Giò Sống or Vietnamese uncooked pork meat paste is the base to the traditional Vietnamese pork sausages (Chả Lụa or Giò Lụa) used in everything from the iconic Bánh Mì sandwich to the fan-favorite Bún Bò Huế noodle soup. You can also use this easy and versatile pork paste for meatballs, rice paper rolls, and more!
What is Vietnamese Pork Paste (Giò Sống)?
This Vietnamese raw pork paste is most commonly used to make Chả Lụa or Giò Lụa, a traditional ham or sausage you can spot in a lot of Vietnamese restaurants and households. Have you ever had an authentic Bánh Mì sandwich with delicate yet flavorful slices of ham inside? Those are made from Giò Sống!
But it doesn’t stop there. Vietnamese pork paste is also the key to many other Vietnamese dishes such as Bánh Mì and Bún Bò Huế, which are staples of Vietnamese restaurants, and lesser known dishes such Bánh Dày – sticky rice cakes served during New Years – and Bánh Cuốn or steamed rice rolls.
Once you know how to make your own homemade Giò Sống, you’ll be able to elevate your dishes and really bring out the authentic flavors of Vietnamese cuisine in the comfort of your own home.
How to Make Vietnamese Pork Paste (Giò Sống)
It only takes seven ingredients and a few easy techniques to make authentic Vietnamese pork paste.
To start, combine sugar, baking powder, corn starch, cold water, fish sauce, and vegetable oil in a bowl. Add this mixture to your ground pork and massage it into the meat until well-combined.
Next, you’ll store the pork meat into freezer bags to get them nice and chilled for the next step. To do this, divide the meat into two gallon-sized freezer bags, spreading it out evenly so the meat can cool quicker.
Keep them in the freezer for two hours, long enough to make the pork meat very cold without freezing. Make sure not to skip this step, because it prevents the fat from melting as you grind the meat and will help create a more even texture for the final product.
Once the meat is ready, add it to a food processor one pound at a time. Start by processing the meat at low speed for 1 minute, then move up to high speed for 2-3 minutes. Now your Giò Sống is ready!
What to Do With Giò Sống or Chả Lụa
To make your Giò Sống into Chả Lụa or Vietnamese sausage, wrap it tightly in banana leaves to create a cylinder shape then cook it vertically in boiling water. A large batch will usually take about an hour to cook.
From there, you can slice the sausage or ham and add it to a variety of Vietnamese dishes. The most popular choices are Bánh Mì and Bún Bò Huế. Try adding it as a topping the next time you make pho and taste the difference!
I also use the uncooked pork paste in my Chạo Tôm or Vietnamese Fried Shrimp Paste recipe. It’s a fragrant and flavorful appetizer that’s sure to be a family favorite.
For a simpler preparation, you can also pan-fry the slices to make Cha Chien or Vietnamese Fried Ham. Serve it over rice with some Nước Chấm and enjoy!
Vietnamese Pork Paste Recipe | Giò Sống
- 2 lbs Ground Pork
- 3 tsp Sugar
- 1 tsp Baking Powder
- 2 tsp Mushroom Seasoning
- 6 TBSP Cold Water
- 2.5 TBSP Fish Sauce
- 4 TBSP Vegetable Oil
- Combine all ingredients.
- Add to ground pork and massage them into the meat.
- Divide meat in 2 X gallon size freezer bags.
- Flatten the meat out in the bag and put in the freezer for 2-3 hours.
- Once meat is very cold (but not frozen), add to standing mixer. Do it 1 lbs at a time.
- Process meat at low speed for 1 minutes.
- Process meat at medium speed for 3-4 minutes.
- Process meat at high speed for another 3-4 minutes or until desired texture and consistency.