Friday, December 18, 2009

Soothing Red Lentil Soup

It has been cold lately, very cold! It seems as if soups and stews are the daily staple now. Today I'd like to share with you a fairly new recipe of mine. One that was created about a week and a half ago. A warming, nourishing......soothing red lentil soup.

We've been very busy lately, and frankly who hasn't these days. I have made multiple batches of this soup since its creation and it has been just perfect for a quick, warming lunch or an easy dinner. The soup is chock full of greens, ginger, garlic, and onions...just the thing to boost the immune system during cold and flu season. I do use a little citrus to liven up the flavors but the soup is tomato-free.

We brought this soup up to the mountains with us in a large Thermos last weekend and it was just the thing to warm our bellies after an afternoon of sledding. My 5-year old nephew was just in town visiting with my mom. He liked the soup so much that he asked me to make sure I would send the recipe to his mom. He ate bowlfuls of it everyday while he was here! He also asked me to make sure I send her the Milk Chocolate Cupcake recipe and the Molasses Cookie recipe!

Soothing Red Lentil Soup

The first time I made this soup I used the ingredient amounts below, but the entire pot was gone in one sitting. I now make a double batch to feed our family of six. I mean, I rely on those leftovers! If you would like, you could freeze portions of this soup before adding the greens. When you are ready to use it, heat it up in a small pot and add a handful of greens. This will keep the soup fresh-tasting and bright.

2 to 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 to 3 cloves garlic, crushed (or more)
1 to 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
2 teaspoons mild curry powder
2 cups red lentils
8 cups water or veggie stock (or a mixture of both)
3 to 4 large carrots, peeled and sliced
4 cups thinly sliced chard (or kale, spinach, collards)
2 to 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 teaspoons Herbamare or sea salt

Heat the olive oil in a large stockpot (8-quart). Add the onions and sauté for about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, and curry powder and sauté a minute or so more.

Add the red lentils and water or stock. I like to prep the carrots at this point. It's just nice to get the lentils cooking first to save time. Then add the carrots, cover the pot, and simmer for about an hour total (start time after adding liquid and lentils).

Turn off heat, add greens, lemon, and salt. Stir it all together and let it rest for about five minutes for the greens to soften. Enjoy! Source:

Below is a photo of my 5-year old nephew and I in the Mt Baker area (12/09).

Other warming winter recipes you might like:

Other news:
I posted the winners of the two recent giveaways I did, the
coconut sugar giveaway and the Authentic Foods cake mix giveaway. You can go back to each post to view who won. The names are posted in the comment sections. If you won, please email me soon with your address info!

Also, if you are interested in doing
the Elimination Diet, we will be starting it on the blog in early January. We'll begin with a few green smoothie recipes and then move on to Phase 1 recipes, then Phase 2, and finally 3. I 'll be sharing links from other bloggers too. This way you will have plenty of options during this very restrictive diet. We may even do a few cooking videos....if you don't mind watching 2-year old twins sautéing at the stove!

About the Author

Alissa Segersten holds a Bachelor's of Science in Nutrition from Bastyr University. She is the founder of Whole Life Nutrition, the mother of five children, a whole foods cooking instructor, professional recipe developer, and cookbook author. She is passionate about helping others find a diet that will truly nourish them, and offers elimination diet recipes, healthy gluten-free recipes, paleo and vegan recipes, as well as tips for feeding your family a nourishing, whole foods diet. Alissa is the author of two very popular gluten-free, whole foods cookbooks and guidebooks: The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook and Nourishing Meals. She is also the co-author of The Elimination Diet book. Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram!


  1. Cute photo and your soup looks so good and creamy! Nice bowl after being out in the cold...yum!

    Bee Happy!

  2. The soup looks amazing per usual! It's cold here, too, and I'm thinking about trying out a new soup recipe myself today.

    Love the photo of you with your nephew! Boy, did he have a great time with you guys. :-)

    Now who on earth would mind seeing your twins at the stove? I can't wait!


  3. yum... this looks sooo good. All your stuff is so good!!
    I bought 2 of your cookbooks for Christmas presents... as I use mine more often than any other cook book!!

    THANK YOU! :)

  4. Ali-
    the name of this soup is so perfect! It is SO soothing on a cold afternoon! Perfect after completing the Jingle Bell 4 mile run today! thanks!

  5. Funny you should post this one because we just made the red lentil soup from your cookbook (minus coconut milk because we didn't have any and tomatoes because Jasper won't eat them). But the recipe was still a huge hit with the whole family. Red lentils rock!

  6. This soup looks delicious ! I will try to make a version of it.

    What would you recommend for seasoning, when one is sensitive to garlic, curry and lemon?

  7. It's really great to see some non-dessert recipes again. I'm not a big sweet eater so I really have missed seeing more regular meal recipes. Since I can't do nightshades, I especially appreciate recipes without tomatoes or hot peppers. Do you have a suggestion for a homemade curry powder without hot pepper? The lentil soup looks really good!

  8. I am going to defrost some of my homemade veg stock and make this for supper tonight! Thanks!


  9. Hi Ali!
    I'm so glad I won! Thanks so so so so much!!!
    I just e-mailed you my mailing address!
    Thanks again, let me know if for some reason the e-mail didn't go through!!!
    Talk to you soon!!! Thanks again!!!

  10. Hi Ali,
    this soup sounds amazing!
    I just adore red lentils this time of year. I made some soup the other day with red lentils, blended them up smooth, added some olive oil while blending and some ume plum vinegar. The flavors meld so perfectly... sublime.
    We just posted a short and quite silly audio clip called "13 Beans and Greens" on the EFE site and I mention that recipe...

  11. I love lentil soup and make a version similar to this one often. But your addition of the greens at the end sounds like a really nice way to bump up the veggie factor in the soup. Planning on trying it tonight. :)

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  13. Making this as I type. I added potatoes to it, as I wanted it to feel a little more hearty. Great recipe, huge fan of red lentils!

  14. Another easy to prepare and oh so tasty to enjoy recipe! I served it up tonight with your biscuit recipe. Full and happy tummies tonight.

  15. This is one of my all time favorite soups and I had posted it on my blog too.

    Thank you!

    Rawfully Tempting (Barbara)

  16. I just recently found your site and love it! I am doing my own version of an elimination diet and this soup is FABULOUS! I made it with water and skipped the citrus and I was amazed at how flavourful it was. Thank you for the great recipe.

  17. Hi Ali,
    This soup has become a favorite in our family. Thank you for posting the recipe. My question is if this soup freezes well with the lemon juice added? I plan to make this for a family in mourning. Thank you.

  18. Hi! I just cooked the soothing red lentil soup and it is aaaamazing! I started recently a kind of elimination diet and I am so happy I found your website ! Just wanted to let you know, thanks again!

  19. I just finished the last bowl of my 4th batch of this magical blend and my body and soul thank you. I have also passed the link to your site onto others who are in need of such nourishing meals.

    Many blessings

  20. Hi, Ali. I live in sunny Fullerton, California, and even though it's warm day I felt like soup because it's Fall! I just made your soup and it was fantastic. My husband was more than a little impressed with it! For my tastes, however, it desperately needed more salt so I used a total of 1 tbsp. kosher salt.

    Thank you for such a wonderful recipe. My palate thanks you, too!

  21. We are eating nightshade free and went in search of a lentil soup recipe. We are so happy we found this one. It will be on our regular rotation.....I made it exactly as written but added 1/2 cup dried split peas. Extra creamy and sadly few leftovers.


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Thanks and Happy Cooking! ~Ali :)