Fight Off The Flu With These 35 Global Comfort Foods

Fight Off The Flu With These 35 Global Comfort Foods

Sickness always seems to strike at the most unexpected times, so when it happens, it's best you be prepared with a list of comforting foods to help you recover and relax. Across different cultures and countries, there are various special dishes that people always turn to thanks to their soothing and restorative properties. Today, we're going to be sharing 35 of these foods with you, so that the next time you're feeling under the weather, you can give them a try.

1. Chicken Soup (Global)

Chicken soup is a universal remedy for the sick. Often called "Jewish penicillin," this warm, brothy delight is rich in nutrients and has anti-inflammatory properties that help alleviate cold symptoms.

1024Px-Chicken Noodle SoupHoyabird8 on Wikimedia Commons

2. Congee (China)

Congee, a rice porridge, is a staple in Chinese households for the unwell. It's gentle on the stomach, easily digestible, and can be flavored with various ingredients like ginger, which is known for its healing properties.

Chinese Rice CongeeDaiju Azuma on Wikimedia Commons

3. Miso Soup (Japan)

In Japan, miso soup is a go-to for those feeling unwell. Miso, made from fermented soybeans, is rich in probiotics, supporting gut health and boosting the immune system.

Miso Soup 001Ocdp, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

4. Ginger Tea (Global)

Ginger tea is consumed worldwide for its health benefits. Ginger's anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties make it an excellent choice for treating colds and flu.

Dominik-Martin-Jyfmyif4N70-UnsplashPhoto by Dominik Martin on Unsplash


5. Khichdi (India)

Khichdi, a mixture of rice and lentils, is a comfort food in India for the sick. It's light, nutritious, and can be easily spiced to enhance its digestive and healing properties.

Mario-Raj-0Ni63Grt4Pe-Unsplash (1)Photo by Mario Raj on Unsplash

6. Chicken Arroz Caldo (Philippines)

This Filipino chicken and rice porridge, seasoned with ginger and garlic, is a popular sick-day food. It's nourishing, easy to digest, and provides a gentle boost to the immune system.

1024Px-5837Arroz Caldo Tilapia And Pancit 05Judgefloro, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

7. Matzo Ball Soup (Jewish Cuisine)

Matzo ball soup, often enjoyed during Jewish holidays, is also a comforting dish for when you're feeling ill. The light matzo balls and chicken broth provide a soothing meal.

Matzo Ball SoupAndrevan on Wikimedia Commons

8. Pumpkin Soup (Caribbean)

In the Caribbean, pumpkin soup is a traditional remedy for the sick. Its high vitamin content and warm, soothing nature make it ideal for colds and flu.

Ella-Olsson-Fxjtl Gdh28-UnsplashPhoto by Ella Olsson on Unsplash

9. Garlic Soup (Spain)

In Spain, garlic soup, known as 'Sopa de Ajo,' is a traditional remedy for illness. Garlic's antimicrobial properties help fight infections and boost the immune system.

Sopa De AjoCoralma*, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

10. Bubur Ayam (Indonesia)

Bubur Ayam, an Indonesian chicken rice porridge, is rich in flavor and comforting when sick. It's easily digestible and provides a balance of nutrients.

Bubur Ayam SamarindaWadaihangit on Wikimedia Commons


11. Tomato Soup (Global)

Tomato soup, with its high vitamin C and antioxidant content, is a global favorite for illness recovery. It's light, comforting, and can be paired with a variety of accompaniments.

Farhad-Ibrahimzade-3Khfugr9Ckw-UnsplashPhoto by Farhad Ibrahimzade on Unsplash

12. Avgolemono (Greece)

Avgolemono, a Greek lemon chicken soup, is known for its comforting and healing qualities. The lemon adds a boost of vitamin C, essential for fighting colds.

1024Px-Avgolemono Souprobin.norwood on Wikimedia Commons

13. Jook (Korea)

Jook, a Korean rice porridge, is a mild, comforting food perfect for those with an upset stomach. It can be made with various ingredients, such as ginger, to enhance its healing properties.

Korean Abalone Porridge-Jeonbokjuk-02by ~Nisa at Flickr on Wikimedia Commons

14. Kanji (Sri Lanka)

Kanji, a Sri Lankan rice porridge, is often eaten when sick. It's easily digestible and can be flavored with herbs and spices to boost its soothing effect.

Rice Porridge As A Convenience FoodPhoto by JIP on Wikimedia Commons

15. Ajiaco (Colombia)

Ajiaco, a Colombian chicken and potato soup, is a hearty and comforting dish for those feeling under the weather. It's rich in nutrients and flavors that help in recovery.

Ajiaco (1)Mauricio Giraldo from Bogotá, Colombia on Wikimedia Commons

16. Pho (Vietnam)

Vietnamese Pho is a noodle soup renowned for its restorative properties. Made with a clear, aromatic broth, rice noodles, herbs, and usually chicken or beef, it's both nourishing and easy on the stomach.

Hong-Anh-Duong-Ek--Nam-Cym-Unsplash (1)Photo by Hong Anh Duong on Unsplash


17. Uji (Kenya)

In Kenya, Uji, a traditional porridge made from fermented millet or sorghum flour, is a popular choice for the unwell. It's packed with nutrients and provides gentle nourishment.

Oat Porridge In GhanaEdithobayaa1 on Wikimedia Commons

18. Pozole (Mexico)

Pozole, a traditional Mexican soup made with hominy, meat (usually pork), and garnished with lettuce, radish, onion, lime, and chili, is not only a festive dish but also a go-to for comfort and nourishment during illness.

1024Px-PozoleMeutia Chaerani / Indradi Soemardjan on Wikimedia Commons

19. Fisherman's Soup (Hungary)

In Hungary, Fisherman's Soup, known as Halászlé, is a spicy river fish soup. Rich in vitamins and minerals, it's especially comforting during cold weather illnesses.

HalászléUser:Themightyquill on Wikimedia Commons

20. Kicharee (Pakistan)

Kicharee, a Pakistani rice and lentil dish, is akin to the Indian Khichdi. Mild and nutritious, it's often eaten when digestion is weak, providing a soothing, easily digestible meal.

Daal KhichdiAbhaystoic on Wikimedia Commons

21. Chicken Tinola (Philippines)

Another Filipino favorite, Chicken Tinola, is a ginger-based soup that includes green papaya and chili leaves. It's a warming, immune-boosting soup that soothes cold symptoms.

Chicken Tinola With Green Papaya And LemongrassObsidian Soul, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

22. Haejangguk (South Korea)

Haejangguk, often called Korean hangover soup, is also a popular remedy for colds and flu. Made with beef broth, vegetables, and often congealed ox blood, it's a hearty dish that reinvigorates the body.

Haejangguk (Hangover Soup)sangmins, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons


23. Zosui (Japan)

Zosui is a Japanese rice soup, similar to congee. Made with pre-cooked rice, fish or chicken, and vegetables, it's light, easy to digest, and comforting for those with a cold or stomach upset.

Kinoko Zosui, At Restaurant Gusto (2012.02.26)Lombroso on Wikimedia Commons

24. Lentejas (Spain)

In Spain, Lentejas, a lentil stew often cooked with vegetables and chorizo, is a comforting dish for sick days. It's rich in fiber, protein, and nutrients, providing strength and warmth.

1024Px-Lentejas Con Longanizas (8642799425)simenon from Chile on Wikimedia Commons

25. Borscht (Russia)

Borscht, a beetroot soup from Russia, is not just a culinary staple but also a sick-day favorite. Rich in vitamins and antioxidants, it's both nourishing and comforting.

Rasmus-Gundorff-Saederup-U9Dw1Ggttxw-Unsplash (1)Photo by Rasmus Gundorff Sæderup on Unsplash

26. Fufu and Light Soup (Ghana)

In Ghana, Fufu served with Light Soup is a common sick-day meal. Fufu, made from cassava and plantains, is soft and easy to swallow, while the soup is light and spicy, aiding in clearing congestion.

Fufu With Light Soup And ChickenEdithobayaa1 on Wikimedia Commons

27. Pea Soup (Sweden)

In Sweden, Pea Soup is a traditional Thursday meal that doubles as a comforting sick-day food. Rich in nutrients and easy to digest, it's often served with mustard and pancakes.

Aneta-Pawlik-1Tgt-Ns31Ty-UnsplashPhoto by Aneta Pawlik on Unsplash

28. Lentil Soup (Middle East)

Lentil Soup, found across the Middle East, is a comforting and nutritious option for the unwell. It's high in protein, fiber, and essential vitamins, making it an ideal recovery meal.

Roam-In-Color-Qy1956Bj8De-UnsplashPhoto by roam in color on Unsplash

29. Goulash (Hungary)

Goulash, a Hungarian stew made with beef, vegetables, and paprika, is not only a national dish but also a comforting choice when feeling sick. It's warming and packed with nutrients.

Hungarian Goulash Recipe (1)Valeva1010 on Wikimedia Commons

30. Ciorba de Burta (Romania)

In Romania, Ciorba de Burta, a tripe soup, is a popular remedy for the sick. Known for its hearty and soothing qualities, it's believed to aid in recovery and digestion.

Ciorba De Burta 2Sacha47 on Wikimedia Commons

31. Masoor Dal (India)

In India, Masoor Dal, a simple red lentil soup, is a common comfort food for those feeling sick. It's light, easily digestible, and packed with protein and essential nutrients, making it perfect for gentle nourishment.

1702574245330.pngMiansari66, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

32. Risi e Bisi (Italy)

Risi e Bisi, a classic Venetian dish, is essentially a creamy rice and pea soup. In Italy, it's often served to those needing a light but nourishing meal. The combination of rice and peas provides a soothing, easy-to-digest dish, rich in vitamins and energy.

Risi E BisiSolde on Wikimedia Commons

33. Lablabi (Tunisia)

In Tunisia, Lablabi, a chickpea soup, is a popular choice for those feeling unwell. It's made with chickpeas, garlic, cumin, and olive oil, and often served with bread. This soup is not only comforting but also loaded with protein and fiber, aiding in recovery.

Lablabi Photo 5 لبلابيSami Mlouhi on Wikimedia Commons

34. Mustikkakeitto (Finland)

In Finland, Mustikkakeitto, a blueberry soup, is often consumed when someone is sick, especially during colds. It's made with blueberries, which are high in antioxidants, and often served warm. This sweet, vitamin-rich soup provides a soothing and immune-boosting meal.

Blueberry SoupChrumps on Wikimedia Commons

35. Caldo de Pollo (Latin America)

Caldo de Pollo, a traditional Latin American chicken soup, is a staple for those feeling under the weather. Made with chicken, vegetables, and sometimes rice or noodles, it's a hearty and comforting dish that provides essential nutrients to help speed up the recovery process.

1024Px-Caldo De Pollo (2411932823)El Gran Dee on Wikimedia Commons