This Spicy Italian lentil soup takes the nourishing legume, adds plenty of flavorings, vegetables and seasonings and turns it into a dish fit for a king. The hearty soup requires little time, start to finish. It's the lentils that give the soup its rich comforting flavor, thick texture and spice from the highly seasoned garlicky kielbasa.
Why lentil soup?
At our house we're all about flavor and texture. We love our spicy meats, fresh herbs, and loads of seasonings. This is the type of soup you can't-get-enough-of good.
The texture is just right for dunking thick rustic bread chunks like our 4-Hour baguettes.
And if it weren't enough that it gets top marks for comforting taste, it also has the reputation of being a good luck soup. I know, that's funny, isn't it. But Italians eat lentils on New Year's Eve for wealth and prosperity. Who are we to argue, right?
The lentils are traditionally served with pork. We couldn't break with tradition so we added the kielbasa.
What goes in Italian lentil soup?
- Soup base: chicken stock, white wine
- Legumes: either green, brown, black lentils
- Meat: Polish kielbasa
- Vegetables: celery, carrots, potatoes, canned roasted tomatoes with garlic
- Aromatics: onion, garlic
- Fat: olive oil, butter
- Herbs: parsley, basil, oregano, dill, bay leaves
- Seasoning: sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, Parmesan rind (optional)
- Dutch Oven
- Cutting board
Lentils best for soup
Dried brown or green lentils are best for making this recipe. They're very common and they're a little bit bigger than the other type. Here are a few reasons why we like them.
- cook quickly -- between 20 to 30 minutes.
- tend to split and fall apart thickening the soup
- lends a mild, earthy flavor to soups and stew.
You can use yellow or red lentils, but they're smaller and they break down quickly, turning mushy. They also affect the color of the soup. But if you want a thick, soothing mush, these lentils will do great.
The French lentil, or Puy Lentils are thick-skinned. They won't break down like the green and brown lentil making a brothier soup. These little gems are fantastic for a side dish or salad. They take about 45-50 minutes to cook though. You want to eat them like pasta - al dente.
- Sauté vegetables. 2. Add garlic. 3. Add wine, then broth. 4. Mix in tomatoes, 5. Add potatoes. 6. Mix in lentils. 7,8,9. Stir in the seasoning.
How to make the soup
Like most of our dishes, we always have all the ingredients mise en place (everything ready to go). Once we start to cook, it's as simple as 1,2,3.
- Sauté the onion, celery and carrots over medium heat for about 7 minutes.
- Add the garlic and sauté for another minute.
- Pour in the wine and let simmer for a minute.
- Add the chicken broth, tomatoes, potatoes, lentils and kielbasa.make
- Sprinkle in the parsley, basil, oregano, dill, bay leaves, salt and ground black pepper.
- Add the Parmesan rind (optional). Bring the soup to a simmer.
- Cover the pot and simmer for 30 minutes or until the lentils are tender.
- Ladle the soup in bowls, garnish with Parmesan Cheese and chopped parsley.
10. Add the bay leaves. 11. Drop in Parmesan rind. 12. Finished soup.
Are lentils nutritious?
If you're wondering whether lentils are good for you, the answer is a resounding yes! Lentils are very nutritious. You'll find them high in:
- B vitamins - makes sure the body cells are functioning properly.
- iron, magnesium, potassium, zinc - play an essential role in our health and well-being.
- great source of plant-based protein - lower in fat and calories than animal protein making it good for the heart and overall health.
- fiber - important for digestive health.
How to store the soup
The soup will last for five days in the fridge. It's a great soup to have on hand and serve for lunch throughout the week and weekend. It is a warm bowl of love, so comforting.
If you make a huge pot and want to store it for a later date, the soup freezes beautifully. It will be delicious for 3 months and even longer.
This soup has quickly become one of our favorites. Hearty and Filling. A lot like our Old-Fashioned Beef Barley Soup. Even though it's just the two of us, we always make enough soup to eat on for a few days then freeze what's left.
This way you can have a nice variety of lunches and dinners in the freezer just waiting for you. To complete the meal add a side salad and of course the hearty bread.
If you like hearty, tummy-warming soups, try our 15 Bean Soup Recipe.
Tutti a tavola è pronto!
Un caro saluto e alla prossima.
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We love the shape of this ladle. It's easy to to get what you need from the pan and pour. We have a metal ladle but when we stayed at a rental they didn't have anything to use for soups. We are going to replace the one we have at home with this one.
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Spicy Vegetable Italian Lentil Soup Recipe
Lentils never tasted so good as when they're spiced up and mixed into a hearty soup. The kielbasa adds a smokey note to the thick vegetable stew-like dish. The lentils become tender but still retain some of their shape. This soup is a meal in itself.
And if you'd like to try another quick and easy lentil soup, give our Chicken Lentil Soup a try.
As lentils are the Italian "good-luck" soup ingredient on New Year's Day, check out our Quick and Easy Black-eyed Pea soup recipe steeped in old Southern tradition.
If you like this recipe please give it a 5-star rating.
Spicy Vegetable Italian Lentil Soup
- 7.5 cups chicken stock
- ½ cup dry white wine
- 14.5 oz diced roasted tomatoes with garlic canned
- 1 cup lentils, brown or green rinsed (check for stones and discard)
- 4 tablespoon olive oil extra virgin
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 onion, large chopped
- 3 stalks celery chopped
- 2 carrots, large chopped
- 3 small red potatoes cut into small chunks
- 3 cloves garlic finely minced
- 2 tablespoon fresh parsley coarsely chopped
- 1 tablespoon dried basil
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried dill
- 2 bay leaves
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- sea salt Quanto basta (to your taste)
- 12 oz spicy kielbasa sliced in half and in half moons.
- Parmesan rind (optional) if you have a piece, add it in.
- Grated Parmesan cheese and chopped Parsley for garnish
- Heat the olive oil and butter in a large Dutch oven to medium heat. Add the onions, celery and carrots to the pot. Sprinkle with sea salt. Sauté for about 7 minutes until tender and the onions are golden in color.
- Add the garlic and sauté for another minute.
- Add the wine and let simmer for a minute.
- Pour in the chicken broth, tomatoes, potatoes, lentils and kielbasa.
- Sprinkle in the parsley, basil, oregano, dill, bay leaves, and ground black pepper.
- Add the Parmesan rind if you have it.
- Cover the pot and simmer for 45 minutes or until the lentils are tender.
- Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with grated Parmesan cheese and chopped parsley.
- Serve with crusty bread.
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