Indian Lentil Soup

Lentil soup
Tuesday night we made lentil soup. Being a vegetarian for 15 years now I must have tried at least a thousand (probably more?) different veggie-recipes and I can honestly say that not much beat this lentil soup. It isn’t very fancy, recipe-smart or unique, but has a secret and is just one of those dishes that makes me close my eyes after putting the first bite in my mouth.
I learned this recipe from my friend Mahmud from Bangladesh. He actually filled the pot with spices, lentils and vegetables before even starting the stove and then let it all cook together for a couple of minutes before adding the water. I seem to burn it all whenever I try that, so I altered the recipe slightly.
The secret (according to him) is to use laaarge amounts of spices and to let the lentils cook a bit too long.

Indian Lentil Soup
Serves 4

2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil
1 yellow onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tbsp fresh ginger, very finely chopped
1 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp ground chili or harissa
3 medium potatoes, diced
2 carrots, sliced
200g red or yellow lentils, rinsed
4 cups / 1 liter vegetable stock
a pinch of sea salt
2-3 tomatoes, diced

Prepare the vegetables. Heat the olive oil in a big soup pot. Add onion, garlic, ginger and all the spices. After about a minute add the potatoes, carrots and the lentils, stir it around another minute before adding the vegetable stock. Let it boil on low-medium heat for 30 minutes, stir occasionally, taste the soup and add more salt and spices if needed. Add the tomatoes and let it boil for 5-10 more minutes. The soup is done when the lentils are dissolved. Serve with roasted pumpkin seeds and some fresh coriander.


  • Thank you for this recipe! Two days ago I made this soup and it was sooo delicious! Can't wait to cook it again
  • […] so I was so stoked to finally be cooking it! This recipe was adapted from the cute family over at They are definitely #familygoals and […]
  • Hi Luise and David, this looks amazing! Can’t wait to try it. Pinning it now!
  • yvan
    A very interesting recipe indeed! I would add some (whole) cumin seeds (about one small spoon or less according to taste) at the and (unblended) It might help digestion.
  • vanessa.lanaroja
  • Emma
    Absolutely delicious! Start of winter here in Sydney & hit the spot perfectly.
  • Marie Frank
    I love your recipes, photos and stories. Would you please consider including a "printer friendly" button for your recipes? Thank you!
  • Bianca
    Just made this soup tonight. Thick, and Yummy. Wondering if Sweet Potato instead of regular potatoes would work? Added extra chili flakes because I like it hot ;)
  • I LOVE LOVE lentils and Indian curries, so this would be incredible! I just had Indian food yesterday, actually! What a beautiful recipe!
  • I added more chili and black pepper for that extra zing! Great recipe; thanks!
  • […] recipes we posted on this blog, soon six years ago(!), was an Indian lentil soup. Looking back on that photo and the short text that came with it, I definitely feel that we have learned a whole bit about food […]
  • Karolina
    This truly is the best lentil soup I've ever tried!
  • Ray Andrews
    Deborah Madison advises soaking lentils for an hour or more before cooking them.I do this and always use filtered water for all my cooking.The lentils soaked turn out really well.
  • First off: yum! Here's a picture of my finished product served over rice: I overboiled mine (which explains why mine is so dark) I had to add more water to it to save it and then pureed it down like others had mentioned in their comments. I don't have a hand-held emulsifier so I used my ninja blender to blend it down, which still left some chunks of veggies but my husband and I didn't seem to mind! Yours is much prettier than mine and way more "soup" like but the flavors speak for themselves! This will be added to our regular menu!
  • […] sweet potato CARAMEL! this gingerbread layer cake with salted whiskey caramel. this indian lentil soup. these blackberry […]
  • […] with it and a bit of (homemade) hummus and you’ll be set for the day. Or have a large bowl of dal and reach the 100% RDI in one gulp! It is really not that difficult to get what you need from real […]
  • Paula
    This is my all time favorite soup. I must have made it dozen of times since I first discovered it. This is unbelievably good. For me, the trick is to chop vegetables into really really tiny pieces. They almost dissipate in the soup and that is what makes the soup's perfect consistency. When I got lazy and did not feel like chopping the veggies so small, the soup did not turn out as good. Also, I do not recommend using food processor for chopping. For whatever reason, the soup ends up tasting differently when I chop it myself (?) Sounds crazy, but this was an observation I made.
  • Renae
    Delicious. This is something I made tonight and only had a pantry-style grocery store to shop for ingredients. I doubled the curry powder and turmeric and was very happy with the results. I have enjoyed every soup recipe I have tried by GKS. Thanks!
  • Just made this soup and it's incredibly delicious. Even my insanely picky 6year old liked it which is saying something! Thanks for a great blog and great inspiration.
  • […] 5. Indian lentil soup – turn lentils into something truly tasty with just a few spices and some cheap veggies such as potatoes and carrots. […]
  • […] It’s kind of tradition for us to create a new yellow/orange soup every year. We have done lentil soups, sweet potato soups, pumpkin soups and orange soup. Today we are sharing this warm, smooth and […]
  • Tori
    I've made this twice now, really yummy! Served it with noodles to entice the toddler first time and then for the second batch I used pumpkin in lieu of carrots and also added some chickpeas. Increased stock to five cups for this batch. Delicious and super easy, thanks!
  • […] pre school they cook vegetarian (or fish), dairy free & wheat free meals for Elsa. For example lentil soup, salmon lasagna (gluten free), soy sausages, potatoes and vegetables. Weekends we often eat […]
  • […] favoriete recept is deze Indiase linzensoep – die moet je echt proberen! Zelfs degenen die huiveren bij de gedachte aan linzensoep zullen […]
  • […] er fra Green Kitchen Stories, som er en madblog med vegetariske (mange veganske) og sunde opskrifter. Jeg kan forøvrigt […]
  • Aleksandra
    This soup is just perfect! We've just had it for lunch and, well, this won't sound very modest, but it's the best lentil soup I've ever eaten. Thank you!
  • Kristin
    Delicious! Even my super picky 4 year old ate a bowl! I pureed some of the soup and added it back, so good on a cold evening!
  • April
    I'm very new to cooking with lentils, and bought both dry and canned. Which should be used in this recipe?
  • [...] tried this Indian Lentil Soup from Green Kitchen Stories the other day and really liked [...]
  • [...] 5. Indian lentil soup – turn lentils into something truly tasty with just a few spices and some cheap veggies such as potatoes and carrots. [...]

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