Learn how to make a delicious, hearty, and healthy lentil soup. It’s made entirely from pantry staples and yet has so much wonderful flavor!
If you’ve never had lentil soup before, it’s a bit like split pea soup, but with a less split-pea flavor. Lentils have a less strong flavor than split green peas do.
Lentils have a mild flavor and they tend to take on the flavor of whatever you cook them with. That makes for a very palatable protein source, assuming you jazz up that flavor well.
To make this soup, you can start by sauteing some aromatic veggies, if you have any (onions, garlic, celery, carrots, bell pepper). If not, no worries – this is a great pantry soup that can be made with only pantry ingredients, I promise!
Then you add the lentils and saute them for a moment either just in the oil, or with the veggies. Add in some canned diced tomatoes, chicken stock, and seasoning. Then just simmer it until the lentils are tender. You can serve it just like that or you can puree it in a blender or with an immersion blender. I like mine pureed just a little bit so that some lentils break down into the broth, while other stay intact and have texture.
One more thing, as it is, this soup is vegetarian (and even vegan) if you use vegetable stock instead of chicken stock. If you want to make it meatier though instead, you can add some diced ham, cooked bacon, or chopped kielbasa when you add in the stock.
There you have it, pantry lentil soup that’s quick and delicious, and very satisfying too!
P.S. If you’re loving the legume soups right now, definitely check out our Black Bean Soup that is also made completely from pantry staples!Print
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- Optional vegetables*
- 1 lb. dry lentils, rinsed and drained
- 1 (28 oz.) can diced tomatoes
- 8 cups unsalted vegetable or chicken stock**
- 1 tsp. chili powder
- ½ tsp. garlic powder
- ½ tsp. ground coriander seed
- ½ tsp. ground cumin
- Measure the olive oil into a large pot or Dutch oven and warm it over medium heat. Add the optional vegetables, if using. Stir until softened, about 3 minutes.
- Add the lentils and stir to coat. Add the diced tomatoes, stock, chili powder, garlic powder, coriander, and cumin. Stir.
- Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until lentils are tender, 25-30 minutes. Taste and add salt if needed.
- Serve as is or use a hand blender (immersion blender)to puree it to the desired texture. I like it best partly blended such that some lentils have dissolved into the broth, while others are still fully intact. If you don’t have a hand blender, you can use a regular blender but you might have to do it in batches.
*If you have any of the following use all or some of them: 1 small onion (chopped), 2 carrots (finely chopped), 2 ribs celery (finely chopped), 1 bell pepper (finely chopped). Alternatively, use 1-2 cups of frozen mixed vegetables that you defrost and stir in before or after pureeing in Step #4.
**Instead of stock you can use plain water but the soup will be a bit bland. I really like a product called Better Than Bouillon that you can add to water to make something like stock on the fly. But regular bouillon cubes or packets will work here too, just be mindful that they can be quite salty.