Vegan Lentil Soup

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The flavors in this vegan lentil soup will surprise you! The veggies and the protein-packed lentils are cooked in a rich cherry tomato broth with plenty of aromatic dried herbs. A delicious, economical dinner made in one pot! 

Published Oct 17, 2022/updated Feb 17, 2024

Top view of a white bowl full of vegan lentil soup with spinach and cherry tomatoes.

From this spicy lentil soup to this lentil tabbouleh, It is no secret that I absolutely love lentils. This terrific, affordable pantry staple is a nutritional rockstar full of protein and fiber. It is a great way to get heft and nutrition in your diet.

Today, we’re having vegan lentil soup, one of my favorite lentil recipes, perfect for cooler weather!

With lentils, convenient dried herbs, spices, and canned cherry tomatoes, which add richness and a lovely pop of color, you can make this wholesome one-pot vegan meal that is warming and super delicious.

Make a big pot to have some now with crusty bread, crispy Italian crostini, golden croutons, or warm focaccia, and save some for later – this soup is freezer-friendly and great for meal prep!

List of the ingredients

Top view of the ingredients to make this vegan lentil soup over a white background.

How to make vegan lentil soup

(Note: this is a quick description with step-by-step photos; the full recipe is at the bottom of the page)

  • Sauté the veggies in olive oil for about 5 minutes.
  • Add in the garlic, the spices, and the herbs and stir to combine. These first steps create a flavor base and also add nutrition.
Top view of a ceramic pot with diced vegetables, spices and herbs.
  • Stir in the lentils, tomatoes, broth, salt and pepper.
  • Cook for about 25-30 minutes or until the lentils are soft.
Top view of a ceramic pot with lentils, tomatoes and broth.
  • Blend part of the soup Using an immersion or a stand blender and return it to the pot. Although not essential, this step makes this vegan lentil soup deliciously thicker and creamy.
  • Stir in the spinach and cook until just wilted.
  • Add a touch of fresh lemon juice, and adjust the seasoning and consistency to your liking.
Top view of a blender pouring some pureed soup back to the pot.

Recipe Notes

Ingredients for the best lentil soup

Best lentils: Dried brown or green ones work very well since they hold their shape nicely. Canned will work just fine, too. For a vegan red lentil soup, you can use red lentils, but keep in mind they cook faster and lose their shape, and you get extra thickening of the broth (but they absorb more liquid; you’ll need to add a bit more water/broth).

Veggies: I start with onion, carrot, celery, and garlic sautéed in olive oil (soffritto). This makes the flavor base and adds extra nutrition to this vegetable lentil soup recipe.

Canned tomatoes: I recommend buying canned whole cherry tomatoes to make a richer tomato base with cherry tomatoes that add texture and color. But canned whole tomatoes, crushed or diced tomatoes will also do.

Spices: I used paprika to enhance the tomato broth and some ground cumin that works well with lentils. Smoked paprika and ground coriander work fine, too, if you want to swap them. The spicy kick comes from a dash of chili flakes, which you can adjust to your taste if you don’t want the soup too spicy.

Herbs de Provence: For a more Mediterranean flavor, I used this French aromatic mixture, which traditionally includes thyme, basil, rosemary, tarragon, marjoram, oregano, savory, and bay leaves. Alternatively, you can make your mix using dried or fresh herbs you have on hand.

Broth: I used low-sodium vegetable broth as usual, but you’re welcome to use your favorite chicken broth if you don’t keep it vegan. Adjust the seasoning accordingly since some broth can be quite salty.

Greens: The lentil soup is amped with spinach for a nutritious and satisfying vegan meal. Fresh or thawed spinach works fine, and kale is a great option.

Close-up of a spoon in a white bowl full of vegan lentil soup with cherry tomatoes and spinach.

What to do with vegan lentil soup leftovers

You can make a big batch of this recipe for vegan lentil soup; it keeps in the fridge for about 3-4 days and freezes well. I suggest dividing the soup into single portions, cooling it entirely in the refrigerator overnight, and then transferring it to the freezer. An airtight container is perfect for freezing. To enjoy your soup, thaw it and reheat it in a microwave using a microwave-safe container on a stow top.

Serve it with…

This vegan lentil soup is filling on its own, but to leave you truly happy and satisfied, don’t forget your crusty Italian bread or warm focaccia to soak up all the soup. I also love to add a delicious refreshing green salad aside for more plant-based goodness.

And if you love lentils…

Here are two great collections of 25+ lentil recipes and 25+ green lentil recipes to choose from, plus a few of our favorite family staples:

Close-up of a spoon full of vegan lentil soup.

More vegan soup recipes?

Firstly, look at this collection of 40+ vegan soup recipes; they’re easy to put together, packed with plant-based protein, and so on. Here are some of my favorite recipes: 

Let me know if you make this vegan lentil soup recipe or if you have any questions! Leave a comment, send me a message, or rate it.
I would love to hear from you!

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Top view of a white bowl full of vegan lentil soup with spinach.
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Vegan Lentil Soup

The flavors in this vegan lentil soup will surprise you! The veggies and the protein-packed lentils are cooked in a rich cherry tomato broth, which is infused with plenty of aromatic dried herbs.
The recipe yields smallish servings (6 cups)
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time35 minutes
Total Time40 minutes
Course: Soup
Cuisine: Mediterranean, vegan
Keyword: vegan lentil soup
Servings: 6
Calories: 241kcal
Author: Katia


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and diced
  • 2 celery ribs, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • teaspoon chili flakes (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons Herbs de Provence*
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • 1 can (400gr/14oz) canned cherry tomatoes (or other canned tomatoes)
  • 1 ¼ cup (approx 250 grams) dried brown or green lentils, picked over and rinsed
  • 5 ½ cups (1.3 litres) low-sodium vegetable broth (or your fav broth)
  • ¾ teaspoon fine salt, or to taste*
  • teaspoon pepper, or to taste
  • 2 cups baby spinach (optional)
  • 1-2 tablespoon lemon juice, to taste


  • Heat two tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat in a large ceramic or cast iron pot. Add the onions, carrot, and celery, and saute for 5-7 minutes.
  • Reduce the heat on low, add the garlic, cumin, paprika, chili flakes, and herbs, and cook, stirring, until fragrant, for 1 minute.
  • Add the lentils, tomatoes, broth, salt, and several grinds of black pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are tender (25-30 minutes).
  • Optional step: scoop out about 1 ½-2 cups of the soup, let it cool slightly, then transfer to a blender, fasten the lid, and place a tea towel over it to protect you from the steam (careful, it's hot!). Purée the soup until smooth and return it back into the pot. Alternatively, use a stick blender to blend a portion of the soup.
  • Add the spinach to the pot and cook just until wilted; it takes a couple of minutes. If your soup is too thick, stir in 1/2 to 1 cup more water to reach your desired consistency.
  • Turn the heat off, stir in 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, taste, and adjust the seasoning with a bit more salt, pepper, and/or lemon juice if you wish. Serve with crusty bread and grated vegan parmesan if desired.


Salt: The recipe uses low-sodium vegetable broth as usual, but you’re welcome to use your favorite broth if you don’t keep it vegan. Make sure to add the salt accordingly since some broth can be quite salty.
Herbs de Provence: This French mix is made with thyme, basil, rosemary, tarragon, marjoram, oregano, and savory. You can also make your mix using the herbs you have on hand.
Nutrition facts: The nutrition values are for one serving and are based on an online nutrition calculator. They are estimates only and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice. Please see my disclosure policies.


Calories: 241kcal | Carbohydrates: 36g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Sodium: 415mg | Potassium: 777mg | Fiber: 16g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 4020IU | Vitamin C: 18mg | Calcium: 88mg | Iron: 6mg


  1. 5 stars
    Delicious! I made this for dinner. My husband enjoyed the flavors and savory goodness!! Will make again. Easy.

    1. Fantastic, I’m so pleased it turned out delicious!
      Thanks for sharing your feedback, Linda. : )

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