This vegan lentil soup is a simple one-pot meal that’s inexpensive to make and hearty enough to fill you up. This recipe uses red lentils for their earthiness with dried apricots and lemon juice for a delicious sweet and sour flavour. You’ll need pantry staples and just 30 minutes to have this delicious and colourful vegan lentil soup on the table!
Soups are definitely and quick and easy vegan go-to and lentils should be a staple in every vegan pantry. It took me a while to discover the beauty of lentils but now that I have I want to use them in everything!
This Spanish-style vegan lentil stew was the recipe that turned me on to lentils and I discovered how easy it is to make something as humble as the lentil taste spectacular with just a few simple seasonings.
So as the weather gets chilly I had a hankering for developing another vegan lentil soup recipe and here it is! This time I used red lentils and the way in which they break down while they’re cooking makes them perfect for hearty soups and red lentil chili.
This vegan lentil soup is really simple to make. First, soften some onion, garlic, chopped carrot and dried apricots in a pot. I water-fried mine to make this an oil-free recipe but you can use a touch of oil if you prefer.
Then simply dump in the dry lentils, a can of diced tomato and vegetable stock. Cover and simmer till the lentils are soft, give it a quick blitz with an immersion blender and stir through a bit of lemon juice and salt. This is a great weeknight meal with minimal prep and it’s done in no time!
It’s up to you how thick or thin you want to serve the soup. You can blitz it totally smooth or keep it with some texture (that’s how I like it). If you have any leftovers, the soup will thicken as it cools so you can thin it out again with a few more splashes of stock or water when you reheat it.
Because I like to get fancy, I sprinkled over some pomegranate seeds (they’re in season) and fresh cilantro but the garnishes are totally optional. You can also add in any other seasonal vegetables like spinach or kale, diced squash or chickpeas. If you want to make it even more of a hearty meal, serve over brown rice or your favourite grain.
This simple sweet and sour vegan lentil soup has endless options and is just what you need to warm you up on a chilly winter evening!
Vegan Lentil Soup
- 1 medium onion diced - $0.14
- 2 cloves of garlic minced - $0.08
- 2 carrots peeled and finely diced - $0.18
- ½ cup (about 100 grams) dried apricots finely diced - $1.51
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin - $0.10
- 1 ½ cups (300 grams) dried red lentils rinsed and drained - $1.17
- 1 can (390 grams / 14 oz) chopped tomatoes - $0.71
- 4 cups (1 litre) vegetable stock - $1.80
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice - $0.24
- Salt to taste - $0.03
- Pepper to taste - $0.03
- Optional: half a pomegranate to garnish - $0.79
- Optional: a small bunch of your favourite herb: cilantro, parsley, thyme, etc. - $0.10
- Heat a medium-sized pot over medium-high heat and add a splash of water (or oil if you prefer), the onion and garlic. Fry (add more water as necessary if the pot is dry) until the onion is soft and translucent then add the carrots. Fry until the carrots are beginning to soften then add the apricots and cumin. Give it another minute or so, stirring, until the cumin is fragrant.
- Add the lentils, can of tomatoes and vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cover the pot. Simmer very gently until the lentils are tender – about 20 minutes. Use an immersion blender, or remove some of the soup from the pot into a stand blender, and blitz until you reach the consistency that you want. You can make all the soup totally smooth or keep some texture.
- Stir in the lemon juice, salt and pepper. Serve the soup garnished with pomegranate seeds and the herb of your choice, if using.
Adapted from: The Washington Post
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