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Curry Lentil Soup

This vibrant Curry Lentil Soup combines an array of veggies, red lentils, a robust seasoning blend, and creamy coconut milk to deliver an unforgettable warming meal.
Course Dinner, Main Course, Side Dish, Soup, Spice, Vegetarian
Cuisine Healthy, Indian, Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword Curry Lentil Soup
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 434kcal
Author Chelsea Lords
Cost $7.61


  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil (or butter)
  • 1 cup diced red onion (~1/2 a large onion)
  • 2 cups thinly sliced carrots (~3 large carrots)
  • 1 cup diced Yukon gold potatoes (~1-2 potatoes)
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons EACH: finely minced garlic, finely minced ginger (~3 cloves & 1-inch piece)
  • 1 tablespoon yellow curry powder Note 1
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon EACH: paprika, ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon EACH: ground cumin, garam masala, white sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, optional
  • Fine sea salt and cracked pepper
  • 1 can (14.5 oz.) fire-roasted crushed tomatoes
  • 3/4 cup red lentils Note 2
  • 1 can (13.5 oz.) full-fat coconut milk, divided
  • 3 cups vegetable stock or broth Note 3
  • 1 cup frozen sweet peas
  • Optional: zest and juice of a lemon (3 tablespoons juice), 1/3 cup finely diced cilantro, toasted coconut flakes


  • PREP: Measure the lentils and pick over to remove debris or shriveled lentils; add to a fine-mesh sieve, thoroughly rinse with cool water, and set aside. Prep the veggies: finely dice the onion and thinly slice carrots (cut thick carrots in half lengthwise first and then thinly slice (to create half moons), dice potato (no need to peel if using Yukon gold) into small 1/2 inch pieces. Cut carrot and potato small so they'll cook in the right amount of time. Finely mince the garlic cloves and the ginger.
  • SAUTE: Measure the 3 tablespoons butter or coconut oil when solid and heat in a large cast iron pot to medium-high heat. Add in onion, carrots, and potatoes. Saute for 7-9 minutes, stirring frequently, until golden. Add in the garlic and ginger. Cook for another 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly. Nothing should be overly browning or burning; if so, turn down the heat. If you aren't using a cast iron pot, cook times will be longer (cast iron holds heat better). While everything is cooking, measure out the spices.
  • SPICES AND TOMATOES: To the pot, add all the spices. Season with salt and pepper; I add 1 and 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt and 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, for 1-2 minutes or until very fragrant. Add in the (undrained) tomatoes, reduce the heat to medium, stir and cook for 2-3 minutes, scraping the bottom of the pot to release any browned bits.
  • LENTILS AND LIQUIDS: Vigorously shake the can of coconut milk. Open and remove 1/4 cup and set aside for later. Add vegetable stock, lentils, and remaining coconut milk to the soup. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and gently simmer, uncovered, for 15-20 minutes or until lentils and veggies are tender. Stir occasionally. Red lentils can get mushy if over-cooked so check at 15 minutes. If soup thickens too much, add a splash more broth/stock (we do like this soup pretty thick!) and if it's too thin (or lentils aren't tender), increase the heat a bit to simmer at a slightly higher heat.
  • FINISHING: Remove from heat. Stir in the frozen peas and optional 1/3 cup finely chopped cilantro. Stir in the zest and juice of a lemon. Taste and adjust any seasonings; flavors should sing, so add extra salt, pepper, or lemon juice if needed.
  • SERVE: Ladle into bowls and serve with lemon wedges. (We love lots of lemon in this soup!) Use a spoon to drizzle reserved 1/4 cup coconut milk onto the tops of bowls and sprinkle in toasted coconut flakes if desired. Enjoy!



Note 1: The two seasonings that can make a more varied end result are garam masala and curry powder. Both of these seasonings are actually a blend of a lot of spices so they can certainly impact how the soup tastes and overall spiciness. For this soup, I use Private Selection Garam Masala Blend and Great Value Organic Yellow Curry Powder. (These two specific brands keep everything very mild)
Note 2: Use dried red lentils for this soup. While any brand works, I do like Bob's Red Mill best (not sponsored). There is no need to soak the lentils before adding to this soup. Red/orange lentils are more processed, break down quicker (about 15-20 minutes), and thicken the soup quite a bit. This recipe, timing-wise and flavor-wise, relies on red lentils so I don't recommend using a different type of lentils.
Note 3: We love Swanson's vegetable stock best (not sponsored); you can use chicken stock if you aren't vegetarian.


Calories: 434kcal | Carbohydrates: 51g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 18g | Sodium: 635mg | Potassium: 1223mg | Fiber: 16g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 13899IU | Vitamin C: 40mg | Calcium: 106mg | Iron: 7mg