Glowing Spiced Lentil Soup

625 comments

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First off, thank you all so much for your excitement and congrats about our news! I really enjoyed reading your comments and stories. I’m also happy to hear my impending loss of sanity should only be temporary. Truthfully, I’m not sure that I ever got it back after our first!

Second of all, I’ve missed you dearly. I’ve missed blogging. I’ve missed posting recipes. I love sharing my favourite recipes and stories with you guys. Nothing makes me happier than creating something I adore and thinking about you trying it in your own kitchens! It feels so good to have more energy these days and also to wrap up some other massive projects.

Today’s recipe is most likely the last soup recipe I’ll post until next fall (*sad face*), but boy is it a great one to end on. As my dad likes to say, “It’s a humdinger!” Do you remember my Spiced Red Lentil, Tomato, and Kale Soup? Well, this soup reminds me a bit of that one, only it’s even better! Turmeric, coconut, cumin, cinnamon, and cardamom create an incredibly healing and flavourful broth. I always say the test of a “vault-worthy” soup is whether you want to drink the broth on its own, and this one certainly fits the bill. A generous amount of turmeric makes it feel so healthy and powerful. Knowing that turmeric has so many anti-inflammatory benefits is always an added bonus, too!

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My inspiration comes from a Whole Foods mason jar soup called “Spiced Lentil” that Eric picked up for me on a whim. Well, this soup blew me away. After glancing at the short ingredient list, I knew I could easily recreate it in my own kitchen. Or so I hoped! I scribbled down a recipe attempt and started cooking. The beauty of this soup is that it’s a “pantry” soup. I had every single ingredient on hand (and still do, which explains why I’ve been making it so much). The first batch turned out darn near perfect (actually, we liked my version more), and the second attempt was even better than the first. Poor Eric only got one bowl from the first batch. You gotta be quick around the pregnant lady! I’ll fight you.

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If your weather is still cool, snowy, rainy, and dreary in early spring like it is here in Southern Ontario (we’re getting a snowstorm later today…*cries*), I hope you’ll enjoy this comforting soup. Even if it’s not cold where you are, I’d argue that breaking out into a light sweat while eating this is totally worth it!

glowingspicedlentilsoup

4.9 from 251 reviews
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Glowing Spiced Lentil Soup

Vegan, gluten-free, grain-free, nut-free, refined sugar-free, soy-free

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This soup is so quick and easy because there aren’t many vegetables to chop (just garlic and onion—that’s it!) and it relies mostly on pantry staples. It takes 15 minutes prep time (that includes getting the ingredients out), and then it’s hands off while it cooks. Talk about easy! While this soup contains a lot of spices, it's not what I would call "spicy" or "hot". If you do want a kick of heat feel free to add some cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes. Also, feel free to change up the baby spinach for other greens like stemmed kale or chard. This soup is inspired by Whole Foods.

Yield
about 7 cups (1.65 litres)
Prep Time
Cook time

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups (280 grams) diced onion (1 medium/large)
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 (15-ounce/398 mL) can diced tomatoes, with juices
  • 1 (15-ounce/398 mL) can full-fat coconut milk*
  • 3/4 cup (140 grams) uncooked red lentils, rinsed and drained
  • 3 1/2 cups (875 mL) low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt, or to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper, to taste (for a kick of heat!)
  • 1 (5-ounce/140-gram) package baby spinach
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice, or more to taste

Directions:

  1. In a large pot, add the oil, onion, and garlic. Add a pinch of salt, stir, and sauté over medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes until the onion softens.
  2. Stir in the turmeric, cumin, cinnamon, and cardamom until combined. Continue cooking for about 1 minute, until fragrant.
  3. Add the diced tomatoes (with juices), entire can of coconut milk, red lentils, broth, salt, and plenty of pepper. Add red pepper flakes or cayenne, if desired, to taste. Stir to combine. Increase heat to high and bring to a low boil.
  4. Once it boils, reduce the heat to medium-high, and simmer, uncovered, for about 18 to 22 minutes, until the lentils are fluffy and tender.
  5. Turn off the heat and stir in the spinach until wilted. Add the lime juice to taste. Taste and add more salt and pepper, if desired. Ladle into bowls and serve with toasted bread and lime wedges.

Tips:

  • * I tried a version using light canned coconut milk and one using full-fat canned coconut milk, and I greatly prefer the full-fat coconut milk version (shocker, I know). I recommend following suit, but if all you have on hand is light canned coconut milk that’ll work in a pinch—it just won't be as rich and creamy.

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{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

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Lucy June 20, 2017

Hi Angela, do you soak the lentils first?

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Angela Liddon June 22, 2017

Hi Lucy, Thanks for the question! The red lentils just need to be rinsed and drained. Hope this helps and happy cooking! :)

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Sandra June 13, 2017
Recipe Rating:

Just stumbled upon this recipe on your beautiful app and made it since I had all the ingredients on hand. Wowzer!! So delicious and so insanely easy to make! Barely any clean up required. Chopping so many veggies is often the difficulty of being plant-based but this is probably the easiest and flavourful recipe I’ve made in ages! Keep these great and easy recipes coming, Angela!

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Mj Bertolini June 10, 2017
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Loved this, Angela! Do you have the nutritional info per serving? Thanks

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Angela Liddon June 12, 2017

Hi there! I’m sorry, I don’t have the nutritional info on hand, but you should be able to get a fairly quick breakdown by plugging the recipe into an online tool like caloriecount.com or nutritiondata.com, or even a free app like MyFitnessPal. Hope this helps!

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Jodie May 27, 2017
Recipe Rating:

Oh my!! Looked up a lentil soup recipe and discovered you. And u must glow from the love coming from my husband and I. One of the best soups ever!! Made it on a campfire and ate the lot between us in one go. Utterly divine. Thank u sooooo much!

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Mykaela May 9, 2017
Recipe Rating:

Soooo yummy and easy. New fav

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E May 6, 2017
Recipe Rating:

This recipe is a keeper :)
Substituted: Rice milk for the coconut milk.
Added: A little curry
Served over brown rice.
Wow!! So good!!! Thanks for sharing.

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Ashley May 1, 2017
Recipe Rating:

Winter is coming in New Zealand and it’s cold tonight, I needed something quick, easy and comforting. This was so so yum that I think I’ll make it every week! Thank you!

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Angela Liddon May 1, 2017

I hope it keeps you warm, Ashley!

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Mikaela April 30, 2017
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This recipe was amazing , Thankyou!! I added coriander on top and it worked so nicely !

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Sarah April 24, 2017
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I made this last night and it was perfect! I was looking to use up some red lentils I had and this was an easy, quick, and delicious way to do it! I did the recipe exactly as suggested (except I used lite coconut milk that I already had) and added a few TB of chili flakes,and it was delish!

Thank you for yet another delicious, easy, and satisfying dinner!

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Kat April 24, 2017
Recipe Rating:

I made this soup yesterday for a week of work lunches – it’s absolutely brilliant! I added a diced zucchini towards the end of cooking for extra veg.

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Angela Liddon April 24, 2017

Can’t go wrong with extra veg! Enjoy those lunches, Kat.

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Jackie April 23, 2017
Recipe Rating:

Made this today, and it was amazing! That cayenne pepper does add a kick to it! :) The only thing I didn’t have on hand was a can of diced tomatoes, so I ended up adding fresh tomatoes instead. Absolutely delicious! Thank you!

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Angela Liddon April 24, 2017

I’m happy to hear you enjoyed the soup, Jackie! Thanks for taking the time to let me know :)

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Olivia Martin April 22, 2017
Recipe Rating:

Just made his for lunch and it was great! I threw in a knob of ginger since I was out of cardamom and used the reduced fat coconut milk (although I can see how it would be heavenly with the full fat). Thanks for another winning recipe, Angela!

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Tanja April 20, 2017
Recipe Rating:

Amazing! I make this regularly and is so delicious and warming. Even my EXTREMELY fussy 13 year old will eat it BEFORE spinach! 😆

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Claire April 5, 2017

I just made this for dinner tonight, and I love it! The only change I made was canned lentils instead of dry, and then shortened the cook time!

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Kathy March 31, 2017

This soup has been my go to recipe for a potluck Wednesday night soup supper my church hosts once a month… wound up bringing it 4 out of 6 months to honor enthusiastic requests… with copies of your recipe from your website!

sometimes I have just added a good curry powder to it if I don’t have the specific spices!

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Angela Liddon April 6, 2017

Thanks for sharing the love, Kathy! It’s wonderful to hear this soup’s been such a hit at your potlucks. :)

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Maggie LaBold March 28, 2017
Recipe Rating:

Made this tonight. Still at the dinner table and had to share our thoughts….four big THUMBS UP! We love this soup and agree it has a place in our recipe rotation. We especially like that it has turmeric, protein packed lentils, and a whole container of spinach. It is so healthy and yet oh so good! Thank you for this fab recipe.

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Angela Liddon March 29, 2017

Sounds like it was a big hit, Maggie!! I’m so happy to hear it. Thank YOU for the comment!

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Tao March 27, 2017
Recipe Rating:

Thank you for posting the measurements in both cups and grams! I have a budget of approximately $120 for my meals, so it’s been a necessity to calculate how much each meal serving costs to see if I can make it a regular staple in my diet. Not only does posting the two measurements make it easier for me to cook, but it also helps me to know what meals I can add on a regular basis! Posting the yield amount has also been a huge help too.

Thank you very much! Have a splendid evening. :)

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Angela Liddon March 28, 2017

I’m so happy to hear you find it helpful, Tao! I hope you had a great evening as well. :)

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Mélanie March 26, 2017
Recipe Rating:

This is a very yummy soup. Thank you. I blended part of the soup for the kids, they loved it!

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Angela Liddon March 27, 2017

Blending it–what a great idea, Melanie! I’m glad it was a hit :)

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Ann-Marie March 19, 2017

Angela: I have not made this soup but wanted to comment on your Golden French Lentil Stew. Made it yesterday and it was amazing. Definitely making it again. Love your recipes!

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Ashley March 17, 2017
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Hi Angela,
I’ve been following you since I went plant based about 6 years ago and just want to say I really enjoy your recipes. Particularly enjoyed following your pregnancy and am currently on baby #2 plant based. (Your recipes have really helped!) I made this recipe last night as part of my prep for the week and LOVE the taste and simplicity. I’m not sure if you’ve heard of the instant pot but it was made in that which made it twice as easy. If you haven’t seen them around you should check them out! It will be a regular rotation for sure.
Thank you for being so wonderful and sharing all your recipes (:

Reply

Angela Liddon March 17, 2017

Thanks so much for the lovely comment, Ashley. Congratulations on baby #2! Sending you and your growing family a ton of well wishes. :)

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