Friday, December 11, 2009

Korean Style Miso Soup (두부 된장찌개)

The weather is frightening outside! It's been raining all day and just too cold! You're probably laughing at me if you already know where I live. I live in Northern California, near Sacramento. It's supposed to be nice during the fall and winter (well, we don't really have winters - more like fall until the heat comes around in the summer.) It's weird because I used to live in Korea and in Idaho where it snows a lot and makes you purple when you're out all day and now that I've been living here for two years, I'm whining about the 40 degrees weather. I know, I'm so lame. But it's too cold and all I want is some nice, warm soup.

Korean style miso soup, made with soy bean paste is definitely my favorite kind of Korean soup. It is a little stronger than Japanese miso soup in taste but rich in flavor and also in its ingredients. I like to put a lot of different ingredients in the soup such as tofu, Inoki mushrooms, zucchinis, potatoes, and some serano peppers. And let me tell you, this soup will melt the ice in your chest. I love the Korean soy bean paste flavor. Oh and the potatoes in the soup - my favorite!

This little pot you see in the pictures is a pot for traditional Korean soups such as this and Kimchi soup. It is made of clay and it keeps your soup warm for a longer time. Families usually share and eat soup out of a same pot instead of in their own bowls in Korea. Afraid of your family's germs? Then you can get your own bowl, that's okay, too. You can find these clay pots at most Korean or Asian stores. They're about $10-15. When I saw it at a Korean store in Sacramento, I just had to get it.

So here is the recipe. Enjoy!

Korean Style Miso Soup (두부된장찌개)
Printable Recipe


3-4 tablespoons Korean soy beans paste (된장)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon sesame oil
pinch of black pepper
3 cups water
1/2 firm or extra firm tofu, sliced
1 small zucchini, sliced in half moons
1 medium potato, sliced in half moons
1 package Inoki mushrooms, ends cut
2 green onions, chopped
(optional) 1 serano chili pepper, seeded or unseeded and sliced
(optional) pinch of Korean red chili pepper flakes


In a medium sauce pan or a clay pot, heat sesame oil over medium-high heat. When the oil is heated, add the garlic and black pepper and stir. Add the soy beans paste and stir until all ingredients are mixed well, about 2 minutes. Add the water into the pan or the pot and bring it to a boil.

When the water starts to boil, add the sliced potato, zucchini, and tofu. Place a lid over the pan or the pot and cook about 5 minutes or until the potato is soft.

Add the mushrooms and the chili peppers and cook about 1-2 minutes or until the mushrooms are cooked. Sprinkle with red chili pepper flakes and green onions and remove from the heat. Place the lid back on the pan or the pot until ready to eat.

Sook the Cook


  1. That's so timely. I was thinking of cooking miso seafood soup for dinner yesterday evening but later changed my mind. I ended up cooking seafood curry instead. Now I really want to cook this miso soup. It looks too irresistible.

  2. It's actually dangerously cold here--windchills, below zero temps, and so I really DO need soup :-) I actually love miso goes good with egg rolls!

  3. That sounds so delicious! I want you to come cook for me!

  4. I hate cold weather too! I love this soup - I did not know that Korean miso is different from Japanese miso, now I am impossibly curious to taste it! Can't wait!

  5. This soup is perfect for the rainy weather! It's so savory and satisfying.

  6. Tasty Trix-
    Korean miso is a little stronger than Japanese one in taste. It's actually got chunks of soy beans, too. I love it. I hope you get to try it soon!

  7. CaSaundra-
    Below zero? That is insane! I used to go to college in Idaho and it would go below zero almost everyday between Jan and early March. My nostrils would freeze! Craziness!

  8. Thanks for posting this, this will be on my list of soups to make on cold nights.

  9. I've tried this at Korean restaurants, love it! so comforting...

  10. I simply love this soup, looks awesome...wonderful presentation.

  11. I just bought one of those pots at H-mart. I've cooked a couple of soups in it and LOVE it. I bought a small one and want to go back and get another small and a larger. I couldn't believe it when I took off the lid about 5 minutes after I turned off the burner and the soup was still bubbling. I so much want to learn more about this pot. I'm loving your blog and can't wait to make this soup.

  12. Lea Ann-
    I love the clay pot too! I love making Korean soup in there, even like seafood soup. It works perfect! I'm so glad you enjoy the pot too!

  13. My boyfriend has been hinting to me about making him some miso soup. I may just have to give your recipe a try. Did I already tell you how much I love Korean food?! SO good!

  14. Hi
    Oh you'd better make it for your boyfriend then. Gotta keep him happy! :) Thanks for taking the time to leave me a comment. I appreciate it very much. I think I'm going to have this soup for lunch today. I'm so craving some warm soup.

  15. What a tasty looking soup! I really like using both Japanese and Korean style miso's in soups like this

  16. This is perfect for today's wet SF Bay Area weather. Thank you!

  17. They say it takes you about 2-3 years to acclimate to a new climate. I was born in Montana but I've lived in California for over 12 years and I think 40 degrees Fahrenheit is cold, too! LOL!