Gingery Shiitake & Cabbage Soup with Edamame

shittake mushrooms, cabbage, tofu, Asian, soup, vegan, clean, vegetarian

There’s a lot of things I feel like I should be doing in the kitchen that I simply do not.

Like sifting flour. Washing fruits and vegetables.* And cooking big elaborate meals on Sundays. Because that’s when we have all the time in the world, right?

*I give them a haphazard rinse, but I’m not quite sure if that counts.

Not me.

First, I kill half my Sunday by sleeping till noon, of course. And by sleeping till noon I actually mean getting out of bed a few hours before that once I decide I can no longer sleep, and killing the rest of the time on the couch, snuggling with my laptop. And don’t be fooled. I’m not meal planning or blogging or doing anything resembling productive. I’m only interrupted by Ben asking when we’re going to eat breakfast, and again when he brings it to me, because I’ve told him, “we’ll eat whenever you make it.” Sweet, huh?

Then it’s time to dive into my own personal hell meal plan. You probably think I enjoy this activity, but it’s really nothing more than a necessary evil. About 2 hours later, we finally make it into the car, lists and grocery bags in hand.

And by the time we get home, I’m starting to get anxious. About putting groceries away and maybe prepping a few things for the coming week but most definitely I’m anxious about blogging and making those 75 unread posts in my google reader disappear but not before leaving a thoughtful comment or share for each.

So when am I supposed to cook, again?

Another thing you should know about my weekends is that I tend to splurge enough on Saturday that by the time Sunday night rolls around, I’m already in that get-back-on-track mode that most people reserve for Monday.

So maybe now you’ll understand why I’m more likely to pull a healthy, quick-fix meal from the freezer on a lazy Sunday night rather than a busy weeknight one.

This past Sunday I was really glad to have this Gingery Shiitake & Cabbage Soup waiting for me in the freezer. And even moreso, I’m happy to have a copy of Terry Walters’ Clean Start: Inspiring You to Eat Clean and Live Well with 100 New Clean Food Recipes on my bookshelf, because otherwise we’d all be missing out on this fabulous soup. It’s somehow incredibly light yet filling at the same time. The flavor doesn’t knock you in the face, rather, the mellow notes of ginger and earthy mushrooms are just right. Satisfying protein comes from edamame and cubed tofu, and heaps of cabbage lend a hearty, noodle-like texture. Could there possibly be a more perfect soup for savoring the last few hours of weekend? I think not.

shiitake mushrooms, ginger, cabbage, tofu, soup, vegetarian, vegan, clean eating

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Gingery Shiitake & Cabbage Soup with Edamame

Yield: 6 servings

A light but incredibly satisfying vegan soup with a mellow Asian flavor.


1 small package dried shiitake mushrooms (about 6 mushrooms)
2 cups boiling water
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 heaping tablespoon grated fresh ginger
2 large leeks, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
1 8oz package mixed wild mushrooms (such as shiitake, cremini and oyster), sliced
1/2 head green cabbage, thinly sliced
2 carrots, thinly sliced with a vegetable peeler
8 cups water
1 cup shelled edamame
1 14oz package firm tofu, pressed to remove excess water, and cut into small cubes
2 tablespoons reduced-sodium tamari or soy sauce
2 teaspoons ume plum vinegar
6 teaspoons toasted sesame oil, for servings


Place the dried mushrooms in a heat-proof bowl and cover with 2 cups boiling water. Let sit for 30 minutes. Remove the mushrooms with a slotted spoon, and thinly slice them. Reserve the broth and mushrooms separately.

In a large soup pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Cook the ginger and leeks until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the the shiitake mushrooms and the fresh, mixed mushrooms. Saute for about 5 minutes, until mushrooms begin to brown.

Add the cabbage, carrots, reserved mushroom broth, water, edamame, tofu, and tamari. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat. Simmer for 10 minutes, or until cabbage is soft. Stir in ume plum vinegar.

Divide among serving bowls and drizzle each one with about 1 teaspoon sesame oil.

Nutrition Facts:

Amount Per Serving
Calories 231.9
Total Fat 11.5 g
Saturated Fat 1.4 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 4.0 g
Monounsaturated Fat 4.3 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 588.1 mg
Potassium 519.9 mg
Total Carbohydrate 20.2 g
Dietary Fiber 8.0 g
Sugars 3.4 g
Protein 13.8 g

Adapted from Terry Walters' Clean Start

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13 Responses to “Gingery Shiitake & Cabbage Soup with Edamame”

  1. 1

    janet @ the taste space — January 27, 2012 @ 7:31 am Reply

    I’ve had this soup bookmarked for a while now, Cara… and with so many mushrooms in my fridge, and cabbage, and tofu and edamame, I don’t think I have an excuse not to make it now. wait, I don’t have the leeks, arg!! 🙂

  2. 2

    Kalyn — January 27, 2012 @ 10:51 am Reply

    This sounds flavorful and delicious!

  3. 3

    Shanon — January 27, 2012 @ 11:33 am Reply

    this is my soul in soup form.

    also, i am 100% with you on sundays!

  4. 4

    Ricki — January 27, 2012 @ 12:08 pm Reply

    Gorgeous soup, Cara! And I think you’ve just described my Sunday–except I don’t even do the meal planning! I’m really, really close to starting, though. . . 😉 (PS This soup would be great on WW, too. . . . just sayin’). 😀

  5. 5

    Dawn — January 27, 2012 @ 4:43 pm Reply

    I just made some lovely cabbage soup too! And OMG your Sunday’s sound divine. Mine start usually around 6ish with a little voice asking what we’re going to do today or “mommy I want breakfast”.

  6. 6

    Joanne — January 27, 2012 @ 9:22 pm Reply

    I am the exact.Same.Way. Sunday is my day of rest…HA. Which really means doing all the errands I didn’t do all week and editing tons of photos and catching up on blog reading, etc. It’s basically blogging mayhem. And get back on health food track mayhem. That’s where this soup is gonna come in handy. You know how I love my ginger!

  7. 7

    Kate — January 28, 2012 @ 3:52 am Reply

    We’re very similar with the sifting flour and washing fruits and vegetables (come on, don’t we all need a little dirt and bacteria in our lives?) but the OCD in me really enjoys menu planning.

  8. 8

    EA-The Spicy RD — January 29, 2012 @ 10:45 am Reply

    Your relaxing morning sounds fabulous! Although I don’t think I have it in me anymore to sleep past 8 am (unless black out curtains are involved), I’m very good at sitting around lazily on a weekend morning whenever I have the chance (like this morning). This soup looks so delicious and comforting. I’m making a miso inspired soup today, but adding this one to my line up to try. Love the bowl too 🙂

  9. 9

    Hannah — January 30, 2012 @ 10:22 am Reply

    Gorgeous photos! You’re making me want to whip this soup up all over again. It’s nice to know the nutrition value, too- Thank you for including it! 🙂

  10. 10

    Shannon — January 31, 2012 @ 4:25 pm Reply

    ooh, this does sound just like what i need right now 🙂 and seriously, i’m the same way with fruits and veggies… and i wish i only had 75 posts in my google reader 😛

    • 10.1

      Cara — January 31, 2012 @ 7:52 pm

      I should clarify, that’s 75 posts after weeding out all the ones I don’t plan on commenting on / sharing!

  11. 11

    Megan — April 13, 2012 @ 9:40 pm Reply

    Ok, I’ve read over this about 5 times now and I can’t find the part where I’m supposed to use the reserved mushroom water. Is that included in the 8 cups water?

    • 11.1

      Cara — April 15, 2012 @ 11:02 pm

      it’s added along with the 8 cups water (so 10 cups liquid total are added.) Thank you for pointing out the omission! I’ve updated the recipe.

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