Italian Vegetable Lentil Soup

01.08.2017

Here’s a new, super healthy soup to add to your dinner rotation – this Italian Vegetable Lentil Soup! It brimming with nutritious ingredients and it will fill you right up. Plus it’s perfectly comforting for all these cold winter days. It’s been nearing 0 degrees outside (yes ZERO, it was 1 degree the other night) so the only dinner option around here lately is soup. Soup. Soup. And soup again. I think we’ve had soup 5 days in a row, either for lunch or dinner, but there aren’t any complaints around here about that. I think it’s a total lie when my thermostat says 72 degrees in the house, it sure doesn’t feel like it (although I can’t complain I’m super grateful for a heated home). The only way for me to get warm is to eat loads of soup, take a hot bubble bath (yes the bubbles are necessary :)) and then slip right into some extra warm socks and jams. It’s practically becoming a routine. 

Italian Vegetable Lentil Soup | Cooking Classy

Italian Vegetable Lentil Soup | Cooking Classy

Honestly I was surprised that my kids ate this soup and actually enjoyed it. I was expecting “ewww whats all this green stuff” but they ate it right up. So it was a win all around and I’ll definitely be making it again and again! I’m even tried freezing some since I made two batches while testing recipes, so I’m going to have some pre-made healthy lunches to look forward to. And I love that it tastes so much like minestrone soup, I’ve always loved minestrone. Now do yourself a favor and make this perfectly satisfying Italian Vegetable Lentil Soup this week! If you can’t resist serve it up with some crusty sourdough baguette slices for dipping.

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Italian Vegetable Lentil Soup

4.95 from 35 votes

Yield: About 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups diced carrots (3 medium)
  • 1 1/2 cups diced yellow onions (1 medium)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp minced garlic (4 cloves)
  • 4 (14.5 oz) cans vegetable broth
  • 2 (14.5 oz) cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 1/4 cups dried brown lentils , rinsed and picked over
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups diced zucchini (1 medium)
  • 2 cups packed chopped kale or spinach
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • Parmesan cheese , for serving (optional)

Instructions

  1. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add carrots and onions and saute 2 minutes then add garlic and saute 2 minutes longer. Pour in vegetable broth and tomatoes. Add in lentils, basil, oregano, thyme and season with salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer 35 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add in zucchini and kale and simmer 10 minutes longer. Stir in lemon juice and add up to 1 cup of water to thin as needed (as the soup rests the lentils soak up more of the broth). Serve warm with parmesan cheese if desired.
  2. Recipe source: inspired by Yummy Mummy Kitchen and my minestrone

117 comments

  • Grace: Two questions,
    Can I use barley or rice instead of lentils?

    Can this be made in a crock pot?

    Thank you January 9, 2017 at 6:42am Reply

    • Jaclyn: It would give it a different flavor but they should work in this recipe. January 9, 2017 at 5:14pm Reply

  • Sara @ Last Night’s Feast: This looks so comforting! January 9, 2017 at 6:41am Reply

  • 2pots2cook: Thank you for this idea since I have used lentils while preparing Indian dishes. Great photos make me try this version. Thank you and have a pleasant day ! January 9, 2017 at 2:15am Reply

  • Jo: I’ve only had lentil soup a couple of times a long time ago & I didn’t care for it. This looks wonderful like the minestrone I mad last weekend. Can someone tell me what lentils taste like & which ones are the best to use? I’ve read there’s a difference. Thank January 8, 2017 at 9:26pm Reply

    • Leslie: I think brown lentils are used here. But these take longer to cook than red lentils (which really look pink). As a Nutritionist I always soak and briefly sprout all lentils too. Helps reduce the phytates/phytic acid. This is an antioxidant that can inhibit the digestion of certain minerals. Red lentils can be soaked overnight then sprouted the next day and are ready to cook for dinner. In a bind I’ve even soaked and sprouted red lentils the same day. Soaking and sprouting also reduces cooking time. ;) January 25, 2018 at 5:23pm Reply

      • Pam: How would green lentils be in this dish? Just happen to have some on hand. :) February 27, 2018 at 3:33pm Reply

  • Monique: Even though I live in Miami, I can’t seem to get the winter comfort food vibe out of my system. I make either peas, beans or soup every week. I love lentils, and this one looks hearty and healthy. I’ll definitely try it! January 8, 2017 at 7:22pm Reply

  • Sarah | Well and Full: It just snowed here in CT, so I’d love to curl up with a bowl of this soup right now :) January 8, 2017 at 6:23pm Reply

  • Edwina at The Equipped Cook: This looks really good (and healthy). I need to reintroduce lentils to the family. I go through phases when I forget about them but this soup would be a winner for dinner! January 8, 2017 at 3:28pm Reply

  • Aleeha: I’ve never had a lentil soup before, but this looks so good!
    Aleeha xXx
    http://www.halesaaw.com/ January 8, 2017 at 3:22pm Reply

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