You're going to love our flavorful, well-balanced, and comforting Tomato Lentil Soup. Made in one pot, this quick and easy weeknight meal is not only delicious but healthy and satisfying.
We combine the warming flavors of curry and ginger that complement the tomato base and add a touch of coconut milk to round out the spices.
Why Our Tomato Lentil Soup Recipe Works
SIMPLE - One pot is all you need, so cleanup is easy.
FLAVORFUL - The combination of curry, ginger, and tomatoes packs a lot of taste into every spoonful.
NUTRITIOUS - Lentils make this soup filling and good for you, providing plenty of protein and fiber.
Please check the recipe card below for a detailed, printable ingredient list.
VEGETABLE OIL - Serves as the base for sautéing the aromatics, ensuring that every flavor is fully released.
CURRY POWDER and GARAM MASALA - These spices are key to the soup's signature flavor, offering a blend of warmth, spice, and complexity.
RED LENTILS - Chosen for their quick cooking time and ability to thicken the soup naturally, lending a creamy texture without the cream.
CRUSHED TOMATOES and TOMATO PUREE - These give the soup its rich and tangy foundation, evening out the hearty flavors of the lentils and spices. If you like your soup a bit spicier you can also use fire-roasted tomatoes.
VEGETABLE BROTH - It deepens the soup's flavors while keeping everything vegetarian-friendly. But you can also use chicken broth instead.
COCONUT CREAM - Introduces a silky, luxurious element that softens the spice and adds a subtle sweetness.
How To Make Tomato and Lentil Soup
Please check the printable recipe card below for more detailed instructions.
- Heat vegetable oil in a heavy-bottomed pot and sweat diced onion until soft.
- Add minced garlic and ginger, frying for fragrance and flavor. Stir in curry powder and garam masala.
- Add red lentils, crushed tomatoes, tomato puree, and chicken broth.
- Season, then simmer to cook lentils and meld flavors.
CHICKEN - Add some shredded rotisserie chicken to the pot a few minutes before serving.
Planning and Leftovers
MAKE AHEAD - I find the flavors are more developed when it is eaten the next day. I like to make a big double batch of this soup to always have on hand.
STORE - If you've got leftovers, pop them in an airtight container and into the fridge. They'll stay good for up to five days, making your weeknight dinners a breeze.
FREEZE - One of the best parts about this soup is how well it freezes. You can stash it in the freezer for up to three months, and when you reheat it, it's like you just made it fresh.
REHEAT - Warm the soup over low heat, adding a little water or broth if it's too thick to bring back its original consistency.
EXPERT TIP - How to cut fresh ginger. After peeling ginger, cut it lengthwise into thin strips and then cut those strips in a crosswise fashion. It’s best to use young fresh ginger as the older ginger contains more strands and is harder to cut nicely.
Recipe Success Tips
- This recipe can easily be doubled (photos show the recipe doubled)
- There are many different types of lentil varieties. Red lentils are excellent because they cook quickly and naturally thicken the soup. Another option is to use yellow lentils; these are somewhat similar to red lentils in that they have a nice mild flavor, but you may need to alter the cooking time for them to soften.
- You can easily adapt this recipe to make it vegetarian by replacing the chicken broth with water or vegetable broth.
- If you prefer a spicier version, use a spicy curry powder and add ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes.
- The can of coconut cream may have a very thick appearance when it is opened. Give it a good stir before adding it to your soup.
- If you don’t have garam masala on hand, it’s not a dealbreaker. You can substitute garam masala for an extra ½ teaspoon of curry and ½ teaspoon of cinnamon
- Curry powder has an ingredient called turmeric, which has an intense yellow. It can stain any white cooking tool, so be mindful of this.
Commonly Asked Questions
Can I substitute the coconut milk for something else?
If you can’t find coconut cream, coconut milk will also work, or failing that. You could also stir sour cream or yogurt into the soup (replacing the coconut cream with equal amounts of what you like).
More Easy and Delicious Soups
TORTELLINI SOUP - Hearty tortellini in a savory broth.
CURRIED PUMPKIN SOUP - Pumpkin soup with a hearty twist.
LASAGNA SOUP - Lasagna flavors in a soup.
OLD-FASHIONED POTATO SOUP - Classic creamy potato goodness.
HAMBURGER SOUP - A family favorite.
Please take a moment to rate our Lentil and Tomato Soup recipe below!
Lentil Tomato Soup
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 large onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons ginger fresh, peeled & minced (about a 3-inch piece)
- 2 teaspoons curry powder
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- 1 cup red lentils rinsed
- 2 cups crushed tomatoes
- 1 can (6-ounce) tomato puree
- 3 cups vegetable broth divided
- 1 can (13.5-ounce) coconut cream unsweetened, divided
- Heat oil in a heavy-bottomed pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion and fry until translucent and soft, about 2 to 3 minutes.
- Stir in the garlic and ginger and fry until soft and the ginger becomes fragrant. Add the curry powder and garam masala, stirring until well combined. Add lentils to the curry mixture and stir until they are coated in the spices.
- Pour in the crushed tomatoes, tomato puree, and 2 cups of broth. Stir in 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and cover to simmer for 15 minutes.
- Stir in half of the can of coconut cream. Continue to simmer, covered for 10 minutes or until the lentils have softened. Add remaining broth, if needed, to the desired consistency. If desired, season the soup with additional salt and pepper to taste.
- To serve, ladle into soup bowls and top with a few cilantro leaves, a squeeze of lime, and coconut cream.