Total Time
Prep 30 mins
Cook 10 mins

Two vital sauces if you cook vietnamese :) The Nuoc Cham is presented in regular and vegetarian forms. Once again from the best cookbook: Hot, Sour, Salty, Sweet.

Ingredients Nutrition

  • Vietnamese Must-Have Table Sauce (Nuoc Cham)

  • 14 cup lime juice
  • 14 cup fish sauce
  • 14 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 bird chile, minced
  • 12 tablespoon shredded carrot
  • Vegetarian Nuoc Cham

  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon lemongrass, finely cpped
  • 18 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 bird chile, minced
  • 1 teaspoon peanut oil
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 12 teaspoon salt
  • Vietnamese Peanut Sauce

  • 14 cup dry roasted peanuts
  • 2 tablespoons tamarind powder (dissolved in the 2 T warm water)
  • 2 tablespoons warm water
  • 2 teaspoons peanut oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tablespoons ground pork
  • 3 tablespoons fermented soybean paste
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 14 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 -2 bird chile, minced
  • lime juice


  1. Nooc Cham (regular and vegetarian):.
  2. Combine all the ingredients and dissolve the sugar completely. This works easily with stevia instead of the sugar. I use 2-4 drops.
  3. Keeps in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Store in tightly sealed glass container in the fridge.
  4. Vietnamese Peanut Sauce:.
  5. Using a food processor or mortar, pound peanuts to a course powder. Set aside.
  6. Sieve the tamarind and water. Set aside the liquid, discard the solids.
  7. Heat the oil in a wok or skillet over high heat. Add garlic and stir fry about 15 seconds, until color begins to change. Toss in the pork and cook until it is cooked through.
  8. Add soybean paste and tamarind and stir until blended. Add 1/2 cup of water. Then stir in most of the ground peanuts (reserve 1 T for garnish). Add the sguar and chiles. Add water until you reach the desired texture (thick and pourable, but not watery).
  9. Serve at room temperature or warmer. Squeeze a lime over it and add the reserved peanuts.
  10. This keeps in the refrigerator for 3 days or freezes for one month. Reheat before serving.
Most Helpful

I made the vegetarian version and thoroughly enjoyed it with some brown rice. Thanks! Made for the Zaar World Tour#6-Asian-2010 by the Looney Spoon Phoodies!

Sharon123 May 24, 2010

Beautiful! I made the Nuoc Cham and the vegetarian Nuoc Cham. Both were really delightful, and had distinct character of their own. I made the vegetarian one slightly milder, by reducing the amount of chile. The cinnamon and lemongrass are a really interesting combination, and they really sparkle on fried rice or stirred into a bowl of pho. I look forward to trying them on lots of different dishes.

EmmyDuckie May 24, 2010