Banh mi sandwich


This banh mi sandwich was created when my friend Anne went to Harvard for a while and I worked flights to Boston a lot to hang out with her.

It was only a 24 hour layover, so our ritual was having breakfast at a yoga school café. We basically worked our way through their whole menu, and everything we tried was great, but there was this one combination that turned out to be my favourite: it was the banh mi sandwich and the hyper monkey smoothie.

So I created something similar at home in my fusion kitchen and I’m very happy with the result. You can find the my version of the smoothie here as snickers shake with espresso

What is a banh mi sandwich?

Banh mi sandwiches are popular street food in Vietnam and have gained popularity in many other parts of the world due to their delicious combination of flavors and textures. The fusion of French and Vietnamese culinary elements in banh mi sandwiches is a result of Vietnam’s colonial history, where French baguettes and culinary techniques were adopted and adapted by the local culture. They can be found in various regional variations and with different fillings and toppings.

vegan banh mi sandwiches

What do you need to make a vegan banh mi sandwich?

  • Bread

Traditionally, the banh mi sandwich is made with a rice baguette and you can sometimes buy some from Vietnamese restaurants. If you can’t get that, you can use French Baguette. I used soft hot dog rolls for these pictures and that worked quite well too.

  • Smoked tofu

Smoked tofu is a variety of tofu that has been flavored with a smoky taste through the process of smoking. You can use firm white tofu if you can’t find it.

  • Vegan mayo

If you can’t find vegan mayo, you can also make it yourself. I like this recipe by vegan heaven.

  • Sriracha sauce

Sriracha sauce is a type of hot chili sauce that originated in Thailand. You can find it in Asian grocery stores and bigger supermarkets.

  • Smoked paprika powder

Smoked paprika powder, also called Pimenton de la Vera, is a spice derived from dried and smoked peppers, adding a distinct smoky flavor to dishes. It is commonly used in Spanish and Hungarian cuisine, and we use it in this recipe to give the smoked tofu some extra oomph.

  • Pickled pink onions

To make pink onions, you need 2 large red onions, 120ml apple cider vinegar, 240ml water, 1 teaspoon sea salt, and 1 tablespoon maple syrup. Cut the onions into half rings and place them in a clean container (500ml) with a lid. Heat up the apple cider vinegar, water, sea salt and maple syrup (doesn’t have to boil) and pour over the onions. Put the lid on and let it cool down. Then, put the jar in the fridge. You can already eat the onions, but they will have their most beautiful color after about 48 hours. They should last for approximately 2 weeks.

pickled pink onions


Banh mi sandwich


A delicious vegan version of the Vietnamese banh mi sandwich – one of my favourite breakfast ideas!
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Brunch
Cuisine Vietnamese inspired
Servings 2 Sandwiches

Recommended Equipment


  • 1 carrot and a piece of cucumber
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 200 g smoked tofu
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika powder Pimentón de la vera
  • 100 ml vegan mayonnaise
  • baguette rolls
  • pickled pink onions see blogpost
  • cilantro
  • salt and pepper


  • First, gather all your ingredients and prepare them in the right amounts. That makes it so much easier and more fun and you're less likely to forget anything 🙂
  • Slice carrots and cucumbers into thin slices. This works well with a vegetable peeler.
  • Mix carrots, cucumber, brown sugar, and rice vinegar thoroughly and set aside.
  • Cut the smoked tofu into 3-5 mm thick slices; thinner is better. Heat some vegetable oil in a pan. Fry the tofu slices in the pan with a bit of olive oil over medium to high heat for 5 minutes.
  • Combine maple syrup, soy sauce, rice vinegar, and smoked paprika powder into a sauce.
  • Flip the tofu slices and fry for another 5 minutes, lowering the heat, then brush them with about half of the sauce. This works especially well with a brush. Stir the tofu slices in the pan and transfer it to a plate.
  • Mix mayonnaise and Sriracha sauce with the other half of the sauce.
  • Cut one side of the baguette open and spread the sandwich sauce on the inside from both sides. Layer it with tofu, pickled vegetables, pink onions, and cilantro leaves, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and you're ready to enjoy!
Keyword packed lunch
Did you enjoy this recipe?A 5 star rating would mean the world to me and I always love to see your pictures on instagram @flymetotheveganbuffet

You love sandwiches? Check out my blogpost “10 ideas for your new favourite sandwich“!

5 from 2 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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