Looking for recipes to help you stick to your new year goals? Look no further. This creamy lentil soup is what winter foodie dreams are made of. Hearty but oh-so good for you, and soul-warming without weighing you down. The perfect antidote to the deep freeze we’ve been experiencing these last few weeks (and which is scheduled to return this weekend, brrrrrr). Because when it’s cold and blustery outside, hot soup > cold salad any day. Amiright?
Powerhouse veggies like butternut squash and kale are spiced with smoky cumin, bright turmeric and fresh cilantro for a sneakily cleansing, detoxifying boost that will fill you up without filling you out (yes, plz) and keep your blood sugar stable, helping you say a convincing “no thank you” to the cookies people are still bringing into the office.
Did I mention it’s an Instant Pot miracle? Start to finish in about 20 minutes, including time for the pot to pressurize. Seriously delicious + sneakily healthy + quick and easy to prepare is the quintessential win-win-win in my book. This is good food made for real life, with pantry-staple ingredients.
You’ll notice I’ve topped mine with grated parmesan cheese, and you’d be so very right if you guessed that I sopped it up with crusty whole wheat bread. Because a happy life is all about moderation, and enjoying the foods you love while finding balance. Fill up a bowl with kale, butternut squash, and lentil goodness, and you better believe I’m adding in those extras.
As with all recipes I create for Another Root, this one was made for real life. Because it’s honestly for my real life. Somehow I’m already 30 weeks pregnant, with just 10 weeks to go until our little guy’s due date, and each meal I add to our weekly plan runs through my mental checklist:
- Delicious ✔
- Quick & Easy ✔
- Healthy ✔
- Freezable ✔
If 3-4 of those boxes are checked, the recipe makes the cut.
This detox lentil soup recipe makes a LOT of soup. I mean a lot. I froze half for quick reheating when baby comes and trips to the grocery store become less frequent, and we enjoyed the rest for lunches and dinners already this week.
Don’t have an Instant Pot yet? I have to admit, I’ve been experimenting with it for a few weeks now and am impressed. Highly recommend. Though, if you’re not ready to jump on the IP train just yet, not to worry. I’ve included instructions in the recipe below to whip up this soup in your slow cooker or on the stovetop.
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 4-5 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups carrots, peeled and chopped
- 2 cups celery, chopped
- 2 cups butternut squash, peeled and cubed (i used frozen)
- 1-2 teaspoons salt, to taste
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 bay leaf
- 14.5 oz fire roasted tomatoes
- 1½ cups green lentils
- 8 cups vegetable or chicken broth
- 2-3 cups kale, stems removed, chopped
- 1 cup cilantro, chopped
- ¼ cup olive oil
- Juice of ½ a lemon
- A few spoons of plain yogurt or shredded cheese for topping
- Saute onion and garlic in the Instant Pot in 2 tablespoons oil until fragrant and tender, about 2-3 minutes. Add the veggies, spices and salt. Saute 4-5 more minutes. Add the tomatoes and stock, scraping up any browned bits. Add the lentils, stir and cover, setting the Instant pot to Pressure Cook on Normal for 12 minutes. Quick release.
- Cook onion and veggies on stovetop until fragrant. Add with rest of ingredients to crock pot. Cover and cook on high for 5-6 hours or low for 7-8 hours.
- Follow the Instant Pot instructions, in a soup pot over medium heat. Simmer on low for 20-25 minutes.
- Blend 2-3 cups of soup with the olive oil. Add back to the pot. Stir in the kale, cilantro, and lemon juice. Serve topped with yogurt if you'd like!