Pâté chaud, or bánh patê sô, is a flaky, buttery, and piping hot savory meat pie that goes great with a cup of Vietnamese coffee. This is very similar to the popular Australian hand pies.
They are the perfect on the go snack or even an at-your-own-leisure with coffee snack at home! This recipe gives you steamy pâté chaud at home that you can share with friends and family when the cravings hit.
Bánh patê sô translates to “hot meat pie.” Similar to Vietnamese foods like banh mi, pâté chaud or bánh patê sô, also has origins from French colonialism. In the mid 19th century, French chef Urbain Dubois described a pastry called Pâté-chaud à la Marinière, a French seafood pie covered with a puff pastry shell; This pastry is thought to be an early influence on bánh patê sô.
These days, I usually pick some up from local little Saigon shops like Bánh Mì Chè Cali or Gala Coffee. However, if you don’t live near a large Vietnamese population, you can make it at home using this recipe.
The puff pastry
I would like to thank Ina Garten for instilling in me the idea that store bought is a fine option if you don’t have time to make a puff pastry dough–who has time to make dough when a pâté chaud craving hits? Not this dude. For this recipe, we used store-bought puff pastry (Pepperidge Farm to be exact) and it works great.
Puff pastry is finely tuned dough with hundreds layers of alternating butter and dough (700+ layers in the classic version). It’s your job to keep those layers of butter cold and solid.
In the oven, the water in the dough evaporates and the fatty butter melts into the layers and helps each layer expand into light, flaky goodness that is puff pastry.
The easiest way to defrost puff pastry is to leave it to thaw on your counter for one to two hours before using. You want to make sure it’s still a little bit frozen, then carefully unfold the dough to prevent it from cracking. If you notice some cracks when unfolding, you can use a rolling pin to lightly roll out the cracks. Try not to overwork the dough though!
To get the optimum puff in your pastry, after you assemble your pâté chaud, chill the dough again in the fridge to re-solidify the butter in the pastry before putting it into the oven. I like to cut about three by three squares of puff pastry for each pâté chaud because it’s a nice size for finger food.
Pâté chaud filling ranges from ground pork to other variations that include ground beef or chicken. You can also add other items such as wood ear mushrooms, pâté, oyster sauce, or more. For this photo set went with chicken, for a healthier alternative than the popular pork.
The beauty of this meat pie is that you can customize it based on your preferences. I actually prefer the traditionalist route with ground pork sauteed with onions.
Just a quick tip, sweating the onions beforehand improves the aroma of pâté chaud greatly, and reduces the amount of moisture in your meat mixture–helping the puff pastry get a better rise.
You can make these ahead of time and then reheat them in the toaster oven when you’re ready to eat. I love to eat piping hot pâté chaud with a fresh cup of Vietnamese coffee, or if you have a sweet tooth, icy coconut Vietnamese coffee.
For another version of a meat pie, you can also make Filipino beef empanadas, which have a slightly sweeter filling and pie crust dough. If you want a sweet dessert, I would suggest making my guava and cheese puff pastries.
Pâté Chaud Recipe (Bánh Patê Sô)
Dough & sealer
- 1 pack puff pastry Pepperidge Farm has 2 sheets of 10×15”, but any brand will do
- 1 extra large egg egg whites and yolk separated into two bowls and lightly beaten
- 1 lb ground pork or ground chicken
- ⅔ c chopped onion sweated with 2 tbsp oil until fragrant, then cooled
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp sugar
- 1 tsp ground pepper
- ⅓ tsp MSG (monosodium glutamate) or chicken bouillon
- 1 tsp potato starch or 2 tbsp bread crumbs
- Defrost the puff pastry dough on the counter for about one to two hours. You want to make sure that the dough is a little frozen so that it doesn’t over-soften while you work with the dough.
- Sweat onions on medium-low heat until fragrant then set aside until cooled, about five minutes.
- Combine the onions, ground meat, salt, sugar, ground pepper, MSG, and potato starch into a bowl and mix well.
- Taste test: put ½ tsp meat in the microwave on a small plate and taste it to make sure you like the seasoning, adjust as needed.
Assembly & baking
- Preheat the oven at 350 °F degrees.
- Unfold the dough carefully and if there are any cracks, make sure to lightly roll out the cracks. If you find your dough softening too much, put it back in the fridge to solidify.
- Cut the dough into three by three inch squares.
- The amount of filling you add onto each square varies depending on the size of the square. For a three by three square, spoon in about 1.5-2 tablespoons filling onto the middle of each square. The goal is to add enough that’s a good dough to meat ratio, but not overload it so the top layer has to stretch too much, or so much that the filling will spill out.
- Separate the egg whites and yolks of two small eggs into two bowls.
- Brush the egg whites along the edges of the square and gently place the top square over the meat filling.
- Using the tips of a fork, crimp the edges of the square to seal the top and bottom squares.
- Lightly brush the egg yolk over the top. This creates a nice golden crust when baked.
- Place all of your pâté chaud on a half sheet over parchment paper to prevent sticking.
- Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown. This also varies depending on the size of your squares, but you can tell it’s finished when golden brown.
21 comments on “Pâté Chaud Recipe (Patê Sô / Vietnamese Meat Pastries)”
Thank you for your authentic recipe. I am Vietnamese but I don’t know how to read or write. Your post is very helpful .
Glad it helps you out Cat! 🙂
I’m in the same boat as you! Making this tomorrow! =] thank you!
See if you can get DuFour puff pastry. It is an all butter product and has better flavor than PF’s.
Thanks for the tip Candace, I’ll keep an eye out for that one!
I’m trying this recipe tomorrow. Wish me luck!
Made them today and turned out delicious. Added 1 tbsp soy, 1 tbsp fish sauce and a drizzle of sesame oil for extra flavour! Never buying these from the bakery ever again! So easy to make!
Glad you liked it Sarah and thanks for the tip!
Hi! I am wondering why this recipe doesn’t have pate in it?
Could I use corn starch instead of potato starch?
I have not tried this sub, sorry!
Lockdown has made me crave these so badly, and I tried your recipe out – I’m not allowed to leave 5km of my house, and my favourite Vietnamese bakery is just outside of this limit! Made these last night and they were a hit with my parents and sister. (It got a nod of approval from my dad which says a LOT!) They were delicious, thank you for the recipe!
Glad you’re able to make some tasty eats while in lockdown, thanks for sharing Emma! Just curious what country is enforcing the 5km rule?
I’m guessing Melbourne in Australia.
Another tip: I add peas (bought frozen ten thawed) to my mixture and add half boiled egg. This makes it a filling meal served with a side salad or a more substantial snack.
I’m guessing Melbourne in Australia.
Another tip: I add peas (bought frozen then thawed) to my mixture and add a half boiled egg (or adjust size to fit inside pastry sheet). This makes it a filling meal served with a side salad or a more substantial snack.
Yummy recipe, now we don’t have to drive 14 miles each way to pick up some fresh ones. 🙂 Thank you for this and other recipes I have yet to try.
Thanks for this amazing recipe!
Do you roll out the PF puff pastry sheets before assembling the pate chaud? In the instructions, you don’t mention that you roll it out, but in the pictures, it looks thinner than the PF sheets that I bought.
Thanks for the awesome recipe!
Did you roll out the PF pastry sheets before assembling the pate chaud? In the directions, it doesn’t say to roll it out, but the sheets look thinner in your pictures.
Thank you for the recipe!
Do you roll out the PF puff pastry sheets before assembling them?
Hey Tracy, you don’t need to roll it out any thinner than it is–it’s ready to use out of the package. The only rolling you may need to do is at the seams if the dough cracks from unfolding it.
So good! Love this!!