Enriched with proteins, carbohydrates, and prominently no fats, lentils come as a healthy source of nutrition. They can be cooked as a part of a meal, added to patties, croquettes, or made into soups. Soups serve as an easiest and nutrient-intact way of consuming lentils, since there are no flours added, and the quantity of oils used for cooking is very minimal. Below are some of the benefits of lentil soups
Benefits Of Lentil Soups
- When compared to other sources of protein like beef, meat, poultry, or fish, lentil soup contains negligible amounts of saturated fats and zero cholesterol. Thus, decreasing the risk of obesity or bad cholesterol build-up in the body.
- They also have abundant amounts of dietary fibers, both soluble and insoluble. While the soluble fibers help fight stroke, diabetes, heart disease, and hypertension, the insoluble fibers aid proper bowel movements and prevent cancers related to the GI tract.
- Lentils are rich in iron and folate, which are responsible for proper metabolism, synthesis of RNA and DNA, and synthesis of RBCs.
- They have a spectrum of vitamins like A, C, E, B6, niacin and riboflavin and minerals like potassium, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, and zinc.
Healthy Lentil Soup Recipes
1. French Green Lentil Soup
- 1/2 cup French green lentils
- 2 cups chopped yellow onions, medium sized
- 1 tbsp minced garlic, large cloves
- 3 tbsp virgin olive oil
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tbsp minced thyme (dried or fresh)
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 2 carrots, diced
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- Cook the lentils in boiling water for 15 minutes and drain.
- In a pot, add olive oil and saute the onions and garlic.
- Add pepper, thyme, cumin and salt and let it cook for 10 minutes until the vegetables turn translucent and tender.
- Add celery and carrots and saute for 5 more minutes such that they are flavored well with spices.
- Add the vegetable stock, cooked lentils, and tomato paste. Cover and bring to a boil.
- Simmer with the pot covered for 1 hour or until the lentils are cooked thoroughly.
- Periodically, check the soup to ensure that there is enough liquid to cover the lentils. Add more broth and/or water if needed.
- Recheck the seasoning according to your taste.
- Stir in the red wine vinegar and serve hot.
2. Creamy Lentil Soup
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup white onion, chopped
- 3/4 cup green onion, chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 1/4 cup dried brown lentils
- 1/2 tsp cumin powder
- 3/4 cup carrot, chopped
- 2 small red potato, peeled and diced
- 4 cups reduced sodium vegetable broth
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup milk, non-dairy (plain) or regular
- Vegan sour cream (for topping), extra green onion
- In a large pot, heat olive oil. Add both types of onions and garlic and saute for 5 minutes.
- Add parsley and cumin, and give it a stir. Cook for 2 minutes.
- Add the lentils, potatoes, broth, carrots, and salt and pepper. Bring it to boil and then reduce to simmer.
- Cover the pot and cook for 30–40 minutes, until lentils become thoroughly tender.
- You can either eat this soup as is in the current state or puree it until it is creamy and smooth.
- Add milk and stir.
- Top it with a vegan sour cream and chopped green onion and serve hot.
- You can additionally include a bowl of spinach in the recipe to enhance its richness.
3. Easy Brown Lentil Soup
- 1/2 cup dry and rinsed brown lentils
- 1/2 tsp olive oil
- Garlic, 6 cloves
- 1 onion, chopped in big chunks
- 1–2 green chilies, finely chopped
- 2 tomatoes, chopped
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 1–2 bay leaf
- 3–4 cups water
- Black pepper
- Lemon juice
- Cilantro, freshly chopped
- In a large pot, add oil and saute garlic and green chilies for few minutes.
- Add onions and carrots and saute for 3-5 minutes.
- Add tomatoes, bay leaf, salt, water, and lentils and bring it to boil.
- Let it simmer for almost 30 minutes with the lid closed.
- Blend it into a smooth puree.
- Season it with salt, black pepper, and lemon as per your taste.
- Garnish with freshly chopped cilantro and serve hot.