Is Miso Paste Vegan?


You’ll typically find it next to tofu in the grocery store.

That’s because miso paste and tofu are made from the same main ingredient – soybeans.

They are both also vegan friendly in just about all cases.

What is Miso Paste Made Of?

Both red and white miso paste are made of similar ingredients. You’ll typically find:

  1. Fermented soy beans (mashed up into a paste)
  2. Salt
  3. Cereals (rice or wheat are common)

If you have those ingredients, it’s very easy to make your own.

You simply ferment the soy beans along with your grain of choice, and then mash up the result. Next, you mix in salt to improve the flavor.

The exact amounts to add are tricky, but there are plenty of vegan miso paste recipes online you can follow.

What’s the Difference Between White, Yellow, and Red Miso?

The big difference is the grain used and the amount.

White miso is typically made by fermenting the soy beans with a lot of rice.

Yellow miso uses barley, and sometimes a bit of rice.

Finally, red miso uses a small amount of barley or other grain. The big difference is the amount, which is why the flavor of the fermented soybeans is a lot stronger.

Long story short, miso paste is vegan in almost all cases, unless something atypical is added in.

About the author

Dale Cudmore

Your friendly neighborhood vegan from Toronto. Chemical engineer turned semi-professional soccer player and freelance nutrition writer. I've been vegan for years and try to make life easier for others by sharing what I've learned.

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