If you want to see Vietnam the way the local people do and fit in the local way of living, besides exploring the local cuisine, you may want to learn about the eating habits in Vietnam. Yes, you know they use sticks, but is that enough? We’re presenting you top 10 quick facts about eating in Vietnam. Check them out to see if they fit with your daily routine and eating habits!
1. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are the main and the only meals in Vietnam.
Sorry, but in the traditional way of living adopted by the local people from the villages of Vietnam, there are no coffee or tea breaks between the meals! Of course, the modern era has provoked some changes, so it is not strange for people in the cities to get some coffee in cafes between their main meals.
2. Local people have their breakfasts before 9 o’clock and they prefer it completely salty.
This may be a bit shocking for people used to the Western way of eating which is based on sweet meals or combinations of sweet and salty food.
3. Typical breakfast in Vietnam may be a baguette stuffed with pork, various vegetables, and pate; rice crepes (banh cuon); or the extremely popular noodle soup (pho).
4. Lunch is a quick but nutritive meal which usually has to be eaten before 1 pm, and usually after 12.
People working in offices have them during their breaks and usually buy them from street food vendors or have the lunch boxes ordered from the restaurants. In both cases, their lunch usually consists of some type of meat (normally fish, beef, pork, chicken), tofu, or vegetables with rice.
5. The main meal in Vietnam is dinner, which gathers the whole family, and it is usually prepared by women, with some help of their daughters, or mothers.
6. Not all of the families in Vietnam have the dining table.
It is mostly a privilege of the wealthy families and those living in the cities, while the lower classes and families in the villages usually dine on the floor. Maybe it sounds weird when you think about it, but it is actually quite a pleasant experience for tourists who get a chance of dining this way.
7. The main principle of dining in Vietnam, which is actually responsible for the sense of belonging and gathering, is sharing.
The main meal is served in a single bowl or tray and they all take the food from it. Only the side dishes (such as rice) are separated into individual plates.
8. Dinner in Vietnam may consist of one or two main dishes and they also represent a combination of broth, meat, and vegetables.
When it comes to meat, if they serve pork, it is usually stewed. The chicken is normally steamed, and fish is mostly prepared by frying. Veggies can be stir-fried or boiled. We probably don’t even have to mention that in local people’s opinion there is no decent dinner in Vietnam without steamed rice.
9. When it comes to expectations during the dinner, tourists in local families may relax, since there aren’t really many rules and rituals.
As long as you are polite, respectful, and show the good manners, you should have no worries – you can relax, enjoy your meal, and embrace the Vietnamese way of living.
10. For a long time, eating out in Vietnam wasn’t really a frequent option when it comes to local people’s eating habits.
It was usually the way to celebrate an important event in a family – anniversary, increased salary, etc. Today, when the modern era has moved in into numerous homes in cities of Vietnam, eating out has become a part of the lifestyle of wealthier families.