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Hearty Vegan Lentil Soup (1 Pot)

Full of veggies and hearty lentils, this Vegan Lentil Soup is rich in protein and fiber and so much healthier than canned soup! Plus, it’s easy to make using the stovetop, Instant Pot, or Slow Cooker!

top down view of pot with fresh cooked vegan lentil soup.

I needed a new lentil soup in my life – and here it is!

It’s perfectly spiced and loaded with an assortment of veggies for a delicious year-round lentil soup we can’t seem to get enough of – and we think you’ll agree!

Why We Love This Recipe!

  • Super easy! This one-pot recipe uses everyday ingredients and is ready in about 45 minutes from start to finish. You can even use frozen veggies for a quicker prep time.
  • It’s healthy! It’s nourishing and well-balanced. Full of plant-based protein and healthy fiber. It also includes an oil-free option for a heart-healthy and virtually fat-free lentil soup.
  • We’ve added various cooking methods for ease of use. And if you have leftovers, they are even better the next day!

Without further ado, let’s make soup du jour!

Ingredient Notes

Here’s everything you’ll need, plus substitution ideas for ‘your’ perfect vegan lentil soup. Measurements can be found in the recipe card below.

  • Lentils – These are the main protein source in this recipe. You can use either brown or green lentils in the recipe. If using green lentils, you’ll need to add a few minutes of cooking time, as noted in the recipe card below.
  • Mirepoix – The usual mix of onion, carrot, and celery makes a great flavor base while adding color and texture.
  • Garlic – If you don’t have fresh garlic on hand, substitute with 1 teaspoon of garlic powder.
  • Potatoes – Use waxy potatoes such as red, white, or Yukon gold, as they hold their shape nicely when simmered. I used baby potatoes here, but the regular size is great too. Sub with sweet potato or butternut squash for variation.
  • Green Beans – Use fresh or frozen.
  • Tomatoes – Use canned for convenience or fresh if roma tomatoes are in season.
  • Greens – I used a packaged baby kale & spinach mix, but you can use whatever greens you like – spinach, rainbow chard, beet greens or kale.
  • Spices – Together, the paprika, cumin, and curry add a deep, warming flavor that I have fallen in love with. This is a delicious combination, and I know you’ll love it too! For variation, I think thyme, Italian seasoning, or herbs de Provence would be a great substitution for the cumin and curry.
  • Vegetable Broth – We like using Better Than Bouillon Veg Paste (affiliate link) to control sodium and strength. I used just under 1 teaspoon for this recipe. The jar can be stored in the refrigerator and lasts a long time.
  • Parsley & Lemon – Adds a finishing touch, adding brightness and freshness.

Can I Use A Frozen Mix of Vegetables?

Yes! For ease, this lentil soup recipe can be made using 3 – 4 cups of any frozen vegetable mix. The amount will depend on if you include other veggies from the recipe. We recommend using a classic medley of carrots, peas, green beans, and/or corn. Simply saute the onion and garlic, and add the veggies to replace the fresh carrots, celery, green beans, and/or potatoes when adding the lentils.

side by side photos showing the process of making vegan lentil soup.

How To Make Vegan Lentil Soup

Making vegan lentil soup is as easy as can be!

Here are the steps for the stovetop method with photos for reference. Slow cooker or Instant Pot methods only take a few adjustments, as noted below.

  • Start by sauteing the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic. Add the paprika, cumin, and curry, and saute for 1 minute more.
  • Add the tomatoes, green beans, potatoes, and lentils, and pour the broth over the top.
  • Simmer the soup for 30 minutes.
side by side photos showing the process of adding spinach and lemon to vegan lentil soup.
  • Just before the soup is done, about 5 minutes, stir in the spinach and cook until wilted.
  • Remove from heat, and add a bit of lemon. Season with salt and pepper.

And that’s it – now you are ready to enjoy a cozy bowl of soup!

More Cooking Methods

How to make vegan lentil soup in an INSTANT POT: Add the ingredients, except the greens, to the bowl of your pressure cooker. Place the lid on the Instant Pot and set the release valve to the SEALED position. Press the MANUAL button and set the timer to 15 minutes. Once finished, set the valve to quick release or let it release pressure on its own (takes about 20 minutes). Remove the lid, and stir in the greens.

How to make lentil soup in a SLOW COOKER: This is the set-it-and-forget-it method! Simply add the ingredients, except the greens, to the crock pot bowl. Cover with lid and set on HIGH for 4 – 5 hours or LOW for 8 – 10 hours. Add greens, let them wilt, and serve!

top down view of pot with fresh cooked vegan lentil soup with items surrounding.

How To Store, Freeze + Reheat

  • Refrigerator: Leftovers can be stored for 5 – 6 days in a covered container. This makes for a great meal prep idea!
  • Freezer: Will keep for 2 – 3 months in the freezer.  To freeze, let cool completely and store in freezer-safe containers (affiliate link), leaving 1/2 inch headspace for expansion. Let thaw before reheating. You can also freeze larger portions in large ziplock bags.
  • Reheat: Simply rewarm on the stovetop over low heat until warmed through. Alternatively, reheat in the microwave using 30 – 60-second intervals, stirring after each interval, until warm.
  • Make ahead: This soup is great for meal prepping for the week and tastes even better the next day.

Serving Suggestions

Turn your bowl of lentil soup into a full, well-rounded meal with any of these delicious recipes!

top down view of vegan lentil soup in a bowl with items surrounding.

More Vegan Soup Recipes!

Let me know if you’ve tried this recipe! Leave a comment and rate it below. I love to hear what you think, or any changes you make.



5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

5 from 42 reviews

Filled with hearty vegetables and made in 1 pot, this vegan lentil soup is super hearty, healthy, and ready in about 45 minutes!

  • Author: Julie | The Simple Veganista
  • Prep Time: 15 min
  • Cook Time: 40 min
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6
  • Category: Entree, Soup
  • Method: Stovetop, Instant Pot, Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: Vegan


Units Scale
  • 1/4 cup water or 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 23 carrots (about 1 cup), diced
  • 2 celery ribs, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 can (14oz) diced tomatoes with juices, or 23 roma tomatoes diced
  • 1 lb. baby potatoes, diced
  • 1 1/2 cups dried brown or green lentils
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry
  • 6 cups water or low-sodium broth, + more as needed
  • 2 handfuls of baby spinach or kale
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup parsley, chopped
  • mineral salt & pepper, to taste


Stovetop (see notes for more cooking options):

Saute: In large dutch oven or pot, heat water/olive oil over medium heat. Add onion, carrots, celery, and garlic, saute for 5 minutes. Add the paprika, curry, and cumin, saute 1 minute, or until fragrant.

Simmer: Add the green beans, tomatoes, potatoes, lentils, and liquids, give a good stir and bring to a boil, turn heat to low, cover askew and simmer for 30 – 35 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add greens: 5 minutes before soup is done, stir in the greens. Add more water if needed, maybe up to 1 cup. Add lemon juice and season with salt & pepper. 

Serve: Ladle into soup bowls and top with a sprinkle of fresh chopped parsley and squeeze of lemon juice for an extra touch of brightness. Pairs great with homemade vegan cornbread, vegan naan or artisan bread

Serves 6

Store: Leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for 4 – 5 days. store covered. To keep longer, store in the freezer in freezer-safe containers for 2 – 3 months.


Lentils: If using green lentils, they tend to take a little longer to cook, add another 5 – 10 minutes on the stovetop and 2 minutes in the Instant Pot.

Herbs: For a different flavor profile, try substituting the cumin and curry for 1 teaspoon of thyme, Italian seasoning, or Herbes de Provence.

Potato: Sub regular potatoes with sweet potatoes or butternut squash for variation.

Night-Shade Free: Omit the diced tomatoes, paprika, and curry. In place of the cumin, try another flavor profile by adding 2 – 3 teaspoons of Italian seasoning, herbs de Provence, or any combination of thyme, rosemary, oregano, basil, etc.

Make this recipe prep-friendly by subbing most of the fresh veggies with 3 – 4 cups of a frozen vegetable medley. Saute the onion and garlic, add the frozen veggies with the lentils and continue as directed.


More Cooking Methods:

  • Instant Pot: Add the ingredients, except the leafy greens and water/oil, to the bowl of your pressure cooker. Place the lid on the Instant Pot and set the release valve to the SEALED position. Press the MANUAL button and set the timer at 15 minutes. Once finished, set valve to quick release or let it release pressure on its own (takes about 20 minutes). Remove lid, stir in the greens. Season with salt & pepper taste.
  • Slow Cooker: Add the ingredients, except the leafy greens and water/oil, to the bowl of your crock pot. Cover with lid. Set on HIGH for 4 – 5 hours or LOW for 8 – 10 hours. Add greens, let them wilt. Season with salt & pepper to taste.

Nutritional information is calculated without oil and using 2 cups of vegetable broth.

Web Story: https://simple-veganista.com/web-stories/hearty-vegan-lentil-soup/

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  1. Delicious, added a little more spice but that was all. Absolutely loved it

  2. Made this tonight and really enjoyed it. But I also added 2 tablespoons of tomato paste, the juice of one large orange and a pinch of nutmeg. For me, it added just a little something extra to an already very delicious soup.

  3. Delicious, didn’t change a thing.

  4. Linda Vasconi says:

    Wonderful combination of flavors and hearty soup! Excellent!

  5. I added white mushrooms and used sugar peas instead of beans. Very tasty and I think would be great served with naan .

  6. Do I need to soak the lentils like the lentils package says before using? Thanks

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Lentils do not require soaking, but doing so can reduce cooking time by about half and aid indigestion. If you have trouble with gas and bloating after eating lentils, you may want to soak them to help ease digestion, aiming for a minimum of 2 hours and a maximum of 12. Soaking them to reduce cooking time is great for those trying to conserve energy (but it ends up consuming extra water and taking longer to make the recipe). I hope that helps! :)

  7. Help! I had already cooked lentils & used them in this delicious recipe when I made it the first time. I’m making it again and I would really like to know if you **soak the lentils** before you cook them. I had soaked and then cooked the lentils beforehand when I made this the first time. Surprisingly they weren’t mushy and it was great! Thank you! Help!

  8. Lidia Bayliss says:

    Thank you for sharing this recipe. I’ve made it several times and change up the veggies and/or broth depending on what I have. I do though double the cumin and paprika. It’s a very comforting soup!

  9. Barb Hilliard says:

    I can’t stop making this!! The recipe as – is: is perfect. I serve with crumbled feta. This time I tried adding sun dried tomatoes (maybe 4 oz?) and dried chili flakes. I took a photo after everything was added….

  10. Made this today. I have never made a soup before and this was just awesome! I added the ingredients I had in my store on a rainy Sunday so not exactly everything written; I have substituted a few veggies for other veggies. A member of the family is vegetarian and others not…. No left overs! Just saying. Definitely remaking this. Thank you

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