A Classic Lentil Soup recipe to warm your soul! Hearty and filling, this lentil soup is pure comfort in a bowl! Only 2 fat grams per serve!
Naturally thick and loaded with veggies, this lentil soup is so simple to make! Just dump ingredients into a pot and let the stove do the cooking for you!
Well, here we are again. Another new year, another resolution, and a warm and filling recipe to help us on our way. Because sometimes a classic recipe is all we need to fulfil our hearts and take us back to when things were simple and life was less complicated.
This is THE lentil soup I grew up with. My mother would make this for us at least once a week, and she would add anything to it: pork, chicken or beef. Personally, the pork version is the one I crave til today, but for now, I’m keeping this lentil soup simple and leaving the meat/chicken/pork part up to you! And I’m not kidding when I say this soup is filling. I mean, FILLING. Fully loaded, you don’t need to serve this with anything else!
But I want meat or chicken!
You can most certainly add it in, like we did here in this Warm Chicken and Pumpkin Lentil Stew!
When it comes to poultry in this soup, I prefer the darker meats such as thighs, as breasts tend to dry out. You can of course use breasts if you prefer!
These are my suggestions only, using 1 pound (or 500 grams) for boneless, and 2 pounds (1 kilo) for bone in meats:
- Skinless bone-in chicken thighs
- Diced chicken thigh fillets
- Skinless chicken drumsticks or drumettes (you can either leave bones in once they have cooked in the soup, or remove them and shred the meat back into the soup).
- Pork chops (bone-in ) — my favourite. Once they are cooked in the soup, remove the bones and shred the pork, then mix the meat through the soup. DELICIOUS.
- Pulled pork (use this Carnitas recipe. Once pork is cooked, just add it into the soup.)
- Ground beef
- Chuck steak cut into 1-inch pieces
All of these options can be added after step 1 in this recipe. Allow the meat to brown, then add in the lentils and continue the recipe from there!
Can I use canned lentils?
YES! Personally, I love the texture of this soup made form scratch. Unlike this 10-Minute White Bean Parmesan Spinach Soup where we use canned beans as a time saving solution, I truly believe lentil soup needs to be simmered from scratch to get the thickness and texture out of those beans and into the soup.
If using canned lentils, add them in during the last 5 minutes of cooking. They don’t need long as they are precooked. You won’t have the same texture as from scratch, but most of the flavours will be there.
Then of course, dip some bread into it like there’s no tomorrow. I made a batch of these Individual Garlic Breads to serve with ours!
The Best Lentil Soup Recipe!
Best Lentil Soup Recipe
A classic hearty and filling lentil soup recipe to warm your soul! Pure comfort in a bowl. Naturally thick and loaded with healthy veggies, a simple soup to make! Just dump ingredients into a pot and let the stove do the cooking for you!
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, (chopped)
- 4 cloves garlic, (minced)
- 1 large carrot, (chopped)
- 1 stalk celery, (chopped (just over 1/2 cup))
- 2 cups (13-14 ounces or 375-400 grams) dried green or brown lentils,
- 3 large tomatoes (or 4 small tomatoes), (diced)
- 2 medium-sized potatoes diced into 1-inch pieces, ((Yukon gold if possible))
- 2 quarts (litres) or 8 cups low sodium chicken stock (or broth), (divided)
- 2 teaspoons vegetable stock powder (such as Vegeta) (or beef/chicken bullion powder)
- 2 teaspoons paprika (sweet or mild (or 1 teaspoon smoky))
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon fresh chopped thyme ((optional))
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley, (plus extra to garnish)
- Salt and pepper, (to taste)
Heat oil in a large saucepan or pot over low-medium heat. Cook onion until transparent. Then add the garlic and cook until fragrant (one minute). Add the carrot and celery and cook until softened (about 8 minutes).
(If adding any meats, do so now and brown before continuing next step.)
Mix the lentils through the flavours in the pot, allowing them to cook for a couple of minutes, while stirring occasionally (add in 1 tablespoon of extra oil if needed).
Add in the tomatoes and cook until soft, then add the potatoes and allow them to cook for further 4-5 minutes.
Mix through all remaining ingredients except the salt and pepper. Increase heat; bring to a simmer while stirring occasionally to prevent sticking to the bottom.
When the soup has been simmering for 2-3 minutes, reduce heat down to low, cover with a lid allow simmer for 40-50 minutes, while occasionally stirring, until lentils and potatoes are soft.
To thicken soup, use a potato masher, pressing down 3 or 4 times through the soup until reaching your desired thickness or consistency. (You can also use a stick blender: 2-3 quick pulses.)
Season with salt and pepper, to your tastes. Garnish with a little extra parsley (if you wish) and serve with garlic bread!
- Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat until it begins to smoke. Season the beef with salt and pepper, then gently place into the hot oil, and brown on all sides, about 8 minutes. Once browned, remove the beef and set aside, reserving the remaining oil in the pot. Stir in the celery, carrot, onion, garlic, cilantro, and oregano; cook and stir until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 8 minutes more.
- Pour in the chicken broth, tomatoes, and browned beef. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the meat is beginning to turn tender, about 1 hour.
- After the soup has simmered 1 hour, add the lentils, recover, and continue simmering until the lentils are tender, about 40 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then stir in the parsley. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese to serve.