Japanese sweet potatoes add Asian flair to this easy take on pho, a traditional Vietnamese noodle soup; their pale, creamy color makes them look more authentic. If you can't find Japanese sweet potatoes, substitute Jersey yellow sweet potato or regular white potatoes. This is a vegetarian version, but if you're a meat-eater, use beef broth and add seared tenderloin before serving.

Ingredients

  • 2 large Japanese sweet potatoes

  • 1 Tbs. peanut, olive, or coconut oil

  • 4 cups vegetable broth

  • 4 whole garlic cloves, crushed

  • 8¼-inch slices fresh ginger root

  • 2 whole star anise

  • 1 cinnamon stick

  • 1 tsp. ground black pepper

  • 2 cups shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced

  • 1 Tbs. fish sauce, plus more for serving

  • 1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced on the diagonal

  • 1/2 cup bean sprouts

  • 1/2 cup Thai basil or sweet basil leaves

  • 1 serrano chili, thinly sliced

  • Sriracha chili sauce for serving

Preparation

  1. Scrub potatoes, cut off ends and spiralize into long, thin noodles. Set aside. 
  2. In a medium pot, heat oil and sauté onion until translucent, 2 to 3 minutes. Add broth, garlic, ginger, star anise, cinnamon, and pepper. Cover and simmer, covered, for at least 15 minutes and up to 1 hour. Strain and discard solids. Return broth to pot and add mushrooms, fish sauce, and sweet potato noodles. Simmer for 3 to 4 minutes, until mushrooms and potatoes are tender.
  3. To serve, ladle servings into each bowl. Top with green onions, bean sprouts, basil, Serrano chili slices, fish sauce, and Sriracha. Serve immediately.
Japanese Sweet Potato Soup with Rice & Nori Croutons recipe.

Japanese Sweet Potato Soup

This creamy vegan soup is topped with crispy rice “croutons” laced with seaweed; we used crumbled nori, but kelp or dulse flakes would work as well.

Sweet Almond Butter Hummus

Sweet Almond Butter Hummus

This sweet, surprising hummus combines tryptophan-rich chick- peas with almonds, high in sleep- inducing B vitamins and magnesium. Spread it on apple slices, cinnamon toast, or crackers for the perfect bedtime snack.