New This Month

Lentil Vegetable Soup


Nothing beats a good, hearty soup that has inexpensive ingredients, feeds a lot of people, and doesn't take long to make. For a twist on this triple threat, add some bacon or pancetta. From the book "Mad Hungry," by Lucinda Scala Quinn (Artisan Books).

  • Servings: 8


  • 2 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped (3/4 cup)
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped (3/4 cup)
  • 2 celery stalks, peeled and chopped (2/3 cup)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced (1 tablespoon)
  • 1 tablespoon coarse salt
  • 1 small tomato, chopped (1/3 cup)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 cups brown or green lentils
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 small bay leaf
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 cups chicken broth or vegetable broth
  • 4 cups water, plus more if needed
  • 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • Garlic Croutons, optional


  1. Heat a large soup pot over high heat and swirl in the olive oil. Add the onion, carrots, celery, garlic, and 1 teaspoon of the salt. Reduce the heat to low and saute until the vegetables are lightly caramelized, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and cook for another 2 minutes.

  2. Add the lentils, thyme, bay leaf, pepper, and the remaining 2 teaspoons salt. Add the broth and water, and bring to a boil, skimming and discarding any foam as it rises to the surface. Reduce the heat and simmer until the lentils are tender, 15 to 20 minutes. (The cooking time depends on the age of the dried lentils.) Stir in the vinegar. Season to taste with salt and pepper. If needed, thin the soup with additional water or broth for the desired consistency. Serve in a bowl topped with fresh croutons, if using.

Cook's Notes

To prepare a vegetarian lentil soup, don't add meat and substitute vegetable broth for the chicken broth.

Reviews Add a comment

  • memphisyum
    28 NOV, 2012
    Forgot to say, I also added some diced mushrooms for added savory flavor, and am serving with open-face ham and tillamook sandwiches instead of croutons.
  • memphisyum
    28 NOV, 2012
    Just made this and it's simmering on the the stove right now. I tasted it and it's DELICIOUS. My lentils were pretty old so I pre-cooked them while I was doing other things, before adding them in along with the liquid I cooked them in, to everything else. I also didn't have any tomatoes or tomato paste on hand so I just used some salsa. Works well since the recipe calls for vinegar and the salsa's got vinegar and lime juice in it. Not a big soup fan but this really is as good as others have said
  • zahira40
    15 AUG, 2012
    sopa lentejas
  • Lalletag
    14 JUN, 2012
    Made this soup for dinner last night - something quick and hearty. We all loved it. Will be saving this recipe and making again! Thanks Lucinda!
  • RosalieCeurvels
    16 JAN, 2012
    Great meatless meal. Even for meat eaters !! Made this tonight with the croutons as shown in the video and everyone really liked it ! Very good . Will make again.Really like Lucinda and her ease in the kitchen . She makes everything look simple.
  • hellzbellz
    5 SEP, 2011
    not exactly a review. HELP - can this recipe be halved?
  • VanessasKitchen
    8 AUG, 2011
    A great, simple vegetarian recipe. Also very healthy. I omitted the croutons because I don't care for them, as well as the tomato paste.
  • MsBigFan
    19 JUL, 2011
    Packed with flavor and nutrition, this soup was just what the doctor ordered. It's rich and delicious. Who needs meat? You'll never miss it. It was exactly what I was looking for. Thanks for this quick and easy masterpiece.
  • Prysmith
    9 FEB, 2011
    Absolutely super, no pun intended. I have made this and frozen it for those days when the mid-winter doldrums set in. Great flavor, very filling, and highly nutritious. Who can ask for more from a bowl of soup?
  • bracklanta
    15 JAN, 2011
    mouthwatering soup! Even my picky husband enjoyed this one - I will definitely make this again and I love that I can freeze it and look forward to it after work for a quick meal!