This easy hot and sour soup is an explosion of flavors! As the name suggests, it’s spicy, hot, sour and so delicious! The mixture of vegetables like carrots and cabbage, crushed tomatoes, tofu, and spices create an extremely comforting vegan hot and sour soup to unwind at the end of the day.
I think this soup might become your favorite easy and filling soup dinner when you’re looking for comfort and it would make for a great family dinner if you are moderate with the spices. Let us know how you like it!
Why This Recipe Works
A great clean-out-the-refrigerator soup. Feel free to use whatever veggies you have on hand!
Easy to adjust the spiciness for all types of eaters. That's what makes it perfect for families.
Hearty enough for the main course! But it also makes a great starter or side dish too.
What is Hot and Sour Soup?
It has its origins in China, although the original version contains meat and egg. This vegan version of the soup retains all the amazing flavors of the original but without the meat. The flavor is spicy with its signature sour notes.
If you have ever tried this classic Chinese vegetable soup then you just know what we mean. It’s addictive! Plus you can play around with the ingredients and customize them to your liking. So, next time you’re reaching for that takeout, consider making this delicious vegan hot and sour soup instead!
What Goes Into This Recipe
Let’s take a look at what is in this soup recipe! I think you’ll be surprised at how simple the ingredients are for this delicious soup.
Oil: This recipe uses mostly olive oil with a touch of sesame oil to add its distinct flavor.
Vegetables: Onion, cabbage, and shredded carrots. Any variety of cabbage works. Keep it simple with green cabbage or you can use napa or savoy cabbage.
Tomatoes: Use canned crushed tomatoes when making this soup. You can also use diced tomatoes or whole tomatoes but you may want to blend or chop them up a bit for smaller pieces.
Vegetable broth: Adds flavor and liquid to the hot and sour soup.
Extra firm tofu: My favorite for making this vegetable soup. But other softer types of tofu work well in this particular preparation as well.
Soy sauce: A great way to add umami flavor to this vegetable soup. If you need a gluten-free option, you can substitute it with coconut aminos.
Rice wine vinegar: Gives this veggie soup its unique sour flavor.
Crushed red pepper: For the “HOT” in this vegetable soup recipe.
Fresh ginger: Infuses vegan hot and sour with its unique peppery yet pungent flavor and aroma.
How To Make Hot and Sour Soup
1) Heat the oil over medium heat in a large soup pot. When it's heated add the onion and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes.
2) When the onions start to soften and become translucent, add the cabbage, carrots, and canned tomatoes. Cook the veggies for another 2 to 3 minutes.
3) While the veggies are cooking, cut the tofu into bite-size pieces.
4) Add the tofu and the remaining ingredients to the pot. Cook the soup over high heat until it begins to boil.
5) Once it boils, reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook for 20 minutes.
6) When the soup is ready, serve it up hot with fresh pepper.
To make the soup less spicy, adjust the level of red pepper used. Place a small bowl of it or some sliced chilies on the table for anyone who wants to add more spiciness to their bowl.
More sour flavor? Add an extra splash of vinegar just before serving.
Using broccoli, snap peas, cauliflower, green beans, or other delicate veggies? Add these to the pot of soup during the last ten minutes of cooking so they don't turn out too soft.
Is hot and sour soup healthy?
Yes, for the most part - but it depends on the variation you are preparing or ordering. This recipe uses completely wholesome ingredients for a soup that makes a healthy addition to meals.
Does hot and sour soup contain meat?
In some cases, it is made using meat-based broth, eggs, and even some pieces of meat. This vegan hot and sour soup, however, does not!
What vegetables will work well when making this vegetable soup?
Any veggies you would normally add to soup will work. Some favorites include cabbage, onion, carrots, snow peas, spinach or kale, broccoli, cauliflower, and mushrooms. More delicate vegetables such as bean sprouts or green onions can be sprinkled on the top for garnish or added right at the end before serving.
In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat. When hot, add the onion and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes. When the onions become tender and translucent, add the cabbage, carrots, tomatoes, and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes.
While the cabbage is simmering, cut the tofu into bite-size pieces. Add the tofu and the remaining ingredients to the pot. Cook over high heat until the soup begins to boil. Once it begins to boil, lower the heat to low, cover, and cook for 20 minutes.
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