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Red Bean Soup

Red Beans

Red Bean Soup Recipe

Where yin and yang of foods go, green bean soup is "yin" (cooling) while red bean soup is "yang" (warming), so this is perfect for the cooler rainy days. If you do not wish to add any sago to your red bean soup, skip step 1.

Serves: 4

Prep Time: 10 mins

Cook Time: 60 mins


  • 100 grams red beans (may also use Japanese azuki beans) soaked overnight, rinsed and drained
  • 2 pandan (screw pine) leaves dried ends cut, tied in a knot
  • 1.7 litres water
  • 70 grams rock sugar to taste
  • 10 grams (about 3 pieces) dried orange (tangerine) peel
  • 80 grams canned or vacuum-packed lotus seeds or ginkgo nuts optional
  • 50 grams (1/3 cup) small sago (small tapioca pearls)


  1. Bring a small pot of water to boil. Add sago and simmer for 10 minutes. Turn off the stove, cover the pot with lid and let the sago continue to cook on its own for another 10 minutes, until all the sago turns translucent. Run the cooked sago through a fine sieve and running water to remove excess starch. Set aside. Check out this step-by-step photo tutorial for preparing sago.
  2. In a bigger soup pot, add red beans, 1.7 litres water, dried orange peel and pandan leaves. Bring to a boil.
  3. Add lotus seeds/gingko nuts and reduce heat to a simmer, partially covered, for about 50 minutes (or until the beans are soft), stirring the sides and bottom of the pot occasionally. Top up with hot water at any time if necessary.
  4. Stir in rock sugar (to taste) until the sugar is dissolved. Discard orange peel slices and pandan leaves. Add the cooked sago prepared in step 1 to the red bean soup. Serve warmed or chilled.

Leave a Comment

21 Responses to “Red Bean Soup”

  1. char — October 26, 2012 @ 12:11 am

    can i use white sugar to substitute rock sugar? approx how much white sugar is needed? cant wait to try this out!


    • wiffy replied: — October 29th, 2012 @ 10:47 am

      Hi char, yes you can substitute with white sugar. Add 1 tbsp at a time, stir to dissolve sugar completely, test taste and repeat until desired sweetness is reached.


  2. Chen Ching Han — November 30, 2012 @ 12:29 pm

    Sorry, can I have ” Chinese Vession” Red Bean Soup Receipt, thank a lot.

    Awaiting from you to return appreciation


  3. Tanya Sala — January 13, 2013 @ 3:20 pm


    I am wondering if you can substitute the dried orange peel for fresh orange peel or possibly a few leaves from an orange tree.


    • Kamchaska replied: — January 27th, 2014 @ 7:55 pm

      Yes, you can! I have, with fresh mandarin-not an orange thus- peel and the result was the dessert sooo beautifully aromatic and fresh! Please go ahead and try.


  4. Nicole — April 10, 2014 @ 6:31 pm

    Hi Wiffy,

    I supposed if i am using slow cooker on high heat, I don’t need to add so much water? The water of slow cooker will not loose so much as compared to the cooking pot.


    • wiffy replied: — April 10th, 2014 @ 9:06 pm

      Yes, you are right. You can reduce the water added, anyway you can always top up with hot water if necessary.


  5. Jocelyn — May 30, 2017 @ 9:44 pm

    When I cooked it, there’s a very raw beany taste. Any idea why?