Steamed Rice Coconut Cake with Ground Pork (Bánh Đúc Mặn )

Recipe By: Lindsey D
Experience Level: Easy

The following Vietnamese food recipe will knock you out of the park. It can look very intimidating to do but is by no means difficult. The flavor profile is a perfect balance between creamy, savory, citrusy-sweet dipping sauce, and crunchiness of the shiitake mushroom with the fragrant fried shallots. I feel like this is a healthy dish really, because the portions are so small with minimal carbs and meat ratio. I can eat about upwards of 5 of these with no issues. If you haven’t guessed already, yes, I am talking about Bánh Đúc Mặn or sometimes referred to as Bánh Đúc Nóng since it is served hot.

Bánh Đúc Mặn is soft coconut milk steamed rice cakes served with ground pork and fried shallot. This is also a very common street food in Vietnam and can be eaten throughout the day. It can be an appetizer, lunch, brunch, or dinner entrée. It is so transformative and versatile as comfort food. Banh Duc Man has many components of a typical Vietnamese food dish/cuisine, one of which being the sweet and sour fish sauce or nước chấm dipping sauce.

There are two versions of the Steamed Rice Coconut Cake with Ground Pork. The recipe today is the Northern Vietnamese version of Bánh Đúc Mặn, and it is phenomenal. Your jaw will drop when you are done cooking and wait ‘til you see the food presentation. I was in awe when I first saw this food photo.

Thank you to Karen Quế for submitting this amazing Vietnamese Steamed Rice Coconut Cake with Ground Pork recipe. Unlike the Central Park Karen, this Karen is the one I can stand firmly behind and is in many ways the total opposite of the other infamous Karen. Without further ado, here is the recipe. Please make sure to prep and make the fish sauce dip the night before. If you make it the day of, please reserve a couple of hours for it to sit in the refrigerator for the best taste.

Recipe & Photos: Karen Quế Phạm

Prep Time
25 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
2 servings

How to Make Fish Sauce Dip

Step 1
Combined everything and stir until everything is incorporated.
Step 2
Season and adjust to taste. Set aside and put it in the refrigerator overnight or at least a few hours until served for the best taste.


How to Make Meat Topping

Step 1
In a heated pan, add oil then fry garlic and shallots. Then add in ground pork. Stirring pork till cooked, then add in all mushrooms.
Step 2
Add seasonings and adjust to taste.


How to Make Rice Cake

Step 1
Add rice flour, tapioca starch, water, and salt to the pot. Cook and stir consistently over high heat until boiling. Then turn to low heat.
Step 2
When slightly thickened add in coconut milk and oil.
Step 3
Keep stirring until everything is blended smoothly. Cook for about a minute.
Step 4
If a softer texture is desired, add more coconut milk or water. Pour into mold. Let cool before taking out of the mold. You can also pour into individual serving bowls.
Step 5
To assemble and serve the Vietnamese Steamed Rice Coconut Cake with Ground Pork (Bánh Đúc Mặn ), if your Banh Duc has a firm texture, the cooling process will turn it into the exact mold. You will need to cut this into bite-size rectangular pieces.
Step 6
Topped off the creamy coconut cakes with all the toppings prepared with chili, a sprig of cilantro, and fried shallots. Set aside the fish sauce in a separate bowl or add it to your own bowl so the flavors can seep through and meld together. Enjoy!