Spicy Lentil Soup

Do you like a bit of kick in your food once in awhile? If so, you’re really going to love this Spicy Lentil Soup. The first time I ever tried this soup, we had gone cross-country skiing and we were SO hungry! My sister-in-law had this soup ready for us and boy, did it taste delicious!

I was so thankful to have warm soup, but I was even more thankful that it was so flavorful. I asked her for the recipe on the spot. I noticed that I wasn’t the only one to do so. It’s that good!two bowls of orange colored blended soup in burgundy bowls topped with green cilantro

Why You’ll Love Spicy Lentil Soup 

  • This soup is simple to make. Even beginner cooks can follow this recipe to perfection. 
  • Perfect for cold days. I like a little spice in my soup, which makes this recipe perfect for those cold days where you’re craving something hearty! 
  • This recipe doesn’t require many ingredients, so it’s perfect for a budget friendly meal. 
  • Freezer friendly, this is a soup recipe that you can enjoy anytime you like.

Spicy Lentil Soup Ingredients

  • 2 Chopped Onions – This recipe starts off strong with 2 chopped onions. I like to chop them up finely. 
  • Olive Oil – This ingredient is going to help cook down the onion and spices. 
  • Garlic Cloves – For flavor, you are going to need garlic gloves for this recipe. You can use whatever garlic you have in whatever form. 
  • Ground Cumin – Another delicious spice that is needed to help bring this lentil soup to life. 
  • Paprika – You wouldn’t think that paprika would taste good in a soup, but it adds sooo much flavor. 
  • Cayenne pepper – Now for the star of the show, you are going to need cayenne pepper because that’s where the kick comes from. Add more to make it spicier or less if your spice tolerance is lower.
  • Chicken or Vegetable Broth – You are going to need around 7 cups of chicken broth. You can use store bought or homemade.
  • Dry Red Lentils – Please make sure you rinse the lentils prior to putting them in this recipe. 
  • Tomato Paste and Bay Leaf for flavor.
  • Evaporated Milk – Regular milk does not lend itself well to freezing but evaporated milk does.
  • Salt and Pepper

How to Make on the Stovetop 

  1. Cover and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.
  2. Reduce heat and simmer for 25-30 minutes or until lentils are tender.
  3. Discard the bay leaf.
  4. Blend half the soup in the blender until smooth or use a hand blender in the pot for all the soup.
  5. Return to the saucepan and stir in 1 can of evaporated milk and season with desired amount of salt and pepper.

How to Freeze Spicy Lentil Soup 

  1. Add all ingredients to a resealable freezer bag AFTER it cools off! 
  2. Remove the excess air and seal. Place in the freezer until you are ready to thaw and enjoy. 

Note: Since this soup is cooked before freezing, it’s ideal for freezing in smaller portions. Simply use quart sized bags instead of a single gallon sized bag. 

How to Reheat the Spicy Lentil Soup 

  1. Thaw. 
  2. Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop.
  3. Top with fresh cilantro if desired. 

burgundy bowl with blended orange soup topped with fresh cilantro

FAQs for Spicy Lentil Soup

What kind of lentils should I use for spicy lentil soup?

You can use any type of lentils for spicy lentil soup, but red or yellow lentils are a popular choice as they cook quickly and have a creamy texture.

Can I freeze spicy lentil soup?

Yes, you can freeze spicy lentil soup for up to three months. Simply allow the soup to cool, then transfer it to an airtight container or bag and store it in the freezer. When ready to eat, thaw the soup in the refrigerator overnight and reheat on the stovetop or in the microwave.

Can I add other vegetables to my spicy lentil soup?

Yes, you can add vegetables such as carrots, celery, or spinach to your spicy lentil soup for added nutrition and flavor. Just be sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly to ensure that all of the vegetables are cooked through.

Is spicy lentil soup vegan-friendly?

Yes, spicy lentil soup is often vegan-friendly as it typically does not contain any animal products. However, it’s always best to check the ingredients to be sure. This recipe is as long as you use vegetable broth.

Can I use canned lentils for my spicy lentil soup?

Yes, you can use canned lentils for your soup to save time. Simply drain and rinse the lentils before using them in the recipe. Keep in mind that canned lentils may be softer than dried lentils, so adjust the cooking time accordingly.

Spicy Lentil Soup
Prep Time
45 mins
Cook Time
7 mins
Course: Soup
Servings: 6
  • 2 onions chopped
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1/2 - 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 7 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 1/2 cups dry red lentils rinsed
  • 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 354 mL evaporated milk
  • salt and pepper to taste
Assembly Instructions:
  1. Sauté chopped onions in olive oil.

  2. Add garlic cloves, cumin, paprika, and cayenne pepper and cook for one minute.

  3. Add lentils, tomato paste, bay leaf, and broth.

  4. Cover and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.

  5. Reduce heat and simmer 25-30 minutes or until lentils are tender.
  6. Discard bay leaf.
  7. Use a hand blender to blend the soup in the pot until smooth.

  8. Stir in 1 can evaporated milk.

  9. Simmer 5 minutes longer until hot.

  10. Add salt and pepper.
  11. When cooled, add to one large or several medium sized resealable freezer bags. Remove excess air, seal, and freeze.

Reheating Instructions:
  1. Thaw. Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop.

  2. Garnish with fresh cilantro.