Num Pang: A Delicious Guide to Cambodian Sandwiches [3 Recipes]

Num pang is a Cambodian sandwich that shares similarities with the Vietnamese Banh Mi. A num pang typically consists of a toasted baguette, pickled carrots or daikon, cilantro, chili sauce, and a protein such as pork or pate. The unique flavor combinations and essential ingredients make this Cambodian sandwich an authentic culinary experience, which we’ve worked hard to recreate in our recipes below.

num pang with pate
Cambodian num pang sandwhiches

Num pang is a popular street food in Cambodia. Traversing the busy streets of Phnom Penh, or exploring the vibrant night markets of Siem Reap, you’ll notice locals and tourists alike enjoying these mouthwatering sandwiches. While visiting Cambodia, you expect to encounter the following versions of Num Pang sandwiches.

  • Traditional Num Pang Sach: A sandwich featuring pork, pate, and pickled vegetables.
  • Num Pang Barang: A variation of the original, using turkey and flavorful Sriracha mayonnaise.
  • Num Pang Pate: Similar to Vietnamese Banh Mi, this version showcases toasted baguettes with pate and assorted meats, along with crisp vegetables.

The num pang sandwich unites the flavors of Southeast Asia and France, as fresh, crisp baguettes are an indispensable component of any num pang sandwich.

The rich culinary traditions behind num pang have captured the hearts and taste buds of food enthusiasts far beyond the shores of Cambodia. For example, any foodie in New York City is probably familiar with Num Pang, the famed sandwich shop chain founded by Ratha Chaupoly and Ben Daitz.

But you don’t need to go to New York or Phnom Penh to try a mouthwatering num pang sandwich. Num Pang is simple enough to make, and the traditional recipe gives you plenty of opportunities to experiment with your own fillings. Below, we’ve compiled three bold recipes for the famous num pang sandwich, two of which are popular in Cambodia, while the third is a creation of our own that’s inspired by key local flavors. The following are the three num pang recipes we share with you in this article:

  • Num pang with pate: Num pang sach with pate is the classic Cambodian answer to the Vietnamese sandwich banh mi, and is found in any num pang kitchen in Cambodia. And although Cambodians call the key ingredient in this sandwich “pate”, the protein used here is more similar to SPAM or bologna than the pate that’s more familiar in Western countries.
  • Num pang with grilled beef: This grilled lemongrass beef sandwich is less popular than the pate sandwich, but is found in abundance in the best sandwich shops of Phnom Penh and other cities. Our num pang sach with beef is filled with the famous Khmer grilled beef sticks (sach ko ang), Cambodian slaw, our special Cambodian chili mayo, and a mix of lettuce, spring onions, and other seasonal vegetables.
  • Num pang with lemongrass chicken: You won’t find num pang sach with chicken in a typical num pang sandwich shop. This rendition of the num pang sach is one of our own Southeast Asian-inspired recipes. The great news is that these num pang sandwiches are a breeze to prepare — as long as you’ve got access to chicken breast, bell peppers, and lemongrass in your local supermarket.

Num pang sach with lemongrass chicken is the simplest sandwich to make of the three recipes below. The ingredients are hardly exotic (except, perhaps, lemongrass), and the preparation steps are not rocket science. On the other hand, the pate and grilled beef versions require a bit of skill, some patience, and Southeast Asian ingredients.

Classic Num Pang With Pate, Ground Pork, and Pickled Papaya Salad

The num pang sandwich with pate is the classic Cambodian sandwich you’ll find anywhere close to the dinner hour. This sandwich takes a bit of effort to prepare, as you have to saute some of the fillings. However, it’s still a reasonably straightforward recipe.

num pang with pate

Classic Num Pang With Pate, Ground Pork, and Pickled Papaya Salad

Thida Koeut
This is the classic Cambodian num pang sandwich.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Course Appetizer, dinner, lunch, Main Course, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine Cambodian
Servings 2
Calories 901 kcal


  • 1 can Sardines in tomato sauce 155g
  • 1 stalk Spring onions
  • Cilantro to taste
  • ½ pound Ground pork
  • 3 cloves Garlic
  • 1 tspn Soy sauce
  • 1 tspn Fish sauce
  • ½ tspn MSG
  • 1 tspn Sugar
  • 1 cup Spicy papaya side dish You can get the papaya side dish recipe here
  • 1 tbsp Cooking oil
  • pound Pork pate*
  • 2 Baguette 6-7 inches
  • Optional ingredients: Thai basil, chili powder, Sriracha sauce


  • Chop spring onions and set aside.
    Cut spring onions
  • Mince garlic and set aside.
    cut garlic
  • Preheat cooking oil in a wok or frying pan over medium-high heat.
  • Add garlic to the cooking oil and fry until golden-brown, while stirring continuously with a spatula.
    Fry garlic
  • Add ground pork to the frying pan and mix together with the garlic. Continue frying for 7 minutes.
    Add pork to the frying pan
  • Open the can of sardines and add the fish and the tomato sauce to the frying pan, then mix with the ground pork and fry for 5 minutes more.
    Add canned fish to the frying pan
  • Remove the ground pork mix from the frying pan and set aside to cool.
  • Make a deep-enough in the baguette, lengthwise, to accommodate the fillings.
    slice the baguette in half lengthwise
  • Spread the fried ground pork mix over one half of the baguette.
    spread ground pork
  • Place (or spread, depending on consistency) the pate over the fried ground pork mix on the same half of the baguette.
    Add pate to the sandwich
  • Stuff the spicy papaya side dish into the baguette, on top of the meat fillings.
    Add pickled papaya to the sandwich
  • Garnish with cilantro.
    num pang with pate


*Feel free to use any pate you can find, although the original version uses a luncheon meat that's similar to bologna and SPAM.


Serving: 2gCalories: 901kcalCarbohydrates: 65.1gProtein: 57gFat: 46.1gSaturated Fat: 17.1gCholesterol: 156mgSodium: 1789mgPotassium: 564mgFiber: 5.8gSugar: 19.2gCalcium: 198mgIron: 8mg
Keyword Cambodian sandwich, num pang
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Num Pang With Grilled Beef and Pickled Papaya

Num pang with grilled beef and pickled papaya

Many great sandwich joints in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, Battambang, and other large urban centers serve num pang with grilled beef and pickled papaya (not to be confused with the green papaya salad). However, this version of the Cambodian sandwich is still a bit of a rarity. This version of the num pang sach takes a bit of time to prepare, but the result is such treat for your taste buds that your time and effort will be well worth it.

In our recipe of the num pang with grilled beef and pickled papaya we use our own chili mayo, which is simple enough to prepare by mixing the spicy Cambodian dipping sauce (teuk trey koh kong) with mayonnaise.

Below, we’re providing links to our recipes for the lemongrass beef sticks, the papaya side dish, and the Cambodian dipping sauce. Once you’ve got these three essential components prepared, you can go ahead and put the sandwich together.

num pang with beef recipe

Num Pang With Grilled Beef and Pickled Papaya

Thida Koeut
This num pang sandwich is filled with 2 Cambodian classics — lemongrass beef sticks and spicy pickled papaya.
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 15 minutes
Course dinner, lunch, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Cambodian
Servings 2
Calories 606 kcal



  • Add the Cambodian spicy dipping sauce to the mayonnaise and mix together.
    mix mayo and teuk trei koh kong
  • Slice the baguette in half lengthwise.
    slice the baguette in half lengthwise
  • Spread the mayo onto both sides inside the baguette.
    Spread mayo
  • Place cucumbers, lettuce, and spring onions into the sandwich.
    Add lettuce and spring onions to the sandwich
  • Remove beef from the skewers and add to the sandwich.
    Add beef to the sandwich
  • Add pickled papaya to the num pang sandwich.
    Add pickled papaya to the sandwich


Serving: 2gCalories: 606kcalCarbohydrates: 78.1gProtein: 33.8gFat: 19.4gSaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 54mgSodium: 1271mgPotassium: 386mgFiber: 8gSugar: 35.5gCalcium: 192mgIron: 5mg
Keyword lemongrass beef sandwich, num pang, num pang sach, num pang sandwich
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Num Pang With Lemongrass Chicken

This lemongrass chicken num pang recipe is one of our Southeast Asian-inspired sandwiches. It’s our beginner-friendly num pang recipe, but its simplicity (and lack of exotic ingredients) makes it no less delectable than the more advanced versions listed above.

Num pang with lemongrass chicken

Num Pang With Lemongrass Chicken

This is the easiest num pang sandwich to prepare if you're a beginner or lack access to Southeast Asian ingredients.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Course Appetizer, dinner, lunch, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Cambodian
Servings 2
Calories 706 kcal


  • 2 stalks Lemongrass
  • 5 cloves Garlic
  • 1 tbsp Fish sauce
  • ½ tbsp Soy sauce
  • 1 tspn Oyster sauce
  • 1 tspn MSG
  • ½ tbsp Sugar
  • 2 tbsp Mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp Cambodian dipping sauce You can get the dipping sauce recipe here
  • ½ Red bell pepper
  • 1 Cucumbers
  • 2 Medium-sized baguettes Any similar bread will do (we used bolillos here because baguettes were sold out at our local bakery)
  • ½ pound boneless chicken breast


  • Cut the chicken breast into ½-inch pieces.
    Cut chicken
  • Slice the garlic.
    Cut garlic
  • Cut the lemongrass into thin slices.
    Slice lemongrass
  • Heat a tablespoon of cooking oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add lemongrass and garlic to the oil, and fry until the garlic turns brown.
    Fry lemongrass and garlic
  • Add chicken to the frying pan and stir together with the lemongrass and garlic. Continue frying over medium heat for 10 minutes.
    Add chicken to the frying pan
  • Add the fish sauce, oyster sauce, sugar, and MSG to the frying pan and stir together.
  • Remove the chicken from the frying pan and set aside.
    Remove chicken from frying pan
  • Wash and slice the cucumbers, red peppers, cilantro, and lettuce, which will be used as filling in the sandwich while the chicken is cooling off.
    Prepare vegetables for the filling
  • Slice the baguette in half, lengthwise.
    slice the baguette in half lengthwise
  • Add the Cambodian spicy dipping sauce to the mayo and mix together.
  • Spread the mayo onto both surfaces inside the baguette.
    Spread mayo
  • Place the cucumbers, lettuce, and red peppers inside the baguette.
  • Add the chicken to the num pang sandwich.
  • Garnish the sandwich with cilantro.
    Num pang with lemongrass chicken


Calories: 706kcalCarbohydrates: 82.3gProtein: 55.5gFat: 17.6gSaturated Fat: 4.2gCholesterol: 128mgSodium: 1861mgPotassium: 1054mgCalcium: 134mgIron: 9mg
Keyword lemongrass chicken sandwich, num pang, num pang sach, num pang sandwich
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

What are the origins of num pang?

The origins of Num Pang trace back to the influence of the French in Cambodia. The French introduced bread to the Indochinese peninsula, which led to the birth of the famous Bánh Mì sandwich. The Cambodian version of this sandwich, num pang, was created when the Cambodians adopted the French baguette as a foundation for their own twist on the sandwich. In Cambodia, “num pang” means “bread,” and “num pang sach” refers to the sandwich itself. Typically, a delicious mix of savory meats, pickled vegetables, and flavorful sauces are piled high on a crispy, airy baguette, making for a satisfying (but often messy) sandwich experience.

Num Pang is now a popular Cambodian street food, enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. However, num pung is well-known outside of Cambodia, too. In 2009, Ratha Chaupoly and Ben Daitz introduced the flavors of num pang to the New York City food scene. They opened the first num pang sandwich shop in Union Square, which quickly gained a loyal following due to the unique and tasty offerings. The success of the initial location led to the opening of more num pang franchises throughout the city, each continuing to serve freshly-made, gourmet Cambodian sandwiches to hungry New Yorkers.

What is the difference between num pang and banh mi?

There are two key differences between num pang and banh mi. Firstly, the two sandwiches traditionally have different fillings. Vietnamese banh mi baguette sandwiches are typically filled with a variety of cold cuts, whereas Cambodian num pang is traditionally filled with pate and fatty pieces of pork. The second difference is in the bread. Cambodian baguettes are notably sweeter than their Vietnamese counterparts, so expect a num pang sandwich to taste on the sweet side if you purchase it in Cambodia.

The differences between banh mi and num pang blur a bit if you purchase one of these sandwiches outside of Cambodia or Vietnam. Most baguettes sold outside of Cambodia have the traditional French flavor and lack sweetness, while the fillings are far more diverse than those typically available in Cambodian and Vietnamese street food carts.

How to serve num pang?

Cut the num pang into individual portions and serve it immediately once you’ve assembled it. Offer additional sauces on the side, like Sriracha or chili sauce, so guests can customize the spiciness to their preference. Num pang can be enjoyed as a main dish, served alongside a simple green salad, or incorporated into a picnic spread.

How to store leftover num pang?

To store leftover num pang, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil and store it in the refrigerator for up to two days. When reheating, remove any fresh herbs, and place the sandwich into a preheated oven (350°F/175°C) for about 5-10 minutes, or until the bread is crispy and the filling is warm. Don’t reheat the sandwich in the microwave, as this can make the bread soggy. Before serving, add the fresh herbs back onto the sandwich.

Thida Koeut

Thida Koeut, born near Kampot, Cambodia, is the chef and author behind Thida's Kitchen. Immersed in Cambodian gastronomy from childhood, she later managed a renowned Danish-French fusion restaurant in Kampot, mastering European culinary techniques. Her hands-on farming experience deepened her connection to authentic Cambodian ingredients. Now based in New Westminster, British Columbia, Thida seamlessly blends her rich heritage with global flavors, presenting them to the world through her online publication.

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