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Kimchi Soup with Tofu

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Makes 4 servings 1x

Time 25 minutes

Units Scale


  • 2 tablespoons good-quality vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 1/2 cups kimchi, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar, plus more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce, plus more to taste
  • 1/2 cup short-grain white rice
  • 12 ounces soft silken tofu, drained
  • Pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped scallions for garnish


  1. Put the vegetable and sesame oils in a large pot over medium heat. When hot, add the kimchi and cook, stir- ring, for just a few seconds. Add 7 cups water along with the vinegar and soy sauce and bring to a boil, then lower the heat so the mixture bubbles gently but steadily.
  2. Add the rice, stir, and once again adjust the heat so the mixture simmers. Cover and cook, undisturbed, until the rice is tender and the broth thickens, 15 to 20 minutes.
  3.  Add the tofu and stir to break it into pieces with a spoon. Let the soup return to a boil, then remove from the heat. Taste and adjust the seasoning, adding more soy and vinegar if you’d like along with some black pepper. Garnish with the scallions and serve.

— Recipe from How to Cook Everything Vegetarian: Completely Revised Tenth Anniversary Edition

Recipe variations

Korean-Style Mushroom Soup with Tofu
With unfermented vegetables, you’ve really got to have mushroom stock here instead of water to make the best broth: Instead of the kimchi, use a combination of 1 pound sliced white button mushrooms and 1/2 pound shiitake mushrooms, sliced (caps only; remove and reserve the stems for stock). In Step 1, when you add them to the hot oil, keep cooking, stirring occasionally, until they release their liquid and the pot becomes dry again; you can even brown them a bit. When the mushrooms are ready, add 1 to 2 tablespoons gochujang or other chile paste or sauce and 2 tablespoons sesame seeds. Proceed with Step 2.