An Immunity Soup to Light up Your Insides

A soup built on a monster white pepper broth. White pepper with jolts of ginger, and stabs of garlic - clear and strong topped with tofu, mushrooms, watermelon radish, and lots of green onions.

An Immunity Soup to Light up Your Insides

This soup is built on a monster white pepper broth. White pepper with jolts of ginger, and stabs of garlic. I like it just shy of scalding, racing down my throat, sweeping through my sinuses in one boisterous, fragrant swoop. This is a soup I make often, particularly when I need a boost. And, while I float other ingredients in the broth, mostly to make a meal of things, that part of the equation is usually an after thought. For me, this soup is all about the clear strong broth, the invigorating way it makes me feel, and the way it lights up my insides. This is a soup for the coldest days, the runniest noses, and the shortest days of winter. You should make it too.
An Immunity Soup to Light up Your Insides

An Immunity Soup to Light up Your InsidesImmunity SoupAn Immunity Soup to Light up Your Insides

A couple words of wisdom here. Serve hot. As hot as you can stand without betraying your tongue. It's an experience that's just not the same when the soup is served lukewarm. On occasion, I'll whisk in a bit of brown or red miso for a fuller-bodied, creamier broth experience - also the beneficial miso nutrients. But, try it straight and clear first. -h

101 Cookbooks Membership

Premium Ad-Free membership includes:
-Ad-free content
-Print-friendly recipes
-Spice / Herb / Flower / Zest recipe collection PDF
-Weeknight Express recipe collection PDF
-Surprise bonuses throughout the year

spice herb flower zest
weeknight express

Immunity Soup

4.78 from 18 votes

Treat the broth seasonally - if it's summer, toss some corn in. Late spring? Go for sliced asparagus. Also, for a more substantial meal, serve over brown rice or soba noodles. All tasty. Also, a mandolin makes quick work of all the slicing here, but watch those fingers! I like enoki or nameko mushrooms, black trumpets are good, and regular brown mushrooms do the job as well.

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, quartered and thinly sliced
  • 3 celery stalks, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium carrot, thinly sliced
  • 8 medium garlic cloves, very thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons grated ginger, peeled
  • 3/4 teaspoon finely ground white pepper, plus more to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups mushrooms, trimmed
  • 8 ounces firm tofu, sliced into thin slabs
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons fine grain sea salt
  • to serve: lots of chopped green onions, sliced watermelon radish, and/or pea shoots
  1. Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium heat, and stir in the onion, celery, carrot, garlic, and ginger. Gently sauté just until soft, you don't want any browning. Add a small splash of water if the pan drys out in the process. 

  2. Stir in the white pepper and 10 cups of water. Dial up the heat to bring the broth to a simmer, and hold there for about 15 minutes. Add the mushrooms, tofu, and salt, and gently simmer for another 5 minutes. Stir well, taste, and adjust with more salt or water if needed. Ladle the soup into shallow soup bowls and top with lots of green onions, pea shoots, and a few watermelon radish slices. Add a finishing drizzle of olive oil, and enjoy!


Serves 4-6.

Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
25 mins
If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

Post Your Comment


I may be totally insane, but I am contemplating making this. I am in Australia and its around 43c/104F at the moment,......


Six years I'm following you not just for what you make, but how you describe it.


Made this last night for dinner. Warmed us up heads to toes. Perfect for a cold Maine winter night. Thank you Heidi for this beautiful recipe!


This soup looks beautiful and sounds like just what I want right now. I love the idea of mixing raw radishes with cooked vegetables... the must give the soup a nice zip!

Kate in New York

Made this last night for dinner. Warmed us up heads to toes. Perfect for a cold Maine winter night. Thank you Heidi for this beautiful recipe!


Perfect recipe for me right now, I have a cold that wont let go..

Madelein - mother to three boys and three girls

Its funny, it looks refreshing and cool in the photo--put me at ease just looking at the bowl of goodness.


What a wonderful looking soup, perfect for the alkaline diet my husband is on.


Wonderful idea, this immunity soup. What's more, one form or another of it is always in season! Thanks for sharing this one.

Dan from Platter Talk

I can almost feel this soup doing me good. Love all that garlic.


Having just feasted with my eyes on this gorgeous bowl of soup, Heidi, I already feel healthier. Thank you.


I love the name you've given this soup! I'd like to use it in a reality TV segment involving cook-offs...

phi @PrincessTofu

Sounds delicious, my whole family could use some immunity with this flu going around our house. Thanks for sharing!


Where was this recipe when I needed it?! I'm still going to try it, although my flu has passed and even though I think white pepper smells like horse manure. Am I alone in this? Thx


Your photographs are breathtaking! The soup looks wonderful too. Since my family are purging the holiday excess right now, I think this broth would be a bright and bracing change. Thank you!


This soup looks stunning and just what the Dr order.. or rather what the Dr won't need to! Thank you.


Despite the lack of cold weather here in the SF Bay area I still find myself drawn to restorative broth soups...a fresh, light start to the New Year perhaps. I recently enjoyed a spicy ginger one and two nights ago we had a lovely chicken bouillon flavored with star anise, cinnamon, cloves, coriander seeds and of course peppercorns. This one will be on our dinner table next week. And those beautiful watermelon radishes...they add such a rosy glow to winter plates!

Kristin | The Dinner Concierge

I adore the flavour of white pepper and really need to use it more often than I do! Love the sound of this and I too am intrigued by your tofu!?

Emma Galloway

I am also curious about this marvelous looking tofu


This will be dinner tomorrow night!!

David Crossfield

More Recipes

101cookbooks social icon
Join my newsletter!
Weekly recipes and inspirations.

Popular Ingredients

Use of this site constitutes acceptance of its User Agreement and Privacy Policy.

101 Cookbooks is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Any clickable link to on the site is an affiliate link.