My Very Own Lentil Soup Recipe

Taste:  ****
Difficulty: Easy
Cleanup: Quick

I come from a family of carnivores.  Growing up, there was nothing my family enjoyed more than a nice steak or slice of prime rib.  In fact, my dad liked more than just the meat — he would gnaw on bones and slurp up the meat juices that accumulated on a platter of beef.

So you might imagine my family’s reaction when I declared myself a vegetarian after two weeks at Yale.  While I now refer to myself as an omnivore, during my 4+ years without meat my mother combed through countless vegetarian cookbooks to find delicious recipes to make for me on holidays and when I was home on break.  One of my favorites was her lentil soup recipe that she discovered from “The Compassion Cook,” a cookbook published by PETA and Ingrid Newkirk (my mother really likes fur so it’s a bit amusing she used a PETA cookbook).

I have adapted “The Compassion Cook” recipe in an effort to recreate the amazing lentil soup served at ‘wichcraft, a popular lunch spot for me and Tim.  I used beef broth which is a bit more flavorful than the vegetable broth.  I have also added parmesan cheese to the recipe.  Lastly, I used an immersion blender as a final step to puree the soup a bit and create a thicker consistency.

While I will always love the original vegan recipe, I think my new twist is perfect for omnivores.  Peter, Pam, and Tim – who had the soup for lunch – seem to agree.

Lentil Soup
Jessica Ogilvie

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 carrot sliced
  • 1 medium onion sliced
  • 6 cups beef broth
  • 1 cup lentils
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Heat oil in a dutch oven over medium heat.  Saute onion and carrot for 5 minutes or until tender.

Add 4 cups of the broth, lentils, pepper, thyme, bay leaves, and salt.  Cover and simmer on low heat until tender, about 40 to 50 minutes.

Uncover pot and add additional broth to taste (about 2 cups).  Stir in 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese.  Use 5 to 10 quick pulses of an immersion blender to thicken the soup.  Add lemon juice and additional salt to taste.

Serve with additional parmesan cheese.

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