It’s so much fun to create recipes for my TV segments on AM Northwest, and this delicious soup is no exception! I wanted to make a really flavorful soup that goes together quickly. I also wanted it to be hearty and filling, and full of fiber. Well, I believe I hit all of the notes with this soup!
I have found myself in love with a local artisan brand of curry pastes here in Portland, called Thai Home. They are incredible and you can taste all the flavors from lime to lemongrass. But, if you’re not in Portland, don’t worry. There are many brands of red curry pastes in stores that you can buy (and online, like this one from Thai Kitchen or this Portland brand Thai and True). If you are sensitive to gluten or peanuts, or are plant-based or vegan, make sure to check the ingredient list on the curry paste. Of course, if you have time, you can make your own red curry paste at home too. But using store-bought makes this soup as quick as can be, which is what you need on a busy weeknight.
Oh, and one more thing that I forgot to mention. This soup is a perfect candidate for batch cooking. If you haven’t tried batch cooking yet, I highly recommend it. On a day when you have some time to cook, make big batches of soups or beans and grains, and freeze them in individual (or family-sized) portions. That way you can have healthy meals at the ready, and don’t have to order out or run to the store. This is one of the reasons that I love having a big pressure cooker like this one or this one (or this electric one). You can cook large quantities of food with very little effort.
Even if you are just looking for a great meatless Monday option, this soup fits the bill. I hope that you give it a try! Let me know if you do, and make sure to tag me on Instagram @julieskitchenette. Oh, and below is the video from AM Northwest, making the soup and talking about virgin coconut oil: )
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 large onion, finely diced
4 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
5 cups hot water
1 1/2 cups red lentils, rinsed
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
2-3 tablespoons Thai red curry paste (depending on brand and how strong you want the flavor to be)
1 1/2 tablespoons Better Than Bouillon vegan No Chicken Base or your favorite bouillon
1 cup canned coconut milk (add 1/2 cup for a lighter soup)
1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
Chopped cilantro (about 1 bunch, or to taste)
Diced fresh or dried chilies, optional
In a stockpot or pressure cooker, heat oil over medium high. Cook the onion until softened and lightly golden, about 5 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for another 2 minutes. Add the hot water and lentils and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat, and cover partially with a lid. Cook the soup for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the lentils are soft and tender. If using a pressure cooker, seal top and cook the soup for 10 minutes at high pressure. Let the pressure come down naturally, or if you’re in a hurry, release pressure after 5 minutes.
To the cooked lentils, add the crushed tomatoes, curry paste, and bouillon, stirring well. Add the coconut milk, salt, and adjust seasonings to taste. You can add more curry paste, salt, or dried chilies, depending on how spicy and bold you like your soup. Bring to a simmer, stir in the cilantro, and cook for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and serve hot.
This recipe can be doubled.
Gluten-Free + Vegan
Keywords: plant based, gluten-free, vegan, red lentil, Thai curry