Nothing beats a warm, hearty soup on a cold, rainy day! This carrot lentil ginger soup is creamy and easy to make, making it the perfect choice for when you’re craving some comfort food.
As the name suggests, this soup heroes 3 ingredients – carrots, lentils, and ginger. Each of these ingredients contributes to this soup’s distinct flavor profile. Carrots provide a hint of sweetness, lentils provide a nice earthy flavor, and ginger adds warmth to the soup.
The vibrant color also makes it the perfect pick-me-up for a dreary winter’s day.
What lentil to use for soup?
I love using red lentils for soups and stews because they cook quite quickly. This soup simmers for about 30 minutes on the stove, and by then, the lentils have cooked and have practically dissolved into the soup!
How long to cook lentil soup?
Usually, 20 – 30 minutes will do. For this carrot lentil ginger soup recipe, I cook the soup for 30 minutes on the stove, until the lentils are cooked and the carrots are tender.
Can you freeze lentil soup?
Yes, you can. This is a great choice for meal prep, as you can make a big batch of soup and freeze it in small containers for later use. Store the soup in an airtight container and freeze for up to 3 – 4 months. Just thaw the soup in the refrigerator overnight and reheat it for a quick and comforting meal.
Ingredients for carrot lentil ginger soup
I use 3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped, for this recipe.
This recipe uses red lentils that cook quite quickly. However, you can substitute with other lentils, if you prefer. Just take note that the flavor profile may vary with different lentils.
Fresh ginger is used here. If you don’t have fresh ginger, you can also use ground ginger. Substitute the 1-inch ginger piece with 1 tsp ground ginger, and add it in along with the other ground spices, i.e. turmeric and paprika.
Spices add great warmth and flavor to soups. For this carrot lentil ginger soup, I’ve used 4 spices namely, cumin seeds and coriander seeds (which are tempered in hot oil to help release their flavor) along with turmeric and paprika.
Adding chicken stock definitely amps up the flavor of any soup! Plus, it also adds a nice umami flavor to the soup.
Chicken stock in cartons is hella expensive here in Malaysia! And making homemade chicken stock is too much hassle for this lazy home cook, so I opt for chicken stock cubes instead. For 6 cups of water, I use 2 Maggi chicken stock cubes.
For a vegetarian version, you can substitute chicken stock with vegetable stock or water.
How to make carrot lentil ginger soup?
Here’s how you make this simple yet hearty soup:
Start by tempering the whole spices.
Heat vegetable oil in a pot, before adding cumin seeds and coriander seeds. Fry the spices for about 1 minute.
Next, add the onions.
Sauté until onions brown and are caramelized, around 8 to 10 minutes. You can add ¼ tsp salt to the onions to draw out the moisture and help them brown faster.
Add garlic and ginger.
Once the onions start to brown, you can add chopped garlic and ginger. You don’t want to add the garlic in too early as it may get burnt.
Then, add the lentils, carrots, turmeric, and paprika.
Mix well and cook for 2 – 3 minutes. If the mixture is looking dry, add ¼ – ½ cup of water to prevent the spices from burning.
Pour in the chicken stock.
On high heat, bring to a boil. Once the stock starts boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cover the pot.
If you want to make this a vegetarian dish, you can substitute chicken stock for vegetable stock.
Let the soup simmer for 30 minutes.
During this time, the lentils will cook, and the carrots become nice and tender.
Blend the soup.
Use a stick blender to blend the soup into a thick consistency. Alternatively, you can do this in batches using a regular blender.
Finally, top the carrot lentil ginger soup with your favorite toppings.
I serve this soup with a drizzle of coconut milk for extra creaminess, chopped cilantro, and some bread on the side.
Tips for making carrot lentil ginger soup
Here are some quick tips to help you make this soup hassle-free:
- Don’t worry about chopping or mincing the aromatics finely. Once everything is cooked, it’s going straight into the blender to be pureed anyway, so a rough chop will do.
- If you’re using a regular blender, let the soup cool down a little before blending it in batches. Hot liquids can create pressure inside the blender, potentially causing the lid to blow off and hot soup to go everywhere, so be extra careful.
- When seasoning the soup, keep in mind that store-bought chicken stock or chicken stock cubes may already contain salt. Be stingy with the salt at first, and add more if needed once you blend and taste the soup.
- Once you blend the soup, if you find the consistency too thick for your liking, feel free to put the soup back on the stove and thin it out with a little hot water from the kettle. When the soup reaches your preferred consistency, taste and adjust the seasoning before serving.
What to serve with carrot lentil ginger soup?
This soup is great on its own, but it’s even better with some crusty bread on the side.
If you’re planning a dinner party or an at-home date night, this soup makes for a delicious starter. And here are some ideas for mains:
- Crispy Chicken Pesto Naan Pizza
- 10-Minute Air Fryer Salmon Fillets with roasted potatoes and a side salad
- Salmon Fish Biryani with raita
Carrot Lentil Ginger Soup
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- ½ tsp cumin seeds
- ½ tsp coriander seeds
- 1 red onion, chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1-inch ginger piece, chopped
- ¾ cups red lentils, rinsed
- 3 medium carrots, chopped
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp paprika
- 6 cups chicken stock
- Salt to taste
- Coconut milk
- Chopped cilantro
- Heat oil in a deep non-stick pot on medium high before adding cumin seeds and corianderseeds. Fry for about 1 minute.
- Next, add the onions. Sauté until onions brown, around 8 to 10 minutes.
- Add chopped garlic and ginger, and sauté for 2 minutes.
- Then, add the lentils, carrots, turmeric and paprika. Mix well and cook for 2 – 3 minutes.
- Pour in the stock and on high heat, bring to a boil. Once the water starts boiling, reduce the heat to low, cover the pot, and let the soup simmer for 30 minutes.
- Use a stick blender to blend the soup into a thick consistency. Alternatively, you can do this in batches using a regular blender.
- Serve with a drizzle of coconut milk for extra creaminess, chopped cilantro, and some bread on the side.
This soup is a great recipe to have in your repertoire for those cold, rainy or winter days. It’s hearty, warming, and very comforting. Do yourself a favor and make a big batch of this soup! Freeze any leftovers, so you can reheat them anytime you’re craving the kind of comfort only a warm bowl of soup can deliver.