A warming, brothy soup filled with nutrition, this miso soup recipe is a twist on the miso soup at Japanese restaurants. Instead of a clear soup with a couple of tofu cubes, it's filled with tempeh, zucchini noodles, mushrooms and chicken broth. Use vegetable broth for a vegan soup. This vegetable miso soup is a nice, light addition to your soup recipes.
Miso Soup Ingredients: What is Miso
Miso is a all purpose, traditional Japanese seasoning. It's a centuries-old nourishing, fermented food made with soybeans, cultured grain (rice or barley), and salt.
While it is most known for making miso soup, it can be used as a flavoring in many other dishes. The lightest style is sweet white miso, with a gentle flavor and smooth, creamy texture. Miso provides that "umami" flavor that is rich and savory, like in soy sauce, mushrooms and Parmesan cheese.
Vegetable Miso Soup with Tempeh
For my miso soup recipe, I use tempeh instead of tofu. Tempeh is a terrific plant-based protein made from fermented whole soybeans. It has a meaty, chewy texture and a nutty flavor. As a fermented food, tempeh a good source of probiotics (good for your gut). Tempeh is a complete source of vegan protein providing approximately 16 grams of protein in just 3 ounces. Find it in the refrigerated dairy area.
The Rest of The Soup
Now that I've gotten carried away explaining miso and tempeh, what about the rest of the soup? I used homemade chicken broth but use vegetable broth for a vegan soup.
For vegetables, I add zucchini noodles and mushrooms. Use a spiralizer to make zucchini noodles, or a hand julienne peeler. You don't even need to cook them, just add them to your bowl and pour the hot broth over the top.
For mushrooms, I use the little beech mushrooms. They come in cello packages in the produce department and last forever in the refrigerator.
- My favorite miso comes from South River Miso. A family owned, artisan company in Massachusetts. It's organic, unpasteurized miso. You have to order on line but this miso is really worth it. Check out their other flavors as well. Miso lasts years when refrigerated.
- Another brand I've used is Miso Master. It is also organic and unpasteurized. Find it in the refrigerated dairy section.
- Make homemade vegetable broth, It's far superior in flavor and nutrition than anything store bought, and it's easy to make
- As both miso and tempeh are made from soybeans, buy organic products so you are not buying GMO (genetically modified) soy.
- For gluten-free eaters, be sure to read the labels and buy products made only with brown rice and not barley.
- Miso tends to be high in sodium so again, read labels and compare. Sweet white miso tends to be the lowest in sodium. The flavor of miso is concentrated, so a little goes a long ways. South River sweet white miso is lower in sodium than other brands I've tried.
Try These Other Miso Recipes
- Pan-seared Halibut with Miso Glaze
- Seared scallops with orange-miso sauce. This sauce also works beautifully with boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Vegetable Miso Soup with Tempeh
- a spiralizer or a julienne peeler to make the noodles
- 6-8 cups low or no sodium chicken broth preferably homemade
- 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon sweet white organic miso
- 4 small zucchini about 1 pound
- 2 teaspoons coconut oil
- 2 packages beech mushroom
- 12-16 ounces organic tempeh (no flavor) cut into small cubes
- 4 scallions sliced
- Add broth to a medium pan and bring to a simmer over medium low heat, covered. Whisk in the miso. When broth is hot, turn to low and keep hot for serving.
- Cut ends off of the zucchini. Using a spiralizer or julienne peeler, slice zucchini into thin noodles. Portion noodles between four bowls.
- To prep beech mushrooms, just slice off the base. Add coconut oil to a non-stick pan and melt over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and cook until golden brown at the edges, about 3 minutes. Place mushrooms in a small bowl to add to soup. Save the pan for cooking the tempeh.
- Add more 1 teaspoon of coconut oil to the non-stick pan if dry and heat over medium heat. Add tempeh cubes and cook until browned, stirring occasionally, about 3 minutes. To serve, pour hot broth over the zucchini noodles, then top with the mushrooms, tempeh cubes and chopped scallions.