Vegetarian Pho

This vegetarian pho (Vietnamese noodle soup) is full of flavor, thanks to spices, herbs and sautéed shiitake mushrooms! It’s easy and fun to make, too. Recipe yields 4 generous bowls of soup.

Vegetarian Pho

INGREDIENTS
Soup
  1. Two 3-inch Frontier Co-op cinnamon sticks
  2. 3 Frontier Co-op whole cloves
  3. 2 Frontier Co-op star anise
  4. 1 large white onion*, peeled and quartered
  5. 4-inch piece of fresh ginger*, peeled and halved lengthwise
  6. 4 cups (32 ounces) vegetable stock or broth
  7. 4 cups water
  8. 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium tamari or soy sauce
  9. 6 ounces (one large handful) rice noodles
  10. 1 tablespoon avocado oil, mild extra-virgin olive oil or your neutral-flavored oil of choice
  11. 5 ounces thinly sliced shiitake mushrooms
  12. Salt

Garnishes
  1. Mung bean sprouts
  2. Sprigs of fresh basil (use Thai basil if you can find it) or cilantro
  3. Sprigs of fresh mint
  4. Thinly sliced green onions (mostly green parts)
  5. Very thinly sliced fresh jalapeño (omit if sensitive to spice)
  6. Small wedges of lime

INSTRUCTIONS
  • Warm a medium soup pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the cinnamon sticks, cloves, and star anise and toast until fragrant, stirring occasionally, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the onion, ginger, vegetable stock, water and tamari. Raise the heat to high and bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat as necessary to maintain a gentle simmer. Simmer for 30 minutes to give the flavors time to meld.
  • In the meantime, prepare your rice noodles by cooking them according to package directions. Set them aside.
  • To prepare the shiitake mushrooms, warm the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add the mushrooms and a few dashes of salt. Cook until the mushrooms are tender and lightly browned, about 4 to 6 minutes, then set them aside.