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This simple recipe makes a big pot of light and bright summery lemon lentil soup to nourish. 

A bowl of lemon lentil soup with carrots and a sprig of thyme.

“Mama, can you put that lentil soup in my lunch tomorrow?” What music to any mama’s ears! My 5 year old loved this recipe so much she wanted more the next day. Although soup can feel like a winter meal, this one is perfect for summer with it’s bright fresh flavors. Full disclosure – my 7 year old was not as enthusiastic – she said is was “good” but not her favorite. I’m with my preschooler though – love is the right word for this one. Lentils have been a staple in our house since I gave up meat several years ago.

Even before that really. These cutie legumes are a great source of vegetarian protein, iron, folate, fiber, and many other important nutrients. Lentil soup is on our regular dinner rotation, but I was getting a little tired of the same old way I’ve always made it. So I was excited to try my friend Kacie’s recipe for Lemony Lentil Soup. She often posts on Facebook that she is making a huge batch and is happy to give some away and share with another family. How awesome is that?! Kacie is the amazing photographer of Kacie Jean Photography, and she shot some of my favorite family photos.

This lemony lentil soup is hearty and satisfying, and loaded with plant based protein and fiber from the green lentils, vitamin C from the carrots and lemons, and I add an extra spoon of turmeric for its anti-inflammatory properties.
Lemons on a lemon tree
Because I always have dried lentils in the pantry and lemons on the tree, I had all the ingredients I needed already at home. I love that this recipe has turmeric in it, as it is a fabulous anti-inflammatory ingredient with many other health benefits. I talked about that here if you want to know more. Lemony lentil soup is an easy one-pot dinner, and I just love those types of dinners.

Lemony lentil soup in a bowl with a lemon and blue and white dish towel.
I love making a big pot of soup and freezing half or giving it away to friends and this recipe makes plenty. Quick tip: French green lentils work best here. Red lentils are wonderful, but break down into more of a mushy consistency than we are going for with this soup.

Lemony Lentil Soup

Nourishing lentil soup brightened up with lemon.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 1/2 cups diced or sliced carrots
  • 1 1/2 cups diced celery (1 full head)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 teaspoons fresh grated ginger
  • 2 1/2 (32 oz.) boxes vegetable broth
  • 2 teaspoons dried turmeric
  • 2 cups green lentils, rinsed and picked over for stones
  • zest of 1/2 lemon
  • juice of 3 small lemons

Directions:

  1. Heat oil in a large Dutch oven set over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, celery, and salt and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger and sauté another minute longer. Add the broth, turmeric, and lentils.
  2. Reduce heat to low and simmer, partially covered, for 45 minutes. Stir in the lemon zest and juice and simmer another 30 minutes. Add more broth if needed.