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Red Lentil Soup with Turnip and Parsley

Detox Cred: Keep a batch of this warming soup around for the week and you'll stay slim and satisfied -- a whole cup of cooked lentils contains just 200 calories. The legume is also a stellar source of both soluble and insoluble fiber -- getting enough roughage this week is important for keeping your digestive system running smoothly.

  • Servings: 8
  • Yield: Makes 10 cups
Red Lentil Soup with Turnip and Parsley

Photography: Bryan Gardner

Source: Whole Living, January/February January/February 2012


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 celery stalks, finely diced
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups dried red lentils
  • 1 turnip, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 teaspoon red-wine vinegar (optional)
  • Coarse salt and pepper


  1. In a pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, and celery; cook, stirring, until tender, 6 to 8 minutes.

  2. Increase heat to high and add tomatoes; cook for 1 minute. Add lentils, turnip, and 6 cups water.

  3. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until lentils are tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Stir in parsley and vinegar. Season with salt and pepper.

Reviews (14)

  • LittleRedFrog 23 Jan, 2014

    I love soup and I love this soup!
    I wasn't so sure about adding the vinegar but this is just the thing that adds the depth that the batch would have been missing otherwise.
    This makes a lot of soup, especially for the "small" portion advised on the website for this cleanse so I made the whole thing and froze the rest in small portion. Now, when I'll feel lazy on Sunday evenings, I just have to take a portion out of the freezer and done I am!

  • laluna65 16 Jan, 2014

    This soup is so simple, clean and delicious. I made it for the first time today and shared it with 2 co-workers. They both loved it so I shared the recipe. I didn't have turnips on hand and it was simply divine anyway. I did try the soup first without the vinegar and felt something was missing. But once I added it in, the flavor completely blossomed. This is a new favorite!

  • MissChriddy 14 Dec, 2013

    I use a chopped carrot in place of the turnip. Normally my husband asks where the meat is in any suspiciously healthy-looking dish, but he devoured this soup and even declared that if he'd ordered this in a restaurant he would be impressed. I've made it many times in the past two years. So simple to make, and with ingredients that are usually on hand. Success! *I add a pinch of this or that for seasoning, but don't remember what exactly.

  • thefetuspatrol 31 Dec, 2012

    It was awesome! I added some sriracha chilli sauce and some curry powder and that made it way better but it was good without it too. Could use more liquid action, so maybe add a bit more water or maybe a couple cups of veg. broth.

  • lkg4wrd 18 May, 2012

    I didn't have turnip, so left that out. I added [filtered word]ake mushrooms which I sauted with the onions and celery. I added 2 cans chichen broth for 4 cups of the water. It was delicious! This one will be a staple.

  • MoxieJen 3 Feb, 2012

    Excellent! I wasn't doing the cleanse so replaced one cup of water for white wine and added a bay leaf. Fantastic!

  • chicchefjess 20 Jan, 2012

    Delicious!! I added extra vinegar which gave it great flavor. Also threw in a couple of bay leaves.

  • kij 18 Jan, 2012

    Made this today & it's soo good! I was nervous after reading the bland review, but I added a dash of cayenne and it was plenty flavorful. And filling. It's a winner in my opinion!

  • Twoflower 16 Jan, 2012

    This was reasonably filling but incredibly bland. I added quite a bit of curry powder and salt and pepper, I'll try the cayenne and chili peppers that other posters suggested

  • 802karen 15 Jan, 2012

    Mine was not thick - bummer. The turnip was not cooked after the 25 minutes. Guess I'll add some cayenne and red pepper and enjoy what I've made and try again!

  • Pamela12 12 Jan, 2012

    thick and hearty soup hit the spot during this cold snap

  • TheGodMom 11 Jan, 2012

    *chile peppers and cayenne is what I meant to write.

  • TheGodMom 11 Jan, 2012

    Need a little spice in your life? Throw in some green peppers and a dash of cayenne! yum

  • IvyOakGal 11 Jan, 2012

    This is terrific! My tomatoes were going to go south before I made this recipie while on the 2012 action plan. So I blended up a small version of the M.Stewart Roasted Tomato Sauce (one of my faves) and used 1-1/2 cups of that instead of fresh tomatoes. I think it gave a richer soup & still kept with the plan (I think). Will make this MANY more times!

    And, I don't even like lentils...

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