Vietnamese soup with fish balls

Vietnamese soup with fish balls
  • 0:20 Prep
  • 0:30 Cook
  • 4 Servings
  • Advanced

Some fresh produce and a few pantry staples are all you need for this delicious Vietnamese noodle soup.

Featured in
Soup recipes, Vietnamese recipes


  • 500g snapper fillets, pin-boned, skinned
  • 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1cm piece ginger, finely grated
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup mint leaves, finely chopped
  • 450g packet fresh rice noodles (see note)
  • 2 spring onions, cut into 5cm lengths
  • Thinly sliced long red chilli (optional), to serve


  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2cm piece ginger, finely grated
  • 2 cinnamon quills
  • 5 star anise
  • 100g shiitake mushrooms, halved
  • 2 tablespoons caster sugar
  • 125ml (1/2 cup) soy sauce
  • 1L chicken stock


  • Step 1
    To make broth, heat oil in a large saucepan over high heat. Add onion, garlic, ginger and spices, then cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until onion is soft. Add remaining ingredients and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium. Simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Step 2
    Meanwhile, to make fish balls, process fish, garlic, ginger and egg in a food processor until combined. Transfer to a large bowl with mint. Season, then stir to combine. Roll heaped tablespoons of mixture into 20 balls.
  • Step 3
    Carefully lower fish balls into broth. Increase heat to high and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 4 minutes. Add rice noodles and cook for a further 3 minutes or until fish balls and noodles are cooked.
  • Step 4
    Divide soup among bowls. Scatter with spring onions and sliced chilli, if using, to serve.


Top tip: Fresh rice noodles is from the refrigerated section of supermarkets.

  • Author: Dominic Smith
  • Image credit: Ben Dearnley
  • Publication: MasterChef



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