Bánh Cốm

Bánh cốm is a Vietnamese snack with green glutinous rice and mung bean filling, often used in celebrations and festivals.

Lastest Updated January 6, 2024
Verified by A-Z Cuisines Team
  • Traditional
Home » Dishes A-Z » Bánh Cốm

Fact: Bánh cốm is an affordable souvenir to buy in Hanoi (around 0.3 to 0.4 USD).

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Basic Information

Bánh Cốm: Basic Information

Pronunciation

bahn kohm

Alternative Name(s)

No

Dish Type

Snacks, Glutinous rice dishes, Cakes and pastries

Course

Dessert

Mealtime

Anytime

Popular Variations

No
Origin and Region

Bánh Cốm: Origin and Region

Origin

Vietnam

Continent’s Region

Southeast Asia

Country’s Region

Northern Vietnam

Associated Region

Hanoi
Vietnam Map
Ingredients and Preparation

Bánh Cốm: Ingredients and Preparation

Main Ingredients

Glutinous rice (green sticky rice), mung beans

Main Cooking Method

Stir-frying (the rice) and steaming (the mung beans)

Preparation Process

Marinating green sticky rice with lotus jam and coconut, stir-fry with sugar until green and condensed; mashing steamed green beans, sweeten with sugar; assembling the cake with green bean filling wrapped by green sticky rice.
A Deep Dive

Bánh Cốm: A Deep Dive

Cultural Significance

An iconic delicacy of Hanoi

Taste

Sweet

Texture

Soft and chewy glutinous rice and smooth mung bean filling

Aroma

Fragrant with a distinctive scent of fresh green rice

Color

Green

Serving Style

Small cakes, individually wrapped

Serving Temperature

At room temperature

Accompaniment

Tea (especially green or jasmine tea)

Occasions

Weddings, festivals (like Mid-Autumn Festival)

Seasons

Fall, year-round

Special Diets

Vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free

Calories

80-100 calories per serving

Popularity

Northern Vietnam (mainly) and Ho Chi Minh City

Popular Similar Dishes

  • Bánh Giầy
  • Bánh Ít Trần

Popular Dining Area

Traditional bánh cốm stores or households in Hanoi

Bánh cốm is a traditional Vietnamese sweet treat made from young, green glutinous rice (called cốm) and mung beans. It is famous in Hanoi, especially those from Hang Than.

Banh Com Overview

The green sticky rice is typically pounded until it becomes a fine, tender paste, and this forms the outer layer of bánh cốm.

Inside, there is a filling made of mung bean paste, sometimes including shredded coconut or lotus seed jam.

Generally, bánh cốm is sweet and slightly chewy, with a fresh and fragrant aroma. It usually has a vibrant green color and is in small, flat squares or rectangles.

It’s a popular gift for special occasions, like weddings in Vietnam. It is also a popular treat during the Mid-Autumn Festival since cốm is a seasonal food associated with this season.

Besides being a sweet snack, bánh cốm is also an ideal dessert to enjoy with tea.

While home-making bánh cốm is an option and will be explored later with step-by-step guidance, purchasing pre-made ones is a convenient alternative, particularly in Hanoi.

Later, let’s check some good and bad sides of bánh cốm, refer to frequently asked questions from others, and find out dishes akin to this Vietnamese favorite.

Key Points

  • Bánh cốm is a traditional Vietnamese sweet treat made from young green glutinous rice and mung beans.
  • It is especially famous in Hanoi.
  • Many well-known stores in Hang Than, Hanoi, sell this green rice cake.
  • Bánh cốm has a sweet taste and slightly chewy texture.
  • It is often served at weddings and during the Mid-Autumn Festival.

Bánh Cốm Images

How To Prepare Bánh Cốm at Home?

Preparing bánh cốm at home involves a detailed process, but here’s a general guide with three main steps.

Step 1: Preparing the Green Sticky Rice

Use high-quality green sticky rice and marinate it with lotus jam and grated coconut. Stir-fry the marinated cốm on a hot pan with caster sugar for about two hours until condensed but retaining the green color.

Step 2: Preparing the Bean Paste

Steam the green beans until cooked, then mash them finely. Sweeten the bean paste by cooking it on low heat with a bit of sugar. Then, add shredded coconut or lotus seed jam.

Step 3: Assembling the Cake

Divide the green bean paste into small portions. Wrap each portion of bean paste with the prepared green sticky rice.

Plus, stir-frying the green sticky rice is a crucial stage. The cake may become too soft or overcooked if the firepower used or stirring skill is not appropriate. In Vietnam, locals normally wrap the final product in a plastic wrapper and put it in a small box.

In case you want to buy them from stores, the next section will suggest some good places to get these treats in Hanoi.

Where To Buy Bánh Cốm in Hanoi, Vietnam?

For those looking to savor the authentic taste of bánh cốm in Hanoi, Vietnam, here are four reputable stores in the city where you can buy and try this green rice cake.

In Hanoi

Bánh Cốm Nguyên Ninh
Address: 12 Hang Than, Nguyen Trung Truc Street, Ba Dinh District, Hanoi
Bánh Cốm Bảo Minh
Address: 11 Hang Than, Nguyen Trung Truc Street, Ba Dinh District, Hanoi
Bánh Cốm Hà Nội Ngọc Ninh
Address: 50 Hang Than, Nguyen Trung Truc Street, Ba Dinh District, Hanoi
Bánh Cốm Nguyên Hương
Address: 60 Hang Than, Ba Dinh District, Hanoi

Continuing on, I’ll offer some good aspects and drawbacks of eating it.

Pros and Cons of Eating Bánh Cốm

Explore bánh cốm advantages and disadvantages through the table below.

Pros

  • Tasty Flavor: Bánh cốm combines the natural flavors of green rice and mung beans.
  • Texture: It provides a pleasant textural experience with the softness of the cake contrasted by the slight firmness of the filling.
  • Cultural Experience: Consuming bánh cốm is a way to experience a traditional Hanoi delicacy.

Cons

  • High Sugar Content: Bánh cốm can be high in sugar, which might not be suitable for those monitoring their sugar intake.
  • Short Shelf Life: It should be consumed within 3-4 days.

Following this, you’ll examine usual questions that arise about this Hanoi-based green rice cake.

Bánh Cốm FAQs

It is typically gluten-free because it is made from glutinous rice, which does not contain gluten.

Due to its sugar content, bánh cốm should be consumed in moderation by those who have diabete.

Bánh cốm is distinct from other sticky rice cakes due to its green color and the use of mung bean paste. Plus, it is a sweet treat that can be served as a snack or dessert.

While Bánh Cốm is strongly associated with weddings or the Mid-Autumn Festival, it can be enjoyed throughout the year as a delightful sweet treat.

Bánh Cốm is a symbol of the harvest and is often associated with the Mid-Autumn Festival, which celebrates the abundance of the season.

Bánh cốm is best kept at room temperature in its original box or dry place. To maintain freshness, consume within 3-4 days of purchase or preparation.

Similar Dishes of Bánh Cốm

Banh It Tran

Bánh ít trần is a Vietnamese steamed glutinous rice cake hailing from the central and southern regions, usually filled with savory ingredients.

Banh Giay2

Bánh giầy is a round Vietnamese sticky rice cake made from glutinous rice.

Truc Tran (Kris)

Truc Tran (Kris)

Senior Food Editor

Expertise

Home Cooking, Meal Planning, Recipe Development, Baking and Pastry, Food Editor, Cooking-video Maker, Vietnamese Food Evaluation Expert

Education

  • Hospitality (Commercial Cookery) at TasTAFE
  • Culinary Arts at Kendall College (Australia Branch in Sydney)
  • Vietnamese Cuisine Head Chef at HNAAu School (Vietnam, International Joint Training Program)

Truc Tran (Kris), an experienced food writer and editor, is great at exploring and describing global cuisines, from simple street food to fancy dining. In her writing, she skillfully mixes different flavors, cooking methods, and culinary traditions, showing the unique character of various cultures through their food and drinks. On azcuisines.com, Kris highlights her knowledge, especially in Asian cuisine and worldwide traditional dishes.

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