I must confess that I had never even tried lentils until I saw them in Clean Eating magazine – which is where I got the inspiration for this lentil soup recipe. At first lentils seemed like a weird uber-healthy food that must taste bad. (Kind of like I expected quinoa to be the first time I tried making quinoa recipes….LOL) Once again, I was pleasantly surprised. I actually really like lentils (and lentil soup) and have been trying to include them in my diet as often as I can!
Many of you who are super busy will love this easy lentil soup recipes. And, if you are looking for a quinoa recipe easy enough for after a tough day at work, this is a great one to try. Buy your onions, carrots and celery pre-chopped (or chop on the weekend) and used a jar of minced garlic. Then, throw everything into the pot when its time and you can be off to enjoy a good book or a glass of wine and come back to a hearty and delicious lentil soup! Best of all, there will be plenty left over for lunch or to freeze for another night.
Now, if you have never prepared lentils before, here are some things to keep in mind.
Tips for Cooking Lentils
- Lentils should be rinsed and picked over prior to cooking
- Add in an onion, thyme or bay leaf to improve flavor.
- Ladle off any white foam. These are protein impurities.
- Wait until the last 10 minutes to add in salt. This gives it enough time to be absorbed but prevents the lentel from getting tough.
- If you have used the onion, etc in cooking save it! It is great as a vegetable broth.
- Lentils will freeze for up to three months.
- 2 cups green lentils (dried)
- 1 cup quinoa, soaked for 15 minutes and rinsed
- 12 cups vegetable broth
- 2 onions, chopped
- 4 carrots, chopped
- 1 cup celery, sliced thin
- 10 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup tomato sauce
- 2 T olive oil
- 1 T dried oregano
- Mineral sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper
- Juice of two lemons
- Place lentils and broth in a large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Add in quinoa, onions, carrots, celery, garlic, tomato sauce, olive oil, oregano, salt and pepper. Cook for another 30 minutes or until lentils are tender. Stir in lemon juice just before serving.
- If desired, this soup can be frozen for up to three months. Allow to cool first!