Curry Lentil Soup

Quick Summary

Curry Lentil Soup- this easy, one pot, curry lentil soup is creamy, comforting, nourishing, and most importantly DELICIOUS! The perfect meal for a cold day or any day!

curry lentil soup in 2 bowls with cilantro and coconut milk

Do you cook with lentils? I love them. If you haven’t tried them, don’t be intimidated. They are easy to cook, affordable, and a great source of protein, fiber, iron, and folate.

My Lentil Salad and Lentil Soup are two of my all-time favorite recipes. Today, I am sharing a Curry Lentil Soup recipe, that is basically a hug in a bowl. The soup is hearty, warming, creamy, and SO good! You will want to lick your bowl!

This recipe is inspired by Ottolenghi, I spotted it in his cookbook, which is gorgeous btw, but I made a few changes and I am hooked. I have already made it a few times this month. It is a new favorite!

The soup is easy to make and made with mostly pantry ingredients. You only need ONE pot, it’s basically the perfect weeknight meal. Pro tip, try to save some leftovers for lunch because this soup gets even better as it sits. It is a great make-ahead, meal prep recipe!

curry lentil soup ingredients

Soup Ingredients

The ingredients are basic, but the flavors are not! Everything comes together in one pot and the end results are incredible!

  • Oil– you can use olive oil or coconut oil, whatever you have on hand!
  • Veggies– onion, red pepper, and carrot!
  • Garlic– you can finely chop it or use a garlic press.
  • Ginger– make sure you use fresh ginger, the flavor is SO good! Pro tip-keep ginger in the freezer! You can easily peel it with a spoon and grate with a microplane.
  • Curry powder– use yellow curry powder, you can find it in the spice aisle.
  • Crushed red pepper flakes– for a little heat. You can add more if you want it spicy!
  • Red lentils– Use red lentils, they cook faster and are slightly sweeter. You don’t have to pre-soak the lentils, but before cooking, rinse lentils in cold water, pick over to remove any debris, then drain.
  • Vegetable broth– cooking the lentils in broth adds flavor.
  • Tomatoes– use fire roasted tomatoes for the best flavor.
  • Coconut milk– you can use regular or lite canned coconut milk. Obviously, regular will be richer in flavor, but I think the lite works too. Make sure you shake the can well before adding it to the soup.
  • Cilantro– so fresh!
curry lentil soup ingredients in a soup pot

How to Make Curry Lentil Soup

  • In a large pot, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, carrot, and red bell pepper and cook until tender.
  • Stir in the garlic, ginger, curry powder, and crushed red pepper flakes. Cook for 1 minute and stir in the red lentils.
  • Pour in the vegetable broth, tomatoes, and coconut milk. Stir in the cilantro and season with salt and pepper. Bring the soup to a boil and then reduce heat to low.
  • Simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the lentils are soft, but not mushy.
  • That’s it! SO easy!

Serving Suggestions

Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with cilantro, a drizzle of coconut milk, and a squeeze of lime juice. The squeeze of fresh citrus is a nice finishing touch and really balances out the flavors.

I highly recommend serving the soup with buttery naan bread, pita bread, or crusty bread. The bread soaks up all of those flavorful juices. YUM!

curry lentil soup in pot with a ladle and cilantro

Storing Tips

Place leftover, cooled soup in an air-tight container and keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat on the stove or in the microwave.

To freeze, place the cooled soup in a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw and heat on the stovetop or in the microwave.

curry lentil soup in bowl with cilantro and coconut milk

More Soup Recipes

Curry Lentil Soup

Curry Lentil Soup- this easy, one pot, curry lentil soup is creamy, comforting, nourishing, and most importantly DELICIOUS! The perfect meal for a cold day or any day!
4.80 from 10 votes

Ingredients
  

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or coconut oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeds removed and diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2- inch piece ginger, peeled and finely grated
  • 1 tablespoon yellow curry powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 3/4 cup red lentils, rinsed, drained, and picked over
  • 2 1/2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 14.5- ounce can diced fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 13.5- ounce can coconut milk, shaken well
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • Kosher salt and pepper, to taste
  • Garnish: extra cilantro, drizzle of coconut milk, lime wedges

Instructions
 

  • In a large pot, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, carrot, and red bell pepper and cook until tender, about 4 to 5 minutes.
  • Stir in the garlic, ginger, curry powder, and crushed red pepper flakes. Cook for 1 minute and stir in the red lentils.
  • Pour in the vegetable broth, tomatoes, and coconut milk. Stir in the cilantro and season with salt and pepper. Bring the soup to a boil and then reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the lentils are soft, but not mushy. Taste the soup and season with additional salt and pepper, if necessary.
  • Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with cilantro, a drizzle of coconut milk, and a squeeze of lime juice, if desired. Serve immediately.

Notes

Leftover soup will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days. You can freeze the soup for up to 3 months. 
Recipe adapted from Ottolenghi

Nutrition

Calories: 338kcal, Carbohydrates: 39g, Protein: 11g, Fat: 15g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Sodium: 860mg, Potassium: 534mg, Fiber: 13g, Sugar: 8g, Vitamin A: 4395IU, Vitamin C: 46mg, Calcium: 80mg, Iron: 4mg

Have you tried this recipe?

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Maria

I'm Maria and my husband is Josh. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. We love sitting around the table with good food, good conversation, and good friends and family! Our kitchen is always open!
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  1. Would love to try this. But I have tons of brown lentils, can I substitute them for red would it change the flavor?

    1. They should be fine, they might take a little longer to cook and the texture might be slightly different.

  2. Can I substitute the coconut milk for something else? I have a nut allergy, including all coconut, so I like to get a good substitution.

  3. 4 stars
    I made this last night and it was yummy! I did need to add a bit more curry and salt at the end. I wanted to add potatoes just because I love them in soup but I didn’t have any. I threw in some leftover rotisserie chicken at the end and that was really yummy. My husband and daughter loved it too. Thanks for the recipe!

  4. wow! we loved this soup. we are vegetarians and i always have to tweak recipes. this was a treat…
    thanks for the awesome job you do.

  5. 5 stars
    Turned out delicious. Although a big fan of fire roasted tomatoes, I had none on hand and used canned diced tomatoes – added more than recipe called for and added some red curry paste for added flavour.

  6. The 2 billion people in South Asia who have been making some version of this dish for centuries call this Daal.

  7. 5 stars
    This was really yummy! I didn’t see instructions to add lentils, but assumed you add them with the broth. Can’t wait to make this again!

  8. 5 stars
    Loved the recipe. It is comfort winter soup and very nourishing. Instead of the chili flakes I added hot red pepper sauce. The squeeze of lime in the bowl definitely made it taste superb! Thank you for sharing your recipe.

  9. 5 stars
    This soup is fabulous. My husband (who has discriminating tastes) said “Keep this recipe”. I used brown lentils and chicken broth as I had them on hand.

  10. I have it on the stove now! So delicious and quick to prepare. Had all the ingredients in my pantry. Will enjoy for lunch all week!

  11. 5 stars
    I made this when I had a cold and it was perfect- a healthy and tasty meal that made me feel a little better physically and emotionally.
    It also was easy to make, which was key because I was not in the mood to cook.

  12. Just finished making this and it was delicious!! I added some soy sauce but everything else was exactly as directed. Will definitely be making this again!

  13. First off, I adore Maria. I trust her recipes, she has never ever failed me
    This is a favorite and my go to for a yummy soup. I am vegetarian and leave it as is for myself. I cook boneless chicken thighs, shred and add for my carnivores.
    I love that i can make this with items I have on hand in my pantry.

  14. 4 stars
    Very nourishing recipe with great flavor. Only thing I would change is the cook time if using red lentils – I simmered for the 20 mins and the lentils were destroyed and mushy. Next time I will do about 12 mins.