Spiced Curried Lentil Soup is a DELISH-cious dish that will surprise even the pickiest of palates. I invite you to try something new & exciting on your holiday table this year. It’s so good, it may even convert those who aren’t really into soup, per se. And it’s so easy to make it may convert those who aren’t into cooking or have minimal cooking skills. I work hard at testing my recipes in an effort to simplify them, eliminate steps & make cooking fun and enjoyable for my readers. For the record, I’ve had my fair share of cooking disasters while attempting to make soup!
Lentils have been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. My mom used to serve them to us in a million and one ways: there was lentil soup, rice with lentils, lentil stew, lentil puree; you name it: it had lentils in it. There was no “compromise” around food with my mother, & she often reminded my sister & I that many children around us wished they had the meal we were frowning at. I guess when you grow up in a place that has been hard-hit by a decade long Civil War, it throws a lot of perspective into your day-to-day that you would otherwise never acquire. 20 years after the fact, am very thankful for that experience.
This yummy soup is slightly on the spicier side, but it’s something that you can easily modify & control. I added some good quality yellow curry, onions, garlic, turmeric, cumin, & chilli flakes. It gets a light drizzle of olive oil, yogurt, pepita seeds & mint before serving & this is done to temper of the spices. This, my friends, is finding the perfect balance; the right mixture of spices. I could happily eat this soup as a starter or as an entree. It’s packed with protein, vegetables & deliciously warming spices.
Curried Lentil Soup
- 1 large yellow onion finely chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup of finely chopped carrots
- 1/2 cup of finely chopped red bell peppers
- 1 tbsp of olive oil (you could also sub with coconut oil)
- 2 tbsp of curry powder
- 1/2 tsp of cumin
- 1 tsp of turmeric
- 1 tsp of chilli flakes (completely optional)
- 6 cups of organic, low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock
- 1 cup of yellow, red, or french green lentils *do not use canned, cooked lentils. I used yellow lentils in this recipe.
- sea salt & ground pepper to taste – I personally don’t add salt as the broth already has some.
- a drizzle of unsweetened coconut yogurt or plain greek yogurt
- fresh mint leaves for garnish
- a pinch of olive oil for drizzling
- pepita seeds for a healthy, nutrient-filled crunch
- Turn on a large stock pot to medium heat and add the 1 tbsp of olive oil.
- When the oil is hot, add the onions, carrots, & red bell peppers. Let them all soften & when the onions are translucent-add the garlic, turmeric, cumin & curry powder. Cook for about 3 minutes. If you’re going to add chilli flakes, now’s the time. Give the veggies a good stir.
- Add the uncooked lentils & the vegetable or chicken stock. Bring everything to a boil.
- Reduce to a simmer (on medium heat) & cook for another 30-40 minutes, or until the lentils are tender & ready
- You may add sea salt or pepper to taste & continue to stir
- Drizzle each bowl with yogurt & a little olive oil & garnish with fresh mint leaves. Fresh bay leaves also go well with this soup!
Tips & Hints: I also turn this into a thicker “curry” by adding 4 cups of water as opposed to 6 cups and letting it cook longer, until most of the water is absorbed. This recipe is very versatile. I eat the lentil curry over brown rice for a high-protein vegan meal. Or you could have it as a side, with lean protein. There’s something for everybody!