Pho is one of my favourite cold-weather foods. In my mind, the broth has unexplainable healing powers. Some people have their go-to chicken noodle soup for chilly days or when they are feeling under the weather – I have pho.
While I usually order in from one of the various pho restaurants in town (there are too many to count), making slow cooker chicken pho means I can stay in my pajamas, save a little cash, and avoid the blustery cold weather. Score.
It’s easy to make the base of this pho in the slow cooker. Just combine chicken broth, brown sugar, and a variety of spices including star anise, cloves, ginger, lemongrass, and cinnamon. Add chicken thighs and breasts to the crock and cook on HIGH for 2 ½ hours or on LOW for 4 to 5 hours until the chicken is cooked and tender.
Remove the chicken from the crock and strain the broth using a cheesecloth or a fine mesh sieve and a colander. Pour the broth back into the crock, add rice noodles, and continue to cook until the noodles are soft and plump.
Slice or shred the chicken breasts and add to the pho broth and noodles. If you want to enjoy your pho just like you would at your favourite restaurant, serve with plenty of toppings. We topped ours with chili peppers, chili sauce, Thai basil, bean sprouts, and hoisin sauce but you could add extra chilis and sriracha for added spice or even extra steamed vegetables like mushrooms, carrots, or broccoli.
Not only is this soup easy to make in your slow cooker, you can wow your family or friends with the presentation. Whether you are eating a restorative bowl in your coziest pajamas or having this Vietnamese noodle soup for a weeknight dinner, you’ll soon pho-rget you ever had it any other way.