Moroccan Lentil Soup

Gosh, I simply cannot think of a better way to celebrate the start of fall than this plant-based, spice-heavy lentil soup. Even if you’re a meat eater, I think you’ll enjoy a piping hot bowl of it…

It all starts with delightful aromatics, like onion, carrot and garlic sauteed in olive oil. Then, we add the Moroccan spices, including cumin, coriander, turmeric, black pepper, cinnamon and a pinch of cayenne pepper. I always saute my spices with the vegetables for about 30-60 seconds to release their oils, increasing the depth of flavor. Then I add the lentils, potatoes and stock and let them simmer until tender. At the end, I finish the soup with canned coconut milk and fresh lemon juice and cilantro. The rich creaminess from the coconut milk, the zip from the lemon juice and the fresh herbiness of the cilantro really tops it off.

This soup can easily be made in advance and refrigerated or frozen for later use. In fact, as soup sits, it tends to get more flavorful! That’s a win-win, folks!

Now tell me, what is your favorite fall soup?

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Moroccan Lentil Soup

  • Author: Julie Andrews
  • Prep Time: 15-20 mins
  • Cook Time: 30-35 mins
  • Total Time: 45-55 mins
  • Yield: Serves 6 1x
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Stove-Top, Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: Moroccan-Style

Description

A hearty plant-based soup with lentils, vegetables and Moroccan spices.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and diced
  • 34 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher or sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup dried lentils
  • 5 ½ cups unsalted vegetable stock
  • 1 medium or 2 small Yukon gold, sweet or red potato(es), diced
  • ½ cup full-fat canned coconut milk
  • Zest and juice of 1 medium lemon
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

Instructions

To make it on the stove:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven to soup pot to medium. Add the carrots and onion and sauté 4-5 minutes or until slightly soft. Stir in the garlic, tomato paste (if using), cumin, coriander, salt, turmeric, black pepper, cinnamon and cayenne pepper and sauté 30-60 seconds or until fragrant. Add the lentils and stock and bring to a simmer. Add the potatoes.
  2. Let soup simmer 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lentils and potatoes are tender. Stir in the coconut milk, lemon zest and juice and ½ of the cilantro. Taste and adjust the seasoning, if necessary.
  3. Serve soup in bowls and top with remaining cilantro.

To make it in the slow cooker:

  1. Place the carrots, yellow onion, garlic, tomato paste (if using), cumin, coriander, salt,  turmeric, black pepper, cinnamon, cayenne pepper and dried lentils in the bowl of a slow cooker. Cook on high 2-3 hours or low 4-5 hours or until lentils are tender. 
  2. Add the potatoes and cook another 30 minutes on high or 1 hour on low or until slightly tender. Stir in the coconut milk, lemon and half of the cilantro. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.
  3. Serve soup in bowls and top with remaining cilantro.

Notes

Cooking Tip: Adding the tomato paste will create richness and a greater depth of flavor.

Make it a Meal: Pair with a green salad with vinaigrette dressing.


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1/6 of recipe
  • Calories: 182
  • Sugar: 4g
  • Sodium: 593mg
  • Fat: 5g
  • Saturated Fat: 3g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 2g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 25g
  • Fiber: 8g
  • Protein: 12g
  • Cholesterol: 5mg

Keywords: soup, stew, lentils, plant-based

8 Comments

  1. Rob Millan on November 20, 2020 at 8:40 am

    We made this the other day and it hit the spot perfectly. I’ve never had Moroccan lentil with cilantro, but it really added a nice, smooth taste to the mild spice of the soup.

  2. Mike Telesky on November 20, 2020 at 3:23 pm

    Can’t wait to try this, looks amazing.

  3. Marshall Rinek on December 2, 2020 at 5:20 pm

    Very good. I made for my family and no one missed the meat. I do think I’d go a tiny bit lighter on the lemon juice from the squeezed lemon next time I make it.

    • Julie Andrews on December 3, 2020 at 2:21 pm

      Wonderful, Marshall! Glad everyone loved it.

  4. Dana Lindstedt on December 17, 2020 at 3:37 pm

    Love this soup, it was a nice change. The only I changed from the recipe was I used parsnips from my garden instead of the carrot, it’s what I had on hand. Will definitely make again.

    • Julie Andrews on December 18, 2020 at 3:53 pm

      What a great idea to use parsnips! I’ll have to try that next time.

  5. ashok on June 25, 2021 at 10:07 pm

    Thanks For Sharing this amazing recipe. My family loved it. I will be sharing this recipe with my friends. Hope the will like it.

    • Julie Andrews on July 4, 2021 at 2:35 pm

      You’re welcome! Enjoy!

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