Heaven on Earth

Heaven on Earth

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Red Lentil Soup with Lemon

Do you have these in your pantry?  If not, you should.  They are red lentils and they are packed with nutrients. 

My friend Alta showed me a red lentil  soup recipe from Melissa Clark.  It sounded good to her and as she knew how much I liked lentils, she thought I might like to try it.  She was right.  It's delicious!  It's also fast and easy, and with the exception of the red lentils, I had all of the ingredients in the pantry.   I made a few changes to the original recipe, including using a beef /chicken broth blend. This hearty soup has with a bit of a kick.  It also freezes well and will be just the thing to pull out of the freezer some busy cold winter day in December.  My version of Melissas' recipe is below. 

Red Lentil Soup with Lemon

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large onions, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Pinch of ground chili powder or cayenne
2 quarts chicken or 1 ½ quarts chicken and ½ quart beef broth
2 cups water
2 cups red lentils
2 large carrots, peeled and diced
Juice of ½ lemon, or to taste
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro or parsley

Heat the oil in a large pot over high heat until oil shimmers. Add the onions and garlic and sauté until golden, stirring constantly, about 4 minutes.

Stir in the tomato paste, cumin, salt, pepper, and chili powder or cayenne, and sauté for 2 minutes more.

Add the broth, water, lentils, and the carrots. Bring to a simmer, then partially cover the pot and turn the heat to medium-low. Simmer until the lentils are soft, about 30 minutes. Taste and add more salt if necessary.

If you wish to, you may blend or mash ½ of the soup. (I like mine chunky and opted not to blend it).

Reheat the soup; then stir in the lemon juice and herbs. Serve the soup drizzled with a good finishing olive oil and dust lightly with chili powder if desired.


  1. I made a lentil dish last night for a future post. I just use the tried and true. I can see that I need more color.

  2. I love red lentils. Nice recipe.

  3. wonderful and healthy soup, I make something similar with carrots added :-)

  4. I love the color; it looks so inviting!

  5. I'm inexperienced with lentils! I made Ina's lentil soup once and loved it -- I'm betting I'd love this one too. Thanks for sharing your recipe!

  6. I must try this B! I love soup always looking for new recipes. I made sweet potato jalapeño soup last week - one of my faves. Sounds weird, but it's so good! I want to make your pot roast too - last one I made was disappointing ;(.
    Blessings to you B!

  7. I've never tried red lentils. This sounds delicious and just the thing for this cooler weather.