This red lentil soup with spinach and tomatoes is creamy yet textured, packed with flavors and incredible easy to make. Therefore, it’s the perfect weeknight dinner.Jump to Recipe
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About this Recipe
Quick and comforting recipes that don’t require any fancy ingredients are my favorites, especially during the winter months.
And this lentil soup my friend checks all these boxes. Although it has a very complex flavor profile, we can find all the required ingredients in our pantries – or at least in any standard grocery store.
On top on all those delicious flavors and its easy preparation, this recipe is also wholesome and nutrient rich. The lentils provide us with lots of protein and fiber, while the spices, veggies and aromatics add lots of phytochemicals. And of course there’s a ton of potassium and calcium in there thanks to the spinach.
- Aromatics: For the aromatics we’ll use a medium sized yellow or red onion, some garlic and freshly grated ginger.
- Spices: Today we’ll use whole spices, so you’ll need some cumin and coriander seeds. This adds even more flavor to the soup. And it definitely worth the “investment” to buy some whole spices, since they last forever and can be used in so many ways for Asian, Oriental, or Mexican recipes.
- Liquid: For the liquid we’ll use a mixture of coconut milk, peeled tomatoes, and water. If you like you can also use some broth instead of water, to add even more flavors to the soup.
- Veggies: To make the soup even more nutrient rich, we add some spinach at the end. If you like, you can substitute it with kale.
- Garnish: To serve the soup you’ll need some lime juice, raisins, yogurt, and cilantro.
You’ll find the exact quantities in the recipe card further down. Feel free to adjust the servings to your needs and let the recipe card recalculate how much of each ingredient you’re going to need.
Please note, I always base portion sizes on my personal dietary needs (presumably those of the average woman). However, you or perhaps one of your fellow eaters may need more or less than I do. So, feel free to adjust.
Instead of full fat coconut milk you’re welcome to use the fat-reduced version. But no matter which one you use, make sure to stir it first so that the fat combines with the watery part, and you add an even mixture to the soup.
To substitute the raisins, you can go with dried cranberries or dried barberries instead. But don’t skip them completely since they add such a nice flavor contrast to this meal.
Even if you’ve rarely cooked with whole spices before, it’s absolutely worth giving this a try. It will elevate your dishes to another level. But, alternatively, you can use ground cumin and coriander too, just make sure to add them with the aromatics.
How to Make this Recipe
Before we start cooking, we need to peel the onion, garlic cloves and ginger. The easiest way to peel ginger is by scraping off the peel with a spoon. Next, we finely dice the onion and garlic and grate the ginger with a microplane. In total, we need about a teaspoon of grated ginger.
Next, put the lentils in a sieve and rinse them thoroughly. Finally, there is only one ingredient left to prepare – the peeled tomatoes. Transfer them to a big bowl, where you can crash and mash the tomatoes with our hand. This will later make the soup even creamier and thicker.
Sautéing the Ingredients:
Alright, let’s move over to the stove. Add the spices to a medium-sized pot and roast them over medium-high heat, without any oil or butter, for one to three minutes or until they are fragrant and toasty, tossing frequently to prevent them from burning.
Then we add the oil and the onions, garlic and ginger. Season them with a pinch of salt and sauté them over medium-high heat until translucent.
Next, reduce the heat to medium and add lentils. Then deglaze the pot with the tomatoes, coconut milk and water. Stir well and make sure nothing sticks to the bottom.
By now the actual work is over. Reduce the heat to low, put on the lid and let the soup simmer for about 20 to 25 minutes until the lentils are cooked, stirring occasionally.
Before serving the soup, we need to add some more ingredients, to round out the flavors. First, add the juice of half a lime. The acidity of lime juice helps to break up the proteins in the lentils, making them easier to digest. And it also tastes grate.
Next, add a pinch of turmeric and season to taste with salt and black pepper. Then, thoroughly wash the spinach and stir it into the soup. I know, it looks like a lot of spinach, but the leaves will wilt within seconds. So, keep stirring until the spinach has wilted.
Now, divide the soup between to plates and garnish them with some yogurt (soy yogurt or any dairy-free yogurt works great here, too), some coarsely chopped cilantro and the raisins. And with that you’re ready to serve this comforting soup.
How to Serve this Recipe
As already mentioned, yogurt and raisins are essential toppings for this soup. But on top of that, you can also add some more toppings if you like.
Some coarsely chopped cilantro or parsley complete this dish with some freshness. To add even more texture, you can serve this soup with some pan or oven roasted chickpeas.
And as with any soup or stew, a few slices of sourdough or whole wheat bread goes perfectly with this red lentil spinach and tomato soup.
Helpful Tips to Make or Store this Recipe
- To make peeling and grating ginger easier for you, you can freeze your ginger. Frozen, the peel can be scraped off very sparingly with a knife or spoon and then you can easily grate it very finely.
- Stir the can of coconut milk well before adding it to the soup. Usually, the liquid, watery part and the solid, fatty part separate, so you first must combine them before adding the milk to the soup.
- Don’t just leave the remaining coconut milk in the can. Transfer it to a clean screw-top jar or a suitable container and then put it in the fridge. This way, you’ll prevent germs from forming in the fridge and the milk won’t mold as quickly.
Your Common Questions Answered
In case there are any questions left, I hope these FAQ will help you. If not, feel free to drop your question in the comments below.
If you have leftovers, you can keep them in a fridge covered or in a airtight container for one or two days.
The best way to serve this soup is with some yogurt, a few raisins, fresh cilantro or parsley and a few squeezes of fresh lime juice.
Yes, they are. Red lentils are rich in plant-based protein, phytochemicals, vitamins, minerals and fiber.
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I hope you like this recipe and that you give it a try soon. If you have any further questions or suggestions, feel free to drop them in the comments, or send me a massage via email at email@example.com or Instagram(@julesbalancedrecipes).
In case, you’ve tried this recipe, I’d appreciate your comment and rating for this recipe. It’s easy to do and it would mean the world to me.
And if you loved this recipe, here are some more delicious lentil recipes for you to try …
- Hearty Vegan Lentil Stew
- Red Lentil Soup With Coconut Milk
- Lentil Salad with Feta and Creamy Avocado Dressing
Have fun trying it out and bon appétit,
Red Lentil Soup With Spinach and Tomatoes
- 1 pot
- 1 microplane or a similar grater
- 1 medium-sized onion (red or yellow)
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 1 tsp grated ginger
- ½ tsp cumin seeds
- ½ tsp coriander seeds
- 1 tsp vegetable oil (for frying)
- 120 g red lentils (1⅛ cup or 4.2 oz)
- 1 can of peeled tomatoes (14 oz or 400g)
- 250 ml water (1 cup)
- 100 ml coconut milk (½ cup or 3.5 oz)
- ¼ tsp turmeric
- salt, black pepper
- 100 g fresh baby spinach (≈ 3.5 oz) alternatively same amount of kale
- ½ lime (juice)
- some cilantro or parsley (coarsely chopped)
- 30 g raisins (1 oz or nearly a ¼ cup)
- 60 g yogurt (¼ cup)
- Peel and finely dice the onion and garlic. Peel a piece of ginger with a spoon or knife and grate finely (works best with frozen ginger). Place the lentils in a sieve and rinse them thoroughly. Put the peeled tomatoes in a bowl and carefully mash them with your hands to obtain a creamy tomato sauce.
- In a pot or saucepan, add the cumin and coriander seeds and toast them over medium-high heat for about 2 to 3 minutes until they are fragrant and toasty, tossing frequently to prevent burning.
- Next, add the oil, diced onions, minced garlic and ginger and sauté for one to two minutes until translucent. Add the lentils, reduce the heat, and deglaze with the tomatoes, water, and coconut milk. Put on the lid and let the soup simmer over low heat for 20 to 25 minutes until the lentils are nicely soft.
- Add the lime juice and turmeric and season to taste with salt and pepper. Wash the spinach leaves and add them to the soup. Stir until the spinach has wilted. Divide the soup between two plates and serve them with the raisins, yogurt and cilantro.