Red Lentil Potato Soup with Lemon

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This red lentil potato soup with lemon is vegan, easy to make, and full of flavour. Enjoy a bowl of this nourishing kale and lentil soup on its own or with some crusty bread for a super satisfying meal.

A bowl of red lentil soup with lemon on the side

Zesty and full of flavour, this red lentil potato soup with lemon is naturally vegan and gluten-free. It’s also quick and easy to make and I love how it provides me with a hot bowl of goodness that warms me inside out but without me slaving away over the stove. It’s a thick soup, too, which means you’ll feel rather full after just one bowl.

This kale and lentil soup is my go to recipe whenever I discover a pack of red lentils in the back of the pantry (there’s always one, isn’t it?).

What I like about it is that you can be quite flexible when it comes to the veggies that go in this soup. The freshly squeezed lemon juice gives it a particularly bright taste, and I only use a couple of spices, so they don’t overpower everything. The lemon is the real star of the show here, flavour wise.

Close up photo of a bowl of red lentil soup with lemon on the side

What type of lentils to use in this soup?

If you’ve been following the blog for a while, you already know that I do like my lentils. I make this vegetarian green lentil and halloumi curry and a hearty lentil stew with pancetta with green lentils, but I also enjoy red lentils a lot, as you can see in my aubergine and red lentil curry (one of the most popular recipes on my blog — check it out if you love red lentils in vegan dishes) and in my coconut dahl with spicy paneer.

For this soup, I recommend split red lentils, which come with two benefits (besides being delicious, obviously) — they don’t require soaking and cook very quickly. Red lentils have the perfect texture for this soup, so don’t substitute them for other types.

What vegetables go in the lentil potato soup?

I use onion, carrots, celery, potatoes and kale to make this recipe, but you can use other veggies too, such as broccoli or cauliflower, for example.

The potatoes for this soup should be the low or medium-starch variety, as you want them to retain some of their shape. Gold potatoes work well, but you can also use red potatoes or any other type that are called boiling potatoes.

Close up of a ladle of red lentil potato soup over a black pot

Another great idea is to use leek in this soup, and you should add it on top of the onions or instead of it.

How do you make the kale and lentil soup?

  1. In a heavy-bottom pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat and fry the onions for a couple of minutes until they soften a bit. Add the carrots and celery and fry everything for 5-6 minutes.
  2. Add the garlic and give it a good stir, then add the curry powder, ground cumin and paprika. Stir the veggies well and continue to cook for another minute.
  3. Stir in the red lentils, then add the potatoes and the stock. Bring it to a boil, then reduce the heat and cook, covered with a lid, for 20 minutes until the lentils are cooked and the potatoes are fork-tender.
  4. Add the shredded kale to the pot, give it another stir, and cook for 5 more minutes with the lid on until the kale is wilted. Stir in the lemon juice and season with freshly ground black pepper.
Step by step instructions on making red lentil soup with potatoes and kale

Recipe notes and tips for the perfect red lentil soup

  • You can add more stock if you want to adjust the thickness of the soup. I like it pretty thick as it feels like a meal in itself.
  • The kale can be substituted with other greens such as collard greens, Swiss chard, or even spinach. If you do use spinach, add it right at the end, as it only takes a minute or two for it to wilt.
  • If you don’t want your soup to be too lemony, add the juice of a single lemon and adjust to taste.
  • The red lentil soup can be kept in the fridge for up to 3 days. You can also freeze it for up to 3 months.

If you’re looking for more vegan inspiration, check out my recipes for vegan Zuppa Toscana, vegan lentil soup with kale and cannellini beans stew.

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Yield: 6

Red Lentil Potato Soup with Lemon

A bowl of red lentil soup with lemon on the side

This red lentil potato soup with lemon is vegan, easy to make, and full of flavour. Enjoy a bowl of this nourishing kale and lentil soup on its own or with some crusty bread for a satisfying meal.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 2 celery sticks, diced
  • 3-4 potatoes, diced
  • 4-5 garlic cloves, diced
  • 300 g (1 1/2 cups) red split lentils
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1.5 litres (7 cups) stock
  • 3 fresh lemons
  • Chopped cavolo nero (or another type of kale)

Instructions

    In a heavy-bottom pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat and fry the onions for a couple of minutes until they soften a bit. Add the carrots and celery and fry everything for 5-6 minutes.

    Add the garlic and give it a good stir, then add the curry powder, ground cumin and paprika. Stir the veggies well and continue to cook for another minute.

    Stir in the red lentils, then add the potatoes and the stock. Bring it to a boil, then reduce the heat and cook, covered with a lid, for 20 minutes until the lentils are cooked and the potatoes are fork-tender.

    Add the shredded kale to the pot, give it another stir, and cook for 5 more minutes with the lid on until the kale is wilted. Stir in the lemon juice and season with freshly ground black pepper.

Nutrition Information

Yield

6

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 333Total Fat 8gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 6gCholesterol 8mgSodium 1174mgCarbohydrates 53gFiber 9gSugar 9gProtein 15g

Nutritional information is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator.

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