Warm, comforting, and pleasantly savory— that’s all we could say about this miso soup recipe.
With this soup, you’ll get the soft tofu, and the refreshing and subtle-tasting salmon and shrimp in every scoop. It’s specially made for when you feel like treating yourself at home after busy hours.
What Is Miso Soup?
Miso soup (味噌汁) is a traditional Japanese soup that was created 1,300 years ago by the Buddhist priests. Miso soup is made primarily of miso paste, tofu, fermented products, and varieties of vegetables.
Different regions and customs have their different ways to prepare a bowl of miso soup. Today, miso soup is a warm and comforting staple that’s enjoyed in every part of Japan.
Is Miso Soup Healthy?
For Japanese people, miso soup is considered a nourishing soup that can be added to everyone’s daily eating routines. It’s easy to eat, quick to make, and is packed with nutrients from fresh ingredients— especially when homemade.
So yes, it is healthy.
Miso soup is rich in protein and minerals as it’s packed with seafoods and green vegetables. You’ll also get antioxidants and beneficial bacteria for the guts from the fermented products.
Another homemade soup in the Asian cuisine that we made is this winter melon meatball soup. Though the two soups follow different methods, they bring out the very similar impression as both are healthy and enjoyable.
Calories in Miso Soup
You’ll get 140 calories from one serving of this miso soup. This dish is also low in carbohydrate with only 5 grams of it per serving.
Miso Soup Ingredients
Traditionally, the ingredients for a miso soup are the seasonal products that people were having on-hand at the moment the soup is served.
But generally, miso soup always have bold-flavored and light-tasting ingredients combined together. That explained the contrasting color and texture in every scoop of it.
1. Red Miso Paste
It’s no doubt that miso paste is the central ingredient for this miso soup recipe. It plays an indispensable role in the soup’s flavor.
Miso paste is a fermented paste that’s mostly used as a condiment and mixed with soup stock to create miso soup. It’s high in sodium and protein with an intense and salty flavor.
This miso soup recipe called for red miso paste (also known as akamiso – 赤味噌). Red miso is much stronger-tasting, comparing to other varieties of miso paste.
Red miso, similar to other miso, is produced by fermenting soybeans with salt and several other ingredients. It delivers an umami flavor and a significant astringency.
Different fermentation processes result in different flavors, so if you find red miso too strong, don’t worry. You can try switching it with the milder and sweeter white miso or yellow miso for a more earthy-flavored soup.
Miso soup is not only bursting in flavors but also comes with diverse textures. Soft and spongy cubes of tofu brings excellent mouthfeel to miso soup— they perfectly balance the umami flavor from the seafood.
In most grocery stores, you’ll easily find seaweed sold in dried form. Before cooking in the broth, you’ll need to soak it in cold water for 5 minutes so it fully expands.
How to Make Miso Soup
Step 1: Prep
Rinse, peel, and devein the shrimp. Soak the dried seaweed in cold water for 5 minutes and drain after it fully expands. Set them aside.
Step 2: Cook (1)
In a saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Stir-fry ginger and carrots quickly.
Step 3: Cook (2)
Pour chicken broth to the saucepan and bring it to a boil. Continue to add miso paste. Whisk to get the clumps out, until it’s completely dissolved.
Step 4: Cook (3)
Continue to add the shrimp, salmon, and the fully expanded seaweed to the saucepan. Let it cook for a minute.
Step 5: Cook (4)
Turn the heat down to low, add tofu and sake. Let simmer for a minute.
Step 6: Serve and enjoy (5)
Turn off the heat. Sprinkle ground black pepper, sesame seeds, and leek on top. Serve hot.
What Goes with the Soup?
As said, there are more variations of Japanese miso soup that you could ever imagined. Put it another way— there’s more you can do with your miso soup than you thought.
Aside from the mentioned basic ingredients mentioned, these following are the common choices people would like to add to their soup.
Making egg one of the main ingredients in miso soup is a great way to sneak extra dose of good protein into your meals.
Either poached or scrambled eggs can be added to miso soup. It’s also easily purchased so you can save time looking for an Asian grocery store nearby.
Traditionally, Japanese miso soup can also be made with beef steaks. Simply slice the steak thin and cook them with a light broth made of vegetables, miso paste, and fresh herbs.
You can also prepare rice noodles to side along the miso soup and make it a satisfyingly sweet-tangy ramen dish.
How Long Does Miso Soup Last?
When left on the counter, miso soup is edible within the same day that it’s cooked. If stored in the fridge, miso soup can last up to 2 days.
Whatever the case is, you will always need to rewarm the leftover miso soup before eating for the best possible flavor.
Can You Freeze Miso Soup?
You can transfer miso soup to glassware containers and put to the freezer for up to 2-3 months. However, we don’t really recommend freezing the soup that long.
Miso paste itself can already last in the fridge for months, while this miso soup recipe takes only 15-20 minutes to do. Therefore, here’s our advice for a fresh and appetizing miso soup that’s convenient and time-saving.
First, you freeze the prepared ingredients for miso soup separately so they’re ready to use in months. Whenever you feel like adding it to your meals, make a fresh batch of miso soup from the products you stored in your freezer.
The cooking time will be just equivalent to the time you’d have to spend defrosting a frozen serving of it. But of course, everything tastes better when cooked fresh— so why not taking the easy path?
Miso Soup Recipe
- 2 oz raw shrimp whole
- 3 oz boneless salmon filleted
- 3/4 tbsp red miso paste
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 3 cup unsalted chicken broth
- 2 tbsp leek chopped
- 1 tsp ginger grated
- 3 oz soft tofu cubed
- 3/2 tbsp dried seaweed
- 2 oz carrot cubed
- 1/2 tbsp sake
- 3/2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp sesame seeds
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- Rinse, peel, and devein the shrimp.
- Soak the dried seaweed in cold water for 5 minutes. Drain after it fully expands. Set aside.
- In a saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Stir-fry ginger and carrots quickly.
- Pour chicken broth to the saucepan and bring it to a boil.
- Add miso paste. Whisk to get the clumps out, until it’s completely dissolved.
- Continue to add the shrimp, salmon, and the fully expanded seaweed to the saucepan. Let it cook for a minute.
- Turn the heat down to low, add tofu and sake. Let simmer for a minute.
- Turn off the heat. Sprinkle ground black pepper, sesame seeds, and leek on top.
- Serve hot.
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