Hearty Southwest Veggie-Lentil Soup

One-pot-wonder dinner recipe for you today!..

I love lentils. Not only are they very versatile and delicious, easily taking on a wide variety of flavors, they are super healthy. Just one cup of lentils provides 18 grams of protein, 16 grams of fiber and 36% RDA of iron, among other things.

One of my favorite ways to eat lentils is lentil soup. I always order it when it is a vegan soup-of-the-day at restaurants and I love to simmer some on my stovetop and serve it for family dinners. Today's recipe for Southwest Veggie-Lentil Soup is a pretty basic version of lentil soup - with a few spicy and lively flavor accents from jalapeño, cumin, tomato salsa, chipotle "cream" on top and cilantro. This soup is packed with hearty veggies. Fall and winter is soup season, so turn your soup bowl into a hearty, balanced plant-based meal using legumes like lentils. Get the recipe..

I served my soup with some blackened tortillas that I quickly warmed on my stovetop then sliced into triangles.

We start with lentils. I used red lentils..

Start by softening these veggies in a splash of EVOO..

chopped cilantro adds wonderful flavor!

Before adding the chipotle cream on top..

Dive in...

Ready to try it? Make this dish tonight and let me know how it went in the comments section. Happy soup season!

Southwest Veggie-Lentil Soup

Kathy Patalsky

Published 10/07/2015

Southwest Veggie-Lentil Soup

Warming and lightly spicy, this southwest-inspired lentil soup contains hearty veggies and flavorful lentils.


  • Soup:
  • 1 cup lentils (I used red lentils)
  • 1 cup salsa (any variety - I used a chunky spicy salsa) -- great use for leftover salsa
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 jalapeño, sliced and halved (seeds removed)
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 3 ribs of celery, sliced
  • 4-5 cups veggie broth
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, finely chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • additional water or broth as desired for consistency
  • Chipotle Cream:
  • 1/4 cup vegan mayo
  • 1/2 tsp chipotle powder
  • 1 tsp maple or agave syrup
  • Garnish: fresh cilantro leaves -- a few crushed tortilla chips or pepitas would be a nice touch too!


  1. Warm a large soup pot over high heat. Add int he extra virgin olive oil and the onion, celery, bell pepper and garlic. Stir around and cook until the veggies caramelize on the edges and start to soften.
  2. Add all the remaining soup ingredients (except the chopped cilantro) and place lid on soup pot. Turn heat down to low-medium. Allow the soup to simmer for 15-20 minutes to cook the lentils. Once the lentils are soft and cooked through you soup is technically "done." But the longer you allow the soup to simmer at a low temperature, the more the flavors will intensify and the ingredients soften. Note: If you like a "crunchier" less cooked texture to the veggies, serve right after the lentils are cooked through. Add more veggie broth or water as desired to thin out the soup consistency, if desired. I added in a few splashes of water.
  3. To serve, fold in the chopped cilantro. It will wilt into the hot soup instantly.
  4. Make the chipotle cream by briskly stirring all the ingredients in a small cup.
  5. To serve: pour soup into bowls and drizzle the cream on top. Add a fresh leaf of cilantro. (Do not serve the soup with the bay leaf - you can either keep it in the "leftovers pot" for added flavor or discard once the soup is cooked.)

Yield: 5 servings

Prep Time: 00 hrs. 10 mins.

Cook time: 00 hrs. 25 mins.

Total time: 35 mins.


  • Calories: 205
  • Fat: 3g
  • Totalcarbs: 31g
  • Dietaryfiber: 14g
  • Protein: 15g

Tags: soup,lentil,veggies,southwest,entree,spicy,
*nutrition content does not include the chipotle cream on top - and specifies 5 servings per recipe - info is per serving

More lentil recipes I love:

* Lentil Sloppy Joes
* Miso Broccoli Spiced Lentil Power Plate
* Lifting Lemon Lentil Rice Soup
* lentil-Cashew Cakes
* Ginger-Curried Warm Lentil Dip
* Skillet Popped lentils
* Sweet Potato Chili with Lentils

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