Fast-Fixing Hearty Vegan Lentil Soup Recipe for Busy Cooks

Make this vegan lentil soup for a budget-friendly, hearty meal. Your omnivore friends won’t even notice it’s meatless. (It’s ready in about an hour!)

These vegan sweet potato muffins are another great recipe to add to your repertoire.

vegan lentil soup in a white bowl

We keep the pantry stocked with lentils—they are inexpensive, nutritious, store well for long periods of time, and make a nice alternative to meat once in a while! You’ll be happy to know that lentils are a fantastic source of dietary fiber, iron, and protein.

Lentils are legumes, different from common types of beans but used similarly for cooking. Lentils are much smaller than beans and shaped like a small, round disk, about an 1/8″ in diameter. Like beans, lentils need to be cooked, but the cooking time required is substantially less than most beans. This makes lentils a great option for budget meals when you haven’t had the forethought to soak beans ahead of time.

Homemade vegan lentil soup

This vegan lentil soup recipe starts with sautéing onions and carrots. (Your house is going to smell good!) Then you’ll simply add the lentils, broth, and spices and cook for half an hour or so. When the lentils are tender, stir in the spinach and lemon juice (this really adds to the flavor), cook for another couple of minutes, and serve!Enjoy this healthy one-pot meal year round with bread fresh out of the oven. (If you prefer a meatier lentil stew, try Kris’s sausage lentil soup recipe.) Happy bellies, all around.

soup in a cast iron pot

This vegan lentil soup recipe purposely yields a large batch so that you can store leftovers in an airtight container and freeze—you’ll have an entire lunch or dinner ready for another day! If you’re not sticking to a vegan diet, try topping the soup with hard boiled eggs for a little extra protein.

soup with bread from above

★ Did you make this vegan lentil soup recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!

vegan lentil soup in a white bowl

Vegan Lentil Soup Recipe

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

Make this vegan lentil stew for a budget-friendly, hearty meal. Your omnivore friends won't even notice it's meatless. (It's ready in about an hour!)


  • 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups yellow onion, diced
  • 1 cup carrots, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh garlic, minced
  • 2 cups lentils
  • 6 cups low sodium vegetable broth, (preferably organic or homemade)
  • 1½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups organic baby spinach, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoon lemon juice


  1. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Once hot, add the onions and sauté for four to six minutes or until soft and glossy. Add the carrots and continue sautéing for another four to five minutes. Add the garlic and stir continuously for 30 seconds to prevent burning. cooking carrots and onions in a cast iron Dutch oven
  2. Stir in the lentils, broth, cumin, coriander, salt (if using), and pepper. Mix well and bring the soup to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to medium low, and cover with a tight-fitting lid. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes or until the lentils and vegetables are soft and fully cooked.
  3. Add the spinach and lemon juice and stir. Cook for an additional two minutes or until the spinach is tender. For a spicier, more flavorful version of this vegan lentil stew, add freshly diced jalapeño peppers and minced cilantro. Serve! spoon of lemon juice above a pot of lentil stew


To serve leftovers, add a small amount of water, mix well, reheat, and serve.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1 grams
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 270Total Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 0gSodium: 1451mgCarbohydrates: 48gFiber: 20gSugar: 6gProtein: 17g

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Originally published in March 2017; this post has been updated.


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About the author: Amy Godiwalla is co-author of the What a Good Eater! cookbook, available on Amazon. She writes for the What a Good Eater! food blog, is a contributing writer for Attainable Sustainable, and versions of her work have appeared elsewhere online. Amy and her husband, Shaun, live in Denver, Colorado, with their two little boys. When Amy is not feeding little mouths or inventing recipes, she enjoys hiking, yoga, snowboarding, cooking, traveling to the mountains, sipping hot chocolate at ski resorts, and wine tasting.

1 comment… add one
  • Michelle Mar 24, 2018 @ 18:41

    So delicious. I’m definitely going to make this again.

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