Let’s get to it
Grab your soup pot because this vegan French lentil soup is the last lentil soup recipe you’ll ever need. It’s my current lunch obsession because I can throw it on the stove, cook dinner and have my lunch for several days. Oh, and it’s freaking great – even better the next day and the next (if you dare to have any left).
Whatcha’ got cooking?
I’m a huge soup fan. I make soups all year long, but when it’s cold outside, I crave something hearty. It has to be an instant energy boost and taste blast that lasts until my next meal without leaving me hungry. Having really high soup standards, I want it to taste so good that I’m looking forward to it long before it’s time to eat. To be fair, that’s my standard for just about any recipe.
Stirring the pot
Am I the only person who finds it weirdly satisfying to stir a pot of soup? Once you put the liquid in, it’s a low-pressure cooking situation so you get to observe how the ingredients get friendly. Lentils add another dimension because they start to expand (and sometimes take over) as they cook. French lentils are a wonderful soup lentil because they don’t break down like red lentils, so they don’t take over your dish. No dis of the French lentils, they are the heart of my vegan French lentil soup.
There are so many things that make this vegan French lentil soup great, but I want to give a shout out to tarragon. Tarragon has a has a slightly bittersweet flavor and an aroma that reminds you of anise. I’ve started to use it more and more in recipes but be reminded – a little goes a long way. We’re going to use dry tarragon here, but if you opt for fresh, you’ll want to use less as it can overpower a dish. It’s the perfect spice for a vegan French lentil soup as it’s a staple in a lot of French recipes. Interestingly, tarragon has medicinal purposes such as digestion and is actually ground to make some medicines. Who knew?
When I first started learning to cook, I quickly understood that it’s best to add a little of certain ingredients because it’s easy to add more, but it’s almost impossible to reverse something like a zealous over-spice. A little at a time, more if needed. I can apply that concept to a lot of situations in life and I have a few regrets when I didn’t follow that protocol. Something to consider as we journey along. Tread lightly. Peace.Print
Hang onto this recipe because this is the only lentil soup recipe you’ll ever need. One pot, little fuss and so, so good.
- 1 onion diced (about 1 cup)
- 1 cup diced carrots
- 4 cloves garlic
- 2 tsp. tarragon
- 2 tsp. thyme
- 1 tsp. paprika (smoked paprika is recommended)
- 2 cups diced tomatoes
- 2 cups French lentils
- 8 cups vegetable broth
- 3 cups chopped kale
- Grab your soup pot and heat it up to medium, add the onions and carrots and sauté until the onions are soft (about 5 minutes). Add water a tablespoon at-a-time if they start to stick.
- Add the garlic, tarragon, thyme and paprika, sauté for about 30 seconds.
- Add the tomatoes, stir, cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Add ½ cup water if the tomatoes get too dry.
- Add the vegetable broth and lentils. Cover and simmer for 40-45 minutes or until the lentils are soft. (you’ll need to taste for this, poor you).
- Stir in the kale and allow it to soften for about 5-10 minutes.
- If you are not a huge fan of kale, substitute chopped spinach.
- Don’t be shy about using vegetable stock cubes in place of vegetable broth. I do it all the time.
- Vegan French lentil soup will keep in the fridge for 5 days and it freezes well. Set it out in the morning and reheat on the stove or nuke it.
Keywords: vegan French lentil soup plant-based