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Lip-Smacking Lentil Vegetable Soup Recipe (Your Weeknight Winner)

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Immerse yourself in a bowl of wholesome delight with our Hearty Harvest Lentil Vegetable Soup Recipe, a robust blend of tender lentils and a medley of garden-fresh vegetables. Each spoonful is a burst of vibrant flavors, with aromatic herbs and spices adding a rustic warmth. The lentils provide a satisfying bite, while the vegetables bring a splash of color and nutrition. This soup is a celebration of earth’s bounty, promising a nourishing and delicious journey with every flavorful spoonful.

In the bustling heart of my grandmother’s kitchen, the aroma of simmering lentil vegetable soup recipe would drift, wrapping our home in warmth and anticipation. Every spoonful promised nourishing comfort, a cherished recipe handed down with love through the generations. 

Bursting with nutrient-dense vegetables and hearty lentils, it’s more than just a dish; it’s a veritable health powerhouse to fuel your day.

My soup journey has taken me across the globe, exploring unique twists and turns, yet nothing compares to this humble classic. Each simmering pot reflects my dedication to providing my family—and now my readers—with nutrient-rich, soul-soothing meals

I’m thrilled to share this recipe with you, unlocking a world of health benefits and comforting flavors. Join me in uncovering the enchanting tale of lentil vegetable soup, from the sizzling pot to the heartwarming plate. Let’s dive into this culinary delight, one comforting spoonful at a time.

lentil vegetable soup recipe

What Is Lentil Vegetable Soup?

Lentil vegetable soup is a hearty, comforting dish typically made from lentils—small legumes packed with protein and fiber—along with an assortment of vegetables. The recipe may vary widely depending on regional preferences and personal tastes. Still, common ingredients often include onions, carrots, celery, tomatoes, garlic, herbs and spices for added flavor.

Lentil vegetable soup is simmered until the lentils are tender and the flavors have melded together, creating a rich, flavorful broth. Some versions may include additional ingredients like meat or other legumes, but many lentil vegetable soups are vegetarian or vegan.

This soup is well-regarded for its health benefits, as it’s high in fiber, protein, and various essential nutrients. It’s also generally low in fat and calories, making it a good choice for those aiming for a healthy diet. Despite its nutritional value, lentil vegetable soup doesn’t skimp on taste, offering a robust, savory flavor that’s often even better the next day.

lentil vegetable soup recipe

Can You Vary Lentil Vegetable Soup With Other Ingredients?

Lentil vegetable soup is highly adaptable; you can vary its flavor and ingredients based on your preferences. Here are some ways to vary lentil vegetable soup:

  • Spices and Herbs: Experiment with different spices and herbs to add depth and complexity to the soup. To enhance the flavor profile, consider using cumin, turmeric, paprika, coriander, thyme, rosemary, or bay leaves.
  • Broth or Stock: Water is commonly used as a base for lentil vegetable soup, but you can substitute it with vegetable broth or stock to impart more flavor. The broth can be store-bought or homemade, depending on your preference.
  • Additional Vegetables: Besides the traditional vegetables like carrots, celery, onions, and tomatoes, feel free to add other vegetables to the soup. Some options include bell peppers, zucchini, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, peas, corn, or kale. The choice of vegetables can be tailored to suit seasonal availability or personal taste.
  • Leafy Greens: Add leafy greens like spinach, Swiss chard, collard greens, or kale towards the end of cooking. They will provide an extra nutritional boost and vibrant color to the soup.
  • Protein Additions: If you desire more protein, you can include other legumes along with lentils, such as chickpeas, kidney beans, or black beans. Alternatively, you can add tofu cubes or seitan for a vegetarian or vegan protein source.
  • Acidic Ingredients: To balance the flavors and add a tangy element, you can incorporate acidic ingredients like lemon juice, lime juice, or a splash of vinegar. They can brighten up the soup and enhance the overall taste.
  • Garnishes: Sprinkle your lentil vegetable soup with fresh herbs like parsley, cilantro, or chives before serving for an added burst of freshness. Additionally, you can top it with a dollop of yogurt, sour cream, or a drizzle of olive oil for extra richness.
lentil vegetable soup recipe

Recipe Directions 

  • Begin by preparing your ingredients. Rinse the lentils, chop the onions, leeks, celery, and carrots, and mince the garlic. Gather your spices, stock, olive oil, and tomato paste.
  • In a large stockpot over medium heat, sauté the onions, leeks, and garlic with the olive oil, salt, pepper, thyme, and cumin. Sauté for about 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are translucent and very tender.
  • Add the celery and carrots to the pot and continue to sauté for an additional 10 minutes.
  • Pour in the chicken stock, followed by the tomato paste and lentils. Stir well to combine all ingredients.
  • Cover the stockpot and bring the mixture to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low and let the soup simmer, uncovered, for about one hour. If you’re using regular brown lentils, check for doneness at around 45 minutes.
  • After an hour, taste the soup and adjust the seasoning with additional salt and pepper, if needed.
  • Stir in the red wine or red wine vinegar.
  • Ladle the soup into bowls and, if desired, serve hot with a sprinkle of freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese on top. Enjoy this comforting and nutritious lentil vegetable soup!
lentil vegetable soup recipe

Variations, Add-Ons, And Toppings 

Variations

  • Protein Additions: If you’re not vegetarian, consider adding cooked, shredded chicken or diced ham. If you are vegetarian or vegan, cubes of tofu or chickpeas can add extra protein.
  • Grain Additions: For a heartier soup, add in some cooked barley, quinoa, or brown rice.
  • Vegetable Variations: You can mix and match vegetables based on what’s in season or what you have on hand. Consider adding zucchini, bell peppers, peas, spinach, or kale.

Add-Ons

  • Spices: If you like a spicy kick, add a dash of cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes.
  • Herbs: Stir in some fresh basil, parsley, or coriander just before serving for a fresh flavor boost.

Toppings

  • Cheese: While Parmigiano-Reggiano is suggested, feel free to substitute with other cheeses such as cheddar or feta.
  • Herb Oil: Drizzle a bit of herb-infused oil on top for a gourmet touch.
  • Croutons: Add some crunch with homemade croutons or a sprinkle of toasted pumpkin or sunflower seeds.
  • Fresh Herbs: Sprinkle some freshly chopped parsley or cilantro on top just before serving for an extra burst of flavor.
lentil vegetable soup recipe

Can I Make Lentil Vegetable Soup In Slow Cooker Or Instant Pot?

Slow Cooker

  • Sauté your onions, leeks, garlic, celery, and carrots in a pan over medium heat with olive oil, salt, pepper, thyme, and cumin until they are translucent and very tender.
  • Transfer the sautéed vegetables to your slow cooker. Add the lentils, chicken stock, and tomato paste.
  • Cover the slow cooker and cook on low for 7-8 hours or high for 4-5 hours. Make sure the lentils are tender.
  • Stir in the red wine or red wine vinegar. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Serve hot, optionally sprinkled with grated cheese.

Instant Pot

  • Using the sauté function on your Instant Pot, sauté the onions, leeks, garlic, celery, and carrots with olive oil, salt, pepper, thyme, and cumin until they are translucent and very tender.
  • Add the lentils, chicken stock, and tomato paste to the Instant Pot. 
  • Secure the lid and set the valve to the sealing position. Cook on high pressure for about 15-20 minutes (depending on the type of lentils you are using).
  • Once the cooking time is up, allow the pressure to release for 10-15 minutes naturally, then carefully turn the valve to the venting position to release any remaining pressure.
  • Stir in the red wine or red wine vinegar. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Serve hot, optionally sprinkled with grated cheese.
lentil vegetable soup recipe

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

Store-Bought Broth

  • This is a convenient option, especially when you’re short on time. It’s readily available in most supermarkets and comes in a variety of types, such as chicken, beef, vegetable, and even bone broth. 
    When choosing a store-bought broth, look for low-sodium options. This will allow you to control the salt level of your soup more easily. Organic and high-quality brands tend to have better, more natural flavors.
lentil vegetable soup recipe

How To Serve?

  • Warm Bowls: Serve your soup in pre-warmed bowls. You can warm them in a low oven or by rinsing them with hot water. This keeps your soup hot for a longer period.
  • Garnish: Garnish the soup right before serving to add color, texture, and flavor. For this lentil vegetable soup, you might sprinkle some freshly chopped herbs like parsley or thyme, add a swirl of cream or a drizzle of good-quality olive oil, or sprinkle some freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese or croutons on top.
  • Accompaniments: Serve your soup with some crusty bread, a side salad, or a sandwich for a complete meal. 
  • Serve Hot: Soup is typically best served hot. Ensure it’s heated thoroughly before serving.
  • Ladle: Use a ladle for serving to avoid spills. This is especially helpful if you’re serving the soup at the table.
  • Presentation: Consider the bowl or dish you’re serving the soup in. A clean, attractive bowl can make the soup look more appetizing.
lentil vegetable soup recipe

Perfect Side Dishes

  • Crusty Bread: A slice of warm, crusty bread or a hearty roll is always a great choice with soup. It’s perfect for soaking up the broth and provides a satisfying crunch.
  • Grilled Cheese Sandwich: The classic companion to soup, a grilled cheese sandwich can add a comforting, savory touch. Choose a good melting cheese and some high-quality bread for the best results.
  • Green Salad: A light, fresh salad can greatly contrast the hearty lentil vegetable soup. Try a simple green salad with a vinaigrette dressing, or add some variety with ingredients like goat cheese, dried cranberries, or sliced almonds.
  • Roasted Vegetables: Try roasted vegetables for a bit more hearty side. They can add a nice variety of flavors and textures.
  • Quinoa Salad: A cool quinoa salad can be a great accompaniment, adding extra protein and a different texture.
  • Hummus and Veggies: A plate of fresh-cut veggies and some hummus for dipping can add a refreshing crunch to your meal.
  • Garlic Bread: Garlic can be a great choice if you prefer a more flavorful bread option.

Storage And Make Ahead

  • Storage: After cooking, let the lentil vegetable soup cool completely. Store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Alternatively, freeze in portion-sized containers for up to 3 months.
  • Make Ahead: Prepare the soup as instructed, then allow it to cool before transferring to airtight containers. Refrigerate for up to 2 days before reheating. For longer make-ahead options, freeze the soup in freezer-safe containers. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating on the stove or in the microwave for a quick, convenient meal.

What Can We Do With Leftovers?

  • Reheat and Eat: The simplest option is to reheat your soup and enjoy it again. This soup’s flavors may even deepen the next day.
  • Soup Bowls: Use the soup as a base for a soup bowl. Add fresh toppings like a spoonful of Greek yogurt, fresh herbs, cooked chicken or tofu, or a scoop of cooked grains.
  • Pasta Sauce: Thicken the soup by simmering it down and serve it over pasta as a hearty sauce. Add some freshly grated Parmesan cheese on top.
  • Stuffed Peppers or Tomatoes: Use the soup as a filling for stuffed peppers or tomatoes. Top with cheese and bake until bubbly.
  • Freeze for Later: If you’re not going to be able to eat all your soup in a few days, portion it out into freezer-safe containers or bags and freeze it for a future quick meal.

TIPS

  • Enhance the flavor by adding a splash of balsamic vinegar just before serving. It adds a delightful tanginess to the soup.
  • For a heartier texture, try roasting some of the vegetables like carrots, onions, and bell peppers before adding them to the soup. This adds depth to the flavor profile.
  • Don’t be afraid to experiment with different herbs and spices. Consider adding a pinch of smoked paprika or cumin for an extra layer of complexity.
  • To boost the protein content, stir in a handful of cooked quinoa or barley towards the end of cooking.
  • Make it creamy by blending a portion of the soup and then mixing it back in. This creates a luxurious texture without adding any cream.
Lip-Smacking Lentil Vegetable Soup Recipe (Your Weeknight Winner)

Lip-Smacking Lentil Vegetable Soup Recipe (Your Weeknight Winner)

0 from 0 votes
Course: Soup Recipes
Servings

8-10

servings
Prep time

15

minutes
Cooking time

1

hour 

30

minutes
Calories

150-200

kcal

Lentil vegetable soup is a hearty and nutritious dish made with lentils, a variety of vegetables, and flavorful herbs and spices. It offers a comforting blend of protein, fiber, and vitamins, creating a flavorful and satisfying meal that is both wholesome and delicious.

Ingredients

  • 1 Ib 1 French Green Lentils (Or Brown Lentils)

  • 4 Cups 4 Chopped Yellow Onions

  • 4 Cups 4 Chopped Leeks (white Part Only)

  • 3 3 Minced Garlic Cloves

  • 1/4 Cup 1/4 Olive Oil

  • 1 Tbsp 1 Kosher Salt

  • 1-1/2 Tsp 1-1/2 Fresh Black Pepper

  • 1 Tbsp 1 Minced Fresh Thyme Or 1-1/2 Tsp Dried Thyme Leaf

  • 1-1/2 Tsp 1-1/2 Ground Cumin

  • 3 Cups 3 Diced Celery

  • 3 Cups 3 Diced Carrots

  • 3 Qts 3 Chicken Stock (Homemade Or Low-Sodium Store-Bought) Or Vegetable Stock

  • 1/4 Cup 1/4 Tomato Paste

  • 4 Tbsp 4 Red Wine (Or Red Wine Vinegar)

  • Freshly Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese (Optional) , For Topping

Step-By-Step Directions

  • Prepare The Cream Topping
    1/2 cup heavy cream or coconut cream (for a vegan option)
    1/4 cup plain yogurt or coconut yogurt (for a vegan option)
    Salt and pepper to taste
    In a small bowl, whisk together the heavy cream or coconut cream and the plain yogurt or coconut yogurt until well combined.
    Season the cream topping with salt and pepper to taste. Set it aside.
  • Finish The Soup
    Remove the pot from the heat once the lentils and vegetables are tender.
    Use an immersion blender or transfer a portion of the soup to a blender and blend until smooth. This step is optional; you can leave some lentils and vegetables whole if desired.
    Return the blended soup to the pot and stir well to combine.
    Taste the soup and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
  • To Serve
    Ladle the lentil vegetable soup into bowls.
    Drizzle a spoonful of the prepared cream topping over each serving.
    Optionally, garnish with fresh herbs like parsley or cilantro.
    Serve the soup hot with crusty bread or your favorite accompaniments.
  • EQUIPMENT LIST
  • Large Soup Pot or Dutch Oven
  • Wooden Spoon or Spatula
  • Chef’s Knife and Cutting Board
  • Immersion Blender or Stand Blender
  • Ladle
  • Stock or Fat Separator
  • Slow Cooker or Instant Pot
  • Colander or Sieve
  • Soup Bowls and Soup Spoons

Notes

  • Preparation: Prep all your veggies ahead of time for a smoother cooking process. 
  • Lentils: You can use green or brown lentils for this recipe. They hold their shape well during cooking. If you prefer a creamier texture, red lentils could also be used.
  • Vegetables: Feel free to experiment with the vegetables based on what you have on hand. Just make sure to cut them into similar-sized pieces to ensure even cooking.
  • Herbs And Spices: Fresh herbs deliver superior flavor, but dried herbs can be substituted in a pinch. For the spices, feel free to adjust them to your liking.
  • Cooking Time: Cooking times are a guide only. Depending on the exact ingredients used, you may need to adjust the cooking time. The soup is ready when the lentils are tender but not mushy.
  • Storing: This soup stores well in the fridge for up to five days and is also freezer-friendly. It’s perfect for meal prep!
  • Reheating: When reheating, add a splash of water or broth if needed, as the lentils will absorb some of the liquid during storage.
  • Serving: This soup is delicious on its own but is also wonderful served with a side of crusty bread or a fresh green salad.
  • Dietary Notes: To make this soup vegan, substitute vegetable broth for the chicken stock and omit the cheese. For gluten-free, ensure your broth is a gluten-free variety.
  • Nutrition: Thanks to the lentils, this soup is high in fiber and protein. It’s also packed with vitamins and minerals from various vegetables.

Nutrition Table 

Ingredients

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You've entered a realm where each bowl isn't just a meal; it's an expedition to the core of comfort, well-being, and the sheer delight of feeding both body and soul. My name is Julia, and I'm here to navigate you through the flavorful worlds of Soup Chick. Together, we'll uncover the artistry behind each recipe, share stories that warm the heart, and celebrate the simple pleasures of making and enjoying soup.

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