Nuoc Cham (Vietnamese Dipping Sauce)

Total Time
Prep 5 mins
Cook 15 mins

This is the best recipe I've found for this particular dipping sauce, from Tauntons Fine Cooking website. If you prefer it spicier, add half a teaspoon of ground chili paste.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. In a mortar and pestle, pound the garlic and fresh chilies to a paste. (Or mince them together with a knife.)
  2. In a small bowl, combine this garlic and chili mixture with the chili paste, hot water, and sugar. Stir well.
  3. Add the fish sauce and lime juice and combine.
  4. Float the carrots on top. Let sit for at least 15 minutes before using.
  5. *Dipping sauce will keep in the refrigerator for a month.
Most Helpful

Excellent dipping sauce! I used it for pork potstickers. Also would be great on noodles like another reviewer said. I will be making this again! Thanks for sharing!

Not-2-Sweet April 14, 2009

This works good. My family loves it. We often use prepared fish sauce for salads, Bun, etc. Lately my local Viet market has been out. I made this and everyone loved it. I'll make it again. Thanks for sharing.

Kiersten Phae May 16, 2008

This is the real deal, at least at my favourite Vietnamese restaurants in Toronto. Great on just about everything. When I order a Bunh, I dip my fried spring roll in the sauce then pour it over the noodles. The carrots are essential.

margaret.dinsdale July 31, 2007