Indulge in a warm and comforting dinner with a bowl of this delicious red lentil soup. Filled with vegetables and seasoned with warm spices, it is healthy and hearty!
Indian cuisine has many dal preparations. It will be difficult to go to any Indian dinner without having a lentil dish. We make lentil curries, dry preparations, casseroles, and even desserts but not soups so much. I had my first red lentil soup when I was in Tel Aviv for work back in 2005. One spoonful of the creamy lentil soup and I was back within the comforts of an Indian kitchen :-).
Turkish Red Lentil Soup
A warm bowl of red lentil bowl has nourished me on many of my travels abroad. The original red lentil soup recipe belongs to Middle-Eastern and Turkish cuisine. It is called Kirmizi Mercimek Çorbasi. But it is so popular that it has been adopted by cuisines around the world! I recently had it in a cafe while we were trekking in the Austrian Alps, the other day, I had a red lentil soup in a Romanian restaurant 🙂 and the first recipe in my Turkish cookbook is of red lentils soup!
During my travels in Turkey, one of my hosts told that in the Turkish red lentil soup recipe they sometimes add a mix of milk and egg yolk to the soup. As you can see is the case in the recipe that is there in my Turkish cookbook. So if you are traveling and ordering a red lentil soup, you might want to check with your server if the soup is vegan.
I often find the name red lentils confusing. The lentils are actually orange in color and cook up to be yellow! Red lentils, however, are perfect for soups. They become very soft after cooking and even though I blend the soup with a hand blender, the lentils actually mash themselves up.
This soup takes just about 30 mins in total and very little hands on cooking time. For me it’s the perfect weekday dinner which also make for a great leftover lunch. Red lentil soup recipe is naturally vegan unless you cook it in butter. The lentils themselves add the creaminess to the soup so there is no need for any additional milk, cheese or cream.
It is a complete meal with lentils and vegetables — low in carbs and high in proteins and nutrients. But if you are not counting carbs, I would suggest add in a slice of a nice sourdough to make it more filling.
Red Lentil Soup – vegan
Ingredients (1cup = 240ml; 1tbsp = 15ml; 1tsp = 5ml)
- 1 cup red lentils
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic chopped
- 1 inch ginger chopped
- 2 carrots chopped
- 1 onion chopped
- 1 to mato chopped
- 500 ml vegetable stock
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp turmeric
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Salt to taste
- 1 lemon
- freshly grated nutmeg
- fresh parsley
- Wash the red lentils under running water in a fine colander and soak for about 30 mins.
- Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a stock pot. When the oil is hot, add garlic, ginger, carrots and onions. Add a little salt. Mix well and cook covered for 5 mins.
- Add the tomatoes and turmeric powder. Mix well and cook for a couple of minutes.
- Drain the red lentils and add to the pot, pour in stock, bay leaf, and a little pepper powder. Mix well and bring the soup to a boil.
- Reduce the heat to low and let it simmer for about 10 minutes till the lentils are soft. Add more water as required.
- Remove from heat and using a hand blender directly in the stock pot, blend the soup until smooth and creamy.
- Stir in lemon juice and ladle into soup bowls. Garnish with freshly grated nutmeg, lemon slice and parsley.
- Along with carrots and onions, you can also add some potatoes to the vegetables in the soup.
- If you like the soup a little chunky, blend only half. Red lentils when cooked become very soft anyway.
- Nutritional Information is the approximate information for 1 of 2 servings as a main dish.
A Food Blogger’s Life!
I started this blog in 2010 as a way to share recipes with fiends and family. I knew nothing about food photography.
This post was first published on 27th August 2016 and I’ve recently updated it on 1st March 2019. While the recipe remains the same, I’ve updated it with new photographs. Food blogging is an ever-emerging field and I’ve been learning so much about food photography through this journey. Here’s a side-by-side of the picture now and then.
I would really like to know your thoughts on both the recipe as well as photography!