This warming and inexpensive spicy red lentil soup is one of my favorite weekly staples. A hearty and satisfying meal packed with spicy flavor, health benefits, and ready in less than 30 minutes.
Plus, it’s big on flavor but low in cost: only $1 dollar per serving!
The first time I had this lovely soup I was visiting one of my best friends in Dubai, so many years ago. I fell in love with the amazing flavor and I’ve been making it since then.
This Arabic lentil soup (called shorba al-adas) is a supreme example of how to turn inexpensive ingredients like turmeric, cumin, and red lentils into something delicious.
Plus, red lentils are terrific cupboard essentials, they’re packed with protein and cook faster than their green or brown counterparts, they need no pre-soaking and are perfect for nourishing soups.
I love spicy and Middle Eastern flavors and if you haven’t tried them before, you ought to do it soon.
Then serve this delicious spicy soup with freshly chopped coriander and a good squeeze of lemon juice: they add freshness and an up note that offsets the deep cumin flavor. But the best part is the thick and comforting texture, just made for dunking in crusty bread!
Yes, I’m sure you’ll love it!
WHAT YOU NEED FOR THIS RECIPE:
- Red lentils
- Vegetable broth
- Cumin, turmeric
- Coriander or parsley
- Olive oil
- Salt & pepper
- Lemon juice
HOW TO MAKE THIS SPICY RED LENTIL SOUP:
- In a large pot cook gently onion, garlic and spices in olive oil for about 3 minutes
- Then add lentils, chopped carrots, and stir for another minute
- Add broth or hot water, salt, pepper and bring to the boil
- Cook for about 20 minutes
- Serve with chopped coriander and fresh lemon juice
EASY, HEALTHY AND BUDGET FRIENDLY:
It seems our grocery bill goes up every year, making it harder and harder to find balanced meals that suit the whole family. But ingredients like lentils and carrots, even their organic version, are inexpensive (roughly $2.50/lb (bulk) and $1/lb, respectively) and taste great.
This budget-friendly and spicy red lentil soup is loaded with protein and nutrients, it’s ready in a flash and costs only $1 per serving.
How great is that? But there’s more: it’s super healthy and low calories too.
IS TUMERIC GOOD FOR YOU?
YES. Turmeric has amazing health properties since it works as a powerful antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer spice. But this golden spice has a low “bioavailability” which means that our body can absorb only a very small portion of the turmeric we consume.
To increase the full potential of turmeric, add a good pinch of pepper. Turmeric and black pepper is a must-have combo that makes this soup a powerhouse recipe perfect for the whole family.
ARE RED LENTILS GOOD FOR YOU?
YES. Red lentils contain more protein than most other types of beans and legumes. They are low calories and low fat but rich in iron, vitamin B and fiber. Fiber is an important part of your diet, as it prevents constipation, helps control blood sugar and reduces the appetite.
If you love this flavorsome protein-packed red lentil soup, you might also like these delicious recipes:
Although the authentic recipe calls just for one carrot, I add more. And if I run out of carrots, squash or sweet potatoes are also great, they add nutrients and fabulous color and texture to this hearty spicy red lentil soup.
I know, sometimes I love overdoing it when it comes to veggies. Or maybe it’s just me being determined on cooking only one nourishing dish at a time. But loading such a good soup with protein and veggies counts as a terrific balanced meal, doesn’t it?
If so, dinner sorted in no time!|
If you make this healthy and flavorsome spicy red lentil soup, let me know! Leave a comment, rate it or tag a photo #theclevermeal on Instagram. I would love to hear from you! x
SPICY RED LENTIL SOUP WITH CARROTS.
- 1 1/2 cups red lentils, rinsed and drained (300 grams)
- 1 cup carrots, diced (150-200 grams)
- 4 cups vegetable broth or hot water* (approx 950 ml)
- 2 Tbs olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1-2 garlic clove, chopped
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin (or cumin seeds)
- 1 lemon, juice
- 1 handful coriander or parsley, chopped
- 1/2 tsp salt, or more to taste
- 1/8 tsp black pepper, or according to taste
- Rinse your lentils under runny water and drain.
- In a large pot heat gently the olive oil and add garlic, onion and spices and cook for about 3 minutes or until the onion starts to soften.
- Add lentils, the diced carrot and stir well for another minute.
- Add the broth (or hot water), salt and pepper and bring to the boil*.
- Reduce the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Remove the pot from the heat, check the seasoning and the consistency (you might like a thicker or a thinner soup, so you can add or reduce the amount of liquid - see notes)*.
- If you like, blend with a hand blender if you like a smooth and creamy soup.
- Serve with chopped parsley or coriander, a pinch of paprika if you like and freshly squeezed lemon juice*.
- I usually make my own vegetable broth cooking for about 5-10 minutes vegetable scraps and herbs. However, when I'm short on time I go for hot water and vegan low salt vegetable broth cubes.
- Seasoning: If you use a vegetable or chicken broth that tastes quite salty on its own, it's important to adjust the seasoning at the end and not at the beginning as you never really know how strong the salt from the broth is.
In this case, I would start only with a good pinch of salt, no more than that.
- Lemon: dd a little lemon juice at a time and see which level of acidity fits your taste.
- Leftover: it keeps well in the fridge for up to 3 days. t’s also freezable: divide among airtight containers (leaving 1-inch space at the top), and freeze up to 2 months.
- Texture: This red lentil soup is quite thick. If you prefer a thinner consistency, just slowly add more broth until you’re happy with it. Otherwise, water it down a little bit and add more spices.