June 15, 2024

15 of Eatery on the Street: Penh Street Food Options

6 min read

Street Food Southeast Asia’s greatest undiscovered street food jewel is most likely Phnom Penh. I spent a month writing this article when I first came here. I’ve made the decision to update this post now that I’ve been here for three months and counting. It turns out that my expectations about the street food scene in Phnom Penh were far off.

Cambodia and Phnom Penh are foodies’ paradises. Here, street food nourishes the populace and is not only for tourists—well, not all of it is. During the day, Phnom Penh offers street food; however, the real treat comes after dusk, when the plastic chairs are brought out and the aromas and noises of the cuisine begin to overwhelm you.

Where in Phnom Penh can you get street food?

Dummy, out on the streets! Okay, I’m kidding, but as night falls, the streets are crowded with food carts that appear out of nowhere. The choice and quality are often exceptional, no matter where you go.

What are the greatest spots in Phnom Penh for street food? The atmosphere of the riverbank, the royal palace (for bugs), and the vicinity of Street 130 are unbeatable, in my opinion.

Remember that there is much more to define street cuisine than simply the actual “street.” I’ve discovered several excellent eateries that also provide delicious street food. Despite the fact that my favorite is now closed,.

The Top 15 Phnom Penh Street Food Dishes

The best 15 foods I’ve discovered while wandering the streets of Phnom Penh are listed below, not in any particular order. Because I loved each one so much, most of them have links to blogs where you can read more about them!

15) Western Street Food in Cambodia

Street Food Phnom PenhPhnom Penh Street Food: 172 Burger

Alright, this sounds much worse than it does. Chips, fried chicken, and fake hot dogs are wrapped in sweet bread. I even had a chicken nugget burger once, which was extremely good with some Khmer spicy sauce on top. There’s a little street food section along Basaac Lane, just across from Super Dooper, that serves excellent Phnom Penh fusion street cuisine. I would even go so far as to include “The Sandwich Shop” in this discussion, as they specialize in serving burgers rather than sandwiches.

14) Sausages and Barbecued Beef Skewers

Phnom Penh Street FoodPhnom Penh street food: bread-wrapped sausages and beef skewers

These stores, which are really a bit of a mash-up of other items on our list, specialize in serving beef skewers with beef sausages on a stick, along with a buttered slice of bread and papaya salad. After that, you make a homemade sandwich that is really delicious, despite not being Subway or Molly’s. I haven’t written an essay about Phnom Penh street food yet, but I will!

13) Cambodian Street Food Insects

Street Food Phnom PenhCambodians are eating insects.

Just as we gave the tarantula its own entry, we could do the same for every other insect that people consume in Cambodia. Perhaps in the future, we’ll include the greatest bugs in Cambodia, but for now, we’ll only mention grasshoppers, crickets, beetles, and other insects! The majority have a flavor similar to that of crisps. Despite the fact that eating a grasshopper is still somewhat extreme, I have come to like them after first detesting them. You may obtain street food in Phnom Penh near the Royal Palace, but I just purchased some when traveling to Prey Veng.

12) Fried rice from Cambodia

street food  Phnom Penh - cambodian fried rice

I’ve been informed that there is another meal that differs significantly from the Chinese one. I will somewhat agree with this. In my experience, it is much less oily and far more likely to include shrimp. Affordable and widely accessible. It’s fried rice, after all, but it’s a good, simple, and safe alternative.

11) There are frogs everywhere.

fried frogs - street food  Phnom PenhTwo little frogs!

Here, frogs might actually have five or more entries. The terrible past of the Khmer Rouge is purportedly connected to the love frogs of the Khmer people. They deep fried the little ones, loaded them with pork, and consumed them whole. The deep-fried frog in batter was my favorite dish. Like fish and chips, indeed. It tasted like chicken in batter since the frog had a little chicken flavor. Something the Scots would probably object to! An update on this: I recently visited the Street 144 Singapore Frog Restaurant; you can see my review of it here.

Phnom Penh Street, Octopus

street food  Phnom Penh - Street octopus Phnom Penh

This is not something I’m playing around with! The best thing about Phnom Penh is the street octopus! It will be frying by the riverfront for everyone to see. When you bite into the center, there’s an almost cheese-like cream that’s mixed with crispy and juicy bits. Their cooking is a work of art in and of itself. A must-try for street food in Phnom Penh.

9) Fresh spring rolls from Cambodia

street food Phnom Penh

Growing up, I wasn’t a big lover of spring rolls. It comes with English-Chinese cuisine. A deep-fried spring roll is not at all like a fresh one. Add some spring onions, Khmer herbs, and often a large, juicy shrimp. Everything is served with a sweet and sour sauce and wrapped in rice paper. This is a street food staple as well as a staple in gourmet dining!

8) Pok tia koon, also known as Cambodian balut

cambodia balut

Balut is known as pong tia kun in Khmer. Do you need a balut lesson? Go here by clicking. essentially a duck egg that has been fertilized. eaten in Cambodia in a very distinct way. Overall, I think I like the Filipino version more, but it’s still a must-try when exploring the street food scene in Phnom Penh.

Num Pang, also known as Cambodian Banh Mi


You’ve probably eaten banh mi if you’ve been in Vietnam for any length of time. This is a mix of French and Vietnamese cooking. Local ingredients were stuffed into a baguette. Though not as well-known as Vietnam, the version from Cambodia is nonetheless rather nice. Meatballs, vegetables, and a spicy sauce. The only criticism I have about the meal is that the bread tends to be a little too sweet. If you’re hungry, however, this is a tasty and safe Phnom Penh street meal option.

6) The Tarantula


This should be far higher than it is in actuality! Although I have written about eating bugs in Siem Reap, tarantulas are not available there. In general, I dislike bugs, even if I appreciate them. The flavor of the tarantula, however, was excellent! particularly when you eat at the center. This is not for first-timers to street food. One of the more unexpected things I liked about Phnom Penh was the street cuisine.

5) Noodles in a Fry

Cambodian Fried noodlesFried noodles from Cambodia (Lort Cha)

These may be found all across Phnom Penh, especially in restaurants, but the best place to get them is at one of the numerous street food carts that serve just Cambodian fried noodles. However, lort cha and Cambodian fried noodles are rather different, as I have been informed repeatedly. Bravo also to Siem Reap, where I enjoyed some fried noodles and watched football a while back.

4) Sour Khmer Soup

Cambodian Sour Soup

Cambodian sour soup is a vegetable-rich, green soup with a hint of spice from limes and a tiny bit of beef or chicken. An excellent dinner starter that is uniquely Cambodian! This is a common sight at many restaurants in Cambodia.

Street Barbeque in Phnom Penh

Street BBQ Phnom Penh

There’s nothing better than street BBQ paired with Angkor beer. Although it’s available almost everywhere in the city, I personally recommend heading to the Mekong, finding a street vendor, grabbing a plastic chair, and getting your BBQ on. I’ll take large sticks of fish or meatballs for fifty cents.

2) New Oysters from Phnom Penh

2) Fresh Phnom Penh Oysters

It was inevitable that fresh oysters, or “oyster ice,” would catch my eye, but this was no ordinary oyster meal. Combine it with chopped fried onion, Khmer hot sauce, and eucalyptus stems instead of hot sauce. There is an incredible street food phenomenon in Phnom Penh.

First, Lok Lak

lok lak

Bo luc lak, a Vietnamese dish with French influences, was the inspiration for lok lak, which has since been adopted and transformed to become a staple of Khmer cuisine. The finest dish I have had in Phnom Penh yet is marinated beef cubes, which are normally served with fried rice and cooked to a somewhat rare temperature.

It was difficult to narrow down my list of the best street foods in Phnom Penh to just 15, and I can definitely see myself adding to it often while I live in the city.

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