Soup can be made into a healthy, balanced meal instead of making it as a simple appetizer or side dish. Chicken soup has strips of chicken in it and ramen often has slices of meat mixed in. But, that’s not going to work when you’re a vegetarian or vegan.
One way is to use a meat substitute, such as soy curls. Another option is to replace the meat with another protein source, such as legumes. That seems to be the best way to get your proteins without meat.
Knowing this, I immediately searched for a vegan soup inspiration. Naturally, Jamie Oliver’s tomato and red lentil soup caught my eye. It’s such an easy soup to make and the recipe is totally vegan!
While the recipe instructs us to chop and cut up the veggies while cooking, I chose to do that beforehand because I like to be organized and neat.
How nutritious is this soup?
This soup recipe offers a complete meal! Lentils are high in fiber and protein while tomatoes are rich in Vitamin C and other antioxidants. Meanwhile, spinach has potassium, magnesium, and vitamins B6, B9, and E.
Instead of white potatoes, the soup makes use of sweet potatoes, which are rich in phytochemicals like beta carotene and anthocyanins.
All these nutrients help in increasing your energy, strengthening the immune system, boost blood circulation, and ultimately improve your overall health.
This list of health benefits could go on and on, but what I have learned from my research is enough to convince me this is the kind of soup that would benefit me and my family. Now, the only question is: will my kids take to it as they did with my previous soups made with asparagus, broccoli, and cauliflower?
Which herbs and spices can you use?
This tomato and red lentil soup is a Jamie Oliver copycat, which means the herbs and spices I used were exactly the same. It has a sort of Indian flavor because of the coriander, turmeric, and cumin. However, if these were not to your taste, you could exchange them with basil, oregano, and thyme — making it with a more Italian flair.
Red lentils cook faster, but if you’re replacing them with brown or green lentils, make sure you adjust the cooking time. Green lentils, in particular, take longer to soften.
When using green or brown lentils, make sure you don’t add the tomatoes first. Acidic ingredients can prevent lentils from softening. Also, be sure to buy fresh lentils. The ones that remained in storage for a long time don’t turn out well.
How long can you keep the soup in the fridge?
Store the soup in an air-tight container. It can stay edible and nearly fresh in the fridge for up to 3 days. However, the broth may thicken up while in the fridge. Add water to thin the broth before you pop it in the microwave or in the pot to reheat it.Print