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Overhead view of a bowl of a Thai noodle soup with ground pork, bean sprouts, crispy wonton strips, fish balls, and more. The bowl is pink and white with a rooster painted on it, and it sits on a plain white background.
Tom yum noodle soup at Dakzen.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

20 Superb Soups Around Boston

As the days get colder, cozy up with a warm bowl of soup, from tom yum to pozole to borscht

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Tom yum noodle soup at Dakzen.
| Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

The temperatures are frigid, the sweaters are on, and it’s the perfect time to eat a whole lot of soup.

This map features a sampling of fantastic soups in and around Boston, from old standbys to buzzy new hotspots, spanning a variety of cuisines — and most are available for takeout and delivery. Try them, fall in love with them, and return to them again and again when the weather is depressing (and even when it’s not).

Further reading: Want to focus solely on ramen? Find more info on the few listed here and more of Boston's best on this map. In the mood for chowder? Find the city’s greatest options here.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission.

Note: This map was originally published on March 14, 2017; it is updated periodically, and the date of the most recent update appears above.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.
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Sugidama Soba & Izakaya

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Look for this Davis Square spot in the back of the courtyard by Starbucks, set back from Elm Street, and try one of the cold or hot soba dishes. The sukiyaki soba is a giant, hearty bowl of soup packed full of soba, pork, tofu, scallions, and a perfectly poached egg.

Overhead view of a bowl of soup. A thin dark brown broth is full of skinny noodles, tofu cubes, thin slices of pork, and chopped scallions.
Sukiyaki soba at Sugidama Soba & Izakaya.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Feel the heat with the spicy tom yum noodle soup at Dakzen in Davis Square (not for the faint of heart). It’s funky, it’s fishy, it’s fiery, and it may make you cry. It’s also delicious. And that’s not all for excellent soup options at Dakzen: The khao soi is also one of the best around. Pair either with a Thai iced tea with lime, cha manao, and an order of the northern Thai sausage sai ua.

Soup in a Thai-style bowl decorated with a rooster. There are pink barbecue pork slices in the soup, as well as an egg, ground pork, ground peanuts, crispy wonton strips, and more. The bowl sits on a metal tray.
Tom yum noodle soup at Dakzen.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Sugar & Spice

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Sugar & Spice's massive menu highlights a variety of regional cuisines of Thailand; try something you haven’t seen before, and you’re sure to find a new favorite. The guay jub is a standout, a soup featuring a five-spice soy broth that you'll want to drink on its own — but don't, because all the other ingredients are excellent as well. The complex broth is full of wide, flat rice noodles rolled into cigar-like shapes, as well as crispy pork, tofu, and an egg.

A deep brass bowl is filled with soup. The thin brown broth is packed with fried tofu, a hard-boiled egg, crispy pork belly, and cigar-shaped rolls of noodles.
Guay jub at Sugar & Spice.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Yume Ga Arukara

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Yume Ga Arukara is hyper-focused on udon, serving just a hot and a cold version and nothing else, aside from occasional specials. Both are incredible, but in cold weather, you’ll probably want to go with the hot version, which is also substantially more brothy. (The cold version has a bit of broth, but the hot version is much more of a soup.) Hint: Get double beef. Hint 2: Yes, there will probably be a very long line; it will be worth it. (Yume Ga Arukara used to be connected to ramen hotspot Yume Wo Katare; while they share a cofounder, they are now owned and operated separately.)

A deep black bowl is full of udon soup in a thin brown broth, topped with thinly sliced beef.
Udon (hot) at Yume Ga Arukara.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Buk Kyung

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Blink and you'll miss this homey Korean restaurant in Somerville's Union Square, and that would be a shame. The hearty soups and stews will get you through the coldest winter day, but don't be afraid to order them the rest of the year. Try the kimchi chigae: kimchi, pork, rice cakes, and sliced tofu in a slightly fiery broth.

A red broth packed with tofu sits in a black bowl, with steam rising up from it, on a restaurant table.
Kimchi chigae at Buk Kyung.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Angela's Cafe

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This East Boston favorite for Mexican — with a focus on Puebla cuisine — has locations in both Eagle Hill and Orient Heights. The hearty pozole, a hominy soup, is perfect in any weather, made with a choice of shredded pork or chicken; topped with lettuce, onions, radish, oregano, and chile powder; and served with corn tortilla layered with queso fresco and refried beans.

Muqueca

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Muqueca has been serving up Brazilian food in Inman Square for many years, with a focus on the flavor-packed seafood stew moqueca, cooked in a clay pot. The coconut milk-based broth is flavored with cilantro, tomatoes, onions, and more, and diners can choose among various seafood combinations. (Live large with the fish, shrimp, and mussels combo.)

A tower of seafood, onions, and herbs pokes out of a creamy yellow broth in a thick black bowl.
Moqueca at Muqueca.
Muqueca

When night falls and the lights dim at the best new cafe in town, Cicada’s concise dinner menu packs a punch. The oxtail in lemongrass wine broth is an absolute must at this bustling Vietnamese restaurant, but first, start off with the spicy lemongrass duck tartare, and be sure to delve into the natural wine list.

A thin reddish-yellow broth is packed with thick chunks of oxtail, garlic, and greens. Red chopsticks stick out of the bowl.
Oxtail in lemongrass wine broth at Cicada.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Branch Line

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Too often, chicken gets a bad rap — or at least a neutral one — but when done right, it's irresistible, and Branch Line does it really right, from the star of the menu (the rotisserie chicken) to this simple bowl of rotisserie chicken soup. This is the chicken soup of your dreams, the cure for what ails you, the missing piece of a dozen other idiomatic phrases. Even if you're getting chicken for the main course, which you should, don't you dare skip this soup. (Its composition changes occasionally; keep an eye out for the classic version with lemon, olives, and croutons, but any of its variations will do the trick.)

Overhead view of a red bowl with handles on a wooden table. It’s full of chicken soup.
Rotisserie chicken soup at Branch Line.
Fawn DeViney/Branch Line

Way back in 2012, Guchi's Midnight Ramen — a ramen pop-up generally taking place at midnight — began popping up around town. It was short-lived but well-loved, and these days one of its founders, Tracy Chang, has her own restaurant, Pagu, where she thankfully offers Guchi's midnight ramen on the menu. The deeply satisfying soup includes pork belly, umami oil, and a six-minute egg. Relive the memories or try it for the first time.

Overhead closeup view of a bowl of ramen with a pale yellow broth, soft-boiled egg, seaweed, crispy pork belly, and chile oil.
Guchi’s midnight ramen at Pagu.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Mala Kung Fu

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Allston is a good neighborhood for hot pot; don’t miss this particular hot pot spot in Allston. Try a beef hot pot (the medium spice level does the trick) with a variety of mushrooms and other vegetables, plus noodles.

Hong Kong Eatery

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While Chinatown’s longtime Cantonese restaurant Hong Kong Eatery is perhaps best known for dishes such as the sauteed duck tongues in Maggi sauce, the wonton noodle soup is also a fan favorite; it’s customizable with one or two toppings in addition to the wontons. Get the roast duck for one of those toppings.

Sportello

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An oldie but a goodie, Sportello's classic spicy tomato soup — topped with a taleggio and caraway crostini — is suitable for all seasons. Follow it up with a beautiful pasta dish and enjoy the hustle and bustle of the open kitchen from your counter seat. (You can try making this one at home if you’ve got Barbara Lynch’s cookbook, Stir.) Note: Sportello is taking a short winter break and is expected to reopen on January 19, 2022.

Overhead view of a white bowl of thick tomato soup with a swirl of oil, topped with a caraway seed-studded crostini.
Spicy tomato soup at Sportello.
Sportello

Cafe Sauvage

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Previous versions of this map included the stellar French onion soups at Eastern Standard and Bar Lyon, which have both sadly closed. Fortunately there’s a newcomer in town already getting raves for its own French onion soup: Cafe Sauvage. The all-day Back Bay cafe, which aims to offer a multicultural taste of Paris, serves a hearty Gruyere-topped soup; try it as a prelude to the restaurant’s roasted chicken with jollof rice and fried plantains.

Seoul Soulongtang

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This Allston Korean restaurant’s tagline — “beef soup for the soul” — doesn’t lie. Go for the namesake item, the soulongtang, a nourishing ox bone broth with brisket, marrow, and noodles.

Little Big Diner

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Little Big Diner is — as part of the name suggests — little. As for the "big"? The flavors. Try one of the noodle-filled soups, such as this spicy miso ramen with pork, an egg, bean sprouts, sweet corn, scallions, nori, and mayu (black garlic oil) with optional add-ons such as a butter cube, smoked honey corn, or a “wicked hot bomb.”

Overhead closeup view of a bowl of ramen with a thin reddish-brown broth, corn, ground pork, soft-boiled egg, bean sprouts, and more.
Spicy miso ramen at Little Big Diner.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Cafe Polonia

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Part of Dorchester’s Polish Triangle, Cafe Polonia has been serving traditional Polish food for nearly two decades, from pierogi to stuffed cabbage. The famous Eastern European beet soup, borscht, is always available, filled with mushroom- or meat-stuffed ravioli, and other soups rotate. If dill pickle soup is available, get it.

Soup Shack

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This trio of local spots (with locations in Jamaica Plain, Brookline, and Cambridge) features, of course, soup. More specifically, Soup Shack highlights three types of soup, with some variations of each: Thai noodle soups, Vietnamese pho, and Japanese ramen. Start with the tom yum noodle soup, duck noodle soup, or tan tan men ramen, but you really can’t go wrong here.

Overhead view of a white plastic takeout bowl of a Thai noodle soup with fish balls, thin red slices of pork, and ground pork.
Tom yum noodle soup from Soup Shack’s Cambridge location.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

New England Soup Factory

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This classic spot has an absolutely enormous roster of soups (both hot and cold, depending on the season), with a rotating selection available on any given day — think chicken vegetable, clam and corn chowder, chicken pot pie, and much, much more. Pair a bowl with a salad or sandwich.

Pho Hoa

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Dorchester is known for its Vietnamese food, so there are quite a few great pho options around the neighborhood. Try Pho Hoa, around since the early 1990s. Part of a chain with franchises around the United States and beyond, it’s a solid spot for pho featuring various combinations of meatballs, brisket, flank steak, and more. (There’s a brand new location up in Malden, too.) Be sure to visit the adjacent sibling cafe, Reign Drink Lab, too; try the dark and stormy, which tops nitro cold brew and Vietnamese coffee with sea salt cream.

Sugidama Soba & Izakaya

Overhead view of a bowl of soup. A thin dark brown broth is full of skinny noodles, tofu cubes, thin slices of pork, and chopped scallions.
Sukiyaki soba at Sugidama Soba & Izakaya.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Look for this Davis Square spot in the back of the courtyard by Starbucks, set back from Elm Street, and try one of the cold or hot soba dishes. The sukiyaki soba is a giant, hearty bowl of soup packed full of soba, pork, tofu, scallions, and a perfectly poached egg.

Overhead view of a bowl of soup. A thin dark brown broth is full of skinny noodles, tofu cubes, thin slices of pork, and chopped scallions.
Sukiyaki soba at Sugidama Soba & Izakaya.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Dakzen

Soup in a Thai-style bowl decorated with a rooster. There are pink barbecue pork slices in the soup, as well as an egg, ground pork, ground peanuts, crispy wonton strips, and more. The bowl sits on a metal tray.
Tom yum noodle soup at Dakzen.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Feel the heat with the spicy tom yum noodle soup at Dakzen in Davis Square (not for the faint of heart). It’s funky, it’s fishy, it’s fiery, and it may make you cry. It’s also delicious. And that’s not all for excellent soup options at Dakzen: The khao soi is also one of the best around. Pair either with a Thai iced tea with lime, cha manao, and an order of the northern Thai sausage sai ua.

Soup in a Thai-style bowl decorated with a rooster. There are pink barbecue pork slices in the soup, as well as an egg, ground pork, ground peanuts, crispy wonton strips, and more. The bowl sits on a metal tray.
Tom yum noodle soup at Dakzen.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Sugar & Spice

A deep brass bowl is filled with soup. The thin brown broth is packed with fried tofu, a hard-boiled egg, crispy pork belly, and cigar-shaped rolls of noodles.
Guay jub at Sugar & Spice.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Sugar & Spice's massive menu highlights a variety of regional cuisines of Thailand; try something you haven’t seen before, and you’re sure to find a new favorite. The guay jub is a standout, a soup featuring a five-spice soy broth that you'll want to drink on its own — but don't, because all the other ingredients are excellent as well. The complex broth is full of wide, flat rice noodles rolled into cigar-like shapes, as well as crispy pork, tofu, and an egg.

A deep brass bowl is filled with soup. The thin brown broth is packed with fried tofu, a hard-boiled egg, crispy pork belly, and cigar-shaped rolls of noodles.
Guay jub at Sugar & Spice.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Yume Ga Arukara

A deep black bowl is full of udon soup in a thin brown broth, topped with thinly sliced beef.
Udon (hot) at Yume Ga Arukara.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Yume Ga Arukara is hyper-focused on udon, serving just a hot and a cold version and nothing else, aside from occasional specials. Both are incredible, but in cold weather, you’ll probably want to go with the hot version, which is also substantially more brothy. (The cold version has a bit of broth, but the hot version is much more of a soup.) Hint: Get double beef. Hint 2: Yes, there will probably be a very long line; it will be worth it. (Yume Ga Arukara used to be connected to ramen hotspot Yume Wo Katare; while they share a cofounder, they are now owned and operated separately.)

A deep black bowl is full of udon soup in a thin brown broth, topped with thinly sliced beef.
Udon (hot) at Yume Ga Arukara.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Buk Kyung

A red broth packed with tofu sits in a black bowl, with steam rising up from it, on a restaurant table.
Kimchi chigae at Buk Kyung.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Blink and you'll miss this homey Korean restaurant in Somerville's Union Square, and that would be a shame. The hearty soups and stews will get you through the coldest winter day, but don't be afraid to order them the rest of the year. Try the kimchi chigae: kimchi, pork, rice cakes, and sliced tofu in a slightly fiery broth.

A red broth packed with tofu sits in a black bowl, with steam rising up from it, on a restaurant table.
Kimchi chigae at Buk Kyung.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Angela's Cafe

This East Boston favorite for Mexican — with a focus on Puebla cuisine — has locations in both Eagle Hill and Orient Heights. The hearty pozole, a hominy soup, is perfect in any weather, made with a choice of shredded pork or chicken; topped with lettuce, onions, radish, oregano, and chile powder; and served with corn tortilla layered with queso fresco and refried beans.

Muqueca

A tower of seafood, onions, and herbs pokes out of a creamy yellow broth in a thick black bowl.
Moqueca at Muqueca.
Muqueca

Muqueca has been serving up Brazilian food in Inman Square for many years, with a focus on the flavor-packed seafood stew moqueca, cooked in a clay pot. The coconut milk-based broth is flavored with cilantro, tomatoes, onions, and more, and diners can choose among various seafood combinations. (Live large with the fish, shrimp, and mussels combo.)

A tower of seafood, onions, and herbs pokes out of a creamy yellow broth in a thick black bowl.
Moqueca at Muqueca.
Muqueca

Cicada

A thin reddish-yellow broth is packed with thick chunks of oxtail, garlic, and greens. Red chopsticks stick out of the bowl.
Oxtail in lemongrass wine broth at Cicada.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

When night falls and the lights dim at the best new cafe in town, Cicada’s concise dinner menu packs a punch. The oxtail in lemongrass wine broth is an absolute must at this bustling Vietnamese restaurant, but first, start off with the spicy lemongrass duck tartare, and be sure to delve into the natural wine list.

A thin reddish-yellow broth is packed with thick chunks of oxtail, garlic, and greens. Red chopsticks stick out of the bowl.
Oxtail in lemongrass wine broth at Cicada.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Branch Line

Overhead view of a red bowl with handles on a wooden table. It’s full of chicken soup.
Rotisserie chicken soup at Branch Line.
Fawn DeViney/Branch Line

Too often, chicken gets a bad rap — or at least a neutral one — but when done right, it's irresistible, and Branch Line does it really right, from the star of the menu (the rotisserie chicken) to this simple bowl of rotisserie chicken soup. This is the chicken soup of your dreams, the cure for what ails you, the missing piece of a dozen other idiomatic phrases. Even if you're getting chicken for the main course, which you should, don't you dare skip this soup. (Its composition changes occasionally; keep an eye out for the classic version with lemon, olives, and croutons, but any of its variations will do the trick.)

Overhead view of a red bowl with handles on a wooden table. It’s full of chicken soup.
Rotisserie chicken soup at Branch Line.
Fawn DeViney/Branch Line

Pagu

Overhead closeup view of a bowl of ramen with a pale yellow broth, soft-boiled egg, seaweed, crispy pork belly, and chile oil.
Guchi’s midnight ramen at Pagu.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Way back in 2012, Guchi's Midnight Ramen — a ramen pop-up generally taking place at midnight — began popping up around town. It was short-lived but well-loved, and these days one of its founders, Tracy Chang, has her own restaurant, Pagu, where she thankfully offers Guchi's midnight ramen on the menu. The deeply satisfying soup includes pork belly, umami oil, and a six-minute egg. Relive the memories or try it for the first time.

Overhead closeup view of a bowl of ramen with a pale yellow broth, soft-boiled egg, seaweed, crispy pork belly, and chile oil.
Guchi’s midnight ramen at Pagu.
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Mala Kung Fu

Allston is a good neighborhood for hot pot; don’t miss this particular hot pot spot in Allston. Try a beef hot pot (the medium spice level does the trick) with a variety of mushrooms and other vegetables, plus noodles.

Hong Kong Eatery

While Chinatown’s longtime Cantonese restaurant Hong Kong Eatery is perhaps best known for dishes such as the sauteed duck tongues in Maggi sauce, the wonton noodle soup is also a fan favorite; it’s customizable with one or two toppings in addition to the wontons. Get the roast duck for one of those toppings.

Sportello

Overhead view of a white bowl of thick tomato soup with a swirl of oil, topped with a caraway seed-studded crostini.
Spicy tomato soup at Sportello.
Sportello

An oldie but a goodie, Sportello's classic spicy tomato soup — topped with a taleggio and caraway crostini — is suitable for all seasons. Follow it up with a beautiful pasta dish and enjoy the hustle and bustle of the open kitchen from your counter seat. (You can try making this one at home if you’ve got Barbara Lynch’s cookbook, Stir.) Note: Sportello is taking a short winter break and is expected to reopen on January 19, 2022.

Overhead view of a white bowl of thick tomato soup with a swirl of oil, topped with a caraway seed-studded crostini.
Spicy tomato soup at Sportello.
Sportello

Cafe Sauvage

Previous versions of this map included the stellar French onion soups at Eastern Standard and Bar Lyon, which have both sadly closed. Fortunately there’s a newcomer in town already getting raves for its own French onion soup: Cafe Sauvage. The all-day Back Bay cafe, which aims to offer a multicultural taste of Paris, serves a hearty Gruyere-topped soup; try it as a prelude to the restaurant’s roasted chicken with jollof rice and fried plantains.

Seoul Soulongtang

This Allston Korean restaurant’s tagline — “beef soup for the soul” — doesn’t lie. Go for the namesake item, the soulongtang, a nourishing ox bone broth with brisket, marrow, and noodles.

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