Chinese Vegetable Soup with Tofu – Takeout Style

4.5 from 2 votes
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Make takeout in your home in just 10 minutes with this Chinese vegetable soup that’s light and flavorful, yet hearty and comforting enough to fill you up! {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

Chinese vegetable soup in a pot

Chinese Vegetable Soup: Practical Takeout-Style Soup at Home

Looking for a satisfying soup that’s vegan and gluten free? Then try this Chinese vegetable soup. It mimics the takeout experience at Chinese restaurants in the US. The soup is full of flavor yet quite light. But it’s still robust enough to soothe your senses and keep you feeling full.

This One is Fully Vegan

You’ve likely searched for Chinese vegetable soup recipes before and if so, you may have noticed chicken broth as an ingredient. However, this soup doesn’t use chicken broth at all! That’s good news if you’re vegan or vegetarian.

Tofu and veggie soup in a pot

How to Make a Rich Chinese Vegetable Soup

What gives it that special flavor? It’s all the ginger, mushroom powder, simple seasonings, and the combination of vegetables used in the soup that give you the flavor. Now, if you’re not vegetarian or vegan, it’s certainly OK to use chicken broth instead of water if that’s what you prefer. However, I think it tends to overwhelm the lovely flavor of all the different veggies.

Ingredients for making Chinese vegetable soup

How to cut carrots into diamond shapes

To slice the carrots into diamond shape:

  1. Tilt your knife to a 45 degree angle and cut the carrots into pieces that is about 1” (2.5 cm) thick.
  2. For each piece, place it cut side down and further thinly slice them.

Of course, you can simply slice the carrot into round pieces but I thought I’d share how to cut this one like my mom does 🙂

How to cut carrots into diamond shape

Not Eaten in China, but Chinese in Spirit

Another thing that’s a bit amusing is that in China, we don’t have this dish. This Chinese vegetable soup you often find in restaurants here is made from produce that is commonly found in the US, such as broccoli. However, it carries with it the same spirit as a proper Chinese soup, with water, seasonings, herbs, and vegetables for a quick and comforting soup that makes a light lunch or a perfect beginning to dinner.

Don’t Leave the Ginger In

One thing I do advise is that you take the time to strain out the aromatics, particularly the ginger, before serving. It not only creates a better presentation but also keeps you from accidentally chomping into a large chunk of ginger. However, if you’d rather skip that step, it’s totally fine, but take care not to bite into any of the aromatics while enjoying the soup.

How to make Chinese vegetable soup step-by-step

Great for Meal Prep (If it Lasts!)

Make a big batch of Chinese vegetable soup and you can enjoy it all week long. But if you’re like my husband and me, it will likely be gone faster than you expect!

Takeout style vegetable soup
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Make takeout in your home in just 10 minutes with this Chinese vegetable soup that’s light and flavorful, yet hearty and comforting enough to fill you up! {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

Chinese Vegetable Soup with Tofu – Takeout Style

4.5 from 2 votes
Make takeout in your home in just 10 minutes with this Chinese vegetable soup that’s light and flavorful, yet hearty and comforting enough to fill you up! {Vegan, Gluten-Free}
Author: Maggie Zhu
Course: Soup
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: takeout
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon peanut oil (or vegetable oil)
  • 4 green onions , cut into 2” (5 cm) piece
  • 1 ” (5 cm) ginger , sliced
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon mushroom powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/2 block soft tofu , diced
  • 2 stalks celery , sliced on the bias
  • 1 cup (4 oz. / 125 g) mushrooms , sliced
  • 1 medium carrot , sliced
  • 1/2 head broccoli , cut into medium florets

Instructions

  • Heat the oil in a medium-sized pot over medium heat until hot. Add the green onions and ginger. Cook and stir until fragrant and beginning to brown, about 2 minutes.
  • Pour in the water and bring to a low boil. Boil for 5 minutes. Remove and discard the green onion and ginger.
  • Add the mushroom powder, salt, sugar, and white pepper. Stir to mix well.
  • Add the tofu, celery, and mushrooms. Once bringing back to a boil, cook for 3 minutes. Add the carrots and broccoli and boil for another 2 minutes. Taste the broth and adjust the seasoning to taste by adding more salt or mushroom powder if needed.
  • Serve hot.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving, Calories: 54kcal, Carbohydrates: 6.1g, Protein: 3.4g, Fat: 2.4g, Saturated Fat: 0.4g, Sodium: 472mg, Potassium: 244mg, Fiber: 1.5g, Sugar: 2.4g, Calcium: 67mg, Iron: 1mg
Did You Make This Recipe?Don’t forget the last step! Tag me @OmnivoresCookbook and #OmnivoresCookbook on Instagram!

Delicious takeout recipes to serve with

Lilja Walter is a part of the Omnivore’s Cookbook team and worked closely with Maggie to develop and test this recipe.

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Reader Questions and Reviews

  1. Carolyn Brodersen says:

    5 stars
    Delightful–so simple, so restorative–and delicious! If you feel lousy, this soup will lift you up. The mushroom powder is one of the secrets–but all those veggies and the ginger add to the magic. Makes your tummy feel good.

  2. Seems there is no way I can comment. I just wanted to know does it freeze well? says:

    4 stars
    I have yet to try this recipe it looks great.

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