Soup

Sadly, most pre-made soups available in supermarkets contain animal products such as chicken, beef or fish stock. Below are some soups that are/appear to be vegan. You will see there are soymilk soups that are potentially vegan (some contain ingredients like emulsifier that can sometimes be of animal origin).

For those who do not live in Japan, products sold on Rakuten Ichiba can be shipped to other countries via Rakuten Global Express (English), Rakuten’s official overseas delivery service (click here for Rakuten Global Express in Japanese). They will combine your Rakuten Ichiba (Japanese) order with orders from other shopping websites, including those that do not ship overseas, and send everything to you. They do not send refrigerated or frozen items- if you order them, they will be sent to you unrefrigerated. Sign-up is free. Learn how to use the service here (English). Those in Japan can purchase any product that is carried on Rakuten Ichiba directly, of course without using Rakuten Global Express, which is only for overseas shoppers.

Check the blog’s Fast Food, Soup Stock Tokyo section for information on the chain’s animal-ingredient-free frozen soup options that can be taken home and heated. 

INSTANT MISO SOUPS

Generally, vegan instant miso soups can be found in health food stores or online and the occasional upscale supermarket.

This single-serving instant Ohsawa Organic Tateshina Miso Soup was purchased in a branch of Bio C’ Bon supermarket, which has branches in Tokyo and Kanagawa Prefecture.  The soup is marked “for vegan” in English on the package.

• Ohsawa Organic Tateshina Miso Soup/オーサワの有機立料みそ汁 Ingredients: Organic rice miso (including soybeans and rice) , organic Japanese mustard spinach, organic onion, organic fried tofu, yeast extract, kelp powder. Genetically modified soybeans are not used.

Online purchase link: Rakuten Ichiba

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Tsubi Soup/チュビスープ. Tsubi Soup, vegan miso soup, is available to purchase at select stores. Tsubi soup’s website has a list of shops that carry their products. You can find more details about their products on their English-language website as well, aimed at selling their products outside of Japan.

Online purchase link: Tsubi Soup’s website

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RED BEAN SOUP (OSHIRUKO)

Japanese traditional sweet red-bean soup (おしるこ/oshiruko) is available in stores and vending machines, especially in winter. Here are a few examples. The Asahi Red Bean Soup uses ricebeans, which don’t have anything to do with actual rice, but is the common name given to Vigna umbellata beans, a type of red beans from Asia.

Asahi Red Bean Soup/アサヒ おしるこ. Ingredients: Sugar, ricebeans (Vigna umbellata), kidney beans, adzuki beans, salt/stabilizing agent (processed starch, carrageenan), emulsifier, cellulose, pH adjusting agent.

Online purchase link: Rakuten Ichiba

Photo from website.

Asahi oshiruko
Ito-En Dainagon Red Bean Soup/伊藤園 大納言しるこ. Ingredients: Sugar, adzuki beans, salt/thickener (processed starch), cellulose, emulsifier, cyclic oligosaccharide.

This product was spotted in an Acure vending machine. Uses Dainagon adzuki beans from Hokkaido, which are slightly larger than regular adzuki beans.

Online purchase link: Rakuten Ichiba

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VEGETABLE SOUPS

You may be able to find Auga soups from Lithuania (English-language link), which are marked “vegan friendly” in English on the back of the package, in upscale shops like Biople by Cosme Kitchen, in Beetroot, Champignon (mushroom), Minestrone, Carrot and Tomato varieties.

• Auga Soup, Beetroot. Ingredients: Organic vegetables (beets, potatoes, carrots, onions), organic tomato paste, organic rapeseed oil, salt, organic sugar beet sugar, organic rice powder, organic spices (black pepper, parsley).

Products containing wheat are manufactured in the same factory.

• Auga Soup, Champignon. Ingredients: Champignons* 50%, Water, Coconut Milk*, Rice*, Sea Salt, Spices*, *Organic Products

•Auga Soup, Minestrone. Ingredients: Water, various vegetables 36% (organic carrots, organic cabbage, organic potatoes, organic bean sprouts, organic peas, organic paprika), organic tomato paste, organic rapeseed oil, organic spices, sea salt, organic sugar, organic rice flour.

• Auga Soup, Carrot. Ingredients: Organic carrots 42%, water, organic coconut milk 10%, organic rice flour, sea salt, organic spices.

• Auga Soup, Tomato. Ingredients: Water, organic tomatoes 20%, organic tomato paste 10%, organic rapeseed oil, organic spices, organic wheat flour, sea salt, organic sugar.

Online purchase link: Rakuten Ichiba

Some photos from website. 

Auga soups

Auga soups back of packages

auga champignon soup      auga tomato soup

Made by the same company in charge of the Chaya Macrobiotics restaurants. Although the restaurants serve fish, according to their website’s Q&A, all of their manufactured products are 100% plant-derived and don’t use white sugar. The product pages for these soups are specifically marked vegan-friendly in Japanese, ビーガン対応/vīgan taiou.

• Chaya Macrobiotics Corn Potage/チャヤマクロビの粒入りコーンポタージュ. Ingredients: Kombu broth, vegetables (corn, onions), sweet corn powder, rapeseed oil, potato starch, vegetable broth, salt, garlic paste.

Artificial flavorings, preservatives, artificial colorings and white sugar are not used.

Manufactured in the same production process as items containing egg, milk, wheat, buckwheat, peanut, shrimp, crab, squid, orange, beef, walnut, mackerel, soybean, chicken, pork, banana, peach, yam, apple, gelatin, sesame and cashew nuts.

Online purchase links: Chaya Macrobiotics online shop, Rakuten Ichiba

Photo from website.

chaya corn soup

• Chaya Macrobiotics Minestorone/チャヤマクロビのミネストローネ. Ingredients: Vegetables (onion, carrot, cabbage), kelp dashi, diced tomato, roasted onion, starch syrup, pumpkin paste, carrot paste, ume vinegar, garlic paste, olive oil, ginger paste, potato starch, salt, yeast extract, kelp powder, spice.

Artificial flavorings, preservatives, artificial colorings and white sugar are not used.

Manufactured in the same production process as items containing egg, milk, wheat, buckwheat, peanut, shrimp, crab, squid, orange, beef, walnut, mackerel, soybean, chicken, pork, banana, peach, yam, apple, gelatin, sesame and cashew nuts.

Online purchase links: Chaya Macrobiotics online shop, Rakuten Ichiba

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It might not be possible to find the Del Monte One Family Cream of Corn Soup, certified vegan by VegeProject Japan, in stores, but it’s available for online purchase.

• Del Monte One Family Cream of Corn Soup, vegan certified/デルモンテ ワンファミリー(ヴィーガンハラル認証・アレルゲン27品目不使用) クリームコーンあらごしタイ.

Online purchase link: Amazon Japan, Rakuten Ichiba 

Del Monte One Family Cream of Corn Soup

Kagome has a few smoothies that can be found in the cold drinks section of convenience stores and supermarkets, but are soup-flavored. Meant to be enjoyed as-is.

Kagome does animal testing.

Kagome Vegetable Life 100 Smoothie Soy Corn Potage/カゴメ 野菜生活100 とうもろこしのソイポタージュ. Ingredients: Vegetables (carrots (America or New Zealand), onion, corn, kale, spinach, asparagus, watercress, parsley, pumpkin, lettuce, cabbage, beets, daikon, Napa cabbage, celery), fruit (apples, lemon), soybeans, adjusted soymilk, dietary fiber, salt, agar-agar/pH stabilizer, flavoring, emulsifier, vitamin C.

Product contains soybeans and apples.

Online purchase link: Rakuten Ichiba

Photo from website.

Kagome Smoothie Soy Corn Potage

As of February 2021, it looks like it is still possible to find an older version of the product with slightly different packaging and a slightly different ingredient list online (although online retailers don’t always update their photos when switching to selling a newer version of a product).

• Kagome Vegetable Life 100 Smoothie Soy Corn Potage/カゴメ 野菜生活100 とうもろこしのソイポタージュ. Ingredients: Vegetables (carrot, onion, corn, kale, spinach, asparagus, watercress, parsley, pumpkin, lettuce, cabbage, beet, daikon, Napa cabbage, celery), fruit (apple, lemon), soybean, soymilk, soymilk cream, dietary fiber, salt, agar-agar/pH adjuster, flavoring, emulsifier, vitamin C.

Online purchase link: Rakuten Ichiba

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Kagome Vegetable Life 100 Smoothie Soy Pumpkin and Carrot Soy Potage/カゴメ 野菜生活100 Smoothie かぼちゃとにんじんのソイポタージュ. Ingredients: Vegetables (carrot (America or New Zealand), pumpkin, onion, kale, spinach, asparagus, watercress, parsley, lettuce, cabbage, beets, daikon, Napa cabbage, celery), fruit (apple, lemon), soybeans, salt, dietary fiber, agar-agar, soymilk/pH adjusting agent, emulsifier, vitamin C, flavoring. 

Product contains soybeans and apples. 

Online purchase link: Rakuten Ichiba

Photo from website. 

Kagome Smoothie Soy Pumpkin and Carrot Soy Potage 

This Lithuanian Kedainiu Borsch Soup was seen at a branch of Gyomu Sūpā in January 2021.

Kedainiu Borsch Soup/Kedainiu ボルシチの素. Ingredients: Vegetables (beetroot, cabbage, carrot, potato, onion, garlic), tomato paste, vegetable oil, salt, wheat flour, sugar, allspice, black pepper, laurel/acidulant.

Product contains wheat.

Kedainiu Borsch Soup    Kedainiu Borsch Soup ingredient list

In 2019, Kikkoman confirmed that they do use bone-char processed sugar in their sugar-containing soymilk products. It’s not clear if the sugar in these soups was made using that method.

The packages of the following Kikkoman soup products say “butter and cream not used” in Japanese, バター・生クリーム不使用/batā nama kurīmu fushiyou. The website product pages state that out of the 27 specified allergenic substances, both flavors contains soybeans. 

• Kikkoman Soymilk Corn Soup/キッコーマン豆乳仕立てのコーンスープ. Ingredients: Soymilk (soybeans (Canada or America) (not genetically modified)), corn puree, sugar, powdered soy pulp (okara), vegetable oil, salt, stir-fried onions, yeast extract, spices/thickener (modified starch), pH adjusting agent, flavoring, emulsifier.

Product contains soybeans. 

Online purchase link: Rakuten Ichiba

Photo from website.

Kikkoman Soymilk Corn Soup

• Kikkoman Soymilk Pumpkin Soup/キッコーマン豆乳仕立てのかぼちゃスープ. Ingredients: Soymilk (soybeans (Canada or America) (not genetically modified)), pumpkin paste, sugar, salt, vegetable oil, powdered soy pulp (okara), stir-fried onions, yeast extract, spices/thickener (modified starch), pH adjusting agent, emulsifier.

Product contains soybeans. 

Online purchase link: Rakuten Ichiba

Photo from website.

Kikkoman Soymilk Pumpkin Soup

This paste for making tom yum soup is certified vegan by VegeProject Japan. You might be able to find it in upscale supermarkets or specialty shops.

• Lumlum Organic Tom Yum Paste/Lumlum オーガニック トムヤムペースト. Ingredients: Organic red onion, organic lemongrass, organic chili pepper, organic sugar, organic galangal, salt, organic coconut milk, organic kaffir lime leaves. Attached packet: Organic kaffir lime leaves, antioxidant (citric acid).

Online purchase link: Rakuten Ichiba

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The following soups are not vegan:

Hikari Miso’s oat meat soups, despite using oat meat, contain various animal products, so are not vegan.

The Curry flavor contains pork extract powder/ポークエキスパウダー/pōku ekisu paudā. It’s also listed as pork/豚肉/butaniku. The package also states the product contains dairy components/乳成分/chichiseibun, chicken/鶏肉/toriniku, and gelatin/ゼラチン/zerachin.

Hikari Miso 3 (2)    Hikari Miso 4 (2)

The Tomato flavor contains chicken extract powder/チキンエキスパダー/chikin ekisu paudā, also marked as chicken/鶏肉/toriniku, as well as cheese powder/チーズパウダー/chīzu paudā, also marked as dairy components/乳成分/chichiseibun. The package also states the product contains pork/豚肉/butaniku.

Hikari Miso 5 (2)    Hikari Miso 6 (2)

The Onion Consomme flavor contains chicken extract powder/チキンエキスパウダー/chikin ekisu paudā, also marked as chicken/鶏肉/toriniku. The package also states the product contains dairy components/乳成分/chichiseibun and gelatin/ゼラチン/zerachin.

Hikari Miso (2)    Hikari Miso 2 (2)

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