Curried Lentil Soup with Veggies

There’s nothing like a bowl of soup to warm you up on a cold winter’s day.

This is probably one of the easiest soups to make with minimal ingredients like lentils, veggies, and curry powder.

Yes, I use store-bought curry powder, but hear me out!

I don’t use curry powder in actual curries, but I love using it non-traditional dishes like curried chicken salad, curried cashews, and this soup. It has a unique flavor that pairs well with ingredients like chicken or lentils.

Hopefully most people know by now, curry powder is a British invention with no standard recipe. It’s simply a mix of various spices and is often used to make Indian-ish curries.

I don’t know any Indians who use it since we usually make our spice blends from scratch depending on the “curry” we plan to make. Our curries can range from rich and saucy dishes like stews or soups to dry dishes like stir-fries or thorans.

But I purchased my curry powder from our local Indian grocery store, so there are obviously Indians who buy and use it. Here is the brand I get and I love the flavor!

How to Make Lentil soup with veggies

Place a pot over medium-high heat. Add oil and when it starts to simmer add 1/2 cup minced onions, 1-3 teaspoons each of ginger and garlic.

If you want to use some celery or carrots, add them now. Sauté for 5-8 minutes until softened.

Next add 1/2 cup diced tomatoes and cook them down for 2-3 minutes.

Then add 1-2 teaspoons curry powder and stir for 15-30 seconds, followed by 1-2 cups of broth.

Then add 1 1/2 cups dry lentils, and enough water to cover the lentils. Bring to a boil and then lower the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes.

Whole green lentils are perfect for soups and salads because they hold their shape well.

Finally, add 2 cups frozen mixed vegetables and continue simmering 10-15 minutes until the lentils are tender but not mushy.

I like to use a mix that contains corn, carrots, peas, and green beans. These veggies add sweetness and complement the lentils and spices. You can also stir in some baby spinach if you like.

Take the soup off heat and add 1-2 teaspoons lemon juice or red wine vinegar, a pat of butter, and salt and pepper to taste. These ingredients are optional but really brighten the soup and add flavor.

If you want the soup to be thicker, remove 1/2-1 cup of the soup and blend using a regular blender or a handheld immersion blender. Puree until smooth, then stir it back into the soup. 

Serve with a drizzle of yogurt, and whole grain crackers or a crusty piece of bread.

How to Customize Lentil Soup

My lentil soup is very basic for a reason. It’s something I like to make when I don’t feel like cooking, and I tend to adjust it depending on my mood. 

Sometimes I use more or less veggies or different ones. Sometimes I use tomato paste instead of fresh tomatoes, or sometimes I omit the onions or tomatoes altogether.

Sometimes I only use granulated garlic, ginger powder, and dried onion powder instead of fresh!

There’s no need to strictly follow this recipe since it’s very forgiving.

However you choose to make your lentil soup, the spices and flavors are sure to warm you up when it’s freezing outside.


Joby's Test Kitchen bowl of lentil soup with veggies, cilantro.

Curried Lentil Soup with Veggies

Joby’s Test Kitchen
Lentils, veggies, and curry powder come together to make the perfect bowl of soup!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 48 minutes
Total Time 58 minutes
Course Soup
Cuisine Indian
Servings 6
Calories 278 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1-2 tbsps (15-30ml) oil
  • ½ cup minced onions
  • 1-3 tsp grated ginger
  • 1-3 tsp minced garlic
  • ½ cup diced tomatoes
  • 1-2 tsp curry powder
  • cup (282g) dry lentils
  • 1-2 cups (240-480ml) broth
  • 2 cups (480ml) water
  • 2 cups (226g) frozen mixed veggies (e.g. peas, carrots, corn, green beans)
  • 1 tsp salt, or more if needed
  • 1-2 tsps lemon juice or red wine vinegar, optional
  • 1 tbsp (14g) butter, optional

Optional Ingredients:

  • celery and carrots, to sauté with onions
  • spinach, can be added at the end

Serve With:

  • yogurt
  • cilantro chutney
  • whole grain crackers

Instructions
 

  • Place a pot over medium-high heat. Add oil and when it starts to simmer add the onions, ginger, and garlic (and celery and carrot if using). Sauté for 5-8 minutes until softened.
  • Next add the tomatoes and cook them down for 2-3 minutes. Then add the curry powder and stir for 15-30 seconds.
  • Now add the broth, lentils, and enough water to cover the lentils. Bring to a boil and then lower the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
  • Add the frozen vegetables and continue simmering 10-15 minutes until the lentils are tender but not mushy. At this point you can stir in spinach if using.
  • Take soup off heat and add lemon juice or vinegar, butter, and salt and pepper. If you want the soup to be thicker, remove 1/2-1 cup of the soup and put it in a blender, or transfer to a large metal cup and use an immersion blender. Puree until smooth, then stir it back into the soup.

Notes

Easy Version: Don’t feel like chopping vegetables? Instead of using fresh aromatics, try 1-2 teaspoon each of granulated garlic, ginger powder, and dried onion powder. Gently warm them in the oil along with the curry powder, but make sure not to burn them. Also, use 1-2 tablespoons of tomato paste instead of actual tomatoes, and sauté for 30-45 seconds.
Keyword curry powder, frozen vegetables, lentils

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