Toshikoshi Soba is a traditional Japanese noodle dish served on New Years Eve. Made with buckwheat noodles, hot dashi broth and a variety of toppings, this simple soba noodle soup symbolizes cutting off any hardships of the past year and welcoming good luck for the new year.

Ingredients (+Substituions) for Toshikoshi Soba Gyoza

Toshikoshi soba is traditionally served very simply with just buckwheat noodles, hot dashi broth and scallions. However, there are different variations depending on the region and household.

To make simple soba noodle soup, you’ll need:

  • Soba Noodles: Also known as buckwheat noodles. I like to use soba noodles made from 100% buckwheat flour for this occasion.
  • Dashi: Feel free to use any dashi of your choice. To keep it vegan, I’m using kombu dashi. You can either make it from scratch (recipe below) or use the dashi granules.
  • Sake: for flavour.
  • Mirin & sugar: for sweetness.
  • Japanese Light Soy sauce: for flavour and colour
  • MSG: because we’re only using kombu, I like to add a little MSG for extra umami. If you make dashi with katsuobushi (bonito flakes) and/or shiitake, you can skip the MSG.
  • Scallions: The one topping I would not skip!

As a shortcut version, you can also use tsuyu / mentsuyu! All you need is the soup base, water and a little mirin (recipe below).

Additional toppings & their meanings

  • Shrimp (I used kabocha as a sub): longevity because it bends at the waist, like your back when you get old.⁣
  • Grated daikon: removing evil spirits & cutting bad ties.  ⁣
  • Inari (fried tofu): symbolizes prosperity of business & good fortune. ⁣
  • Scallion/leek: symbolizes the hard work of the year. ⁣
  • Kamaboko: the red symbolizes an amulet, while the white symbolizes purification
  • Eggs: the yolk symbolizes good luck, fortune and prosperity.

How to Make Toshikoshi Soba

The beauty of this noodle soup is how simple, quick and easy it is!

  1. Make the Broth
  2. Cook the soba noodles
  3. Prepare any toppings
  4. Assemble the bowl


If you recreate this Toshikoshi Soba recipe let me know how you liked it by leaving a comment and rating below or by tagging me on Instagram @Okonomikitchen, I love seeing all of your tasty recreations!
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Toshikoshi Soba (New Year’s Eve Soba) 年越しそば

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5 from 5 reviews

  • Author: Lisa Kitahara
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x


Toshikoshi Soba is a traditional Japanese noodle dish served on New Years Eve. Made with buckwheat noodles, hot dashi broth and a variety of toppings, this simple soba noodle soup symbolizes cutting off any hardships of the past year and welcoming good luck for the new year. 


Units Scale
  • 2 1/2 cup (600 ml) dashi
  • 1 tbsp sake
  • 2 tbsp mirin
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp msg
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 bundles of soba
  • 2 scallions, sliced

Toppings of choice

  • tempura
  • inari (fried tofu)
  • wakame (seaweed), rehydrated
  • daikon, grated
  • kamaboko (fish cakes), sliced
  • ganmodoki (fried tofu cakes), sliced
  • togarashi

Kombu Dashi from scratch

  • 2 3/4 cup water (660ml)
  • 1 piece of kombu, 10g

Mentsuyu Broth Version

  • 2 1/4 (550 ml) cup water
  • 6 tbsp (85 ml) mentsuyu
  • 3 scant tbsp (40 ml) mirin

Tempura batter

  • 1/2 cup (60g) cake flour
  • 1 tbsp (10g) potato starch
  • pinch of salt
  • 100 ml ice cold sparkling water (or regular water)
  • 4 tsp vegan mayo OR vinegar


  1. Add dashi to a pot and bring to a simmer. Add sake, mirin, sugar and msg. Stir to combine. Once simmering, add the soy sauce. Turn off the heat, remove from the stove and set aside.
  2. Cook soba noodles following package directions. Drain and rinse the soba noodles well to remove excess starch. Gently squeeze the soba noodles to remove excess water.
  3. Prepare any toppings you would like to add (see above for options).
  4. Place the pot of soup base back onto the stove over medium high heat. Once simmering, add the soba noodles and let it re-heat for about 20-30 seconds.
  5. Divide the noodles between two bowls and pour the hot soup broth on top. Add your toppings, serve and enjoy!

Kombu Dashi:

  1. In a medium pot add kombu and water, and allow it to soak for at least 3 hours.
  2. Turn on heat to medium low and bring to a light simmer, for about 10 minutes.
  3. Skim the surface if needed. Just before boiling, remove the kombu from the pot. Kombu dashi is now ready to be used.

Mentsuyu Broth Version

  1. Add the tsuyu, mirin and water to a medium pot and stir. Heat over medium until just simmering and hot.

Tempura Batter

  1. Prepare any vegetables / proteins you are using to make tempura. Root vegetables should be sliced thinly.
  2. Add flour, potato starch and salt to a bowl. Add the mayo (or vinegar) and ice cold water / sparkling water and stir. Do not over mix or it will form gluten, some clumps of flour is okay.
  3. Add oil to a deep fryer or pot, about 2 inches in height. Heat oil to 170 C (340 F). Once heated, dip the vegetables into the batter and carefully add it to the oil to fry. Do not overcrowd or the tempura will drop. Try to keep the temperature as consistent as possible for best results. Fry for about 3-4 minutes. Place onto a wire rack to let excess oil drip off.


  • Helpful Equipment:
  • Nutritional Information Disclaimer: Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated on an online tool (Cronometer). 
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: entree
  • Method: stove top
  • Cuisine: vegan, japanese


  • Serving Size: 1 serving

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About Lisa

I'm Lisa, a home cook, recipe developer and founder of Okonomi Kitchen. Here, you'll find a mix of classic and modernized Japanese recipes, and creative, plant-forward meal inspiration using seasonal ingredients. I hope to share more about Japanese cuisine and culture through food and recipes.

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  1. This is one of my favourite meal now! It’s so perfect, the pumpkin tempura with the tofu and the daikon… Also the soup and soba noodles together will send you straight into noodle heaven! Surprisingly easy and quick to make too! 🙂

  2. We’ve officially adopted this as a NYE tradition. Love the layers of meaning and symbolism added to a meal we eat so often. We topped with jammy eggs, corn, bok choy, green onion, and mushrooms. Hubs spiced his up with chili oil, and I added oyster sauce and a splash of ponzu to my bowl before ladling in the broth.

    I couldn’t find MSG, but I did find Mushroom & Co Umami seasoning at Trader Joe’s and OOMPH that was a good move.

  3. Woo hoo! I made this recipe with a few adjustments with what we had- tempura sweet potato and zucchini instead of kobocha, soft boiled eggs from a local farm, a little more soy sauce to the broth (we like it salty), and I quick boiled my carrot flowers (cut with a small knife) in dashi water. Light and yummy. Could eat cold or hot!

  4. This was our first time making this recipe and it was so delicious!

    I tripled the recipe as I was making enough to serve myself and my boyfriend who eats a lot and it ended up being a perfect portion.

    When making the broth, I added dried shiitake mushrooms as well as doubling up on dried kombu and dashi powder since I didn’t have MSG on hand. So even though I went off the path of traditional, I still ended up with a delicious, sweet, umami flavored broth!

    This recipe is perfect for those cold winter nights, and I loved it so much I will definitely be making it again! Thank you so much for sharing!