Lentil Soup is an simple, savory, and healthy soup. Oh and it is also pretty inexpensive. The only ingredient that is not a normal staple in our pantry are the lentil beans themselves and I can usually pick up a bag at my local grocery for around a dollar. This has a few more ingredients than my basic recipes, but as I said, most are staples I almost always have on hand. If I happen to not have chicken stock on hand, Lentil Soup is one of the recipes that goes on my weekly plan when I make Homemade Chicken Stock.
If you want to take the flavor up a notch and add more “meatiness” you can add diced smoked turkey sausage. The turkey sausage adds more depth of flavor, makes it a little saltier and if you have a man in the house, will fill him up quicker. Smoked Turkey Sausage is something I typically find on sale for around $1-2 and I pop them in the freezer to make things like Lentil Soup or Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya.
I serve the soup with a drizzle of olive oil, Parmesan cheese and topped with homemade crostini. Crostini is just a really fancy word for sliced french bread with olive oil, salt and pepper. Kind of like a big ole crouton! They are what makes this dish and takes it over the top. See my directions for making your own below.
1 pound green lentils, rinsed
1/4 cup olive oil, plus extra for serving
1 large onion, diced
3 stalks celery, diced
2-3 carrots, diced
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoons black pepper
1 teaspoon dried thyme (1 Tablespoon fresh)
2 bay leaves
3 quarts chicken broth
1- 6oz can tomato paste
1/2 lb smoked turkey sausage/kielbasa, sliced and diced
1/4 cup red wine (optional)
Freshly grated Parmesan, for serving
In a large stockpot over medium heat, heat the olive oil and saute the onions, celery, carrots, garlic, salt, pepper, thyme, and bay leaf for 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are translucent and tender.
Add the smoked turkey sausage now if you want it. Deglaze the pan with red wine and simmer until the sausage is hot. (See that brown stuff stuck to the bottom? That is what you want to “deglaze“. That makes the soup taste REALLY good!)
Add the chicken stock, tomato paste, and drained lentils, cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes to one hour, or until the lentils are cooked through and tender. Check the seasonings.
Crostini are a great project to include with your kiddos, my daughter had a lot of fun helping out!
salt and pepper
Lay baguette slices on pan, and drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and toast for 7-8 minutes.
Recipe developed by Kelly Hancock ©2010 Faithful Provisions. For personal use only. May not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed for capital gain without prior permission from Kelly Hancock.