Vegetarian Banh Mi Sandwich





Who doesn’t love street food? To me, street food IS comfort food.

The Banh Mi Sandwich is no different. It’s a Vietnamese street food with bold, fresh flavors in a crunchy baguette. Traditionally, this sandwich is made with layers of pork (or other meat), pickled carrot and daikon radishes, cilantro and some yummy sauces all packed inside a crunchy baguette. The baguette seems like a strange choice for Asian food but it is a remnant of the French influence from the French Colonial days of Vietnam.

This sandwich can easily be made vegetarian by swapping out the pork for marinated tofu or some other faux meat product. So that’s how this recipe was born. I really love that all of the elements of this sandwich can be prepared ahead. When you’re ready to eat,  all you have to do is assemble the sandwich and enjoy.

I have a couple of tips:

  1. In this recipe, I’ve used marinated tofu, but when I’m feeling less ambitious or short on time, I’ve been known to use the Sizzling Szechuan Beefless Tips from Gardein.  YUM! Cook per package instructions and layer in the Banh Mi just you would with the marinated tofu.
  2. If you can’t get your hands on an actual Vietnamese Banh Mi baguette (God knows I’ve not been successful in that department), then you’re looking for a light and crispy baguette. Stay away from country breads or sour dough breads. You may even toast the bread to make it feel lighter.
  3. Instead of Greek  yogurt, traditionally you’d use mayo. Feel free to sub that back in for a more authentic tasting Banh Mi. We don’t keep mayo in the house, so….no mayo in my recipes.
  4. The order of the assembly kind of matters to the taste. (Though, for the life of me, I don’t know why I took a picture of the one sandwich that I didn’t assemble correctly!)
  5. Not totally related, but the marinade I use for the tofu also makes a GREAT Asian style salad dressing. If you’re using it as a dressing, add 1 tbs water before shaking it up and pouring it on 😉
  6. REALLY tasty with a side of pho broth.
Nutrition Facts
2 servings per container
Serving size 1 sandwich

Amount per serving
Calories 464
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 11.9g 15%
Saturated Fat 2.5g 13%
Trans Fat g
Cholesterol 37mg 13%
Sodium mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 60g 20%
Dietary Fiber 6g 20%
Total Sugars 7g
Includes g Added Sugars 0%
Protein 31g

Vitamin D 0mcg 0%
Calcium 62mg 5%
Iron 13mg 73%
Potassium mg 0%
Vitamin A 4%
Vitamin B-6 5%
Copper 16%
Folate 7%
Magnesium 18%
Manganese 50%
Phosphorus 16%
Selenium 20%
Thiamin 9%
Zinc 9%

The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
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1 package extra firm tofu
2 tbs Soy Sauce
1 tsp Dijon Mustard
1 tsp Hoisin Sauce (may omit)
1-2 tsp grated ginger
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 tsp honey
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1/3 cup shredded Daikon Radish
1/3 cup shredded Carrot
2 tbs Greek yogurt
1 tsp Maggi Liquid Seasoning (if not available, soy sauce or hoisin sauce, or nearly any salty Asian sauce could work)
1 cucumber, thinly sliced
2 tbs cilantro
1 jalapeno
2 fresh, crunchy baguettes (as described above)
* Click to ingredient to choose one


If you're going to use a pre-prepared tofu/faux meat product, then skip the steps to marinate and grill your own tofu. Instead, prepare that product per package instructions and layer in the Banh Mi with the other ingredients.
Remove tofu from package. Slice tofu in half horizontally and set aside to drain. I recommend covering them with an absorbent towel and placing a flat heavy object like a pan or some plates on top to help remove extra moisture.
While the tofu sits, combine the marinade/dressing of Soy Sauce, Dijon Mustard, Hoisin Sauce & grated ginger. Shake to combine.
Slice the tofu into 1/4-1/2 inch slices so that you end with tofu rectangles.
Place these to soak in your marinade.
Grate the Daikon Radish and Carrot. I like to use my julienne peeler or spiralizer to get an even, elegant tangle instead using of a hand grater. It makes for a prettier sandwich.
Slice the cucumber.
Combine & mix rice vinegar, honey and red chili flakes.
Place Daikon, Carrot & Cucumber in a bag or container and pour the rice vinegar combination over it. Put this in the fridge for later.
Mix together the yogurt and Maggie Seasoning Sauce. Store this in the fridge as well, until ready to assemble the sandwiches.
Remove the tofu from marinade and grill in a medium-hot non-stick grilling pan or searing pan until the tofu darkens. Do not move the tofu around the pan too much as it will fall apart. Just flip once if you can manage it. You may put more than one in the pan at the same time but allow space between tofu pieces to allow them to cook properly.
Coarsely chop the cilantro and de-seed & slice the jalapeno.
Now all of your elements should be ready. Store these to assemble a sandwich later, or do it right now!
1. Split the bread horizontally.
2. Spread the yogurt (or mayo) spread on the bottom half of the sandwich
3. Place the marinated tofu or faux meat on top of the spread.
4. Then layer the pickled Daikon/Carrot and the cucumber.
5. Top these with a layer of the cilantro and jalapeno.
6. If you like it spicy, drizzle a bit of Sriracha on top before returning the top of the baguette.
Try it with a side of Pho Broth. YUMMY!