time I assume? I miss pho! Thank you in advance.

    • Hi Lisa,

      You can certainly cook Pho Bo using the stove top! The cook time on the stove top for beef bones are much longer, I’d say from 4 to 6 hours. You would need to monitor the pot to refill with more water int he process. You can cheat by using chicken bones or a whole chicken since it will cook faster on the stove top. Then add beef and/or beef balls as your toppings. Add the dried Pho Spices toward the end to prevent the broth from being dark. Stay safe!


  21. Hi Katie,
    I bought some bo nam, how long should I leave in the IP? Can I leave it the same time as the bone?

    • Hi, that’s actually the fat not oil. The IP did its job with extracting all the goodness from the bones that you used. Some people love it. If you don’t simply refrigerate the broth overnight in the fridge. In the morning you will see a thick white layer forming at the top. Scoop it out with a spoon. Heat up the broth and it’s ready to use. You should not have much fat after that. Good luck!

  22. Hi Katie, I love both your chicken and beef pho recipes. I had tried with other recipes in the past and failed. Yours is great and easy to follow!

    If I want to add flank to the pho, could I add to the broth along with the bones? And should I add as one piece and slice after it cools?

    And for the tripe (sach), I saw you said to cook 4 min in the IP high pressure with lemongrass. Will it be ready to eat after 4 min? Just slice and set aside? Not part of the soup?

    Thank you!

    • Hi Christine, I’d cook flanks for about 20 minutes high pressure. So if you want to cook with the bones do a QR and take it out first then continue cooking the bones. You should add it at one large piece and slice it once it has been cooled down. For the tripe, it will ready to eat after 4 minutes. Slice and set aside. Put it on top of your noodles then ladle the hot broth over.

  23. Hi! First time trying to cook Pho. I was wanting to know could you do this recipe on the stove top? My IP is only 4 quarts.

  24. I have the same question as the poster above. I have a 6qt Instant Pot but would like to make more pho with it. Is there a way to start in the instapot and continue on the stovetop for a larger quantity? Would I possibly have to use the instant pot twice (twice amount of bone marrow and oxtail) in order to do that? Or do you think I can drain into a big stockpot the first time and refill the instapot with water (with the existing bone marrow and oxtail) and try to reuse it to make a second batch of broth?

  25. Hi Katie

    No questions – just wanted to thank you for the wonderful recipe! The broth was just so tasty. I’m looking forward to trying it with different cuts of meat and I’m excited to try some of your other recipes!

  26. I am going to follow your recipe. Is this correct? Use both 1 cinnamon stick and 1 piece of casia bark (aka Saigon cinnamon)?

  27. Hi Katie,
    I know roasting the beef bones wasn’t mentioned, but would it add additional flavor if I did? Would you recommend one over the other? beef bones or ox tail

    • Hi, I know others prefer to roast beef bones instead of parboiling. I have always parboil because I visibly see the impurities being discarded. But it’s up to you. Oxtail is a bit fattier/more beef flavor I guess. I like both but most of the time I use beef marrow bones. It’s much cheaper and I still get excellent broth.

  28. Hi Chi Katie,
    I follow your recipe and cut it down for a 6qt IP. However I add very Little Rock sugar and use the quoc viet season. It still take sweet to me. I’m too scared to ass nuoc mam.
    It mor sweeter than savory. Any recommendations so I can prefect the recipe ?

    • If it turns out sweet like that try to dilute with a cup or 2 of water. Then add some mushroom seasoning and little more soup base. Hope it will be better next time.

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