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Hearty, Healthy, Tomatoey Goya Lentil Soup Recipe

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This hearty lentil soup recipe is packed with so much flavor, protein, and veggies that it is hearty enough to be a main meal. And it takes less than 1 1/2 hours to make from start to finish! What could be better than that? It is one of our favorite soup recipes ever, so keep reading to learn how to make it. Your whole family will love it!


There are so many types of lentils: red lentils, green lentils, Puy lentils, black lentils, etc., but in this soup we were using plain old brown lentils. If your bag of dried lentils is simply labeled “lentils”, chances are that they are brown lentils. In this recipe, we are using brown Goya lentils.

Brown lentils have a delicious, mild, earthy flavor that is perfect for soups. 


We are confident that this soup will make it into your arsenal of healthy recipes to make. We make this classic lentil soup recipe all the time and it has become a favorite of all our family and friends! 

Best of all, it uses ingredients that most people already have on hand, so your grocery list will not be long. 


First, add about 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil into a medium pot or dutch oven and heat oil for 1-2 minutes over medium heat. Add 1 cup of diced carrots, 1 cup of diced celery, and 2 cups diced onion. You can use white or yellow onion for this soup. 

Cook vegetables for about 5 minutes and stir regularly. 


Add 3 large minced garlic cloves to the pot and stir well. Then add 1 tsp ground cumin, 1 tsp thyme, 1/2 tsp turmeric, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper. Stir well and turn heat down to low and cook for a minute before proceeding.

Add one 14oz can of diced fire roasted tomatoes and one 14oz can of whole, baby San Marzano tomatoes.  If you can’t find the baby San Marzano tomatoes, you can substitute with a 14 oz can of crushed tomatoes (San Marzano if you can find it). 

These are wonderful tomatoes to use, and the quality matters!

Next, measure out 1 cup of dry lentils (we like Goya brown lentils), rinse them in a colander, and place the lentils in the pot. 

Next add 6 cups of broth. We normally use chicken broth, and homemade chicken broth is best! But if you don’t have any on hand or don’t want to make it, you can used a good boxed chicken stock, or better yet, use Better Than Bouillon soup bases.

We love Better Than Bouillon because it gives you a much more flavorful broth than boxed chicken broth. 

If you’re using Better than Bouillon, add 6 cups of water to the pot. The directions on the label say to add 1 teaspoon of Better than Bouillon to one cup of water, but start off with half the amount and add more if you need to. We find that full strength can be a little overpowering!


If you want to make the soup vegetarian, you can use vegetable broth instead or use the seasoned vegetable Better Than Bouillon base.  Or if you prefer beef flavor instead, you can make a beef broth using Better Than Bouillon roasted beef base. 

Once you’ve added the broth, add a bay leaf (optional) and turn your pot on medium-high heat until it starts to boil.


Once it is boiling, reduce the heat to low, cover pot, and let it simmer for about an hour or until the lentils are cooked, but not mushy. Check your pot periodically and stir occasionally. 

After the lentils are cooked, remove the bay leaf if you added one, and add 1 tablespoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice. Stir well. This will balance out and brighten the flavors. 

Turn off the heat, and use an immersion blender to lightly pulse the soup. You don’t want it all pureed, so just a few quick pulses will do! If you don’t have an immersion blender, you can take 1-2 cups of the soup, place in a blender to puree and pour back into the pot. Add more salt and pepper to taste if needed. 

Lastly, add 6 oz of baby spinach. Let it sit for 1-2 minutes, and serve! If you are making the soup for meal prep and you’re planning on serving it right away, it’s best to add a little spinach after you’ve warmed your soup back up.

When your individual serving of soup is heated up, simply add a a handful of spinach, stir it in, and you have a hearty soup ready to enjoy. 


This soup is delicious served with a side salad and a nice crusty bread like our easy, crusty, no-knead country bread. This soup is a great choice to enjoy on a cold, rainy day!

It’s also wonderful to use for meal preparation if you freeze individual portions of this soup. Be sure not to miss our blog post on our favorite way to freeze soup. It is a game changer!


Goya Lentil Soup Recipe

Yield: 6-8 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes

A hearty, filling, and delicious, tomatoey lentil soup.


  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 2 cups diced onion (yellow or white)
  • 3 large, minced cloves of garlic
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • One 14oz can diced fire roasted tomatoes
  • One 14oz can whole, baby San Marzano tomatoes (or a can of crushed San Marzano tomatoes)
  • 6 cups of chicken broth (homemade is best!)
  • 1 cup, dry, Goya lentils (brown lentils)
  • 1 bay leaf (optional)
  • 6 oz fresh, baby spinach
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice


  1. Into a medium pot or dutch oven, add 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil. Turn your burner on medium heat.
  2. After 1-2 minutes, add the carrots, celery and onion.
  3. Cook for about 5 minutes and stir often.
  4. Add the minced garlic and stir. Then add the cumin, thyme, turmeric, salt, pepper and stir well.
  5. Turn heat down to low and cook for a minute before proceeding.
  6. Add the two cans of tomatoes and stir.
  7. Rinse the dry lentils in a colander, and add to the pot.
  8. Add the chicken broth to the pot and stir well. Add the bay leaf (optional). Turn to medium-high heat.
  9. Once it is boiling, reduce heat to low, cover pot, and simmer for 1 hour or until lentils are cooked but not mushy.
  10. Remove the bay leaf and add the fresh lemon juice and stir.
  11. Turn the heat off and use an immersion blender to give it a few quick pulses. This will give the soup a thicker consistency. You don't want it all pureed, just partially.
  12. Right before serving, add the fresh spinach, stir, and you're ready to serve!


Using homemade chicken broth is best, but you can use Better Than Bouillon chicken roasted chicken base as a shortcut.

You can easily make the soup vegetarian if you use veggie broth instead of chicken broth.

If you don't have an immersion blender, add 1-2 cups of the soup in a blender, and then return it to the pot.

This soup also freezes well so you can have it on hand whenever you need it! The lentils may lose their shape, but it is still delicious.

Like most soups, this is better the next day so if you can make it ahead of time, it will be even better. Wait to add the spinach until right before serving.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 160Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 4mgSodium: 1086mgCarbohydrates: 19gFiber: 6gSugar: 8gProtein: 6g

Nutrition values are merely estimates and aren't always accurate.

If you’ve tried making this Goya lentil soup recipe, comment below and let us know how you liked it! And if you’ve enjoyed this soup, you will also love our 15 bean soup recipe that we make in our Instant Pot!

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