This red lentil and carrot soup is an easy and delicious dairy free soup that is perfect for a chilly winter day. It’s incredibly easy to make, made with simple ingredients you probably already have in your pantry, and comes together in just about 30 minutes!
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This carrot and lentil soup is incredibly creamy, almost like a bisque, and high in protein thanks to the lentils. It’s freezer friendly too so it’s perfect for meal prep.
It comes together in under 30 minutes, makes a big batch and is perfect paired with a baguette but is a complete meal on its own!
- Red lentils: The red lentils make up the base of the recipe. When they cook, they kind of split apart which makes them super easy to blend.
- Yellow onion: Any variety of onion will work, but I would avoid using a sweet onion since we don’t want any sweetness in the soup.
- Garlic: Just a few cloves to balance out the flavors in the onion.
- Olive oil: Any oil will work, this is just to saute the onion or garlic. I personally like olive because it adds a really nice rich flavor to the soup.
- Canned coconut milk: I highly recommend using full fat coconut milk for the creamiest soup. Light coconut milk will work, but definitely don’t use coconut milk (or any non dairy milk) from a carton since it won’t be creamy.
- Veggie broth: If you are not vegan or vegetarian, you can use chicken stock, but this will be used to cook the lentils and adds a ton of flavor.
- Carrots: You only need 3 large carrots, which won’t yield a super carroty flavor, so feel free to add more if you want the carrot flavor to come through more.
- Tomato paste: This will help deepen both the color and the flavor of the soup.
- Spices: We’ll be using a mix of cinnamon, turmeric, cumin, paprika, and small pinch of cayenne pepper.
How to make this recipe
Chop the onion and mince the garlic and add to a large pan with the olive oil.
Saute for about 5 minutes or until very fragrant and the onion is translucent.
Add in all of the spices, salt and chopped carrots.
Saute for an additional 5 minutes to soften the carrots and allow the flavors to blend together.
Add in the red lentils, tomato paste and vegetable broth. You’ll need 4 cups of vegetable broth which is the same as 1 regular sized carton.
Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to (very) low and let simmer, covered, for about 20 minutes or until all of the liquid is absorbed.
Transfer to a high speed blender with the can of coconut milk (you may need to do this in 2 batches depending on the size) and process until completely smooth.
You can use a food processor or immersion blender for this, but I find a high speed blender works best. I cannot recommend this vitamix blender enough, it was truly one of the best kitchen purchases I’ve made!
Taste and adjust seasonings as desired.
Transfer back to the pot and garnish with chopped parsley, red pepper flakes and a few dollops of coconut yogurt.
If you want to make the little swirls like I did in the images, all you need to do is add small drops of yogurt to the top of the soup and take a toothpick and swirl it around the top of the soup (gently) to spread it out.
Do they need to be soaked?
No! And in fact I highly advise against it. Red lentils cook really easily and unlike other legumes, generally do not require soaking.
You can rinse them in a fine mesh colander to remove any bits that don’t belong, but don’t allow them to soak.
You want them to be in the whole original form when you add them to the soup so that the vegetable broth will cook them and infuse the flavors into them.
Does it keep?
This carrot and lentil soup will last for about 5 days in an air tight container in the fridge.
For anyone who likes to meal prep, this soup can also be frozen! Whether in the fridge or the freezer, allow it to cool completely before transferring to an air tight container.
This soup will keep in the freezer for about 1 month. Allow it to defrost in the fridge overnight and then reheat on the stove. Be sure to save some room in the container for expansion.
Tips & tricks to make it perfectly
- Once prepared, this carrot and lentil soup will store in the fridge for about 5 days. Allow it to cool completely before transferring it to a container.
- You don’t want the lentils to cook too quickly, so make sure the heat is on very low and the pot is covered. Don’t transfer the soup to the blender until all of the liquid is absorbed from the lentils and they are completely soft.
- Even after you add the coconut milk, the soup will be pretty thick, which I love! You can thin it out with extra vegetable broth if desired.
- How much salt you need will depend on the saltiness of your broth. I used low sodium veggie broth so ended up using closer to 1 1/2 tsp salt. If you’re using regular broth start with 1/2 tsp and adjust as needed.
Try these next
Red Lentil and Carrot Soup
- Chop the onion and mince the garlic and add to a large pan with the olive oil.
- Saute for about 5 minutes or until very fragrant and the onion is translucent.
- Add in all of the spices, salt and chopped carrots.
- Saute for an additional 5 minutes.
- Add in the red lentils, tomato paste and vegetable broth.
- Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to (very) low and let simmer, covered, for about 20 minutes or until all of the liquid is absorbed.
- Transfer to a high speed blender with the can of coconut milk (you may need to do this in 2 batches depending on the size) and process until completely smooth.
- Taste and adjust seasonings as desired. Feel free to thin it out with extra vegetable broth if desired.
- Transfer back to the pot and garnish with chopped parsley, red pepper flakes and a few dollops of coconut yogurt.