Serves 6 | Ready in 45 minutes 

Of all the recipes in this book, this savory dish is the one I make the most often, not just because it’s delicious, but because it connects me to my past. Throughout childhood, my grandma would make me various versions of this soup, and as an adult, it brings me so much comfort to make it and share it with others. Expect a vegan, Mexican-inspired twist on a Chicken and Rice Soup with tofu swapped in for the chicken and with the addition of fresh lemon juice and cilantro. So delicious! 

  • Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

  • 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced

  • 3 carrots, sliced

    WNK- Plant Based Quick and Easy Book cover Plant-Based on a Budget Quick & Easy Toni Okamoto
  • 3 celery ribs, sliced

  • 2 medium zucchini, diced

  • 3 garlic cloves, minced

  • 2 ears corn, shucked and cut into thirds

  • 1 (14- to 16-ounce) package extra- or super-firm tofu, drained and diced

  • 3/4 cup medium-grain white rice, rinsed

  • 6 cups water

  • 3 vegetable bouillon cubes or “No Chicken” paste equivalent

  • Salt and black pepper, to taste

  • Minced fresh cilantro, for garnish 

Optional additions and swaps:

  • Swap the oil for 1/4 cup water

  • Swap the rice for quinoa

  • Add a squeeze of lemon or lime juice before serving

  • Add a dash of hot sauce before serving

  • Add sliced jalapeños before serving 


  1. In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, celery, zucchini, and garlic and sauté, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are tender, 3 to 5 minutes.

  2. Add the corn, tofu, rice, water, and bouillon cubes. Bring to a boil, cover, and lower the heat, and simmer for 25 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Garnish with minced cilantro.


Toni’s tips:

If you guessed that this soup can be made in a pressure cooker, you’d be right! Combine all the ingredients in the pressure cooker (omitting the oil if you like) and cook on high pressure for 4 minutes with a quick release.

Recipe reprinted with permission from Plant-Based on a Budget Quick & Easy by Toni Okamoto.

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