Rice vermicelli are a thin form of rice noodles.[1] They are sometimes referred to as rice noodles, rice sticks, or bee hoon, but they should not be confused with cellophane noodles which are a different Asian type of vermicelli made from mung bean starch or rice starch rather than rice grains itself.

Presentation and varieties

Rice vermicelli are a part of several Asian cuisines, where they are often eaten as part of a soup dish, stir-fry, or salad. One particularly well-known, slightly thicker variety, called Guilin mǐfěn (桂林米粉), comes from the southern Chinese city of Guilin, where it is a breakfast staple.

Naming in Taiwan

Beginning July 1, 2014, Food and Drug Administration of Taiwan rules that only products made 100% of rice can be labeled and sold as "米粉" in Taiwan, usually translated as "rice vermicelli" or "rice noodle". If the product contains starch or other kinds of grain powder as ingredients but is made of at least 50% percent of rice, it is to be labeled as "調和米粉", meaning "blended rice vermicelli".[2] Products made of less than 50% of rice cannot be labelled as rice vermicelli.[3]

Notable dishes

Mainland China

Guilin rice noodles
  • Cantonese noodles: A large number of Cantonese dishes use this ingredient (called 米粉 maifun or rice in Cantonese). Usually the noodles are simmered in broth with other ingredients such as fish balls, beef balls, and/or fish slices.
  • In Fujian and Teochew cuisine, rice vermicelli is a commonly used noodle and is served either in soup, stir-fried and dressed with a sauce, or even 'dry' (without soup) with added ingredients and condiments.

Hong Kong

Singapore fried rice noodles


  • Sevai is a south Indian dish prepared in houses during festive occasions. It is had in different flavours like lemon sevai, tamarind sevai and coconut milk sevai.[6]
  • Sawaeyaa is a dish made from semolina vermicelli cooked in milk sugar and dry nuts. It is eaten on Diwali, Eid, and other festive occasions in northern parts of India and Pakistan.
  • Paayasam is a South Indian sweet dish made from vermicelli, sago, sugar, spices and nuts and milk.
  • Santhakai is a staple South Indian breakfast dish.



In Malaysia, the rice vermicelli can be called and found as Mihun, Mi hoon, Mee Hoon, Bihun, or Bee Hoon.

  • Bihun Sup is a Malay style dish, mixed with spiced beef broth or chicken broth. Sometimes it comes with sambal kicap (pounded bird's eye chilli mixed with dark soy sauce) as a condiment.
  • Bihun Kari mixed with curry, added with mung bean sprout, fried tofu and red chillies sambal.
  • Bihun soto is in a yellow spicy chicken broth, served with chicken and potato cutlet.
  • Hokkien mee throughout Malaysia varies considerably due to regional differences.
  • Bihun Tom Yam is mixed with tom yam.
  • Laksa Sarawak is mixed with a base of sambal belacan, sour tamarind, garlic, galangal, lemon grass and coconut milk, topped with omelette strips, chicken strips, prawns, fresh coriander and optionally lime. Ingredients such as bean sprouts, (sliced) fried tofu or other seafood are not traditional but are sometimes added.
  • Mi Siam is a stir-fried style dish.


  • Kerabu bee hoon is a Nyonya-style rice vermicelli dish, mixed with herbs and other seasonings.
  • Hokkien mee, commonly in Singapore, consists of rice vermicelli mixed with yellow noodles and fried with shrimp, sliced cuttlefish and pork bits. Hokkien mee throughout Malaysia varies considerably due to regional differences.
  • Satay bee hoon is rice vermicelli served with spicy peanut satay sauce, common in Singapore.
  • Seafood Bee Hoon is a rice vermicelli cooked with sauce and served in tasty seafood broth and seafood such as Lobster, crayfish, clams, scallops and prawns. One of the up and coming brand and stall is in the tourist attraction Newton Food Market called *新式 lobster and seafood beehoon.


  • Mohinga, in Myanmar, is rice vermicelli served with curry gravy and fish.
  • Mont Di is rice vermicelli served with clear fish soup or as salad with fish flakes.



  • Taiwanese fried rice vermicelli is the dry, stir-fried local style (particularly known in the Hsinchu region). Its main ingredients include sliced pork, dried shrimp, and carrots.
  • A Hsinchu specialty is to serve rice vermicelli 'dry' 乾 (gan, not in a soup) with mushroom and ground pork.


Bún Thịt Nướng Chả Giò

See also


  1. ^ Lori Alden (2005). "Asian Rice Noodles". Retrieved November 4, 2011. 
  2. ^ www.fda.gov.tw. "市售包裝米粉絲產品標示規定". Retrieved 22 July 2016. 
  3. ^ www.fda.gov.tw. "食品標示法規手冊" (PDF). Retrieved 22 July 2016. 
  4. ^ "Singaporean Fried Rice Noodles". tastehongkong.com. 21 April 2010. Retrieved 13 August 2012. 
  5. ^ "How to make perfect Singapore noodles". theguardian.com. Guardian News and Media Limited. Retrieved 12 June 2014. 
  6. ^ http://allrecipes.com.au/recipe/4793/indian-coconut-rice-noodles.aspx?rum=us

External links