I’m not sure where you live. We’re in Alabama. And if it dips below 50 degrees, it’s full-on winter warning mode for me. And that means soup!
I am a huge fan of soups, stews, and chowders. Actually, if it has all sorts of things in it, and it can go in a bowl, sign me up.
What’s nice about this particular soup is that it is extremely good for you, AND it doesn’t taste like wet cardboard. You get all the health benefits AND the flavor. Sometimes that’s hard to find.
As our daughter is a lazy vegetarian (she eats fish and shrimp sometimes), we decided to make this soup in a way that she can enjoy as well. We boosted the flavor by adding some baby Bella mushrooms that gave the soup a nice earthiness and depth of flavor to it.
The soup itself contains all the aromatics of onion, carrot, and celery one would expect in a soup. The cumin adds a nice smokiness. The bay leaf and thyme add additional layers of flavor, and the tomatoes add the acidic richness that brings it home.
Tips And Variations
- Not a vegetarian, no problem. Add chicken stock instead of vegetable stock.
- Add 1 1/2 cup of diced ham (or perhaps that ham bone in your freezer) for a delicious Ham And Lentil Soup.
- The addition of Italian sausage makes a great Lentil With Sausage soup.
- Want a vegan and/or gluten-free version? You’re in luck because it already is.
Why This Recipe Works
The real star of this soup is the lentil. Lentils are kind of a superfood.
It comes packed with tons of protein and fiber, so you’re going to fuel up and get some good gut health benefits. The potassium counteracts the damaging effects of sodium. The folate helps in red blood cell formation.
What does all this mean? Let’s sum up: We’re talking about a dish that will fill you up, help lower blood cholesterol levels, and protect against colon cancer and type 2 diabetes.
It also aids in lowering your blood pressure, aids in preventing anemia, and may help in preventing heart disease, cancer, and dementia. LENTILS!
Did I mention that it tastes delicious and is waist friendly AND uses the slow cooker, so you can just dump it and forget it?
How To Make Slow Cooker Lentil Soup
This soup comes together pretty quickly. It’s about just getting your vegetables prepped.
Dice the onion, carrots, celery stalks, and slice the Baby Bella mushrooms. Finely dice the garlic.
Add all that to the slow cooker. Add the lentils, vegetable broth, diced tomatoes, salt, pepper, and cumin to the slow cooker and stir.
Set the crock pot to low and allow to cook until the vegetables are tender, but not falling apart, about 7 1/2 hours.
To thicken the soup a bit more, remove two cups of soup, add it to a blender, and hit pulse a few times to puree it slightly. Then add it back to the slow cooker.
If you have an immersion blender, you can use that by running it for a few seconds.
Next, add the spinach and set the slow cooker to high for 30 more minutes. The spinach will wilt down and add a great texture to your soup.
After 30 minutes, turn off the slow cooker and serve. Season with salt and pepper to taste and enjoy!
I love this soup! It has a great depth of flavor. The mushrooms add a great earthiness, and the cumin comes out, giving it a slightly smoky taste.
I normally don’t go in for vegetarian soups as, for me, they lack richness. Sometimes it can be thin tasting.
Not this soup. I didn’t miss anything.
All the health benefits of this soup, plus it being low calorie and tasting the way it does … well, I’ll be eating this going forward. Probably every week, and I will enjoy this. It’s that good.
I actually had mine with some freshly made cornbread. Holy smokes, dipping that cornbread in the soup was a crazy delicious bite.
This is a great recipe. Absolutely you can serve this as a meal for the family. Throw in the cornbread or some freshly baked bread, and you are good to go!
We also have a great lentil soup with Italian sausage that is worth checking out if you want to do it on the stovetop.
Green lentils will hold their shape over the long cook. Red lentils will disintegrate with prolonged cooking.
Sure can, it’ll keep like anything else for a few months. We’re sending our daughter back to school with some.
Amazing. Like any other homemade soup or stew, the next day, it almost seems to taste better as it’s had time to really have all the flavors come together. I found no need to add additional water or vegetable stock due to absorption.
Other Soups And Stew Recipes
- Easy Ham and Potato Soup
- Wild Rice and Mushroom Soup
- Tuscan White Bean Soup
- Easy Vegetable Beef Soup
- Hearty Beef Stew
- 1 cup Green lentils
- 4 cup Vegetable Broth 32oz
- 4 Carrots Medium, diced
- 1 cup Onion 1 medium onion, diced
- 3 stalks Celery Diced
- 1 1/2 cup Baby Bella Mushrooms About 4 to 5 mushrooms, sliced
- 1 can Diced tomatoes 1 can 14.5 oz
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1/2 tsp Black Pepper Freshly ground
- 1/2 tsp Cumin
- 1 Bay Leaf
- 5 oz Spinach Fresh
- Dice the onion, carrots, celery stalks, and slice the Baby Bella mushrooms. Finely dice the garlic.
- Add all that to the slow cooker. Add the lentils, vegetable broth, diced tomatoes, salt, pepper, and cumin to the slow cooker and stir.
- Set the crock pot to low and allow to cook until the vegetables are tender, but not falling apart, about 7 1/2 hours.
- Remove two cups of soup and add to a blender, and hit pulse a few time to slightly puree it. Then add it back to the slow cooker. You can also use an immersion blender to the same effect.
- Add the spinach and set the slow cooker to high for 30 more minutes.
- Serve, season with salt and pepper to taste.