Italian Lentil Soup

Monday, September 23, 2019
On a cold winter day in Upstate NY, Grandma and I would sit there sorting these tiny rocks from a bag of dried lentils.

She would wash them over and over again to make sure these beans in that package were clean and perfect for her soup, then soak overnight.

I use to love helping Grandma get the lentils ready for the next day as a child, it was like a game to me.

Now we have easier ways to make this, still sorting them, but simple to cook and didn't take so long.

Soaking is still a must as well as sorting, but you can soak lentils in the crockpot  to speed up the process.

Grandma, back in the 1960s, would always cook everything from scratch and didn't have fancy appliances like we do today.

This soup is easier and quicker to make now than what I remember using newer methods.

I still make her lentil soup recipe, it's the best and I also love her chicken soup

I make this one usually using either a pressure cooker or a slow cooker when I have to do something important and pressed for time.

If you would like a printable copy scroll all the way down to my recipe card and hit print.




this is a delicious bowl of lentil soup with Italian bread












Comforting Lentil Soup



If you grew up in the winter in Upstate Utica New York in an all Italian household, you will remember mom or grandma making this soup all winter long.


It was a staple in our home and I still love this delicious soup along with my family through the generations.


Back in the 1960s, this was considered a very economical meal to feed a large family, so we had it once a week.


Although I do not make it much living in Florida, those childhood memories or mom and grandma making this comforting soup will always be one of my finest memories in the kitchen.



this is a delicious bowl of lentil soup with Italian bread



Healthy



Lentil soup is a nutritional powerhouse.


It combines the nutrients, protein, good carbs and fiber in lentils with the antioxidant power of veggies, herbs, and spices.


Grandma also added a little good fat from the extra virgin olive oil rounds it out into a perfectly balanced meal.


Lentils are especially high in B vitamins and minerals like iron, phosphorus, potassium, and zinc.


As I said previously this soup is incredibly easy to make and really inexpensive, you can make a giant pot of soup that will feed many people for under ten dollars!





this is a delicious pan of lentil soup boiling




Recipe We Love



Pasta Fasoli
Escarole and Beans
Chilled Blueberry Soup
Best Soup Roundup






this is a delicious bowl of lentil soup with Italian bread






Ingredients You Will Need


  • dried lentil
  • chicken broth
  • white wine
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • fresh parsley
  • garlic cleaned
  • garlic powder
  • Optional: 1 cup diced tomatoes,1 sauteed diced onion. grated cheese for garnishing, hard-crusted Italian bread for dipping, crackers or croutons.
  • 1 head of escarole cleaned and boiled making sure they are cooked through the drain, then chopped fine when cooled
  • salt, pepper to taste
  • carrots, celery
  • (for meat flavoring, add ham bone or prosciutto while simmering.)Grandma would usually put bacon or ham in this for flavoring





Italian Lentil Soup



  1. 1 cup dried lentil washed and sorted soaked overnight in water with 1/2 teaspoon salt or do the whole package and freeze the rest.
  2. 4 cups chicken broth (I make my own click here)
  3. 1/2 cup white wine
  4. 4 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  5. 2 sprigs of fresh parsley
  6. 3 cloves garlic cleaned
  7. 1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder
  8. Optional: 1 cup diced tomatoes,1 sauteed diced onion
  9. 1 head of escarole cleaned and boiled making sure they are cooked through drain, then chopped fine when cooled
  10. 1/2 teaspoon of salt, pepper to taste
  11. a handful of carrots, 2 stalks celery
  12. (for meat flavoring, add ham bone or prosciutto while simmering.)Grandma would usually put bacon or ham in this for flavoring






Directions:

 Sort the lentils, then place dry lentils in water with salt and soak for at least 3 to 4 hours. Drain and rinse.

Process in food processor garlic, celery, garlic, parsley ( grandma chopped by hand).

Put oil in a large soup pot, add the minced vegetables, carrots and tomatoes escarole, garlic powder, add salt and pepper to taste.

Add any meat if using (IE bacon, ham, Italian sliced sausage or even pepperoni slice).

Grandma used whatever we had, or sometimes all vegetarian.

When the carrots are cooked I take them out and puree them. Add back to the soup for flavor.

Add wine and broth and cover pot. Bring to boil, lower heat, add lentils. Simmer until lentil are cooked add more chicken broth if gets too thick if you prefer a thinner soup. Soup is very thick, Serve with Italian Fresh grated cheese and crusty Italian bread.



Note Why Do We Soak Them?



It's interesting why lentils are soaked, here's the answer: it turns out lentils in general unsoaked are not good for digestion.


Apparently, the outer shell of lentils (and some beans) contains anti-nutrients that can interfere with digestion.


The solution is to soak them, thereby neutralizing the anti-nutrients.




this is a delicious bowl of lentil soup with Italian bread



Some Lentil History




The best-known lentil soup comes not from a manual of classic cuisine but from the biblical story of Jacob and Esau and is mentioned in the Bible: In Genesis 25:30-34, as Esau is prepared to give up his birthright for a pot of fragrant red lentil soup being cooked by his brother, Jacob.


In fact, lentils go back even further in history.


Originating in the Middle East, lentils are believed to be the first legume ever cultivated.


In Jewish tradition, lentil soup has been served at times of mourning; the roundness of the lentil represents a complete cycle of life.


Lastly, lentils are a superfood, they are high in protein, complex carbohydrates, and fiber.


In addition, they are rich in iron, potassium, and folate. They contain virtually no fat and are cholesterol-free.





Italian Lentil Soup

Yield: 8
Author:
prep time: 15 Mcook time: total time: 15 M
A super-rich lentil homemade soup that's full of health benefits.
Pure comfort food at its finest!

ingredients:

  • 1 cup dried lentil washed and sorted soaked overnight in water or at least for 4 hours with 1/2 teaspoon salt or do the whole package in the crockpot ( around 4 hours on low) you can use them for another meal. 
  • 4 cups chicken broth (I make my own click here)
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 4 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 sprigs of fresh parsley
  • 3 cloves garlic cleaned
  • 1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder
  • Optional: 1 cup diced tomatoes,1 sauteed diced onion. grated cheese for garnishing, hard-crusted Italian bread for dipping, crackers or croutons.
  • 1 head of escarole cleaned chopped and boiled, making sure they are cooked through and drain
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt, pepper to taste
  • a handful of carrots, 2 stalks celery
  • (for meat flavoring, add ham bone or prosciutto while simmering.)
  • Grandma would usually put bacon or ham in this for flavoring

instructions:

How to cook Italian Lentil Soup

  1. Place fresh lentils in a crockpot filled to the top for a few hours (up to 4) with water on low around or make to package instructions. Drain and rinse this is to soften and get the dirt particles out. (Grandma soaked in water with salt for at least 4 hours or boiled for 30 minutes.)
  2.  Add and process in a food processor the garlic, celery, parsley ( grandma chopped by hand).
  3. Put oil in a large soup pot, add the minced vegetables, carrots and tomatoes escarole, garlic powder, add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Add any meat if using (IE bacon, ham, Italian sliced sausage or even pepperoni slice).
  5. Grandma used whatever we had, or sometimes all vegetarian.
  6. When the carrots are cooked I take them out and puree them. Add back to the soup for flavor.
  7. Add wine and broth and cover pot. 
  8. Bring to boil, lower heat, add lentils. 
  9. Simmer until lentil are cooked add more chicken broth if it gets too thick if you prefer a thinner soup. 
  10. This takes around 1 hour or longer.
  11. Using a pressure cooker around 35 minutes.
  12. Slow cooker 8 to 10 hours on low.
  13. Soup is very thick, Serve with Italian Fresh grated cheese and crusty Italian bread.
  14. Note: If you want to use the whole package of lentil, add more liquid accordingly.
Calories
229
Fat (grams)
19
Sat. Fat (grams)
11
Carbs (grams)
32
Fiber (grams)
19
Net carbs
18
Sugar (grams)
6
Italian lentil soup, lentil escarole soup, soup recipes, lentil soup recipe, bean soup, best lentil soup
soup, lentils, beans,
Italian
Created using The Recipes Generator




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Crockpot Ham and Cabbage
Cioppino






Pin this Lentil Soup for Later





this is a delicious bowl of lentil soup with Italian bread


Disclosure: This recipe was originally shared in 2010. It was edited and re-published in 2019.

20 comments

  1. Soup is one of my favorite meals, in fact we are making a Southwest soup tonight.

    Your lentil and escarole soup looks wonderful....getting out my soup spoon now!

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  2. This soup il delicious, one of my favorites. Great ;)

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  3. Perfect. I love putting escarole into soup -and bring on those lentils! I'm warm already.

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  4. There are no end to good lentil soups, and what a lovely earthy one this! We tend to use chard as escarole is not so common here (in Melbourne Australia!)

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  5. @cajunchefRyan thank you :)
    @Frederica not too many love lentils its one of my favorites too
    @Claudia thanks I know your soups are all fantastic as well!
    @joy wow love to visit your world someday, so honored you appreciate this thank you! Funny I live in Melbourne Florida~ wow!!!

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  6. yum, such comfort in that bowl of soup ... this is another of your recipes I know I will like, thanks for posting it and keep them coming

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  7. Lentils have always been a favorite of mine! Soup looks delicious!

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  8. One of my favorite foods is escarole. I love the taste of it, especially with beans. This soup looks so good and I know it would go great with your bread!

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  9. oh wow great soup and so healthy Rebecca

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  10. What a comforting bowl of yum! Totally delicious with that crusty hunk of bread for dunking.

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  11. I make a similar soup, what a great recipe!

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  12. A wonderful, delicious soup, what a great combination of ingredients!

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  13. Claudia, the soup looks so sumptious and I noticed that the beans are really soft & tender. Just perfect! Btw, how's life at your working place? Busy?

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  14. Lentil soup with crusty bread...does it get any better than that? (Oh, and a nice glass of red wine.) I've never added escarole before but it looks like I should be doing that. This looks divine!

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  15. i love the lentils soup,your is great!

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  16. This is just the perfect thing to make for a one-pot meal: simple, healthy, delicious, and satisfying.

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  17. A wonderful, warming and healthy soup indeed!

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  18. I love making big batches of this kind of soup..it's even better the next day. And so healthy, too.

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  19. You will never guess what my tomorrow post is. I'll give you a clue it's amazingly similar to yours. This sounds good.

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