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Temple Vegetarian Soup inspired by Kenchin-jiru

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Photo attribution: Jessica Silldorff
Ready In: 50 minutes
Serves: 8
Dairy-freeLow Added SugarVeganVegetarian
Enjoy this soothing soup inspired by an old recipe from a famous Japanese Buddhist temple. It tastes even better the next day!

What you'll need

Large pot
Sharp knife
Slotted spoon
Measuring cups


Serves 8
2 pieces Dried Konbu 2" x 3", optional
6 Dried Shiitake Mushrooms
3 cups Vegetable Broth
3 cups Water
2 Carrots medium
2 Taro Roots small or of Red Potatoes medium
1 Daikon or of Rutabaga
12 ounces Firm Tofu
2 teaspoons Soy Sauce
1/2 teaspoon Toasted Sesame Oil
2 stalks Green Onion sliced thinly


1.In a large pot, combine konbu, dried mushrooms, stock, and water. Bring just to a boil. Then, lower heat and simmer gently for 10 minutes.
2.Meanwhile, peel and cut the vegetables into 1-inch pieces. Break (or cut) the tofu into similar sized pieces.
3.Remove the mushrooms with a slotted spoon and set aside to cool. Add the root vegetables to the mushroom broth. Return the soup to a boil. Then, simmer for about 10 minutes. Stir occasionally and skim any foam that rises.
4.When the mushrooms are cool enough to cut, trim off their stems and quarter their caps. Add mushrooms and tofu to the soup. Simmer another 10 minutes.
5.Season the soup with soy sauce and sesame oil. Sprinkle with green onions just before serving.

Chef's Tips

  • Konbu are dried sheets of kelp, a large seaweed that grows in deep ocean water. Rich in minerals, it is a staple in Japanese cooking and adds depth to many dishes. In its place, you can add a few more dried mushrooms.
  • If you live near a Japanese market, look for several other traditional ingredients for this soup. Try burdock, a long, thin root that is packed with fiber. Japanese families often add konyakku, a firm cake made from a special kind of yam. Various types of tofu, such as fried puffs or marinated squares, also appear in this soup.

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size 1.50 cup

Serving Per Container 8

Amount Per Serving
Calories 153
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2.5 g3%
Saturated Fat <1 g3%
Sodium 372 mg16%
Total Carbohydrate 29.5 g11%
Dietary Fiber 4.5 g16%
Protein 7.4 g

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs:

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