Your whole food, plant-based life.

Vegan Shiitake Miso Cleansing Soup

I don’t know about you, but I will admit right here and now. I over-indulged at Thanksgiving. If I am to be completely honest, I over-indulged leading up to Thanksgiving as well. Trying and testing recipes for our holiday meal started a week before the actual event. There was a lot of great food and we started indulging early.




This year we had a beautiful vegan spread. All of the sides that you would normally have were present. Mashed potatoes (with a tarragon cashew cream), green bean casserole, cranberries, yams, greens, my great grandmother’s dressing made with veggie stock instead of turkey or chicken stock, mushroom gravy, and olive oil rolls dressed our table. The turkey was replaced by a version of the lentil loaf that incorporated the wild rice mixture right into the loaf and then it was wrapped in a vegan puff pastry. All in all it was a huge success. But as I said, food that I never eat on a daily basis but love to pull out for holidays.

On Monday I woke up and knew that my body was craving a healthy, healing, cleansing soup. I grabbed a Napa cabbage (you can substitute regular cabbage), shiitake mushrooms, carrots, leeks and ginger. Into the pot they went. After a nice long simmer, I turned off the heat and added miso and sambal oelek (chili paste), for a perfect touch of heat.


Shiitake Mushrooms for Health

  • Shiitake mushrooms are considered to be one of the world’s most healthy foods. Here are a few things we love about Shiitake Mushrooms!
  • Studies have shown that shiitake mushrooms support heart health by preventing too much immune cell binding to the lining of our blood vessels.
  • Shiitake mushrooms are a tremendous supporter of our immune systems. They boost it when needed and also cut back when needed.
  • They are a very good non-animal source of iron that is bioavailable to us.
  • They are very sustainable.
  • They are rich in B vitamins.
  • They are a good source of zinc, manganese, selenium, copper, vitamin D and fiber.
  • Shiitake mushrooms also are loaded with phytonutrients and are cancer fighters.


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  1. Danyelle wrote on August 22, 2016

    When you call for 1/3 miso, is that as a concentrated liquid or as a prepared, diluted soup?

    • Susan wrote on August 23, 2016

      Hi, Danyelle, Miso is a fermented paste that is made from soy, brown rice or other ingredients. You can find it at the grocery store in the refrigerated section.

  2. Rebecca wrote on June 3, 2016

    This is such a wonderful site!! SUCH creativity! However, I found this soup to be very bland! I could taste the veggies, but as far as a “seasoned” flavor, even with 1/3 cup miso I couldn’t taste it at all. Is this soup meant to be this way because it’s a Detox soup?
    Maybe next time I will add Himalayan sea salt as opposed to the miso. A little goes a long way

  3. Sonia wrote on February 7, 2016

    Hi Susan,

    Thanks for this delightful and warming recipe. Making this for lunch on Lunar New Year’s Day!

    Just one question – when do we add the sambal oelek? Cheers!

    • Susan wrote on February 8, 2016

      Hi Sonia, It is added in the end with the miso. Cheers!

  4. Phyllis Swanson wrote on December 29, 2015

    A great soothing soup, Susan! I did use fresh & dried shiitake – the dried are stronger in flavor, and the broth after soaking, I always add to soup. This will be part of my comfort food arsenal for sure.

    • Susan wrote on December 29, 2015

      So glad you enjoyed it!

  5. Stora wrote on December 15, 2015

    Hi Susan! I’m looking forward to making this. If fresh shiitake mushrooms are available, do you still recommend dried? Thanks ?

    • Susan wrote on December 15, 2015

      Hi, Stora, I would definitely still recommend dried for this soup. The dried mushrooms have a much greater concentration of flavor. You could add some fresh shiitake but I would still use the dried for the broth. Cheers!

  6. lili wrote on December 6, 2015

    Susan, best wishes from Minnesota….loved, loved this recipe. It was so simple to make and full of healthy ingredients. And yes, it makes a nice cleansing break during the holidays.

    • Susan wrote on December 6, 2015

      Oh thank you! How are things back there? No ice on the lakes yet? 🙂

      • lili wrote on December 12, 2015

        No,…. could be the latest ice-in ever for Lake Minnetonka. Never a dull moment here in the weather department as you know!

  7. Stef wrote on December 5, 2015

    Yummy I love miso and Shiitake and everything about this!!! I have not been able to get any of these ingredients for so long but I hopefully will soon and I will be making this!

    • Susan wrote on December 5, 2015

      So glad you like it Stef. They are a wonderful, powerful combination. 🙂

  8. Lauri Bruce wrote on December 4, 2015

    This is amazing. I’m coming off a month of dealing with a post surgical bowel obstruction and this is just the ticket. Happened to have all the ingredients. Add garlic as well. So wonderful. THanks and keep up the great work.

    • Susan wrote on December 5, 2015

      Hi, Lauri, I am so glad this recipe will be helpful. Wishing you fast healing! 🙂

  9. Sheila wrote on December 1, 2015

    I cannot eat miso or any soy products. I imagine this is a key ingredient for taste & nutrition any substitution ideas?


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