This easy Instant Pot Faux Pho comes together without bones in just 2 minutes and it’s full of flavor! Serve with rice noodles & fresh herbs.
Ingredients in this recipe
Here’s what you need to make this easy recipe – the broth can be made to be vegetarian so everyone can enjoy!
- olive oil
- yellow onion
- soy sauce
- lime juice
- star anise
- beef broth
- striploin steaks
- rice noodles
- Garnishes (fresh cilantro, fresh basil, fresh mint, scallions and lime wedges)
How to make pho in the Instant Pot
- Turn Instant Pot to saute mode. Add all ingredients except for beef broth, steaks, rice noodles and garnishes, sauteeing for until fragrant.
- Add beef broth, then pressure cook for 2 minutes. Meanwhile, slice steak into thin strips and soak rice noodles in a large bowl of boiling water. Drain noodles and set aside.
- Do a quick release of the pressure. Drain broth into a large pot using a mesh strainer.
- Divide rice noodles among bowls.
- Top with broth.
- Add in raw steak strips, which will cook in the hot liquid. Add garnishes of choice, then serve and enjoy!
- olive oil – If you don’t have olive oil, any neutral flavour of cooking oil will be fine.
- yellow onion – you can substitute with white onion or shallots if you prefer.
- fresh garlic cloves – I’m a big believer in mincing fresh cloves of garlic but you can find pre-minced garlic in the produce section of larger grocery stores.
- fresh ginger – You’ll have the best flavour using fresh ginger root, but ginger powder will also work.
- soy sauce – Use tamari or coconut aminos to make this recipe gluten free.
- lime juice – If you need a substitute, lemon juice will work. Of course, the flavour will be a bit different.
- sriracha – Use red pepper flakes instead, or leave this ingredient out altogether to make the dish less spicy.
- star anise – For each piece of star anise (there are 3 for this recipe), use 3/4 teaspoon crushed anise seeds. Then are typically easier to find than star anise. Order some star anise online if you can’t find it in stores.
If you can’t find anise seed either, you can use 3/4 teaspoon of Chinese 5-Spice powder as a substitute for EACH piece of star anise.
- beef broth – Feel free to use beef stock, either homemade or ready-to-use.
- beef striploin steak – The striploin, also known as sirloin, is a flavourful and economical cut of beef. Good substitutes are any boneless cut of beef with a small amount of marbling, such as boneless ribeye.
- rice noodles – Authentic pho recipes will always call for rice noodles. Any size or shape that you prefer will be fine. Just keep in mind that thinner varieties, such as rice stick noodles, will cook more quickly.
Adding more flavor to the broth
Using beef bones or homemade beef stock will add a richer meaty flavour to your pho. Purely for convenience and to make the recipe easier to make, this version uses beef broth.
Using chicken instead of beef
Substituting chicken for beef will lighten up the calories and fat in your soup.
After the soup is cooked, stir in leftover cooked and shredded chicken (or rotisserie chicken). Or, use diced chicken breasts/thighs, but add 2 more minutes to the cooking time.
More topping ideas
Fresh herbs are always delicious in homemade soup. Other topping ideas include:
- bean sprouts
- diced or sliced chili peppers
- scallion (the white and/or the green parts)
- sriracha sauce, or other hot sauce of your choice
- thin slices of bok choy
- finely shredded or matchstick cut carrots
Storing and reheating
We use fresh herbs as garnish and to add flavour to the Pho. Unfortunately, there is not a way to reheat the soup without cooking the fresh herbs.
Don’t let this stop you from enjoying any leftovers! You can either reheat the meal with the fresh herbs, or if you think you might have extras, leave the garnishes off. Then, simply serve them at the table instead.
Transfer any leftovers to a covered container and store them in the refrigerator. Be sure to use them up within five days.
Freezing the broth
To freeze the soup, leave the fresh herbs out of the broth.
To prevent ice crystals from forming in the container, allow the soup to cool to room temperature. After it cools, transfer it to a freezer-safe container.
If you include meat, it may be kept frozen for up to 4 months, and without meat, it may be kept frozen for 6 months.
More Instant Pot soup recipes
Meal prep tools for this recipe
- Grab some glass meal prep bowls if you plan on storing the leftovers
- I get all my grass-fed beef from Butcher Box, conveniently delivered to me frozen
- Order some star anise online if you can’t find it in stores
- Freeze this recipe in glass microwave-safe bowls up to 3 months
Instant Pot Pho
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, chopped or two shallots
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 inch piece ginger, minced
- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp lime juice
- 1 tbsp sriracha
- 3 star anise
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 8 cups beef broth
- 2 striploin steaks
- 375 g rice noodles
- fresh cilantro
- fresh basil
- fresh mint
- scallions or onions, thinly sliced
- lime wedges
- Turn Instant Pot to saute mode. Add all ingredients except for beef broth, steaks, rice noodles and garnishes to Instant Pot, sauteeing for 5 minutes until fragrant.
- Add beef broth, then place lid on Instant Pot and make sure valve is set to seal. Press the pressure cook button and set to high, then cook for 2 minutes. Instant Pot will take about 5-10 minutes to come to pressure then pressure cook for 2 minutes.
- Meanwhile, slice steak into thin strips and soak rice noodles in a large bowl of boiling water for 5 minutes until cooked. Drain noodles and set aside.
- Do a quick release of the pressure on the Instant Pot by flicking the switch at the top with a spoon. Open the lid when pressure gauge has dropped and the lid opens easily.
- Drain broth into a large pot using a mesh strainer. Divide rice noodles among bowls, then top with broth and add in raw steak strips, which will cook in the hot liquid. Add garnishes of choice, then serve and enjoy!
- NOTE: If you prefer steak to be cooked, you can sear it over med-high heat for 1-2 minutes per side. Slice through then serve overtop of soup.