Learn how to make authentic Vietnamese banh uot with premade rice sheets. You can skip mixing the messy batter and get to eating this delicious dish!
Banh uot is an amazing dish that you can make right at home without all the fuss of making the batter. I've shared with you my banh uot recipe with making the batter from scratch before, but I also wanted to share with you an easier way to make banh cuon without having to mix batter.
Check out my authentic banh cuon with batter recipe if you want to learn how to make the batter on your own.
What is Vietnamese banh uot?
Banh cuon is a delicious, filled steamed rice roll that is then topped with pork ham rolls with veggies on top which is then drizzled with a sweet chilli fish sauce known as nuoc mam.
All About Premade Rice Sheets for Vietnamese Banh Uot
Where can I find premade rice sheets for making steamed rice rolls?
Premade rice sheets can be found in the refrigerated section of your local Asian grocer. They will come in various sizes, so you'll want to choose the one that is in a square sheet (normally 12" by 12" sheets).
This is a small package of them below:
Here's the larger package size:
What are the ingredients inside steamed rice sheets?
Ingredients in steamed rice sheets for banh cuon include rice, water, wheat, potato starch, soybean oil, and potassium sorbate (preservative).
What are Vietnamese premade rice sheets also called?
Premade rice sheets come in many names, especially when translated from Vietnamese to English. They are often called:
- banh pho tuoi
- fresh rice noodles
- rice sheets
- fresh rice sheets
- fresh rice paper
Are fresh rice noodle sheets and rice paper the same?
Fresh rice noodle sheets and rice paper are not the same product. While both are generally square, made from rice, and are flexible sheets, rice noodle sheets are a thicker and more pliable and generally served warm. Rice paper is stored dried and generally soaked right before serving.
This is what fresh rice noodles look like:
This is what rice paper looks like:
As you can see, they are completely different from one another.
Are premade fresh rice noodle sheets as good as making it from scratch?
Just like anything else, making rice noodle sheets from scratch is the best way to make this dish. However, if you have a busy schedule, buying premade fresh rice noodle sheets is a great alternative as long as you don't heat the sheets for too long.
The premade fresh rice noodle sheets are just as chewy and soft!
What else can you use premade fresh rice noodle sheets for?
You can use these sheets to make banh cuon recipe as well! Banh cuon is another version of banh uot, except it has filling inside.
Find out all about the differences between banh cuon and banh uot.
Asian Grocery Store Shopping List for Cheater Banh Uot
If you have never checked out an Asian market before or are intimidated by even going to one, don't! It is an amazing market that once you figure out what to get, you'll realize how inexpensive ingredients are as well as how vast the selection is. To get you started, here are some links to help you out.
- Going to an Asian Grocery Store for the first time
- Best Asian snacks you need to grab at your local Asian grocer
As always, I have an Asian market shopping list for you so that you can ensure you are grabbing ingredients you don't find at your local western grocer.
Jar of Fried Shallots
These generally come in a jar and will pretty much last you the entire year. You can probably use them in a green bean casserole as an alternative to fried onions, and it would be just as tasty!
You'll want to make sure you grab some Squid brand fish sauce if you don't already have nuoc mam handy. Nuoc mam is a MUST for this.
Cha Lua or Gio Lua (Vietnamese Pork Meatloaf)
This is found in the frozen aisle. They look like cylindrical rolls that are wrapped and encased in aluminum foil or banana leaves. There are a lot of flavored versions, which include spicing up the ham roll. I generally choose the plain Vietnamese pork meatloaf because I find that the nuoc mam provides the spicy kick I need.
This is generally used as a topping.
If you are wanting to make this recipe vegetarian, which is easy to do for this recipe, you can omit this. You'll have to also modify the nuoc mam recipe because the base is made out of fish sauce.
Thai basil is not the same as regular basil that you find in a regular grocer. Thai basil has a different tone and flavor to it. You'll find this in the herb section. You'll know it's Thai basil with it's dark purple stem.
Vietnamese mint provides the flavor and spice as a topping over the rice noodle sheets. These are found in the herb aisle as well (near all the refrigerated items).
While you can find bean sprouts at your western or local grocer, I tend to make my own bean sprouts. It's fresh and I know it's been rinsed appropriately. Making your own bean sprouts is quite easy, but it does take some meal planning in order to know when to start sprouting them an when to serve (it's almost a 2-3 day lead time).
Banh Uot with Premade Rice Noodle Sheet Recipe
This is a recipe that I use over and over again. Often, I really don't want to have to make the batter from scratch because it's too messy. Making banh uot also requires you to use a special steamer for the batter. If you use a skillet, it often turns out to be a thicker rice noodle sheet.
In some of these pictures, I did not add the herbs in there. The toppings are basically a free for all, you can add as much or as little toppings as you'd like. The three main stars of the show are the rice noodle sheets, the fried shallots, pork meatloaf, and the nuoc mam that is generally drizzled all over it.
Ingredients for Vietnamese Steamed Rice Rolls with Premade Noodle Sheets
- Package of rice noodle sheets, thawed
- Nuoc mam, prepared (recipe here)
- 1 cup of bean sprouts (directions on sprouting your own)
- 1 cup of fried shallots
- 1 bunch of Thai basil, rinsed
- 1 bunch of Vietnamese mint, rinsed
- 1 bunch of cilantro
- 1 roll of pork meat loaf, sliced
Instructions for Easy Banh Uot
Step 1 - Prepare the Toppings
You'll want to prepare the toppings for this dish. While I know this seems really obvious, it does take a bit to prepare. You'll need to make the nuoc mam, thoroughly wash the bean sprouts, set out the fried shallots, rinse the Thai basil, Vietnamese mint, cilantro, and slice the pork meat loaf into thin slices.
The toppings should be ready to go before even thinking about heating up the rice noodles.
Step 2 - Prepare the Rice Noodle Sheets Per Package Directions
Follow the directions on the premade rice noodle sheet package.
If you have a package that comes in plastic bag, generally, you'll want to NOT cut open the bag and allow the rice noodle sheets to steam inside of the bag (kind of like steaming bagged vegetables).
Put it in the microwave for about 1 to 3 minutes, longer for a softer, more pliable rice noodle sheets.
Step 3 - Fold and Roll the Steamed Rice Noodle Sheets
Carefully, remove the heated rice noodle sheets from the package. It will be really hot, so ensure you take care in removing them.
Using a spatula or flat plastic utensil, ply one of the sheets off onto a clean plate. Roll the sheet. Continue this so that each plate serving has about 4-5 sheets per plate.
Step 4 - Add the Toppings and serve.
Add the fried shallots first. Next, lay out the sliced pork ham rolls on top of the shallots. Serve with the Thai basil, bean sprouts, Vietnamese mint on the side as accompaniments along with a ¼ cup of nuoc mam sauce to drizzle.
For presentation, banh uot is often served over a bed of shredded iceberg lettuce in restaurants. You can do this too. However, authentic Vietnamese banh uot is generally served with vegetables and herbs on top.
You can also follow this recipe for filled steamed rice rolls (called banh cuon) which includes minced wood ear and seasoned ground pork for an even more filling dish.
Serving Banh Uot Rolled and Steamed Rice Noodle Sheets
Steamed banh uot rice noodle sheets should be presented with shallots and ham rolls with an accompaniment of fresh herbs along with nuoc mam (sweet chili fish sauce) to drizzle over.
Preserving the Rice Noodle Sheets
After heating the package, the rice noodle sheets if covered with plastic wrap should last another 24 hours, but not much longer than that.
Delicious banh uot doesn't require a fancy steamer on a busy weeknight. If you are not wanting to make the batter, using premade steamed rice noodle sheets can be purchased to make an absolutely delicious meal that your entire family will love.
More Easy Vietnamese Recipes You'll Love
- Vietnamese Banh Uot – Steamed Rice Sheet Recipe
- Vietnamese Banh Cuon
- Instant Pot Banh Tet Recipe
- Chai Goi – Vietnamese Fried Egg Rolls
- Authentic Vietnamese Pho