February 11, 2020
Our Favorite Lentil Soup {gluten free & vegan}
The best lentil soup! This vegan lentil soup is one of our favorite healthy recipes. Perfect for anyone looking to add more plant-based protein and fiber into their diet. 
Prep time: 10 min / Cook Time: 45 min / Total Time: 55 min

best lentil soup

As a previous university dietitian, I spent a good chunk of my day talking to students about kitchen essentials. Topics include must-have appliances, pantry staples, and easy, healthy recipes that they can whip up without using google. It was always amazing to me how many students weren’t comfortable in the kitchen! Since I practically grew up with a wooden spoon in my mouth, I sometimes forget that often a barrier to eating healthy is not having a clue on what foods to make.

This is one of those basic recipes that you don’t really need a recipe for. Make it a handful of times, and it’s committed to memory. 

I call this my perfect lentil soup. Perfect in the sense that it takes limited skills in the kitchen, is incredibly flavorful, healthy and did I mention- dirt cheap. While it completes the checklist for a starving student, it also fits my checklist of must-have meals on a monthly basis.

 

Our Favorite Lentil Soup

I’ve made this soup so many times, I could make it in my sleep. Start with a simple saute of onion, carrot and celery. Followed by fire-roasted tomatoes, cooked lentils, spices, and savory broth. I was shocked that I hadn’t yet included it on my blog so last weekend I measured each spice and ingredient so you too could enjoy the perfect lentil soup.

As vegetarians, I don’t ever worry about BL’s and my protein intake because I know we are getting enough, thanks in part to my reliance on the mighty lentil. (You know it wouldn’t be a proper DK post if I didn’t declare my love for lentils at least once.)

The little legume packs 18g of protein plus 16g of fiber all for 1 cup. I bring this point up so often because I think it’s important to note that legumes deliver quite the nutrition punch; it’s also what gives this soup amazing staying power. Since protein is the most satiating (read: fuller, longer) macronutrient, adding it to major meals allows you to feel satisfied longer. It also prevents mid-afternoon snack attacks.

vegan lentil soupvegan lentil soup

Tips for Flavorful Vegan Lentil Soup

Great soup includes a balance of three things: aromatics, salty/umami depth and acid. You can have a good soup with just two of those things, but to really take it to the next level– most soups are missing the addition of some kind of acid. Something that helps brighten the salty broth and rich caramelized vegetables.

It’s why you see that I typically add in a splash of vinegar, lemon or lime juice to most of my soup recipes. Just enough to cut through any richness; you don’t want to actually taste the vinegar. 

I also like blending some of the lentil soup to give it more body and texture — without any heavy cream or butter. Since we are using creamy potatoes in this recipe, this soup becomes even more hearty when some of it is pureed and then added back into the pot. 

Lastly, fresh herbs make a huge difference in the freshness of soup. Especially when you are eating this one for a few meals at a time. I love a generous handful of parsley in this, stirred in right at the end. 

Plant-Based Lentil SoupOur Favorite Lentil Soup

This vegan lentil soup is perfect on it’s own or paired with a salad; however, if you have a few more moments of time, consider making a loaf of my no-knead bread alongside. Just like the soup, you don’t need to be a baker to have perfect bread. The no-knead approach is completely foolproof–just ask my college students. 

If you try this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, and tag your Instagram photos with #delishknowledge . I absolutely love seeing your creations. Happy cooking! 

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best lentil soup

Our Favorite Lentil Soup {gluten free & vegan}

  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Stove top
  • Cuisine: American

Description

The best lentil soup! This vegan lentil soup is one of our favorite healthy recipes. Perfect for anyone looking to add more plant-based protein and fiber into their diet. 


  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Stove top
  • Cuisine: American
  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Stove top
  • Cuisine: American
Scale

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 celery stalks, diced
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 small yukon gold potatoes, diced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 (15 oz.) can diced fire roasted tomatoes
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 1/4 cup French green or brown lentils, rinsed and picked over
  • 2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley

Instructions

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large soup pan over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic and a small pinch of salt and pepper and cook until vegetables are just soft, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add in the potatoes, thyme, oregano and paprika and cook another 5 minutes, stirring so the potatoes don’t burn but get just a little crisp on the outside.
  3. Add the tomatoes, broth, bay leaves, water, lentils and bring to a boil, then reduce heat a simmer for 45 minutes or until lentils are very tender.
  4. Remove ~3 cups and place in a blender along with the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil and puree until creamy and smooth. Return back to the pot along with the vinegar and parsley.
  5. Stir together, then taste. Adding more salt/pepper as needed depending on the saltiness of your broth. Serve!

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Meet Alex Caspero

Alex Caspero is a Registered Dietitian, Plant-Based Chef and Yoga Instructor. She aims to cut through the nutrition noise by providing real-life, nourishing tips for body and mind. Learn more about Alex.

8 comments
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  1. Oh my gosh this soup is so yummy! I used a vegan protein broth and it turned out super delicious. Has anyone tried freezing to serve later? Just me eating this and I don’t want any of it to go to waste!

    • So glad to hear Lisa! I freeze this one often– just thaw and then reheat on the stove. I typically add in a little fresh parsley/dash of vinegar after I reheat it so it tastes “fresh”

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