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The Immunity-Boosting Soup That's Perfect For Cold Season

Leah Vanderveldt
mbg Contributor By Leah Vanderveldt
mbg Contributor
Leah Vanderveldt is an author living in Brooklyn, New York. She received her bachelor’s in communications and media from Fordham University, and is certified in culinary nutrition from the Natural Gourmet Institute. She is the author of two cookbooks: The New Nourishing and The New Porridge.
The Immunity-Boosting Soup That's Perfect For Cold Season
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Garlic is one of those secret-weapon ingredients that works wonders for boosting your immunity when you feel a cold coming on. Its antimicrobial properties can really help to keep the sniffles at bay, and the fact that it's a major flavor booster only adds to its appeal. Make this restorative and healing soup to power through cold and flu season or when you need a little warming boost.

Immunity Garlic Soup

This clear broth does wonders if you're feeling congested and makes a very effective immune booster, too. The large amount of garlic may surprise you, but trust me, the flavor is fantastic. Shiitake mushrooms are a symbol of longevity in Asia and an excellent source of selenium, a known antioxidant that plays a vital role in boosting the immune system.

Serves 4

  • 1 ounce dried shiitake, porcini, and oyster mushrooms (add extra fresh shiitake mushrooms, if available)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium white onion, finely chopped
  • A thumb-size piece of ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1 whole garlic bulb, peeled
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable bouillon powder or 1 vegetable stock cube
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


1. Pour 1 cup of boiling water over the dried mushrooms in a bowl and leave them to soak for 10 minutes.

2. In the meantime, heat the oil in a heavy-based ovenproof pan. Add the onion and ginger then crush in all the garlic cloves. Fry gently until softened and aromatic.

3. Add the mushrooms and their water to the pan, plus any fresh mushrooms, then stir in the stock and the lemon juice.

4. Season then gently simmer with the lid on for at least 2 hours. Alternatively, transfer the pan to a low oven (about 250˚F). Season to taste before serving with crusty bread.

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