Green Lentil Soup with Tomatoes & Carrots

4.80 from 5 votes

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With canned fire-roasted tomatoes, carrots, kale and red pepper flakes, this green lentil soup is a true pantry/fridge forage kind of recipe. It’s a cozy vegan soup that has a pleasantly warming, spicy kick. I also season the broth with minced garlic and cumin.

If you’re looking for another green lentil soup recipe, try this slow cooker moroccan stew with chickpeas and sweet potatoes.

Two bowls of tomato carrot lentil soup.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

It’s a simple, straightforward soup recipe that’s a mix of pantry ingredients and fresh vegetables. So many great soups like this one start with canned tomatoes and veggie broth. From there, you have green lentils, carrots and dried spices. That’s it.

This is a healthy soup recipe that’s very filling too. Lentils are a great source of protein and fiber. They are an easy way to make vegan soups more hearty for a meal.

You always can use another vegetable soup in your fall to winter rotation. Wholesome and packed with nutrition, this lentil soup is easy to cook. Also, you can make it in advance, and it is freezer friendly.

The Ingredients

Ingredients including green lentils, tomatoes, carrots, kale, onions, garlic, veggie broth and spices.

This is what you need:

  • Green lentils simmer in soups and keep their shape unlike red lentils, which break down in the broth. Always rinse lentils with cold water in a strainer before you simmer them in the soup. French green lentils, known as puy lentils, are considered to be the best quality, but it’s not necessary to splurge on them for this soup to turn out great.
  • Fire-roasted tomatoes: You will need a large can of diced tomatoes. This adds nice flavor to the broth and texture with those bites of tomato. 
  • Carrots: You can use standard orange carrots or rainbow carrots to add more color. They are a great pantry vegetable because raw unpeeled carrots will stay good in the fridge for a few weeks.
  • Dried spices: Ground cumin, red pepper flakes, kosher salt and black pepper give a nice depth of flavor.
  • Garlic: There is a fresh garlic clove to round out everything. You can increase that to 2 garlic cloves if you want more.
  • Kale: I take advantage of the warmth of the soup and stir in chopped kale leaves at the end of its simmer time. They soften in a few minutes.
  • Onions: Along with carrots, I sauté chopped onions to create that starting point of flavor.
  • Vegetable broth: I always use low-sodium broth in soup recipes, so I can control the seasonings. If you don’t need the soup to be vegan, you can substitute with chicken broth.
  • Parsley: I finish the soup with chopped fresh herbs.
  • Olive oil: For the best taste, use high-quality extra virgin olive oil.

How To Make Green Lentil Soup

1. Sauté the onions and carrots until they start to soften. Do this in a large pot or dutch oven over medium high heat. This will take 4-5 minutes.

2. Add the spices. Stir in the minced garlic, cumin, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. In a minute, the onions and carrots will become fragrant.

Onions and carrots sautéing in a large pot. Spices and garlic stirred into veggies.

3. Pour in the tomatoes, vegetable broth and lentils. Bring the soup to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the lentils are tender, about 20-25 minutes.

4. Stir in the kale. Give it a couple minutes to soften. Top the soup with fresh parsley.

Soup simmering in pot. Kale leaves stirred into soup.

Serving

As mentioned, the lentils in the soup make it filling. You can serve it on it’s own as a meal, or pair it with a salad. Try a basic arugula salad or a shaved cauliflower salad. You can also add a piece of bread with a good crust that you can use for dipping into the broth. 

Storage, Leftovers & Freezing

You can store leftover soup in an airtight container in the fridge up to 3 days. Let the soup cool to room temperature first. Then rewarm it in the microwave or in a small saucepan on the stove.

If you want to keep the soup longer, up to 1 month, put it in a container in the freezer. Thaw it before reheating it. The carrots, kale and lentils will soften more from being frozen and then thawed.

Bowl of tomato carrot lentil soup.

Recipe Tips

Simmer the soup with the lid off the pot. This gives the soup a chance to reduce and thicken slightly while allowing the flavors to develop.

You can add more than a cup of kale leaves. If you are a fan of kale and greens, you can stir in an additional half cup. 

At the end of the recommended cook time, taste the soup to check the seasonings and to see if the lentils are tender. You may need to make adjustments and add more salt or pepper.

Recipe FAQs

Can you substitute with other kinds of lentils?

You can use brown lentils instead of green. I don’t recommend red lentils or yellow lentils because they lose their shape when they cook in soup.

Is it ok to add celery?

If you want more bite and texture, you can add 1-2 stalks of celery, diced, when you sauté the onions and carrots.

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Green Lentil Soup with Tomatoes, Carrots & Kale

4.80 from 5 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 35 minutes
Servings: 4
With canned fire-roasted tomatoes, carrots and kale, this green lentil soup is a true pantry/fridge forage kind of cozy recipe that also has a warming, spicy kick from red pepper flakes.

Ingredients 

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 pound carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1-28 ounce can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 cup green lentils, rinsed
  • 1 cup roughly chopped kale leaves
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley

Instructions 

  • Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan or dutch oven over medium high heat. Sauté the onions and carrots until they start to soften, about 4-5 minutes.
  • Stir in the garlic, cumin, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper, cooking until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  • Pour in the tomatoes, vegetable broth and lentils and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20-25 minutes until the lentils are tender.
  • Stir in the kale and simmer for a couple minutes more letting the leaves wilt slightly.
  • Divide the soup into bowls and top with fresh parsley before serving.

Notes

You can substitute with brown lentils.
You can increase the amount of kale leaves to 1-1/2 cups.
If you don’t need the soup to be vegan, you can use low-sodium chicken broth instead of vegetable broth.
Let the soup cool to room temperature before storing leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 3 days. Reheat in the microwave or in a saucepan on the stove over low to medium heat.
To keep the soup longer, up to 1 month, freeze it. Thaw before reheating. The lentils and carrots will soften more from being frozen and then thawed.

Nutrition

Calories: 277kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 1619mg | Potassium: 901mg | Fiber: 19g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 20109IU | Vitamin C: 17mg | Calcium: 95mg | Iron: 5mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Soup
Cuisine: Italian
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Hi, I'm Paige.

Welcome to Last Ingredient where you will find simple seasonal recipes with plenty of fruits and vegetables, all for the home cook.

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Recipe Rating




3 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Really great tasty winter soup. Doubled the recipe. Kale straight from the garden. Lightly blended the soup as I had cut the carrots a little large. 🙂