Vietnam New Year Food: Festive Flavors to Savor!

Vietnamese New Year, known as Tết, is a time of immense celebration and joy across the country. And at the heart of this festive period lies the irresistible aroma of Vietnam New Year food.

For visitors fortunate enough to be in Vietnam during the Tết festival, the opportunity to indulge in the flavors of Vietnam’s traditional cuisine is a true delight. From savoring the savory dishes bursting with rich flavors to relishing the sweetness of the festive desserts, travelers can immerse themselves in the unique culinary experiences and vibrant traditions of Vietnam New Year food. So, join in the jubilant festivities and savor the distinctive flavors of Tết.

See more: Exploring Vietnam’s Delectable Food

Vietnamese New Year Culinary Customs and Traditions

Vietnam’s Lunar New Year, known as Tết, is a time of celebration and feasting, and the traditional dishes served during this festive period are as rich in flavor as they are in cultural significance. Families come together to enjoy a variety of special dishes that have been passed down through generations, representing the country’s culinary customs and traditions.

One of the most iconic dishes of Vietnamese New Year is bánh chưng, a savory cake made of sticky rice and pork. Its square shape symbolizes the earth, while the mung beans and pork represent the sky and the people. The preparation of bánh chưng requires great care and attention to detail, as the ingredients are wrapped in banana leaves and boiled or steamed for several hours. This traditional dish is believed to bring luck and prosperity in the coming year.

banh chung vietnam
Source: Internet

Other savory dishes commonly served during Tết include mứt (candied fruits), giò (Vietnamese sausage), and thịt kho (braised pork). These dishes not only delight the taste buds but also hold symbolic meanings, such as wishes for a sweet and prosperous year or the importance of family unity.

Cakes, candies, and jams are essential items during the Tet holiday in Vietnam
Cakes, candies, and jams are essential items during the Tet holiday in Vietnam – Source: Internet

No New Year feast would be complete without a selection of sweet treats. Bánh tét, a cylindrical sticky rice cake filled with mung beans, pork, and other ingredients, is a must-have during Tết. Its shape represents the sun and moon, symbolizing the wish for a prosperous year ahead. Other popular desserts include bánh dừa (coconut cake), bánh bèo (steamed rice cake), and bánh it (rice cake with mung bean).

The flavors of Vietnam’s traditional Lunar New Year dishes are truly unique and unforgettable. Each bite of these festive foods is a celebration of the country’s rich culinary heritage and a reminder of the importance of family, togetherness, and prosperity.

Discover more Vietnam Food Festival here.

Celebrating Tết in Vietnam: Cultural Experiences and Festivities

Tết, the traditional Vietnamese New Year, is a time of celebration and joy, and it offers a plethora of cultural experiences and festivities. One of the highlights of this festive period is indulging in the unique flavors of traditional Vietnamese New Year food, which brings families together to celebrate the holiday in a truly special way.

Each traditional dish served during Tết holds its own cultural significance and adds to the overall experience. For instance, Bánh chưng, a square-shaped sticky rice cake filled with pork, mung beans, and other ingredients, is not only a treat for the taste buds but also a representation of the earth. Its eye-catching presentation and meticulous preparation make it a centerpiece of the New Year feast.

Another delightful dish is xôi gấc, a vibrant red sticky rice dish served with coconut milk and sugar. This dish is believed to bring luck and prosperity in the new year, and its striking color adds to the festive ambiance.

Gac sticky rice is an indispensable dish during the Tet holiday in Vietnam
Gac sticky rice is an indispensable dish during the Tet holiday in Vietnam – Source: Internet

Celebrating Tết in Vietnam offers a unique opportunity to immerse oneself in the rich cultural traditions of the holiday. Whether you are traveling to Vietnam or celebrating at home, enjoying the traditional Vietnamese New Year food is an essential part of the experience. It allows you to appreciate the flavors, textures, and symbolic meanings behind each dish while participating in the time-honored customs of the Vietnamese people.

From the iconic banh chung to the delightful canh chua, the traditional dishes of Vietnam New Year food offer a delightful mix of flavors and textures that reflect the country’s rich culinary heritage. By savoring these dishes, you not only experience the unique tastes of Vietnam but also gain a deeper understanding of the cultural significance and traditions associated with Tết.

Vietnamese Pork Roll is also a familiar dish in Tet holiday.

Exploring Local Markets and Food Streets during Tết

To truly immerse yourself in the unique flavors of Vietnam during Tết, there is no better way than to venture into the bustling local markets and food streets. These vibrant hubs of activity offer a treasure trove of culinary delights, allowing you to fully experience the holiday season in all its glory.

During Tết, the local markets come alive with the enticing aromas of traditional New Year foods. As you wander through the market stalls, you’ll discover an array of mouthwatering dishes that are deeply rooted in cultural significance. From the savory delights of banh chung and banh tet, which are sticky rice cakes filled with flavorful ingredients, to the sweetness of chung cakes and xoi, these traditional dishes are a cornerstone of any festive celebration. Each bite is a tantalizing blend of flavors and textures that showcase the culinary heritage of Vietnam.

It’s important to note that during Tết, the local markets and restaurants will be closed from the first day until the third day of the Lunar New Year. This is a time for rest and togetherness with family. After that period, they will gradually reopen at different times depending on each location. So, make sure to plan your visit accordingly to ensure you can fully enjoy the culinary delights of the local markets and food streets.

In addition to the classic New Year dishes, the local markets also offer a wide selection of festive snacks that are sure to delight your taste buds. Indulge in sticky rice cakes, which come in various shapes and flavors, or sample the vibrant assortment of candied fruits that add a burst of sweetness to the festivities. Don’t forget to try the sweetened mung beans, a popular treat during Tết that symbolizes wishes for a prosperous year ahead.

Exploring the local markets and food streets during Tết is a culinary adventure like no other. It’s an opportunity to engage with the vibrant atmosphere, interact with local vendors, and discover the diverse range of flavors that make Vietnamese cuisine so extraordinary.

Experience the excitement of Vietnamese cuisine with balut.


The Vietnamese New Year is a time of celebration and joy that is highlighted by unique and flavorful dishes. As foreign tourists, it is a great opportunity to immerse ourselves in the culture and culinary experiences of Vietnam while visiting during this time of year. From the vibrant decorations to the festive traditions, Vietnamese New Year is an experience that will not be forgotten. So why not take the time to savor the unique flavors of Vietnamese New Year food and create lasting memories of your travels?