This easy Crock Pot lentil soup is tasty, filling and just the perfect meal for a busy weeknight. A dump-and-start slow cooker soup has no business tasting that good!
Whether you’re still experimenting with your slow cooker or you’ve been using one for years, having a good Crock Pot lentil soup recipe is a must.
This lentil soup is one of my favorite things to cook in the Crock Pot. It’s a dump-and-start recipe, and most of the work you have to do for it is peeling and chopping some veggies.
Besides being one of those recipes you set and forget about, this red lentil soup is hearty, nutritious and budget-friendly.
It’s also a soup that you can make endless variations of, depending on what veggies and spices you happen to have in the house.
Why you’ll love this crock pot lentil soup
- It’s a naturally vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free and oil-free recipe that’s ridiculously easy to make.
- All the cooking time is hands-off, and you don’t have to saute the veggies first.
- It has bold and rich flavors despite being made with a handful of staple ingredients.
Ingredients and substitutions
Onion, carrot and celery — These veggies form the flavor base of the soup. You can also add some parsnip if you like. Dice the veggies as small or large as you want, as they’ll still be perfectly cooked in the Crock Pot.
Potatoes — If you want the potatoes to retain most of their shape in this soup, use a waxy variety. Floury potatoes tend to break down a lot, but they also help thicken the soup. You can also use baby potatoes — peeling is optional for those. Sweet potatoes are another option.
Red lentils — You don’t have to soak split red lentils before using them in this soup. Don’t substitute them with green or brown lentils because cooking times are different for those.
Spices — I used a mix of ground cumin, ground coriander and dried oregano to give this soup Indian-inspired flavors. You can also go down the Mediterranean way and use dried oregano, basil and marjoram or an Italian seasoning mix.
Vegan Worcestershire sauce — Many of the Worcestershire sauces available in supermarkets are not vegan because they contain fish sauce. Vegan options are available, like the one from Biona, for example, so make sure you pick one that has “vegan” on the bottle. Alternatively, you can substitute it with soy sauce.
Vegetable stock — Both homemade and shop-bought vegetable stock work well for this low cooker red lentil soup.
Lemon juice — This adds a bit of brightness and zing to the soup — feel free to adjust the quantity to your likening.
How to make red lentil soup in the slow cooker
Add the red onion, carrot, celery, potatoes and red lentil to the bowl of a slow cooker.
Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook for 4 hours on high or 7-8 hours on low.
Remove the bay leaves and stir in the lemon juice and chopped parsley.
Season to taste and serve hot, with some extra freshly chopped parsley on top if you like.
Leftovers and storage
- Leftovers will keep well in the fridge for up to 5 days in an airtight container.
- Reheat the red lentil soup on the stovetop or in the microwave.
- This soup freezes well, and you can store it for up to 2-3 months in a freezer-friendly container.
Recipe notes and tips
- Other veggies that you can add to this red lentil crockpot soup include broccoli, cauliflower, rutabaga (swede) and sweetcorn.
- The soup tastes great with toast, crusty bread, or tortilla chips. You can also top it with fresh cilantro and sliced chili peppers.
- For extra vitamins and brightness, stir in some baby spinach or kale at the end. Allow it to wilt for a couple of minutes — kale will need more time than spinach.
If you liked this Crock Pot lentil soup, you might also like some of my other easy vegan recipes with lentils:
- Vegan Chickpea and Lentil Curry
- Mujadara (Lebanese Lentils and Rice)
- Vegan Cuban Picadillo
- Vegan Butternut Squash Kale Soup with Lentils
- Sopa de Lentejas (Spanish Lentil Soup with Vegetables)