Pho Tai is a traditional Vietnamese soup that is typically made with beef broth, rice noodles, and thinly sliced beef. However, if you’re a vegan or vegetarian, you can still enjoy this delicious soup by making a few simple substitutions.
In this post, we will share a recipe for a a delicious and healthy vegan alternative version of Pho Tai that is just as flavorful and satisfying as the original.
This vegan version of Pho Tai uses hearty ingredients such as tofu, mushrooms, and an aromatic vegan broth for a satisfying, flavorsome, and nourishing meal, and it is packed with herbs and spices that give it an authentic Vietnamese flavor.
With an abundance of vegetables and plant-based protein, this comforting soup is perfect for those following a vegan diet and anyone seeking a lighter, yet still savory, version of Pho Tai.
If you do not have a vegetable broth ready, we’ve got you covered, with a recipe you can use, below right after this one.
Vegan Alternative Version of Pho Tai Soup
- 8 cups vegetable broth
- 4 cups water
- 1 large onion thinly sliced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2- inch piece fresh ginger peeled and thinly sliced
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 4 star anise
- 4 whole cloves
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 block 14 oz extra-firm tofu, cut into slices
- 4 cups mixed vegetables bok choy, carrots, broccoli, and beansprouts
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms shiitake or button mushrooms
- 8 oz dried rice noodles cooked according to package instructions
- Fresh herbs: mint cilantro, and Thai basil, for garnish
- Lime wedges for serving
- Sriracha or chili sauce for serving (optional)
- In a large pot, combine vegetable broth, water, onion, garlic, ginger, cinnamon sticks, star anise, whole cloves, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, and brown sugar. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let it simmer for around 30 minutes to allow the flavors to infuse.
- Using a fine-mesh strainer or cheesecloth, strain the broth to remove the solid ingredients. Return the broth to the pot and keep it warm over low heat.
- In a skillet, heat some oil over medium heat. Add tofu slices and cook until golden brown, about 3-4 minutes per side.
- In the same skillet, add mushrooms and sauté for about 5 minutes, until cooked and tender. Set aside.
- To assemble the Vegan Pho Tai, place cooked rice noodles in the bottom of a bowl. Top with cooked tofu, mushrooms, and mixed vegetables.
- Pour the hot broth over the noodles and vegetables. Garnish with fresh herbs, a squeeze of lime, and sriracha or chili sauce if desired.
Here is a recipe for a great vegetable broth
This vegetable broth can be used as a base for any soup or recipe that calls for broth:
Vegetable Broth Recipe
- 2 large onions roughly chopped
- 1/2 lb mushrooms
- 2 large carrots cut in chunks
- 2 celery stems some inner leaves are fine
- 1 head of garlic cut in half
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 8 cups of water
- Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.
- Add the onions, mushrooms, carrots, celery, and garlic to the pot and cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are slightly browned.
- Add the bay leaves, black peppercorns, thyme, and water to the pot and bring to a boil.
- Reduce the heat and simmer for 1-2 hours, until the broth is flavorful and fragrant.
- Strain the broth through a fine-mesh sieve and discard the solids.
- Use the broth immediately or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
- Calories: 284
- Carbohydrates: 63 g
- Protein: 13.09 g
- Fat: <2 g
- Fiber : 11.6g
- Onions: Onions are low in calories and high in vitamin C and fiber.
- Mushrooms: Mushrooms are low in calories and high in antioxidants and fiber.
- Carrots: Carrots are low in calories and high in vitamin A and fiber.
- Celery: Celery is low in calories and high in fiber and vitamin K.
- Garlic: Garlic is low in calories and high in antioxidants and has anti-inflammatory properties.
- Olive oil: Olive oil is a healthy fat that is high in monounsaturated fatty acids and antioxidants.
- Bay leaves: Bay leaves are high in antioxidants and have anti-inflammatory properties.
- Black peppercorns: Black peppercorns are high in antioxidants and have anti-inflammatory properties.
- Thyme: Thyme is high in antioxidants and has anti-inflammatory properties.
- Water: Water is essential for hydration and can help to flush toxins from the body.
Can vegetable broth be frozen and reheated?
Yes, vegetable broth can be frozen and reheated. Here are some tips to help with that:
Portion the broth into freezer-safe containers or bags before freezing to make it easier to thaw and reheat.
Label the containers or bags with the date, so you know when to use them by.
Freeze the broth for up to 2 months for best quality.
Thaw the broth in the refrigerator overnight, before reheating it on the stove or in the microwave.
Once thawed, use the broth within 5 days if stored in the refrigerator.
If you have thawed the broth on the stove, make sure to cook it through before refreezing it.
Overall, freezing vegetable broth is a great way to extend its shelf life and have it on hand for future use. Just make sure to follow proper storage and reheating techniques to ensure the best quality and safety.
How to properly thaw frozen vegetable broth?
You have 3 ways:
1. Refrigeration method: The safest and most efficient way to thaw frozen vegetable broth is to transfer it from the freezer to the refrigerator and let it thaw overnight. This method ensures that the broth thaws evenly and reduces the risk of bacterial growth.
2. Microwave method: If you need to thaw the broth quickly, you can use a microwave. First, transfer the frozen broth to a microwave-safe bowl and defrost it for about 3-5 minutes or until the broth becomes gelatinous. You can then separate the gel-like pieces around using a spoon. If the broth remains solid, you might have to add 1-2 minutes to the total defrosting time.
3. Stove-top method: Another way to thaw frozen vegetable broth is to heat it up on the stove-top. First, transfer the frozen broth to a pot and heat it up over low heat. Stir the broth occasionally until it thaws completely.
Note: Once the vegetable broth is thawed, it should be used within 5 days if stored in the refrigerator. If you have thawed the broth on the stove, make sure to cook it through before refreezing it.
Can I use vegetable scraps to make vegetable stock?
Yes, vegetable scraps can be used to make vegetable stock. Just make sure they’re fresh and clean.
Can I use a slow cooker to make vegetable stock?
Yes, a slow cooker can be used to make vegetable stock. Using a slow cooker to make vegetable stock is a convenient and easy way to extract the maximum flavor from your vegetables. It also allows you to set it and forget it, making it a great option for busy home cooks. Here you have the steps to make vegetable stock in a slow cooker:
1. Place your vegetable scraps or vegetables in the slow cooker and top with water until the vegetables are covered with ½ inch of water. You can also add herbs and spices like peppercorns and bay leaves for extra flavor.
2. Cook on low for 8-24 hours, depending on the recipe. Some recipes suggest cooking for 8-10 hours on low or 4-5 hours on high, while others suggest cooking for up to 24 hours on low.
3. Discard the vegetables and strain the broth through a fine-mesh sieve or cheesecloth. Store the stock in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or freeze for later use.