Cumin-Scented Wheat Berry-Lentil Soup

March/April 2007, EatingWell for a Healthy Heart Cookbook (2008)

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Freshly squeezed lemon juice adds a bright note to this toothsome and hearty winter soup, perfect for a weeknight supper with a hunk of crusty bread. It freezes beautifully—you can keep individual portions in the freezer for healthy weekday lunches. For homemade vegetable broth, see Roasted Vegetable Stock at

"Love this recipe. Hearty and full of flavor. It will be one of my go to recipes. "
Cumin-Scented Wheat Berry-Lentil Soup

Makes: 6 servings, 1 2/3 cups each

Active Time:

Total Time:


  • 1 1/2 cups French green or brown lentils, sorted and rinsed (see Tip)
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 4 cups cold water
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 large carrots, finely chopped
  • 1 medium red onion, diced
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, plus more to taste
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 cups Cooked Wheat Berries, (recipe follows)
  • 1 bunch rainbow or red chard, large stems discarded, leaves roughly chopped
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice

This recipe calls for:


  1. Combine lentils, broth and water in a Dutch oven. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat, cover, and simmer gently until the lentils are tender, but not mushy, 25 to 30 minutes (brown lentils take a little longer than green).
  2. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add carrots, onion, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables begin to brown, about 15 minutes. Add garlic and cumin and cook, stirring constantly, for 30 seconds more. Remove from the heat.
  3. When the lentils are tender, stir cooked wheat berries and chard into the pot. Cover and simmer until the chard has wilted, about 5 minutes. Stir in the carrot mixture and lemon juice.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 1 month.
  • Tip: French green lentils are firmer than brown lentils and cook more quickly. They can be found in natural-foods stores and some supermarkets.


Per serving: 250 calories; 8 g fat (1 g sat, 5 g mono); 0 mg cholesterol; 36 g carbohydrates; 9 g protein; 9 g fiber; 617 mg sodium; 433 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (160% daily value), Fiber (36% dv), Folate (26% dv), Vitamin C (25% dv), Iron (20% dv).

Carbohydrate Servings: 2

Exchanges: 2 Starch, 1 Vegetable, 1 1/2 fat

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