Back in the kiddo days, Bạc Xỉu was my only coffee go-to (sweet, light, not too caffeinated). Basically, I loved it at first sip.

Funny thing, though—at this time, I had zero clue about the meaning behind “Bạc Xỉu” until my uni days in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City).

Bac Xiu (Vietnamese white coffee)

🍀 Bạc Xỉu Coffee, the melting pot of 3 cultures in Sài Gòn

Coffee and Bánh Mì represent the French influence on Vietnamese cuisine.

Modern Vietnamese cuisine features many French-Vietnamese fusion dishes that remain popular today, such as bánh pate sô (meat pies), gà roti (rotisserie chicken), and bánh flan (Vietnamese flan).

Vietnamese coffee shop

Meanwhile, Saigon is the bustling trading and economic center in Southern Vietnam with a large population of both Vietnamese and Chinese ethnicities.

This cultural diversity is reflected in many Chinese-Vietnamese dishes like:

Bowl of Hu Tieu Bo Kho: A delicious Vietnamese beef stew served with Hu Tieu noodles, carrots, and onions.
Bò Kho (Vietnamese Beef Stew)
A delicious plate of Vietnamese Hainanese chicken rice with fragrant rice, tender chicken, and ginger fish sauce, garnished with herbs and served with cucumber and tomato slices
Cơm Gà Hải Nam (Vietnamese-style Hainanese Chicken Rice)
Delicious Vietnamese Bo Bia Spring Rolls: Rice paper rolls filled with Chinese sausages, jicama, and carrots - a perfect blend of flavors and textures.
Bò Bía (Spring Rolls with Chinese Sausages)
Delicious Vietnamese Xoi Man - A delectable plate of Vietnamese savory sticky rice adorned with flavorful toppings, a delightful treat from Vietnamese cuisine.
Xôi Mặn (Sticky Rice with Chinese Sausages)

Bạc Xỉu is even more special; it was born right in the midst of the cultural fusion among the French, Vietnamese, and Chinese.

Bạc Xỉu is a shortened term derived from “Bạc Tẩy Xỉu Phé,” originating from the Cantonese community in Saigon.

It literally means “a cup of white with a dash of coffee”. No wonder Bạc Xỉu is also called White coffee.

Locals say that Bạc Xỉu was initially created for women and children who loved the aroma and flavors of coffee but couldn’t handle the strength of caffeine in the popular Vietnamese Iced Coffee (Cà Phê Sữa Đá).

Unsurprisingly, Bạc Xỉu was my favorite coffee when I was a little kid.

☕ Ingredients

To make Bạc Xỉu, you will need:

Bac Xiu Ingredients
  • Vietnamese coffee with a high ratio of Robusta. You could use ground coffee or instant coffee.
    • If you have the chance to visit Vietnam, coffee makes for a fantastic souvenir. I even have a collection of Vietnamese coffee brands that I highly recommend checking out.
  • Condensed milk.
  • Fresh milk.
  • Ice cubes or crushed ice.

Other Vietnamese coffee recipes if you are a coffee lover:

📝 Instructions

  • Brew your coffee using a phin filter. You can find all the tips you need for brewing traditional Vietnamese coffee in my recipe for Cà Phê Sữa Đá.
  • Mix condensed milk with fresh milk. Then, add some ice cubes or crushed ice.
Mix condensed milk and fresh milk.
  • Pour the brewed coffee over the milk mixture.
  • Give it a good stir, and voila! Enjoy your delicious Bạc Xỉu.
Bac Xiu (Vietnamese white coffee)

🌟 How to enjoy Bạc Xỉu

  • In Vietnam, we often enjoy Bạc Xỉu in the morning alongside breakfast. My go-to combination is Bạc Xỉu paired with Vietnamese steamed buns (Bánh Bao) or Pandan Waffles (Bánh Kẹp Lá Dứa).
  • For the vegan version, you could use plant-based milk and plant-based condensed milk.

Other Saigon food recipes:

🌟 What to do with leftover condensed milk

Condensed milk is a must-have ingredient in Vietnamese coffee. It also goes great with many desserts as well as marinades for BBQ dishes. Here are some recipes you could try:

Thanks a bunch for giving my recipe a shot! If you enjoyed it, I’d truly appreciate a 5-star rating or a comment to let me know your thoughts.

And don’t forget to stay in touch with me on InstagramFacebookPinterest, and YouTube 🥰.

Bac Xiu (Vietnamese white coffee)

Bạc Xỉu (The Iconic Saigon’s White Coffee)

Bạc Xỉu, the beloved coffee concoction of Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), owes its origins to the vibrant mix of French, Vietnamese, and Chinese cultures. With its gentle coffee flavor, it's a delightful choice for all palates.
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Course Drinks
Cuisine Vietnamese
Servings 1 person


  • 2 tbsp Vietnamese coffee (30ml)
  • 2 tbsp condensed milk (30ml)
  • ½ cup fresh milk (125ml)
  • Ice cubes (or crushed ice) (to your taste)


  • Use a phin filter to brew your coffee. For all the tips on making traditional Vietnamese coffee, check out my recipe for Cà Phê Sữa Đá.
  • Combine condensed milk with fresh milk, then add some ice cubes or crushed ice.
  • Pour the freshly brewed coffee over the milk mixture.
  • Stir it well, and there you have it! Enjoy your delicious cup of Bạc Xỉu.
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