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Vegetarian Pho with Tofu

Vegetarian Pho with Tofu

Since traditional pho recipes are all about the beef-based broth, it can be tough for vegans and vegetarians to find a way to eat pho without the meat. Here is a great simple recipe with no meat, yet with the added protein of fried tofu. It’s win-win for everyone.


  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried mushrooms
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tbs soy sauce
  • 10 slices of fresh ginger, cut thick
  • 1 tbs brown sugar
  • 1 tbs rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp black pepper, ground
  • 2 sticks of cinnamon
  • 2 whole star anise pods


  • 18 oz package of rice noodles
  • 14 oz package of firm tofu
  • 1/2 cup green onions, sliced
  • 1 cup fresh bean sprouts


  • 1 lime, sliced in wedges
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro
  • 1 cup fresh bean sprouts
  • Chili sauce

First of all, get your broth simmering. Just combine all the broth ingredients in a very large soup pot, and bring up to a hard boil. After about a minute, turn the heat down to a good simmer. Put on the lid, and let it cook for about an hour.

As the pho broth is finishing up, cook the rice noodles in hot water. While the noodles are soaking, cube up the tofu and fry lightly in a hot pan to brown the chunks on all sides. Set that aside when its done and get your bowls ready.

Strain the spice pieces and other bits out of your broth, and divide the noodles between 6 bowls. Top with sliced onions, sprouts and a few chunks of tofu. Ladle hot broth over each bowl, and serve.

Set out a plate with garnishes to go with the soup, and enjoy your vegetarian pho.

Serves 6.

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