Ani’s Nutrient-Packed Miso Soup


Getting a jump start on cold and flu season doesn’t necessarily mean piping hot bowls of chicken soup. According to the World’s Healthiest Foods, “If one mineral were awarded first prize for its beneficial effects on immune function, it would be zinc. A cofactor in a wide variety of enzymatic reactions, zinc is critical to immune function and wound healing.” Fortunately, miso, a food often thought of as just a Japanese condiment, is a good source of zinc along with copper and manganese, two other trace minerals that are essential for energy production and antioxidant defenses. But miso is best handled with care, as heating it can destroy many of its health benefits. That sounds like it contradicts the very idea of a miso soup recipe, doesn’t it?

Enter Ani, raw food guru, and her latest cookbook, Ani’s Raw Food Asia. She has harnessed the power of miso and several healthy greens in an uncooked miso soup recipe. Her version is below, but I want to add a few quick notes before you jump right in:

Soy-Free: Many people assume that miso is always a soy-based food, but there are many varieties that are soy-free. Miso fermented from brown rice, chickpeas, or barley is fairly easy to find in North America, at natural food stores, online, or even in some conventional grocers. In Asia, you can even find millet- or rye-based miso paste.

Temperature: If you are like me, you may prefer your soup on the warm side. If you opt to heat the broth at all, be sure to add the miso at the very end, just before serving, to preserve its enzymatic benefits. Ani’s vegan miso soup recipe is served lukewarm, at room temperature.

Raw Vegan Miso Soup Recipe

Nutrient-Packed Miso Soup (Optionally Raw)
Prep time
Total time
From the book Ani’s Raw Food Asia by Ani Phyo. Excerpted by arrangement with Da Capo Lifelong, a member of the Perseus Books Group. Copyright © 2011
Serves: 4 servings
  • 1 Cup Mung Bean Sprouts
  • 2 Cups Washed, Coarsely Chopped Spinach
  • 2 Tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 3 Tablespoons Miso, unpasteurized, any color
  • 3 Cups Water
  • 2 Tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Teaspoon Minced Garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons Diced Scallion
  1. Marinate sprouts and spinach by tossing with extra-virgin olive oil. Set aside to soften.
  2. To make your broth, whisk together miso and a small amount of water. Slowly add remaining water, oil, and garlic. You can also blend if you want instead.
  3. To serve, transfer broth into four serving bowls. Top with marinated sprouts and spinach and garnish with scallion. Enjoy immediately.
  4. Broth will keep for 4 to 5 days when stored separately in fridge.
Miso is a living food. It starts off cooked, but it’s then fermented and contains living enzymes. The best way to enjoy miso is raw, and even in Asia, miso is added to warm, never boiling, water so as to not damage the enzymes and beneficial probiotic bacteria. Pasteurization kills beneficial bacteria, so make sure to use an unpasteurized miso. Most natural food stores have mung bean sprouts, but if you can’t find any, just use another sprout like alfalfa.

This recipe is Vegan, Vegetarian, Dairy free, Egg free, Gluten free, Grain free, Nut free, Peanut free, Soy free, Raw, and Sugar free.
Want More Raw Food Asia? Try Ani’s Summer Rolls with Ginger “Peanut” Sauce

About Author

Alisa is the founder of, Senior Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.

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