Quick Bites from Pender

Spiced Red Lentil Soup Recipe

In Recipes on January 4, 2010 at 5:01 am


In the past, I have eschewed red lentil soup, primarily because of the grittiness of the final product. Red lentils break down, but not all the way. And then there’s yam soup — smooth and silky — a little too silky, and sweet, if you ask me. It while I was making soup at work that the light bulb went off. Surely a combination of the two would result in a perfectly balanced soup?

The resulting thick, silky-smooth soup was exactly the texture I’ve been wanting. The spices add a warm, comforting earthiness without . Enjoy — take the leftovers to work — and as always, please use the comments to let me know what you think.

Spiced Red Lentil Soup

Yield: 8 servings

Leek, medium dice 1 C 150 g
Celery, med dice ½ C 75 g
Carrot, med dice ½ C 75 g
Yam, med dice 3/4 C 125 g
Olive Oil 1 T 12 g
Sunflower Oil 1 T 12 g
Garlic, minced 1 clove
Red Lentils 1 C 220 g
Cumin 1 t
Coriander 1 t
Paprika, smoked or sweet ½ t
Cayenne Pepper ¼ t
Turmeric ¼ t
Cinnamon ¼ t
Bay Leaves 2
Vegetable Stock 6 C 1.5 L

C=Cup t=teaspoon L=litre

T=Tablespoon TT=to taste g=grams


In a medium saucepan, heat the oils over medium heat until shimmering. Sweat the leek, celery, carrot and yam until translucent, about 5 min. Add the garlic, lentils, spices, bay leaves and s+p. Cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes.

Add vegetable stock, increase heat to med-high, and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 20-25 minutes, or until the vegetables are soft and the lentils are breaking apart.

Remove from the heat, remove the bay leaves and use an immersion blender to puree until smooth. Or, process (in batches) in a food processor. Reheat gently, season with s+p, garnish and serve.



  • The taste only gets better with time in the fridge. I often make a soup the day before I intend to serve it — this gives time for the flavours to develop and blend.
  • For a smoother soup, ensure you puree it while hot (or at least warm).
  • Thin with additional stock if desired.
  • Add coconut milk to the leftovers to make them new tasting.
  • Chicken stock makes an even heartier version.
  1. I made your Spiced Red Lentil Soup. It is perfect. The spices and flavour, and the combination of vegetables including the yam is lovely and so healthy. Yum. Thank you Theresa.

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