This lentil soup is thick and hearty, loaded with lentils, vegetables and fresh herbs. A tasty vegan soup recipe that works great for meal prep!
I am a sucker for a hearty, veggie-loaded vegan meal, like this Vegan Bolognese or a bowl of this Vegan Crockpot Chili. This hearty lentil soup is just that! Cozy, filling, and loaded with good for you ingredients.
This lentil soup recipe is thick and filling, and is perfect for lunch!
And while this is a tasty meal on day 1, it's the kind of soup that tastes infinitely better on day 2. Funny how that happens!
Reasons you'll ♡ lentil soup
- it's made with pantry and fridge staples but tastes gourmet
- it keeps well and tastes even better on day 2
- it's hearty and healthy, vegan + gluten-free
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Which ingredients do we need?
- lentils- go for brown lentils (not red) for this recipe. They hold their shape and don't get as mushy as red lentils. Find out the difference between brown, green and red lentils here!
- veggies- we are finely chopping some carrots and celery
- aromatics- onion and garlic help build flavor
- herbs- fresh rosemary and thyme are great in this recipe, and bay leaves also bring some flavor
- tomato paste- add that somethin somethin to this soup.
- lemon- a squeeze at the end brings the acidity that helps bring out all the flavors even more
- stock- vegetable stock or if you are not vegan, homemade bone broth
Meal prep tips
- tomato paste- make sure you sautee the tomato paste as this helps remove the 'canned' flavor. You can freeze leftover tomato paste in an ice cube tray and use it in another recipe
- lentils- this recipe was specifically developed using dried brown lentils. I don't recommend using cooked canned lentils or red lentils.
- meal prep- this recipe keeps really well for meal prep! Store in the fridge for up to 4 days and the freezer for up to 3 months.
- to puree or not to puree- this soup gets a little help thickening up by pulsing quickly with an immersion blender after cooking. This is entirely optional
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Can I cook this soup in the Instant Pot?
I bet you could, however I have not tried. I would guess 10 minutes high pressure with a 10 minute natural pressure release. Let me know in the comments if you try this, and how it goes for you!
What about the slow cooker?
I bet you could! I would try low for 6-8 hours, checking on the lentils. Again, I'd love to know if you do try this in the slow cooker 🙂
What should I serve with this soup?
We love serving with some crusty bread for dunking. Crackers would also be great!
More soup recipes
- Vegan Carrot Ginger Soup
- Ultra Creamy Butternut Squash Soup
- Lightened Up Broccoli Cheese Soup
- Creamy Roasted Cauliflower Soup
- Thai Coconut Curry Soup
This recipe was originally published in 2016. The recipe has been improved, rephotographed and republished in 2019 with new recipe tips and a video.
Hearty Lentil Soup
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion (diced)
- 4 cloves garlic (minced)
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 carrots (finely chopped)
- 2 ribs celery (finely chopped)
- 5 cups stock
- 1 cups brown lentils (dry; uncooked)
- 6 sprigs fresh thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves)
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon salt
- juice of 1 small lemon
- Heat oil in a medium pot over medium heat.
- Add the onion and stir, cooking until translucent, around 7 minutes.
- Add the garlic and cook for one minute.
- Add the tomato paste; stir to coat onions and garlic, then cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the carrots, celery, stock, lentils, thyme, rosemary, bay leaf and salt.
- Cover, bring to a simmer, reduce heat, and cook for 35-40 minutes, or until lentils are softened to your liking.
- Remove the herbs and bay leaves, and puree. Stir in lemon juice.
- Store in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- Freeze for up to 6 months.
- Instant Pot
- Follow sauté directions above using the sauté function of the Instant Pot.
- Pressure cook for 15 minutes followed by a 10 minute natural pressure release.
- Remove bay leaf and herb stems, add lemon juice, and pulse 3-4 times with an immersion blender.