Today, we’re going to make a classic, homemade easy lentil soup from scratch. You don’t need many ingredients – just some tomatoes, lentils, onion, herbs and spice. This healthy lentil recipe is gluten-free, high-fiber and perfect for a vegan weeknight dinner on a cold fall or winter day and is ready in less than 30 minutes.
Okay, I’ve made this recipe about a thousand times in my lifetime, but this is the first time I wrote it down and timed it. I thought lentils take like 4 years to cook. Reality – around 30 minutes for this whole thing to be ready.
If you’re anything like me, you’ll love this soup after a cold and rainy day. It’s warming, comforting, simple, yet delicious.
Remember When Cooking Lentils
If this is your first time cooking lentils, do not be afraid! As I now realize, lentils do not take hours to cook and are really quite easy to pull off. All you need to do is put them in a pot and cook until they’re tender.
The two things to keep in mind are:
- Soak! Soaking your lentils will speed up the cooking process and reduce the anti-nutritional chemicals, so you can absorb more of lentils healthy nutrients like iron, protein and zinc.
- Add salt! Lentils without salt are super, super bland. So, make sure to add salt to your lentils from the beginning, just a little bit and then adjust as they’re cooking.
Do You Cook The Lentils Ahead?
No need for that! A lentil soup comes very easily together by putting all of the ingredients in a pot, adding water or stock, bringing to a boil and cooking until the lentils are tender.
Surprisingly lentils do not take as long to cook as other legumes like beans or chickpeas!
That being said, if you do have already cooked lentils you can use them in this soup too, it will half the cooking time.
How to Make A Simple, Tasty Lentil Soup
- Sauté the onions, garlic and herbs
- Add the tomato and lentils and stir together
- Add water to cover well and salt from the start
- Once boiling, reduce the heat and let cook for 5 minutes
- At that point adjust for salt and add more water (will probably need to do it as lentils absorb a lot of water and by the end of cooking there will not be much broth left!)
- Serve warm, keep leftovers in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.
That’s how you make a very simple, yet tasty lentil soup!
Since this soup has very few ingredients, it’s also pretty easy to change up and add to, in case you want more from it!
- If you’re not comfortable cooking your lentils with water and adding salt, you can use stock instead
- Add in some crushed red pepper to spice up your soup
- Add in the vegetables you like – spinach, pumpkin, kale, carrots will also be good additions to this soup
- Make it even more filling by adding quinoa, potatoes, rice or bulgur (not gluten-free!)
I may or may not eat 3 bowls each time I make this soup and I really hope you enjoy it as well! Let me know if you’ve tried it or if you have any questions.
- 1 1/2 cups lentils, soaked overnight
- 1 tomato, chopped
- 1 Tbsp tomato paste
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- 1/2 tsp dry mint
- In a small cooking pot, sauté the onion and garlic with olive oil and mint for 1 minute at medium-high heat. Stir in the chopped tomato and sauté for another minute.
- Add the lentils, the carrot, tomato paste and some salt (around 1/3 tsp). Pour in water to cover well, cover with a lid and bring to a boil.
- Once boiling, reduce the heat and cook until lentils are ready. Taste the broth after 5-10 minutes of cooking and add salt to taste and water if needed.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 234Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 212mgCarbohydrates: 29gFiber: 10gSugar: 6gProtein: 10g