This carrot and lentil soup tastes like you spent hours in the kitchen but only takes 30 minutes to make! It's hearty, nutritious, and super flavorful.
Creamy Carrot Lentil Soup
Soups are my go-to when someone in the family isn't feeling well (school germs are the worst!! ), it's a chilly day, or whenever I am in need of a dish that doesn’t require a lot of fuss.
This beautifully hued and flavor-packed soup couldn't be easier to make! And as with all my recipes, I try very hard to include simple ingredients that are easily accessible. You may have most, if not all, of these ingredients on hand right now.
Hearty red lentils with creamy coconut milk and other nourishing ingredients, you are going to be amazed by how filling this soup is.
So cozy, warm, and comforting, you are going to love this meal!
I am highlighting just the ones that need further explanation. The complete list is in the recipe card below.
- Lentils - make the soup thick, creamy, and filling! They are an excellent source of plant-based protein, iron (THE most essential nutrient for babies), and fiber. Red lentils work best for this soup as they cook quickly and become the softest.
- Carrots - add natural sweetness to the soup.
- Vegetable broth - adds liquid and great flavor. do NOT substitute with water.
- Coconut milk - You really want to use a good creamy coconut milk without any emulsifiers and stabilizers. I really love Arroy-D and Chaokoh. Purchase extra and add to so many dishes, like this one pot poached cod with orzo.
- Warm spices - the combination of ground cumin, turmeric, and smoked paprika is magical in this soup!
May be interested in: Lentils for Babies
- Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven or pot over medium heat. Cook the onion for 2-3 minutes.
- Add garlic, carrots, celery, and all the spices. Cook for an additional 6-8 minutes.
- Add the lentils, broth, and coconut milk. Bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered for 20 minutes or so.
Enjoy the soup 2 ways - as is or add to a high speed blender (I've had mine for 8+ years and I can't live without it!) or use an immersion blender and blend until smooth.
You can also blend half and keep the rest chunky (just like this iron-rich baby pasta). Note that the color will more orange once pureed.
- Feel free to substitute carrots with sweet potatoes or butternut squash! They are all great sources of beta carotene, and the soup will be just as creamy and delicious.
- No lentils? Try with white beans or chickpeas.
- Top with some grated cheese, like parmesan or cheddar, for extra richness and flavor!
This healthy soup can stand on its own as a meal topped with some fresh cilantro or parsley, lemon juice, or Greek yogurt (all optional).
This soup is thick so you can preload onto a spoon and place on the tray/table or directly in their hand.
Soups are hard for a lot of toddlers and young children. What I encourage is to include something that they like. That way if they don't want to eat the soup, for whatever reason, there will be something that you know they will eat.
Otherwise, you may have to resort to making another meal, which will further promote picky eating.
Be sure to cool the soup to room temperature before transferring to an airtight container(s).
Store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat on the stovetop over medium heat until warmed through or in the microwave.
You can also freeze for up to 3 months. To thaw, place the soup in the fridge overnight and reheat.
Frequently Asked Questions
I like red lentils because they break down nicely, adding to the creaminess of the soup. You can use brown or green lentils ONLY if intending to enjoy chunky. That's because the texture of these lentils is not ideal pureed.
You can use canned lentils too. Since they are already cooked, add them in during the last 5 minutes of cooking.
Unlike many other legumes, they don’t need to be soaked prior. If you’d like to you can. You do want to rinse before cooking to eliminate any impurities.
You will notice that the soup gets thicker as it cools. If you want it to be soupier, feel free to add additional broth or water to desired consistency.
More Healthy Soup Ideas
Did you make this recipe? Leave a rating below and let me know how you liked the recipe! Your feedback means so much to me!
Carrot and Lentil Soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small yellow onion, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 pound carrots, diced
- 4 stalks celery, diced
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 ½ cups red lentils (300g)
- 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
- 15 ounce can full-fat coconut milk
- Toppings (optional): Fresh cilantro or parsley, yogurt, cheese
- Heat oil in a large Dutch oven or pot over medium heat. Saute the onion until soft, about 2 minutes. Add garlic, carrots, celery, and all the spices. Cook for an additional 6-8 minutes.
- Add the lentils, broth, and coconut milk. Stir to combine and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes, or until lentils and vegetables are tender. Be sure to stir occasionally.
- Enjoy the soup as is or add to a high speed blender and blend until smooth. You can also blend half and keep the rest chunky.
- Serve with fresh herbs like cilantro or parsley and some yogurt or cheese.
- Transfer to an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months.