In less than 20 minutes and with just half a dozen ingredients, you’ll have a delicious, flavorful batch of homemade miso soup.

By Kelly Vaughan
Updated: July 02, 2019
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Miso soup is the comforting, umami-rich start to a sushi date or warm bowl of Udon Noodle Soup on a cold day. It’s salty, savory broth keeps us slurping up spoonful after spoonful. While it may seem like just a Japanese specialty, you can make miso soup at home. Below, we explain what ingredients you’ll need to make miso soup, plus we’re sharing our favorite twists on this Japanese staple.

Miso Soup Ingredients

To make miso soup from scratch, you’ll need just a handful of ingredients. The broth, known as dashi, is made with water, dried bonito flakes, and dried seaweed. The bonito flakes (made from young bonito fish) and seaweed both add a salty, fishy flavor to the stock. Bonito flakes can be found at gourmet Japanese grocery stores, or even on Amazon. Miso paste then gets whisked into the dashi broth for body and flavor. Miso paste is a fermented soybean paste that adds the intense umami flavor we associate with Asian cuisine. Diced tofu and green scallions also add a savory element and some nutrients to boot. And that’s it! One pot and 20 minutes later, you have a delicious miso soup to drink when you have a cold, are feeling cold, or just want something warm and comforting to consume.

While miso soup tastes delicious, is it healthy? Fermented ingredients, like miso paste, offer gut-cleansing properties and digestive benefits. It is quite high in sodium, but like any food, miso soup is perfectly okay to eat in moderation.

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Miso Soup Recipes

Once you nail the basic miso soup recipe, try our own test kitchen-approved variations. You can put anything savory in miso soup for a hearty, full meal. For instance, you can add your favorite pork, chicken, shrimp, or veggie potstickers to miso broth in this Miso and Potsticker Soup with Crispy Snap Peas. White miso paste, grated ginger, and sliced scallions add umami and the whole dish comes together in a snap. Or dress up store-bought chicken stock with white miso paste and soy sauce in this Miso Chicken Noodle Soup. And say goodbye to your sad desk lunch with this eco-friendly, to-go version of Mason Jar Miso Ramen Soup. Prep all your ingredients the night before, then add hot tap water when it’s time to eat. Give it a good shake and pour into a bowl.

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