Ultimate Vietnamese Okra Dau Bap Recipe: Crispy & Flavorful

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Written By Hot Thai Restaurant

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Imagine diving into a dish that’s as vibrant and fresh as a morning in Vietnam. That’s exactly what you’ll experience with the Vietnamese Okra Dau Bap recipe. This simple yet flavorful dish captures the essence of Vietnamese cooking, focusing on freshness and light, tantalizing flavors. It’s a popular side dish that pairs beautifully with grilled meats or a steaming bowl of rice.

Okra, or “dau bap” in Vietnamese, is often overlooked in Western cuisine but is a staple in many Vietnamese homes. This recipe will show you how to transform the humble okra into a delightful treat with just a few ingredients. Whether you’re a long-time fan or a curious newcomer, the crisp texture and zesty seasoning of this dish are sure to win you over.


Prepare to savor the vibrant and fresh flavors of Vietnamese cooking with this simple yet delicious okra recipe. Gathering your ingredients is the first step to creating this delightful dish.

Fresh Ingredients

  • 500 grams of okra (dau bap), stems trimmed and sliced lengthwise
  • 2 medium-sized tomatoes, diced
  • 1 large red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

Pantry Essentials

  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes or 1 fresh red chili, sliced (for a spicy kick)
  • 1 tablespoon roasted peanuts, crushed (for added crunch)
  • A few sprigs of fresh mint (for a refreshing note)

Required Tools and Equipment

To create the Vietnamese Okra Dau Bap dish perfectly, you need the right tools and equipment. Here’s a handy list to ensure you’re well-prepared for this culinary adventure.

Basic Kitchen Tools

  1. Chef’s Knife: For efficiently chopping vegetables and herbs.
  2. Cutting Board: A sturdy board is essential to handle all the slicing and dicing.
  3. Skillet or Wok: A large skillet or wok is ideal to sauté the okra and other ingredients evenly.
  4. Measuring Cups and Spoons: To accurately measure your liquids and dry ingredients.
  5. Mixing Bowls: Useful for mixing your vegetables and dressings separately before combining them.
  6. Spatula: To stir and flip the vegetables while sautéing.
  1. Mortar and Pestle: To crush the roasted peanuts and chili flakes for a fresh, aromatic topping.
  2. Lime Squeezer: Ensures you get every drop of juice out of your limes for the perfect flavor balance.

Before you begin, make sure your tools are clean and within easy reach. Preparing your equipment beforehand not only saves time but also makes your cooking process smoother and more enjoyable.

Preparation Steps

Now that your tools are ready, let’s dive into the preparation of this vibrant Vietnamese Okra Dau Bap dish. Follow these steps to ensure your ingredients are perfectly prepped for cooking.

Cleaning and Chopping

  1. Begin by washing your okra under cold running water. Pat them dry with a kitchen towel to remove any excess moisture. This step is crucial as it prevents the okra from becoming slimy during cooking.
  2. Trim the ends of each okra pod and slice them diagonally into half-inch pieces. This not only enhances the visual appeal but also allows them to cook evenly.
  3. Peel the red onion and garlic. Finely chop the onion and mince the garlic. These will form the aromatic base of your dish.
  4. Wash and dice the tomatoes into half-inch cubes, ensuring they are uniform in size for even cooking.
  5. Roughly chop the cilantro, including the tender stems, which are packed with flavor. Set aside a few leaves for garnishing your finished dish.
  1. To enhance the okra’s flavor, consider marinating it. In a medium bowl, mix two tablespoons of lime juice, one tablespoon of fish sauce, and a teaspoon of sugar until the sugar dissolves.
  2. Add the sliced okra to the bowl and gently toss to coat. Let the okra marinate for about 15 minutes. This step infuses the okra with a tangy depth that brightens the dish.
  3. Drain the okra before cooking, reserving the marinade to add during the cooking process if desired. This ensures that the okra is flavorful yet not overly wet when added to the skillet.

Cooking Directions

Now that you’ve prepped your okra and other ingredients, let’s move on to the actual cooking process, which will bring out the fullest flavors of your Vietnamese Okra Dau Bap.

Frying Okra

  1. Heat a large frying pan or wok over medium heat and add about 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil.
  2. Once the oil is hot, gently add the marinated okra to the pan. Spread the okra in an even layer to ensure it cooks uniformly.
  3. Fry the okra for about 5-7 minutes until it turns golden and slightly crispy on the outside. Be sure to stir occasionally to prevent sticking and to ensure even cooking.
  4. Remove the okra from the pan and set aside on a plate lined with paper towels to drain excess oil.
  1. In the same pan, add a little more oil if needed and sauté the chopped red onion and minced garlic over medium heat until they become translucent and fragrant, about 2-3 minutes.
  2. Return the fried okra to the pan and add the chopped tomatoes.
  3. Pour in the reserved marinade that you saved after draining the okra. Stir everything gently to combine.
  4. Cook the mixture for another 3-4 minutes, allowing the tomatoes to soften and meld their flavors with the okra.
  5. Turn off the heat, and sprinkle freshly chopped cilantro over the dish for an added burst of freshness.
  6. Serve hot as a delightful side dish or over rice for a satisfying meal.

Assembling the Dish

After cooking, the next step is to bring all the components together to complete your Vietnamese Okra Dau Bap.

Adding Garnishes

To enhance the flavor and presentation of your dish, it’s time to add garnishes. Sprinkle freshly chopped cilantro over the hot, saucy okra. This not only adds a burst of color but also a fresh, herby flavor that complements the richness of the tomatoes and the depth of the garlic and onions. For an extra touch of texture and zest, consider a squeeze of lime juice over the dish just before serving. This will elevate the tangy notes and make your Vietnamese Okra Dau Bap truly unforgettable. Serve immediately to enjoy the fullest flavors.

Serving Suggestions

After preparing the Vietnamese Okra Dau Bap, how you serve it can enhance the dining experience. Here are a few suggestions to make your meal delightful:

  • Serve Fresh: To capture its best taste and texture, serve the okra immediately after cooking. The okra’s crispness complements the soft textures of the tomatoes and onions beautifully.
  • Over Rice: For a more filling meal, spoon the okra over steamed jasmine rice. The rice will soak up the flavorful sauce from the okra mixture, creating a satisfying and hearty dish.
  • With Protein: Pair the okra with a protein such as grilled chicken or fish. The mild flavors of the protein will balance the zesty notes of the okra, making for a well-rounded meal.
  • Side Dish: Serve it alongside other Vietnamese dishes for a full feast. It goes particularly well with grilled meats or seafood, balancing the richer flavors with its fresh and tangy profile.
  • Add a Crunch: Top with crushed peanuts or cashews right before serving to introduce an enjoyable crunch and nutty flavor that contrasts well with the tender vegetables.

These serving suggestions are designed to help you enjoy your Vietnamese Okra Dau Bap to its fullest, whether you’re looking for a simple, satisfying meal or a more elaborate dinner spread.


Ready to dive into the delicious world of Vietnamese cuisine? Give this Vietnamese Okra Dau Bap recipe a try! It’s a perfect blend of simplicity and flavor that’ll bring a touch of Vietnam right to your kitchen. Whether you’re serving it fresh, over rice or alongside your favorite protein, this dish is sure to impress. Don’t forget to top it off with some crushed peanuts or cashews for that extra crunch. Enjoy the burst of flavors and the joy of cooking something truly special. Happy cooking!

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