This curried red lentil soup is inspired by the Indian side dish dal; the Hindi word means “split” and refers to the split peas or lentils used in its preparation. Fragrant ginger, curry, cinnamon and cumin add lots of rich flavor. Look for lentils and spices in bulk--you'll often get a better deal and you can buy just the amount you need.

EatingWell Test Kitchen
Source: EatingWell Magazine, September/October 2010

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Recipe Summary

total:
1 hr 5 mins
Servings:
6
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Ingredients

Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, jalapeno, curry powder, cinnamon, cumin and bay leaves and cook, stirring often, for about 5 minutes more.

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  • Stir in lentils and broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, partially covered, until the lentils are tender, about 45 minutes.

  • Discard bay leaves. Stir in cilantro (or parsley) and lemon juice. Season with pepper. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with yogurt and chutney (if using).

Tips

Ingredient notes: Red lentils are excellent in soups, salads and vegetarian stews. You can find them in the natural-foods section of your supermarket or in natural-foods stores.

Look for mango chutney in the Indian section of the supermarket. Not sure what else to do with mango chutney? Whisk some with yogurt for a quick dressing, dip or marinade. Or serve with grilled meat, fish or chicken.

Nutrition Facts

233 calories; protein 18.4g 37% DV; carbohydrates 35.4g 11% DV; exchange other carbs 2.5; dietary fiber 12.8g 51% DV; sugars 5.6g; fat 3.2g 5% DV; saturated fat 0.3g 2% DV; cholesterol 0.3mg; vitamin a iu 75.6IU 2% DV; vitamin c 10.8mg 18% DV; folate 270.2mcg 68% DV; calcium 80mg 8% DV; iron 5.6mg 31% DV; magnesium 64.5mg 23% DV; potassium 904mg 25% DV; sodium 755.7mg 30% DV; thiamin 0.3mg 27% DV.

Reviews (32)

Read More Reviews
32 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 27
  • 4 star values: 5
  • 3 star values: 0
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 5 stars
07/07/2019
I absolutely loved this recipe. I Would definitely make it again. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
02/25/2018
I have made this recipe a few times and I think its great! Read More
Rating: 5 stars
02/09/2017
This soup is AWESOME. I've made it twice so far and am in love. I didn't have cinnamon on hand while making either batch and so omitted it. I also added a little extra cumin and a little bit of ground red pepper to give it an extra kick. The fact that it's so healthy is just the cherry on top of this delicious delicious curry flavored Sunday. Read More
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Rating: 4 stars
04/25/2016
Smells great...but... I'm trying to keep track of my points (weight watchers) and this is only about 5 points a serving!! BUT...how much is a serving? It says it serves six but I made it for lunches so how much should a serving be? Thank you! Pros: Soooooo quick and easy! Read More
Rating: 4 stars
02/03/2016
My teenager loved it over rice- simple and satisfying! I used ground ginger because I did not have fresh. I also used less chicken broth (about 5-6 cups) because I wanted a thick soup to pour over rice and cut down the garlic cloves to only two. The soup was a hit with the entire family including my teenage son who is very picky! Pros: Easy to make and cooked in about half the time in dutch oven. Cons: No cons will make it again! Read More
Rating: 5 stars
01/28/2016
Excellent flavor This is an easy soup to make for Red Lentils cook up quickly. I have never added Cinnamon b/c I don't care for it. Soup is hot spicy first day but diminishes in hotness the next day. Very good for a winter soup. I make this often during the colder months. Pros: rich creamy has a little heat Cons: none Read More
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Rating: 5 stars
11/07/2015
This soup is awesome. I make it a lot in the fall and winter. The aroma is fabulous and matches the flavor. Quick and easy - just the right amount of heat. Heat diminishes on day two. Freezes well too. Pros: Super flavorful smooth & creamy Cons: none Read More
Rating: 5 stars
09/16/2015
Delicious recipe that's packed with flavour I LOVE this recipe. I've made it a few times now and every time I do it turns out beautifully. I'm no chef so finding recipes that are relatively easy to make inexpensive and delicious is like stumbling upon gold. This dish marries some beautiful flavours and is definitely something I'll continue to make again and again. Pros: ingredients found in pantry inexpensive delicious Read More
Rating: 5 stars
03/08/2013
Finally my husband complimented my cooking!! It's not often that my husband tells me that I made something delicious. This recipe was VERY flavorful & easy to make. The red lentils get soft/mushy very quickly so everything was done in less than an hour. The recipe filled our house with flavor - my husband said it smelled like an indian restaurant when he walked in the house. I'll definitely make this one again! Pros: Very easy & had most ingredients in house Read More
Rating: 4 stars
02/16/2013
Best curried lentil soup I've made After making it according to the recipe I found it needed some veg so followed the track of the reviewer who added diced sweet potato. Chard and Kale were outrageously expensive this time of year so added some frozen spinach although the heft in kale or chard would have been better. Used some chickpeas and only a cup of lentils. Didn't have the red so used French greens. Used less broth than called for. Also didn't have a jalapeno but the curry powder I used was hot enough. Pros: Great base; healthy; inexpensive Cons: Needed something Read More
Rating: 4 stars
12/18/2012
Flavor & Scent Explosion!! Yummmmm....The only changes I made were using fewer lentils (didn't have enough on hand...had a little less than a cup) using regular and not red lentils (already had regular ones in my cupboard) and no mango chutney (I would love to try it the next time....couldn't find it on my shopping trip this time). So easy to prepare...very little chopping required.This is fantastic!!! Amazing flavor and scent combination! Will absolutely be making this again and again!!! Pros: Flavor Scent Easy-to-prepare Healthy Read More
Rating: 4 stars
11/18/2012
This soup is delicious. Used half the amount of cinnamon per other reviews and it was plenty. Did not have a jalapeno so I used 1 1/2 tsp. canned diced jalapeno. Just the right kick for me - a little too much for my six and four year old who both really enjoyed this soup. One ate it over steamed rice and the other dipped tortilla chips in it. Will make again and again! Read More
Rating: 5 stars
11/18/2012
This recipe was delicious. The lemon and coriander really complete the dish. I didn't have yoghurt on hand but imagine that would be even better - if that's possible. This one goes into the 'love' file. Pros: Cheap easy Cons: None! Read More
Rating: 5 stars
09/03/2012
Wonderful recipe I followed the recipe to the end but didn't add cinnamon & nutmeg. I also topped it off with grilled shrimp. This recipe was a total hit with the family. The addition of yogurt was so tasty. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
06/11/2012
Loved it. Gets better in the fridge. I make this all the time. I leave out the chutney it's just not for me. And I use 4-5 jalapenos because they're one of my favorite foods and one just wasn't enough! The yogurt makes a brilliant garnish--a much much healthier alternative to sour cream! Also I like to make this soup then leave the pot in the fridge for a day or two before eating (if I can resist) because the flavors meld together and it just tastes better and better. Pros: Easy cheap tasty Read More
Rating: 5 stars
02/22/2012
Loved this soup. Such a great flavor. I added a cubed sweet potato just to give it a little more texture. Would add carrots as well next time. The chutney gave it a little sweetness that was addictive. Loved it. Did not need the yogurt. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
01/05/2012
This recipe is excellent!! I made this during a lunch break it was that easy - some chopping but worth it. I didn't use the mango chutney & bought Italian Parsely by mistake. I think Cilantro would be better. Hearty warming thick soup with just a bit of kick to it. Sending this one to the list of cooks I know. Pros: easy high in flavor not too hot Cons: none Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/30/2011
This soup has become a year-round staple. The mango chutney really adds a nice touch. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/30/2011
We LOVE this soup. It is easy to make -- quite fast -- and still delicious even if you don't have all the ingredients (like chutney or parsely or cilantro) on hand. I'd bet we've made this at least 10 times in the last year. Christina Bozeman MT Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/30/2011
Very delicious. This was very flavorful and very spicy. Brett J. Anderson Baltimore MD Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/30/2011
Love this soup! I am making it for the second time right now. I agree--even without the cilantro or chutney this is great. So easy and makes the whole house smell good. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/30/2011
So delicious! I love the flavor combination of the lentils onions and spices. I am looking forward to making this regularly. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/30/2011
I have made this soup many many times and I agree with the other comments that this is a wonderful soup with so many different flavors. I love the ginger pepper curry and cumin flavors but the best is the mango chutney. This is definitely one recipe I will keep handy. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/29/2011
Wonderful delicious soup loved by the entire family and easy to prepare! Thank you. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/29/2011
We loved this soup! My husband can't believe the explosion of wonderful flavors! Will serve with Naan bread next time. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/29/2011
We love this recipe! This plus the quick tikka masala are two of our favorite eating well dishes ever. We don't add the mango chutney because it is delicious without it! It is one of the few recipes that we do not change modify or add more of something. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/29/2011
Quite simply this is amazing. My new favorite red lentil soup. Many layers of flavors together with the subtle heat of the ginger and jalapeno make this dish a standout! Adding in the swirl of yogurt is like a cherry on top of the sundae. Perfect! Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/29/2011
Loved this soup and so did the whole family! I left out the chutney as well but it was still packed with flavour. I think next time I will add a few more vegetables to make it a more rounded meal. We served it with light sour cream stirred in instead of plain yogurt and have just bought more lentils to make it again. A great week-night meal and the leftovers make the whole office jealous:) Love it. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/29/2011
This was a great recipe to play with. I couldn't find red lentils but regular brown ones worked just fine and they were so cheap! I also added some garam masala replaced the jalepeno with a small serrano a spoonful of coconut milk and a cubed butternut squash. YUM!! Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/29/2011
Wonderful complexity to this soup especially considering how simple it is to make. Though we're just two we made the full recipe and saved half for another meal. We each added some lemon juice cilantro and yogurt to our individual serving bowls rather than to the pot and will do so again when we finish it off. (We also didn't feel that chutney was necessary.) Next time we plan to serve it alongside a serving of steamed spinach with a drizzle of toasted sesame oil and a sprinkling of with toasted sesame seeds (for a little nutritional boost). Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/29/2011
I love this soup! I had all the ingrediants and follow the recipe to the end and the result was just delicious. Couple of comments: the soup was a little bit on the spicy side (perhaps because I used my home fresh garden jalapenos) Next time I will try to use 1/2 jalapeno and there is no need to add salt at the end. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
10/29/2011
Great soup! I ended up using fish (mussel) broth I had frozen in the freezer which turned out great. Next time I would cut the amount of cinnamon in half (I found it overpowered the other flavours) and add an extra half teaspoon of either the curry or cumin. Will make again for sure but might add some carrots and celery for a more complete meal. Read More