This flavorful vegetable udon noodle soup couldn’t be easier to make, thanks to fresh store bought udon noodles and a savory miso based broth.
One of the most popular recipes on this blog is my Pork Belly Udon Noodle Soup. In the years since I’ve published it , however, I’ve transitioned to a mostly plant-based lifestyle and no longer consume pork. I’ve left the recipe up for those of you that do, and still make a version of it myself often, just leaving out the pork. So I figured it was high time I create a proper meatless udon noodle soup recipe to have up here, too.
Why you’ll love this vegetable udon noodle soup
Have you ever had udon noodles? They are a Japanese wheat flour noodle typically used in soups and stir fry recipes with a thick consistency that makes them perfect for slurping. Your girl fancies herself somewhat of a noodle connoisseur, and I must say I will forever be obsessed with udon’s soft, chewy texture. You can purchase them fresh or dried from the Asian section of your grocery store or in Asian specialty markets. I prefer the fresh udon noodles when I can find them because they cook so much faster, making this vegetable udon recipe even more easy-breezy.
This vegetable udon noodle soup is so satisfying and flavorful, I’d wager that you won’t miss the meat one bit. Not only is it full of hearty vegetables like asparagus, bok choy and meaty mushrooms, but the broth is so rich and delicious thanks to a base of garlic, ginger and miso paste. A splash of soy sauce gives it that umami flavor that everyone craves from Asian noodle soups.
I think the thing I love most about this udon noodle soup though is how extremely easy it is to make! In less than twenty minutes flat you can have a satisfying meal on the table.
How to make vegetable udon soup
I like to start this vegetable udon noodle soup by sauteeing the asparagus and mushrooms separately in a skillet and adding a splash of soy sauce and toasted sesame oil to the pan as they’re cooking. It only takes an extra couple of minutes and gives the vegetables an undeniably delicious depth of flavor.
Next, the broth. The base is made up of fresh garlic and ginger, miso paste and soy sauce. To that we’ll add vegetable broth (you can add a splash more soy sauce to taste if you want your soup to be a little saltier).
Once the broth comes to a simmer, it’s time to add the udon noodles and bok choy. If you’re buying fresh udon noodles they will only need a couple of minutes. Dried udon noodles will take a bit longer. Lastly we’ll add our reserved mushrooms and asparagus to the soup.
- Instead of bok choy and asparagus, try baby spinach, zucchini or broccoli
- You can add a soft boiled or poached egg for a boost of protein
- If you don’t consume soy, coconut aminos are a great alternative
- This recipe calls for Asian varieties of mushrooms such as shiitake and king oyster mushrooms, but feel free to use any mushrooms you have on hand like crimini or white button mushrooms. Or if you’re not a mushroom fan, you can leave them out altogether!
Easy Vegetable Udon Noodle Soup
- 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil divided
- 3-4 asparagus spears chopped
- 1/2 cup mushrooms such as shiitake or king oyster sliced
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce divided, plus more to taste
- 2 tablespoons white miso paste
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 2-3 ounces fresh udon noodles
- 1 head baby bok choy halved
- 1 scallion chopped
Add 1 teaspoon sesame oil to a skillet over medium heat. Add asparagus and cook for 2-3 minutes or until asparagus is fork tender. Add 1 tablespoon soy sauce during the last minute of cooking. Remove from skillet and set aside.
Add remaining teaspoon sesame oil and add mushrooms. Cook for 2-3 minutes, adding 1 tablespoons soy sauce during the last minute. Remove from skillet and set aside.
Add remaining tablespoon soy sauce, miso paste, garlic, ginger and vegetable broth to a medium sized pot. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring until miso paste dissolves.
Add udon noodles and bok choy and simmer for 2-3 minutes or until noodles are cooked. Taste broth and add more soy sauce if desired. Transfer to a bowl and garnish with scallions.