Slow Cooker Beef Pho Recipe

Who knew making pho could be so easy?! It’s October now and I love breathing in the crisper air during my morning walk. Pumpkins of all shapes and sizes are out and seem to be making appearances here and there. Each year I tell myself that I’ll decorate a pumpkin, and each year I forget to do it. In addition to all things pumpkin, one thing that I notice with Fall is that slow cooker recipes are all over Pinterest and Facebook. I have to admit I dusted mine off back in August even though the weather was still perfect for popsicles.

Even though it’s October, the weather is still somewhat warm these days. We hit 85F last week, but that doesn’t stop me from enjoying pho! As someone who enjoys noodles so much, pho is on my dinner list at least once a month. It took me a while to gather up the courage to try making my own pho but making pho is not as difficult as you think. In fact, is very easy, and is so much tastier than what you would get at a restaurant!

What the Pho?

Before you dump everything in a slow cooker, there are three things that you need to do:

  1. Broil the onion and ginger to give the broth a wonderful fragrant and natural sweet flavor
  2. Toast the spices such as coriander seeds, cloves, cinnamon, star anise, and cardamom pod to get the best flavor from each one.
  3. Pre-boil the beef bones, preferably knuckles. It is the best kind for making soup and will give you a rich and thick flavor. Pre-boiling the bones helps to clean them and get rid of nasty scum that may be on them.

When those three steps are completed, simply dump everything to your slow cooker along with the rest of your ingredients and let it cook on low for 8 hours on low or on high for 4 hours. Then, all you have to do is come home + enjoy it! Isn’t it awesome coming home to a comforting dish like this?

I like my pho-bulous pho with thin sliced meat such as flank steak, London broil, or sirloin. Most Asian stores sell beef thinly sliced beef for shabu-shabu so you just need to dip it in hot broth when you’re about to eat. You can also add beef meatballs to your pho. As for the noodles, you can use dried flat rice noodles which are available in most markets.

Pho-bulous pho also comes with condiments. Two main condiments are hoisin sauce and Sriracha. I also always love adding fresh herbs to my pho such as fresh mint, cilantro, basil, bean sprouts, jalapeño slices, and limes.

Oh yum! Just writing about this has made me craving another bowl.

Slow Cooker Beef Pho Recipe Recipe

Servings 1


  • 1 large yellow onion, slice into ½” rounds
  • 1 4-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and halved lengthwise
  • 1½ lb. beef bones (knuckle)
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • 6 cups water
  • 7 tbs. fish sauce or to taste
  • 1 tsp. sugar

Pho Spices:

  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 tsp. whole coriander
  • 3 whole star anise
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 1 cardamom pod

Pho Bowls:

  • 16-oz. Dried flat rice noodles, cook according to the instruction on packaging
  • ½ lb. thinly sliced flank, london broil, sirloin
  • 10-oz beef meatballs, cut into half

Pho Condiments:

  • Lime, cut into wedges
  • Fresh herbs: cilantro. Basil, mint
  • Jalapeno, sliced
  • Beansprouts
  • Hoisin sauce
  • Sriracha


  1. Heat the broiler to 400F. Line a baking sheet with foil.
  2. Arrange the onion slices and ginger on the baking sheet and broil until charred, about 10 minutes. Add to slow cooker.
  3. Bring a large pot with water to boil over high heat. Add the beef bones and boil for 10 minutes. Discard water and rinse bones briefly. Add to slow cooker.
  4. Heat a frying pan on medium-low heat and add the spices. Toast until fragrant, about 3-4 minutes. Add to slow cooker.
  5. When you have onion, beef bones, and spice in slow cooker; add beef broth and water. Cover and set to cook on low for 8 hours. Taste and season with fish sauce and sugar when done.
  6. When you’re ready to eat, prep the rest of the ingredients for the Pho bowls.
  7. Distribute the noodles, beef balls, and thin steak slices evenly amongst the bowls. Ladle the stock into each bowl. The hot stock should cook the thinly sliced steak. Serve with pho condiments.

Have you had pho before? What are the ingredients you normally add to your pho?