5 from 15 votes
How to make lentil soup
Middle Eastern Lentil Soup

Hearty and delicious Middle Eastern Lentil soup is the perfect vegan and gluten free soup for the cold nights.

Course: Soup
Cuisine: Middle Eastern
Keyword: gluten free lentil soup, How to make Middle eastern lentil soup, soup for dinner, vegan and gluten free soup, vegan lentil soup
Servings: 6 Servings
Author: Sandhya Ramakrishnan
  • Lentils – 1 cup I used the orange masoor dal
  • Onion – 1 large / about 1 cup chopped
  • Tomatoes – 2 chopped
  • Carrot – 2 / about 1 cup chopped
  • Bay leaf – 1
  • Cumin seeds – 1tsp
  • Fennel seeds / saunf – 1 tsp
  • Garlic – 2 minced finely
  • Crushed Red pepper - 1 tsp
  • Cumin powder – 1 ½ tsp
  • Coriander powder – 1 tsp
  • Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Olive oil – 1 tbsp
  • Salt – to taste
  • Pepper – to taste
  • Cilantro– to garnish
Instant Top method -
  1. Wash and soak the lentils in water for about 20 minutes. Drain and keep aside.
  2. Turn the Instant pot on saute mode and add the oil in the inner pot. Once the oil heats up, add the cumin seeds and fennel seeds. Fry for about 10 seconds.
  3. Now add the chopped onions and the bay leaf and saute until the onion are soft and translucent. This takes about 3 to 4 minutes.
  4. Add the chopped garlic and mix well. Fry for about 30 seconds and then add the chopped carrot and tomatoes.
  5. Next add the crushed red pepper, coriander powder and cumin powder and mix well.
  6. Add the drained lentils to the pot along with black pepper powder and salt.
  7. Mix well to combine and add about 4 cups of water.
  8. Add the turmeric powder and mix well.
  9. Close the IP and turn off the the pot from saute mode.
  10. Set it on pressure cook / Manual for 12 minutes. Once the cook time is done, let the pressure release manually.
  11. Open the pot and then using an immersion blender, blend the soup to the consistency you prefer. Check the seasoning and adjust based on your preference. Garnish with cilantro or parsley and serve hot.
Stove top method -
  1. Wash and soak the lentils in water for about 20 minutes. Drain and keep aside.
  2. In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil and then add the cumin seeds and fennel seeds. Once the seeds fry, add the chopped onion and the bay leaf and cook until the onions are soft and translucent. Now add the minced garlic and fry for a minute.
  3. Now add the chopped carrot and cook for about 7-8 minutes until slightly cooked.
  4. Then the tomatoes go in. Cook for 5 more minutes and then add the lentils.
  5. Add about 4 cups of water and bring it to boil. Add the cumin powder, coriander powder and turmeric powder and simmer it until the lentils cook. This will take about 30 minutes.
  6. Now add the salt and pepper to taste and check for the doneness of lentils.
  7. Use an immersion blender and grind the soup to your required consistency. I generally leave it slightly on the chunky side. If using a regular blender, wait until the soup cools down a bit and then grind it. You do not want hot soup all over the house!
  8. Garnish with cilantro and parsley and serve hot with some crusty bread.