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Smoked paprika enhances the flavor of the bacon and plays off the earthiness of the lentils beautifully. Pureeing some of the hot lentil mixture gives this soup a silky texture. We've used a combination of three different types of lentils, but you could easily just use one type; pay attention to cooking times and cook just until tender. Serve this with a side salad or a small slice of crusty bread.

EatingWell.com, January 2021


Credit: Jacob Fox

Recipe Summary

35 mins
55 mins

Nutrition Profile:



Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Cook bacon in 2 batches in a large pot over medium heat until crisp, 5 to 6 minutes. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate, reserving 2 Tbsp. drippings in the pot. Crumble the bacon and reserve for the topping.

  • Add garlic, onion, carrot, and chard stems to the pot; cook over medium heat until softened, 5 to 6 minutes. Add broth, lentils, smoked paprika, cumin, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Tie rosemary sprigs together with butcher's twine or secure in a cheesecloth bag. Add the rosemary to the soup, gently pressing into the liquid and stirring. Cover, leaving the lid slightly ajar to allow steam to escape and prevent the lentils from boiling over. Simmer until the lentils are tender, about 20 minutes. Remove and discard the rosemary sprigs.

  • Transfer 2 cups of the soup to a blender. Remove the center piece of the lid (to let steam escape), secure the lid on the blender, and cover with a kitchen towel. Puree until smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids). Return the blended soup to the pan.

  • Stir in the chopped chard leaves; cook until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Top each serving with bacon.

To make ahead

Refrigerate for up to 4 days or freeze for up to 4 months.


Butcher's twine or cheesecloth

Nutrition Facts

1 ⅓ cups
261 calories; fat 4g; cholesterol 3mg; sodium 435mg; carbohydrates 39g; dietary fiber 7g; protein 19g; sugars 3g; saturated fat 1g.