Filed Under: Healthy | Indian | Soup

Curried Red Lentil Soup

Recipe By Tessa Arias
January 9th, 2013

Just the smell of this soup is intoxicating. There is so much warm spiciness and flavor that you don't even realize just how healthy this soup is for you.

Yield: 6 servings

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook: 40 minutes

Tessa's Recipe Rundown...

Taste: Just the smell of this soup is intoxicating. There is so much warm spiciness and flavor that you don’t even realize just how healthy this soup is for you.
Texture: I’m actually surprised I like this soup because I’m not a big fan of beans or any foods with that kind of mushy texture. For whatever reason I really like this soup, though.
Ease: There is some hands-on prep work but once you get the soup cooking it’s a breeze.
Appearance: Not exactly gorgeous…
Pros: Flavorful and healthy.
Cons: None.
Would I make this again? Yes, next time I think I’ll add some cauliflower or sweet potatoes for more nutrition.

Have you guys seen these tutorials on Pinterest that teach you how to hem up jeans while keeping the original hem? Being somewhat short at 5’3″ I am always trying on jeans that are WAY too long, even with wedges or heels. Having to factor in an extra $15-$20 for alterations when denim shopping is just depressing. I’m so excited to try this technique to hem two pairs of jeans in my closet that are too long to wear with most of my shoes. Do you alter your own clothes? I had to borrow a sewing machine to embark on this project because mine broke last year. I took sewing in junior high and high school but we really only learned the basics. I would love to be able to tailor my clothes to fit better. I once altered a dress I got from ModCloth and it fit a thousand times better after. I was SO proud of myself even though it was really pretty simple. I think sewing can be like cooking sometimes… not many people do it anymore so even simple sewing tasks seem impressive sometimes.

Onto the recipe… this soup is so comforting and scrumptious while being chock-full of nutrients. Each serving has 13 grams of fiber! The recipe calls for mango chutney to add at the end of cooking but the only jar I could find at my local grocery store was $5 which seemed way too expensive for one soup recipe so I skipped it and the results were still fantastic. I found red lentils, which cook fast, at my local health food store in the bulk bins.

How to make
Curried Red Lentil Soup

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Just the smell of this soup is intoxicating. There is so much warm spiciness and flavor that you don't even realize just how healthy this soup is for you.


  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 1/2 cups red lentils, rinsed and picked over
  • 8 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, or parsley
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons mango chutney (optional - I did not use)
  • Salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1/3 cup plain nonfat yogurt


  1. Heat the oil in a heavy stockpot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, jalapeno, curry powder, cinnamon, cumin and bay leaves and cook, stirring, for about 5 minutes longer.
  2. Stir in the lentils and broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, partially covered, until the lentils are tender, about 40 minutes.
  3. Discard the bay leaves. Stir in the cilantro (or parsley), lemon juice and chutney. Season with salt and pepper. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with the yogurt.

Recipe Notes

From Eating Well September/October 2010
Course: Soup
Cuisine: Indian
Tessa Arias

About Tessa...

I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

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Recipe Rating

  1. #
    Diane — January 9, 2013 at 8:29 pm

    So many things to comment on in this post!

    1. I’m 5’0″ so I TOTALLY feel you. I just learned how to sew recently, so a bunch of pants got hemmed. I got so into it that I even made a dress for Christmas and another for New Year’s. One was perfection, the other a dud…

    2. I am making this soup right away since this is the perfect time of year for warm, hearty soups. However, I only have brown lentils on hand. Do you think it would make a big difference?

    3. I just started my own blog detailing my attempts at cooking, sewing, organizing, etc. and I mentioned you as one of my inspiration blogs on my post today!

    • #
      Tessa — January 9, 2013 at 11:16 pm

      I’m impressed you were able to even sew two things that resembled dresses! Brown lentils generally take longer to cook – you may need to tack on cooking time so that they’re tender. Congrats on starting your own blog, that’s so exciting 🙂 I appreciate the feature – especially in such good company.

  2. #
    Diane — January 15, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    Thanks! I’ll make sure to add a bit more cooking time when I get to the recipe later, or to just get my booty to the grocery store for the red lentils. 🙂

    And I decided to write a post about the dresses I mentioned. The link’s below if you want to take a peek!

  3. #
    Oralee Ladtkow — April 13, 2013 at 9:01 am

    If chicken soup is one of your favorite meals, it pays to keep an eye on which restaurants feature real homemade soup. Many are generally adding additional ethnic tastes now, so you should find a new favorite that features spicy Mexican flavors, and also subtle Asian tastes. For those who have issues with additives such as MSG, it is imperative that you really ask the staff about the soup preparation. The last thing you want is an allergic reaction to the food. Once you find a restaurant that will serves a soup you prefer, do not be afraid to offer them praise. Knowing a customer appreciates the extra prep involved, they are likely to continue. ”

    Our personal blog

  4. #
    Busy Mom — April 15, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    This Curried Lentil Soup was a nice change from my regular lentil soup. I used brown/green lentils and a few other very small alterations and enjoyed it very much. Thanks for the great recipe!

    You can see my post about it here:

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