Protein-Packed Soup

Lentils are an inexpensive plant-based protein that pack in a ton of energy-supportive B-vitamins, appetite-regulating fiber and blood-building iron. This hearty soup is a delicious and nourishing way to load up on colorful vegetables, to boot. It tastes even better the next day, making great leftovers!

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
Total time: 50 minutes
Serves: 6

Recipe Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 zucchini, chopped
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 3/4 cup dried green lentils
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 cups kale, de-ribbed and chopped


  1. Heat avocado oil in a large stock pot over medium heat. Add the onions and carrots, cook while stirring often for about 3-4 minutes, until onion becomes tender and translucent.
  2. Add zucchini and sauté and addition 3 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic, cumin, and thyme. Cook another 2-3 minutes until fragrant. Add fire roasted tomatoes and lentils, then pour in broth and water.
  4. Bring soup to a boil, then turn down to a gentle simmer. Cook for 30 minutes, until the lentils are tender.
  5. Transfer 3 cups of soup into a blender or food processor (make sure to get an even mixture of veggies and broth). Puree mixture until smooth. Alternatively, you could keep the soup in the pot and pulse with an immersion blender a few times to add some creaminess to the soup while leaving plenty of the vegetables and lentils still intact.
  6. Add pureed soup back into the pot and stir. Season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.
  7. Add about 1/3 cup of chopped kale to each soup bowl and ladle soup over kale, allowing it to wilt.


Lisa Markley, MS, RDN, LD

About the Recipe Author

Lisa Markley, MS, RDN, LD, is an integrative dietitian culinary nutrition expert with nearly two decades of experience working towards improving the health of others. She is passionate about educating others how to harness the healing power of food and healthful lifestyle changes.