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Red Lentil Soup: A Delicious and Healthy Meal

Red Lentil Soup – If you have been looking for a healthy, flavorful, and tasty soup, try this healthy and nourishing meal that is high in protein and fiber. The soup is undoubtedly an incredible meal. 

Freshly cooked red lentil soup garnished with parsley

Soup is a comforting and filling meal that can be enjoyed any time of the year. One of the best soups to try is the red lentil soup, which is not only delicious but also packed with nutrients. In this blog post, we’ll share a simple and easy-to-follow recipe for red lentil soup that you can make at home.

A Delicious and Healthy Meal

Red Lentil Soup is a highly nutritious, appetizing, and healthy soup with lentils as its main ingredient. It also contains other pantry-staple ingredients, such as celery, cumin, paprika, and carrots, with a hint of lemon to elevate the soup; you can serve it with or without meat.

Red lentil Soup originates from the Middle East and is even assumed to be the first-ever legume people consumed at the time. Interestingly, Jacob in the Bible is said to have made Lentil Soup the day Esau was so hungry that he exchanged his birthright for the meal. You can imagine how delicious and wholesome it must have smelled and tasted for Esau to have traded his birthright for a plate of Lentil Soup. 

While this soup is mainly served as an appetizer, its consistency is thick and filling. This tasty meal is one you can never get enough of. You will keep coming back for seconds.

Another wholesome and delicious meal I can liken to this recipe is the Nigerian Stewed Beans. It’s worth trying out. 

What to know about Lentils 

Lentils belong to the legume family and are similar to beans. However, Lentils are primarily carbohydrates, high in fiber, and low in fat. There are different types of lentils, all of which can be used to make Lentil soups. These include brown, green, red, and yellow.

Red lentils have a milder, sweeter flavor and a tendency to break down more during cooking, giving the finished product a creamier texture.

Why You Will Love This Lentil Soup Recipe 

  1. It’s highly nutritious 
  2. It is easy to make
  3. It stores and freezes well
red lentil soup served in a bowl and garnished with parsley

Ingredients for making Lentil soup

  • Red Lentils: This is the main ingredient needed to make Lentil soup, as the name implies.
  • Onions: Onions are necessary for enhanced flavor in lentil soup.
  • Carrots: to give the red lentil soup a boost in taste and texture.
  • Celery: adds a depth of flavor to the red lentil soup.
  • Garlic: makes red lentil soup flavourful and tasty.
  • Lemon: gives red lentil soup the needed zest.
  • Cumin: This is needed to enrich lentil soup, giving it a refined earthy, and hearty taste.
  • Paprika: For much-needed spice.
  • Tomato: This is to add texture and thickness to the soup.
  • Vegetable Stock: This is important if you do not want bland lentil soup. You can substitute the vegetable stock with chicken stock. 
  • Parsley/Cilantro: To garnish 
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

How to make Lentil soup

  • Step 1: Saute onion, celery, and carrots in olive oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot.
  • Step 2: Stir in the minced garlic and tomato paste. 
  • Step 3: Add cumin, thyme, paprika, salt, and black Pepper. 
  • Step 3: Add the canned diced tomatoes and stock. Mix well.
  • Step 4: Add the washed lentils. Mix and adjust for seasoning if necessary.
  • Step 5: Cover and let the mixture come to a rolling boil. 
  • Step 6: Let the lentils simmer until tender. 
  • Step 7: Remove from heat and stir in the lemon juice if desired. 
  • Step 8: Garnish with fresh herbs if desired, and serve hot.
Lentil soup served in a plate and garnished with parsley

FAQS

What type of Lentil is good for lentil soup?

Generally, dried lentils of any type can be used to make a delicious pot of lentil soup. The dried lentils are better than the canned version because they produce consistent texture. They have no additives, readily absorb flavor, and are more economical.

Is Red Lentil soup good for you?

Of course, red lentil soup is one of the healthy meals you can indulge in. The soup is a healthy and nourishing meal with protein and fiber. Not only can it be made according to your taste, but its nutritious value is unique. 

What does Red Lentil soup taste like?

Red Lentil soup typically has a rich, earthy flavor and a hearty texture. The red lentils have a mild, nutty taste, while the vegetables and spices used to make the soup can add depth and complexity to the overall flavor.

The extent of flavors in Red Lentil Soup depends on how it has been cooked. It can range from sweet to spicy. Some lentil soups can be quite spicy, while others are milder and more comforting.

Also, the broth or stock used to cook the red lentils can affect the taste of the soup. The soup made with vegetable stock will taste differently from lentil soup made with chicken broth.

Is red lentil soup really good for you?

Yes, Red lentil soup is really good for you. It is high in protein, fiber, and other essential nutrients and vitamins. The soup is also low in fat and calories, making it a great choice for a healthy and nutritious meal.

What mixes well with lentils

Lentils mix well with a variety of ingredients, such as vegetables, herbs, spices, and grains. You can also add in different types of meat, such as chicken, beef, and pork, for an even heartier meal.

How do you make lentils taste better?

There are several ways to make lentils taste better. Adding in flavorful ingredients, such as onions, garlic, and herbs can enhance the taste of the soup. You can also season the soup with salt, pepper, and other spices to give it an extra kick.

Can you overcook Red lentils in soup?

Yes, you can overcook lentils in soup. If you overcook the red lentils, they can become mushy and lose flavor. To avoid this, keep an eye on the red lentils while cooking and remove them from the heat before they become too soft.

Should you wash red lentils?

Yes, it is important to wash your red lentils before cooking them. This will help to remove any dirt or debris that may be present. Additionally, sorting through the red lentils and discarding any broken or discolored ones is important.

Can I freeze Lentil soup?

Yes, red lentil soup can be frozen in an airtight container for up to two months. To reheat the soup, thaw it overnight in the refrigerator and then warm it in a saucepan over low heat.

Make ahead and Storage of Red Lentil soup 

Unlike other legumes, you don’t have to soak these red lentils in water to prepare a meal. Nevertheless, it is important to sort out dirt from lentils and wash them before cooking. You can make the soup a day ahead and reheat it on the stovetop.

Storage: You can store red lentil soup in the fridge for up to 5 days to enjoy on a later day. If made in large quantities, you can freeze your red lentil soup for at least 2 months to savor it from time to time. 

What to serve with Red Lentil Soup

The soup can be a hearty main course or a side dish. You can serve your hearty and delicious lentil soup with a side of bread like Sandwich bread, Buttery bread rolls, and even Flatbread. Vegetable salads and baked stuffed potatoes are also great accompaniments to lentil soup.

Tips to note:

  • Add bay leaves to your lentil soup for enhanced flavor 
  • Cook your lentil soup on low heat to avoid mushy or very soft lentils.
  • Cover the pot to allow lentil soup to simmer well when cooking.

Other soups to try out 

Freshly cooked red lentil soup garnished with parsley

Red Lentil Soup

If you have been looking for a healthy, flavorful, and tasty soup, try this healthy and nourishing meal that is high in protein and fiber. The soup is undoubtedly an incredible meal.
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Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: American
Keyword: red lentil soup, soup
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 338.3kcal

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil 45 ml
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 2 large carrots chopped
  • 2 celery stalks chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 14 oz 14oz chopped tomatoes with juice
  • 6 cups vegetable stock chicken stock if preferred
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 ½ cups dried lentils washed green, red, or brown
  • lemon juice for serving if desired
  • fresh parsley or cilantro for garnish [chopped]

Instructions

  • Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Add the chopped onion, celery, and carrots and cook for 5-7 minutes.
  • Stir in the minced garlic and tomato paste. Let the tomato paste cook for a few seconds. Then add cumin, thyme, paprika, salt, and black pepper.
  • Add the canned diced tomatoes and stock. Mix well.
  • Add the washed lentils. Mix and adjust for seasoning if necessary.
  • Cover with a fitting lid, increase the heat and let the mixture come to a rolling boil. Then reduce the heat to medium-low and let the lentils simmer for about 25-30 minutes or until the lentils are tender.
  • Remove from heat and stir in the lemon juice if desired.
  • Garnish with fresh herbs if desired, and serve hot.

Notes

Add bay leaves to your lentil soup for enhanced flavor
Cook your lentil soup on low heat to avoid mushy or very soft lentils.
Cover the pot to allow lentil soup to simmer well when cooking

Nutrition

Calories: 338.3kcal | Carbohydrates: 61.2g | Protein: 20.9g | Fat: 2.2g | Saturated Fat: 0.3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.9g | Sodium: 1770mg | Potassium: 1174mg | Fiber: 25.4g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 6486.1IU | Vitamin C: 20.5mg | Calcium: 108mg | Iron: 7.5mg

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