New This Month

A Breakfast Soup to Get You Moving in the Morning (It Also Makes a Great Dinner)

Bonus: It's vegan, and you'll learn how to make faux dashi!

brown rice bowl with squash and shiitakes
Photography by: Alpha Smoot

What’s not to love about starting your day with a warm, nourishing broth, a couple of servings of vegetables, and a mellow hit of caffeine? Even if soup for breakfast isn’t your thing, you’re going to want to try this comforting vegan take on a traditional Japanese dashi-broth soup for lunch or dinner.


Get the Brown-Rice Bowl with Kabocha Squash and Shiitakes Recipe


Let’s talk about what this soup is not: Dashi is a simple broth made from simmering kombu (dried kelp), bonito flakes (dried and thinly shaved bonito fish), and water. It’s the foundation for miso soup and great for poaching seafood or using as a base for brothy noodle dishes. Lapsang souchong tea gives this soup a subtle smoky flavor but keeps it vegan. It also adds a tremendous amount of depth and has me wondering why I’m not cooking with more assertive teas in the first place.


Sweet Japanese kabocha squash lends a mellow earthy flavor. No need to peel this skin -- it’s edible (and fiber-rich.) Simmering is a great way to bring out its natural sweetness. If you can’t find kabocha, delicata or acorn squash make fine substitutes. Shiitake mushrooms are a rich source of plant-based protein with a hearty texture to match. Cremini, oyster, or even white button mushrooms could stand in for the shiitakes.


Thinly sliced baby bok choy brings the dark leafy greenness to the bowl. This vegetable delivers almost all the essential vitamins and minerals. It’s added at the end so that the greens just wilt and the pale core end keeps its nice crunch.


For extra credit, add a poached egg or sliced avocado wedges for serving. The avocado sort of melts into this soup, similar to tortilla soup (another favorite of mine.)


This soup is super hearty and warming -- just the thing you want to cozy up to on a chilly day.


Get the Brown-Rice Bowl with Kabocha Squash and Shiitakes Recipe

Tune in every Sunday for a new Healthy Appetite video from Shira Bocar.


Watch Shira make this amazing vegan soup, then try it for breakfast -- or lunch or dinner: