This vegan red lentil soup is so warming. It's the perfect recipe to eat on a cold day or to make you feel better if you have a cold. It's full of healthy spices and simple to make too!
I made this spicy red lentil soup when I'd had a lingering cold for some time and it really needed some nutritional help. I needed garlic, ginger, chilli peppers and spices. Maybe I just hadn't eaten enough of those ingredients. Just a little bit more and I would be cured. Do you think like this too when you have a cold?
Anyway, the soup turned out well and it definitely soothed my throat. It really is comfort food in so many ways.
How hot is this lentil soup recipe?
This is not a hot and fiery soup recipe. I used one fairly mild red chilli pepper to give a bit of gentle heat but not to overpower all the other spices. It's got warming curry spices including cinnamon, turmeric, cumin and coriander as well as garlic and ginger for an extra boost. I'd describe it as a comforting soup, the kind of soup that makes you feel good!
Ingredients for red lentil soup
To make this spicy red lentil soup you'll need:
- Cooking oil - You can use vegetable oil, sunflower oil, olive oil or even coconut oil.
- A chilli pepper - You can use red or green chilli peppers. If you don't want too much heat or you're not sure then remove the seeds first.
- Garlic - I usually use a freshly crushed garlic clove but you can use garlic paste if it's more convenient.
- Root ginger - Again, I like to use fresh ginger and peel and grate it myself but a paste or frozen grated ginger is fine.
- Spices - coriander, cumin, paprika, cinnamon, turmeric
- Red lentils
- Dried curry leaves - These add a lovely flavour but if you don't have them you can miss them out.
- Coriander leaves (cilantro) - I have made this with dried coriander and it's fine but if you have fresh coriander leaves they are lovely stirred in at the end or as a garnish.
How to make red lentil soup
There is a full recipe card further down this page however, this red lentil soup is really simple to make. Just heat the oil in a saucepan. Then fry the ginger, garlic and chilli pepper gently for a few minutes.
Stir in the spices, followed by the lentils and then some water. Bring to the boil and then simmer genty for about 20 minutes.
If you're a fan of coriander then stir in some fresh coriander at the end.
This red lentil soup is ideal for batch cooking
This vegan soup is really easy to make and the great thing is that you can make a big or a small batch. Just increase the quantities if you want to serve more people or if you want to eat the leftovers the next day too. The leftovers taste great. Anything with curry spices just gets better and better when you leave it for a day.
How can you store and reheat this red lentil soup?
Just store the leftover soup in a covered container in the fridge for up to 3 days. When you want to eat it you can reheat it on the stove top. Add some extra stock or water as the lentils will soak up all the liquid and can make it very thick. You can also reheat it in the microwave.
Can you freeze this spiced lentil soup?
This soup freezes well for up to three months. Defrost in the fridge overnight before reheating as above.
Can you adapt this vegan lentil soup recipe?
You can definitely adapt the recipe. Maybe you are looking for a hot and fiery soup? If so then feel free to up the amount of chilli peppers you use! Or if you are cooking for a few people and some people like a hotter soup then serve extra slices of chilli pepper at the table. Or some chilli flakes.
I try to make my recipes adaptable so that the kids as well as my husband are happy. The extra chilli peppers usually do the trick here!
What can you serve with red lentil soup?
Sometimes I might have this by itself but I also like it with Indian breads to dip in. Chapatis or naan breads are delicious with it. Sometimes I make my homemade nigella seed flatbreads but not on a busy weeknight!
More fantastic vegan soup recipes
Soup makes a great light meal, especially in winter. If you like this red lentil soup then do try another of my tasty soup recipes. You might also like one of these soups:
- Roasted garlic and beetroot soup
- Carrot and tahini soup
- Carrot and ginger soup with marmite croutons
- Green lentil and coriander soup
If you're looking for easy dinner ideas then do also check out my recipe collection for easy spicy recipes and my collection of cook once eat twice recipes.
Red Lentil Soup
- ½ tbsp cooking oil
- 1 mild red chilli thinly sliced, seeds removed if you prefer
- 1 garlic clove crushed
- 1 teaspoon fresh ginger finely diced
- ½ teaspoon ground coriander
- ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric
- 80 g red lentils
- 10 dried curry leaves
- 1 teaspoon dried coriander(cilantro) leaf Use a small bunch of fresh coriander if you have it
- Heat a little oil in a saucepan and fry the chilli pepper, ginger and garlic for a minute. Add the spices and continue to cook for another minute
- Stir in the red lentils and dried herbs.
- Cover with 300ml of water. Bring to the boil then simmer for about 20 minutes till the lentils are cooked and breaking up. If using fresh coriander, stir it in at the end
We make a lot of red lentil soup in Greece. In fact lentils are my son'e favorites!
I really love the texture of red lentils and this soup sounds delicious! What a fun theme for NCR!
Rufus' Food and Spirit Guide
That looks great!