This Easy Veggie Pho Is Your Cure for Cold Backcountry Nights

This nutrient- and protein-packed dish rivals what you can get at your favorite Vietnamese noodle restaurant back home.

Photo: Chris Mayhew

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  • 7 oz. extra firm tofu
  • 4 cups fresh broccoli florets (about 1 head of broccoli)
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 2 cups shredded cabbage (coleslaw mix works fine)
  • 1 small yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 bunch of green onions, chopped, tops only
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced white mushrooms
  • 4 oz. thin rice noodles


  • 4 tsp. bouillon powder
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp dried cilantro
  • 1/4 tsp. ground coriander
  • Dash ground cloves
  • 2 packets soy sauce
  • 4 packets hoisin sauce
  • 1/4 tsp. Sriracha (optional)


At Home

1. Freeze the tofu for at least a day and then defrost it overnight in the refrigerator—this will allow it to dehydrate properly. Once the tofu has thawed, drain all the liquid and cut into ½-inch cubes. Place the prepared tofu on dehydrator trays. If the pieces are crumbly, use mesh tray liners.

2. Dehydrate tofu at 135°F (57°C). Every 2 hours, rotate the trays and move the pieces around to break up any clumps. The tofu is done when it’s very firm and dry to the touch, which may take 4 to 8 hours or longer, depending on your kitchen’s humidity. It should break in half easily, rather than bending.

3. Allow the tofu to cool for 30 to 60 minutes, then package in an air-tight container.

4. Bring a stockpot of water to a boil. Add the broccoli, carrots, and cabbage. Wait for the water to return to a boil, then cook the vegetable mix for 3 to 4 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.

5. Spread the vegetables onto dehydrator trays. Place the sliced yellow onion, green onions, and mushrooms onto separate trays. Dehydrate vegetables at 125°F (52°C) for 4 to 8 hours or until completely dry.

6. Once the vegetables are dry, pack them with tofu, rice noodles, and dry both ingredients in a container or zip-top bag. Store sauces separately. 

In Camp

1. Bring 32 ounces of water to a boil.

2. Turn off the stove and add the soup mixture, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, and Sriracha. Mix well, cover, and let sit for 5 minutes.

3. Stir occasionally to make sure the noodles are completely covered with water. Once fully rehydrated, stir and enjoy.

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