Easy 1-Pot Vegan Lentil Veggie Soup 🌱A simply delicious & satisfying one-pot soup made of lentils, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower and celery simmered in vegetable broth. This healthy vegan recipe is high in nutrition, low in calories, easy to prepare, budget-friendly & very versatile. Oil-free and GF.
The humble lentil is the unsung superhero of plant-based cooking. Lentils provide a protein-rich, hearty and chewy texture that can transform a simple soup, salad, stuffing, veggie burger, or casserole into a main dish, like my favorite vegan shepherd's pie.
Every home cook should have a few basic go-to recipes when they need to whip up something filling and delicious in a pinch. This easy lentil vegetable soup recipe is one of those. It's everything I want in a simple dish that can be thrown together in minutes and enjoyed for days or served to a crowd. If you like quick one pot meals, you'll love my easy peasy minestrone soup and this recipe for the best 20-minute vegan chili.
Why we love this recipe
- it's delicious, nutritious and satisfying
- low in calories and no added oil
- very versatile - create unlimited variations from this one basic recipe
- one batch makes about 4 quarts of soup
- everything goes into one pot!
- ready in less than an hour!
Here's everything you need, to know how to make vegan lentil soup!
- Lentils - I prefer organic brown or green lentils. I used green lentils in this recipe.
- Mixed vegetables - I like the convenience of frozen broccoli, carrots and cauliflower, but you can substitute with any variety of frozen mixed veggies or, of course, you can use fresh vegetables too.
- Celery - fresh
- Vegetable broth - homemade or store-bought vegan broth or bouillon. (Make sure to use gluten-free if needed).
- Salt & pepper
- Fresh lemon - optional
- Plain vegan yogurt - optional. Be sure to use unsweetened vegan yogurt.
🥕See the printable recipe card below for quantities & details.
Thoroughly rinse uncooked lentils with water. Drain well.
Don't add salt to the water while the lentils are cooking. It can make them tough.
Pour lentils into a large pot and cover with water.
Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer about 15-20 minutes.
Lentils are ready when they're tender but not mushy.
Add vegetable broth, celery, carrots, broccoli and cauliflower. Stir in salt & pepper. Continue simmering until veggies are tender (about 15 minutes).
Remove soup from heat and serve!
A drizzle of plain vegan yogurt and lemon wedges provide a refreshing bright contrast to the mellow and nutty flavors of the lentils & veggies.
What are lentils?
Lentils - like beans and peas - are legumes, and grow in pods. Lentils are considered a healthy substitute for meat because they're high in protein and fiber and low in fat. They also contain other essential nutrients such as iron, phosphorus, potassium and folate. Learn more here.
You can purchase lentils dried or precooked in cans or pouches and will find them in several varieties, usually described by color.
- Green lentils - also known as French lentils, have a subtle nutty flavor and stay fairly firm when cooked. Green lentils are a good choice for salads and soups.
- Brown lentils - hold their texture if not over-cooked. Brown lentils are popular in vegan burgers and in soups. They're also the least expensive variety of lentil.
- Black lentils - also known as Beluga lentils, are similar in texture to green lentils but are black in color.
- Red lentils - are the fastest cooking lentils and get quite soft when cooked. Red lentils are commonly used in purees and Indian dals.
- Yellow lentils - are similar to red lentils, with a slightly sweet taste. Yellow lentils are a bright yellow color.
Once you see how simple it is to prepare a pot of delicious, basic lentil soup, you can let your imagination run wild using a variety of ingredients. For example:
- Mexican Lentil Soup - use brown lentils, add black beans, sautéed onions, chopped tomatoes, corn, peppers, chili lime seasoning. Garnish with vegan sour cream, a sprig of cilantro or avocado.
- Curry Lentil Stew - use yellow or red lentils, add curry powder, coconut milk, diced potato, chickpeas, or green peas.
- Sweet Potato Lentil Soup - add diced sweet potatoes, fresh herbs, chopped kale.
- Mediterranean Lentil Soup - use green lentils, sundried tomatoes, cannellini beans and fresh basil.
In general, vegetable broth should be free from wheat gluten, but always make sure to read the labels on any broth or bouillon you use, as some may contain gluten or be processed in a facility that uses shared equipment, causing potential cross contamination.
Yes, if you're in a hurry or don't have dried lentils on hand, you can substitute the dried lentils with 2 or 3 15 ounce cans of pre-cooked lentils. The ratio of dried to canned lentils in this recipe would equal about 2.5 cans. I suggest rinsing the canned lentils before making your soup so they'll better absorb the flavors of your broth.
During the packaging process, sometimes small bits of debris can collect with the dried lentils. Rinsing them helps to remove any dust and small particles.
I'm quite certain it can, but to be honest - I own an Instant Pot and have yet to take it out of the box. I'm sure one of these days when I finally give it a try, I'll kick myself for not using it sooner. Do let me know if you make this soup recipe in an Instant Pot - I would love to hear how you did it!
This recipe yields approximately 4 quarts of soup. Leftover soup may be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days or frozen in an airtight freezer safe container for up to 3 months. Cooked lentils may absorb most of the soup broth within a day or two. If needed, simply add more broth prior prior to re-heating.
Read this article for more tips on proper safe food storage.
If you love this recipe ★★★★★ please be sure to rate it below! Sharing your experience lets me know that you enjoyed it and will help other readers decide if they should give the recipe a try too. Thanks a bunch!🥕
Easy 1-Pot Vegan Lentil Veggie Soup
- 6 quart stovetop pot
- Long spoon for stirring
- 2 cups lentils dried green or brown lentils
- 4 cups water
- 32 ounces vegetable broth I use boxed vegan broth. Bouillon is fine too.
- 16 ounces mixed vegetables frozen - I use broccoli, cauliflower and carrots. Chop into smaller pieces if needed.
- 1 cup celery diced
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- Thoroughly rinse uncooked lentils with water. Drain well.
- Pour lentils into a large pot and cover with 4 cups of water.
- Bring to a boil, then turn down heat and simmer approximately 15-20 minutes. Don't add salt to the water or cover the pot.
- Lentils are ready when they’re tender but not mushy. Most or all of the water will be absorbed into the lentils.
- Add vegetable broth, celery, carrots, broccoli and cauliflower. Stir in salt & pepper. Continue simmering until veggies are tender (about 15 minutes).
- Remove lentil soup from heat and serve!
These are estimated values generated from a nutritional database using unbranded products. Please do your own research with the products you're using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended