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Healthy & Perfect Lentil And Kale Soup Recipe (Cook Like A Pro)

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Delve into a bowl of earthy delight with our Rustic Revival Lentil and Kale Soup, a nourishing blend of tender lentils and vibrant kale, simmered in a savory broth. The earthy lentils offer a comforting bite, while the kale adds a burst of color and nutrition. A medley of aromatic herbs and spices brings a warmth and depth to every spoonful, creating a symphony of flavors. This wholesome soup is a tribute to nature’s bounty, promising a revitalizing and hearty dining experience.

Step into a culinary world where hearty, wholesome flavors meet nutritional richness. The story of lentil and kale soup, a warming dish cherished by home cooks and gourmet chefs alike, weaves a compelling narrative of comfort, health, and culinary tradition. 

This humble soup is more than just a delicious meal; it serves as a testament to the power of simple ingredients to create an extraordinary symphony of taste. 

Lentil and Kale Soup

Every spoonful of this vibrant soup delivers an engaging mixture of textures and flavors. Lentils, small but mighty, contribute an earthy depth and heartiness.

At the same time, Kale, the reigning queen of leafy greens, adds a nutritious punch and a hint of pleasant bitterness that complements the lentils beautifully. 

But the tale of our soup doesn’t stop at the main ingredients. A delicate balance of herbs and spices further elevates it, resulting in a hearty, fulfilling dish bursting with health benefits

Ready to explore this culinary journey with us? Let’s dive deeper into the rich tapestry that is lentil and kale soup.

What Is Lentil And Kale Soup?

Lentil and kale soup is a nutritious and hearty dish that combines lentils and Kale with a variety of vegetables, spices, and often a broth base. 

Lentils are a type of legume rich in protein, fiber, and essential minerals.

They cook relatively quickly compared to other legumes and have a satisfying, slightly earthy flavor. They provide the soup with a hearty body and depth of flavor. 

Kale is a leafy green vegetable that’s packed with vitamins A, K, and C, along with other essential nutrients. It adds a distinctive, slightly bitter taste and a beautiful green color to the soup.

The soup can be made with a variety of vegetables like onions, carrots, and celery, which are often sautéed first to build flavor. Garlic, cumin, turmeric, and other herbs or spices might also be added.

The ingredients are then simmered together, usually in a vegetable or chicken broth, until the lentils are tender. 

The result is a rich, flavorful, comforting, and incredibly healthy soup. It’s often served with a slice of crusty bread on the side for a complete meal.

Lentil and Kale Soup

Can You Vary The Lentil And Kale Soup With Other Ingredients?

One of the beauties of Lentil and Kale Soup is its versatility and adaptability to variation. Here are a few ideas:

  • Different Proteins Add some diced chicken, turkey, or even tofu for a protein boost. For a smoky flavor, consider adding smoked sausage.
  • Variety Of Vegetables Feel free to add other vegetables you have on hand. Root vegetables like sweet potatoes or parsnips can add a sweet note, while zucchini or bell peppers can bring a different texture.
  • Beans Add other beans or legumes for even more protein and fiber. Chickpeas or cannellini beans could work well.
  • Grains For a heartier soup, add some grains. Barley or Farro could be a good fit. Remember to adjust cooking times as necessary.
  • Different Greens If Kale isn’t your favorite, try substituting it with other leafy greens like spinach or Swiss chard.
  • Herbs And Spices Mix up the flavor profile by trying different herbs and spices. Add some cinnamon, cumin, and turmeric for a Moroccan twist. For an Italian feel, try rosemary and thyme.
  • Creamy Version Add a splash of coconut milk or cream at the end of cooking for a creamier soup. If you’re aiming for a vegan version, opt for plant-based creams.
  • Toppings Change up the toppings for a different experience each time. Some freshly grated Parmesan, a dollop of sour cream, or even some crispy fried onions can transform the dish.
Lentil and Kale Soup

Recipe Directions 

  1. In a large soup pot or Dutch oven, over medium heat, olive oil must be heated.
  2. Add the diced onion and cook until it becomes translucent, about 5-7 minutes.
  3. If using, add the diced hot links or turkey sausage and cook until lightly browned.
  4. Stir in the white lentils, making sure they are well coated with the oil and onions.
  5. Add the chicken stock or water to the pot. Bring the mixture to a boil.
  6. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low and let the soup simmer. Add the hickory-smoked barbecue sauce and urfa biber pepper.
  7. Cover the pot and let the soup simmer for about 30-35 minutes, or until the lentils are tender.
  8. Stir in the chopped kale and continue to cook for another 5-10 minutes, until the kale is wilted and tender.
  9. Season with kosher salt and fresh black pepper to taste.
  10. Serve hot, with crusty bread on the side if desired. Enjoy your hearty and nourishing lentil and kale soup.
Lentil and Kale Soup

Variations, Add-Ons, And Toppings

Variations

  • Different Proteins: Swap the beef hot links or turkey sausage for other meats such as diced chicken or ham. For a vegetarian version, try adding cubes of tofu or tempeh.
  • Vegetable Variety: Mix in other veggies like zucchini, bell peppers, sweet potatoes, or parsnips for a different flavor and nutrient profile.
  • Other Greens: Instead of kale, try other leafy greens like spinach, Swiss chard, or collard greens.
  • Spices And Herbs: Experiment with other spices like smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, or chipotle powder for a kick. Different herbs like thyme, basil, or rosemary can change the flavor profile entirely.

Add-Ons

  • Beans Or Grains: Add other legumes like chickpeas or black beans. For an even heartier soup, add grains like barley or quinoa.
  • Dairy: Add some milk, cream, or coconut milk for a creamier soup.

Toppings

  • Cheese: Sprinkle some freshly grated Parmesan, cheddar, or feta cheese on top.
  • Fresh Herbs: Add a burst of freshness with chopped cilantro, parsley, or green onions.
  • Crunch: Add some toasted nuts or seeds like pumpkin seeds or almonds. Croutons or crispy fried onions also add a delightful crunch.
  • Heat: For those who like it hot, a spoonful of spicy salsa or a drizzle of hot sauce can liven up the soup.
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Can I Make Lentil And Kale Soup In A Slow Cooker Or Instant Pot?

Yes, you certainly can make Lentil and Kale Soup in either a slow cooker or an Instant Pot. Here’s how:

Slow Cooker Method

  • Start by sautéing the onions in olive oil on the stove until they’re translucent. If you’re using sausage or other meat, brown it as well.
  • Transfer the sautéed onions and any meat to your slow cooker.
  • Add the lentils, chicken stock, hickory-smoked barbecue sauce, and urfa biber pepper. Stir everything to combine.
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours.
  • About 30 minutes before the end of the cooking time, stir the Kale so it can wilt and cook down.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste before serving.

Instant Pot Method

  • Turn on the sauté function on your Instant Pot. Add the olive oil, onions, sausage, or other meat if you use it. Sauté until the onions are translucent and the meat is browned.
  • Add the lentils, chicken stock, hickory-smoked barbecue sauce, and urfa biber pepper. Stir to combine.
  • Secure the lid and set the Instant Pot to the manual or pressure cook setting. Cook on high pressure for 15 minutes.
  • Allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes, then do a quick pressure release.
  • Open the lid and stir in the Kale. The heat from the soup will wilt and cook the Kale. 
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste before serving.
Lentil and Kale Soup

Can I Use Store Bought Broth, Or Should I Make My Own?

Both homemade and store-bought broths can be used to make Lentil and Kale Soup, and each has its own advantages.

Homemade Broth

  • This is often richer in flavor; you can control the ingredients to suit your taste. For example, you can adjust the salt level, choose to include certain herbs or spices or use specific types of bones (like chicken or beef). However, making broth at home is time-consuming and requires preparation beforehand.

Store-Bought Broth

  • This is a great time-saver and can be just as delicious, especially if you choose a high-quality product. Look for low-sodium versions to control your soup’s salt level. You could also consider organic options or broths with few additives and preservatives.
Lentil and Kale Soup

How To Serve?

  • Serve Hot: The soup should be served hot, so make sure to heat it thoroughly before serving. The flavors are most vibrant when the soup is warm.
  • Garnish: A fresh garnish can add a pop of color and flavor to your soup. Consider a sprinkle of fresh herbs like parsley or cilantro, a drizzle of olive oil, or a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. A spoonful of yogurt or sour cream can add a tangy contrast to the rich soup.
  • Accompaniments: Serve the soup with a side of crusty bread, a hearty roll, or a fresh salad to round out the meal. The bread can also be used to sop up the last bits of soup in the bowl.
  • Serve In A Warm Bowl: This is an optional step, but serving soup in a warm bowl can help keep it hot for longer. Just rinse the bowls under hot water or place them in a warm oven for a few minutes before serving.
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Perfect Side Dishes

  • Crusty Bread Or Rolls: A classic side for soup, crusty bread or rolls provide a satisfying crunch and are perfect for soaking up the flavorful broth. Opt for a whole grain variety for an extra nutrient boost.
  • Grilled Cheese Sandwich: The comforting, nostalgic combo of soup and a grilled cheese sandwich can’t be beaten. Use a sharp cheddar or a gooey mozzarella on whole grain bread for a hearty accompaniment.
  • Fresh Green Salad: A crisp, fresh salad would contrast nicely with the warm, hearty soup. Try mixed greens with some cherry tomatoes, cucumber, shredded carrot, and a simple vinaigrette.
  • Quinoa Salad: A salad made with quinoa, mixed vegetables, and a tangy dressing can provide a protein-packed side that’s both delicious and nutritious.
  • Roasted Vegetables: A mix of roasted root vegetables like carrots, parsnips, or sweet potatoes would make a hearty and flavorful side dish.
  • As A First Course: The soup itself could be used as a first course in a larger meal. Follow it with a main dish like grilled chicken or fish with a side of roasted or steamed vegetables.
Lentil and Kale Soup

Storage And Make Ahead

Here are some simple tips that you can follow:

  • Cooling: Allow the soup to cool to room temperature by placing the pot in a sink filled with ice water, stirring occasionally for even cooling.
  • Refrigeration: Transfer the cooled soup into airtight containers and refrigerate. Lentil and Kale Soup can last in the fridge for up to 5-7 days.
  • Freezing: This soup freezes exceptionally well. Portion it into freezer-safe bags or containers, leaving some space for expansion. It can be stored frozen for up to 6 months.
  • Reheating: Thaw overnight in the refrigerator if frozen. Reheat on the stove over medium heat, stirring occasionally. If the soup has thickened too much upon storage, add a bit of water or broth to reach your desired consistency.

Make-Ahead Tips:

  • Prep Ingredients: Chop your vegetables (like onions, carrots, and celery) and store them in the refrigerator. You can also rinse and sort lentils ahead of time.
  • Cook Lentils: Lentils can be cooked separately and added to the soup later. This prevents them from becoming too mushy, especially if you plan to freeze the soup.
  • Assemble Later: Cook the soup base without the kale and store it in the refrigerator or freezer. Add the kale when reheating the soup to preserve its color and texture.
  • Seasoning Adjustments: Adjust the seasoning after reheating the soup. Flavors can change during storage, so it’s always best to do a final taste test and adjust as necessary.
  • Portion for Convenience: If you’re making the soup primarily for future meals, consider portioning it into individual servings before freezing. This makes it easier to thaw and reheat only what you need.
Lentil and Kale Soup

What Can We Do With Leftovers?

Leftover Lentil and Kale Soup offer a wealth of possibilities for new meals:

  • Hearty Pasta Sauce: Use the soup as a base for pasta sauce. Add a bit more olive oil and some cooked pasta directly to the soup, toss until the noodles are well-coated, and serve with a sprinkle of Parmesan.
  • Stew Or Chili: Add some diced tomatoes, more vegetables, and perhaps some cooked chicken or turkey to transform the soup into a stew or chili. 
  • Stuffed Vegetables: Mix the soup with cooked rice or quinoa, stuff it into bell peppers or hollowed-out zucchini, and bake until the vegetables are tender.
  • Soup Bowls: Pour the heated soup over a bowl of cooked quinoa or rice and add a protein like roasted chicken or tofu for a quick, wholesome meal.
  • Smooth Soup: Blend the soup to create a smooth, creamy base. Add a dollop of cream or coconut milk for added richness, if desired.
  • Grain Salad: Stir cold or room-temperature soup into a grain salad for an extra flavor boost. This works particularly well with sturdy grains like Farro or bulgur.

TIPS

  • Choose the Right Lentils: Opt for green or brown lentils as they hold their shape well after cooking. Red lentils tend to become mushy, which might not be ideal for this soup.
  • Rinse Lentils: Always rinse your lentils under cold water before cooking to remove any dirt or debris.
  • Sauté Aromatics: Begin by sautéing onions, garlic, carrots, and celery in olive oil or butter. This base adds depth and richness to the soup.
  • Use Quality Broth: A good-quality vegetable or chicken broth will enhance the flavor of your soup. Homemade broth is best, but a high-quality store-bought broth works well too.
  • Season as You Go: Build layers of flavor by seasoning with salt and pepper at different stages of cooking, starting with the aromatics and ending with a final adjustment after adding the kale.
  • Simmer Gently: Cook the lentils on a low simmer to prevent them from breaking down too much. Gentle cooking also allows flavors to meld together better.
  • Add Kale at the End: Kale only needs a few minutes to wilt and retain its vibrant color and nutrients. Add it towards the end of cooking.
  • Acidic Finish: A splash of vinegar (like red wine vinegar) or lemon juice added just before serving can brighten the flavors and add a pleasant acidity to the soup.
Healthy & Perfect Lentil And Kale Soup Recipe (Cook Like A Pro)

Healthy & Perfect Lentil And Kale Soup Recipe (Cook Like A Pro)

0 from 0 votes
Course: Soup Recipes
Servings

4-6

servings
Prep time

15

minutes
Cooking time

45

minutes
Calories

300

kcal

Lentil and Kale Soup” is a nourishing, hearty dish. Starting with a flavorful sauté of onions, carrots, and celery, green lentils are then added with a rich broth. A generous handful of kale adds a nutritious punch, while a careful blend of herbs and spices gives it an irresistible flavor.

Ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp 2 Olive Oil

  • 1 1 Onion (Diced)

  • 1 lb 1 White Lentils

  • 8 Cups 8 Chicken Stock Or Water

  • 2 Tbsp 2 Hickory-Smoked Barbecue Sauce

  • 1 Tbsp 1 Urfa Biber Pepper

  • 3 3 Beef Hot Links Or Spicy Turkey Sausage (Optional)(Diced)

  • 1 1 Kale (Stems Removed, Washed, And Chopped),Bunch

  • Kosher Salt (To Taste)

  • Fresh Black Pepper (To Taste)

Step-By-Step Directions

  • Prepare The Soup Base
    Heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.
    Add the diced onion, cooking until it becomes translucent, about 5-7 minutes.
    Stir the rinsed white lentils, making sure they are well coated with the oil and onions.
    Add turkey sausage and the diced hot links. Cook it until lightly browned.
    Pour in the chicken stock or water and bring the mixture to a boil.
    Once boiling, reduce the heat to low and let the soup simmer. Stir the hickory-smoked barbecue sauce and urfa biber pepper.
    Cover the pot and let the soup simmer for 30-35 minutes or until the lentils are tender.
  • Prepare The Cream Topping
    In a separate bowl, whisk together 1 cup of heavy cream (or a dairy-free alternative for a vegan option), 1 tablespoon of lemon zest, and a pinch of salt and black pepper. Set aside.
  • Finish The Soup
    After the lentils are tender, add the chopped Kale to the pot.
    Simmer the soup for 5-10 minutes or until the Kale is wilted and tender.
    Adjust the soup’s seasoning with kosher salt and fresh black pepper to taste.
  • To Serve
    Ladle the soup into bowls.
    Drizzle each serving with a spoonful of the prepared cream topping.
    Serve the soup hot, ideally with a side of crusty bread.
  • EQUIPMENT LIST
  • Large Pot
  • Sharp Knife And Cutting Board
  • Stirring Spoon
  • Blender (Optional)
  • Ladle
  • Containers For Storage

Notes

  • Ingredient Quality: Using fresh, high-quality ingredients can make a significant difference in the flavor of your soup. Whenever possible, use freshly picked Kale and high-quality lentils. 
  • Lentil Type: While white lentils are specified in this recipe, feel free to experiment with green or brown lentils for a different flavor and texture. Just note that cooking times may vary.
  • Spice Adjustments: Adjust the amount of urfa biber pepper or substitute it with another type of chili according to your personal heat preference.
  • Vegetable Prep: Make sure to wash your Kale thoroughly, remove any grit, and chop it into bite-sized pieces for easy eating.
  • Broth/Water Ratio: The broth-to-water ratio can be adjusted depending on how flavorful you like your soup. More broth will give a richer taste, while more water will yield a lighter soup.
  • Soup Thickness: If you prefer a thicker soup, you can blend a portion of it and then mix it back in. For a thinner soup, add more broth or water.
  • Leftovers: This soup is a great make-ahead meal. The flavors meld and deepen over time, making it even more delicious the next day.

Nutrition Table 

Nutrition Table 

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