Easy Lentil Soup is the perfect one-dish meal. Using a few basic ingredients, you can have a magnificent pot of it ready to eat in just one hour – and only 10 minutes is actual, hands-on time.

easy lentil soupPrep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 45 min
Ready In: 60 min

Servings: 4

1 cup Green Lentils
36 oz Beef Broth, fat-free, reduced-sodium
1 Carrot, finely chopped
1 Garlic Clove, minced
1 medium Onion, finely chopped
1 tsp dried Thyme
1 Bay Leaf
1 Leek, trimmed and chopped*
2 cups chopped Swiss Chard leaves*
Canola oil spray
1 Fuji Apple, peeled and diced
Salt and fresh Ground Black Pepper, to taste
3 to 4 large Pretzels, broken into small pieces, for garnish (optional)

Place lentils, broth, carrot, garlic, onion, thyme and bay leaf in a medium Dutch oven or large saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, reduce to a simmer and cook until lentils are tender, about 45 minutes.
*For a chunkier soup, add leek at this point. Simmer 20 minutes, then stir in Swiss chard and simmer 20 minutes more.
Meanwhile, spray a medium non-stick skillet with canola oil and heat oil on medium-high heat. Add apple and sauté until golden on all sides, about 3 to 4 minutes.
When lentils are tender, stir in apple and remove bay leaf. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve as is for a soup with texture.
For a creamy soup, purée half in a blender and combine with remaining soup. Serve garnished with crushed pretzels, if desired.

Tips & Notes
Because lentil soup is so easy to prepare, experiment with different flavors to find the version you like best.
Try to brighten a bowl with fresh lemon juice. Changing the seasoning creates another variation, replacing thyme and bay leaf, for example, with oregano for a Greek taste, curry powder for Indian savor, or ground cumin and coriander for Moroccan notes.
Adding more vegetables creates a variety of textures, colors and nutrition. Use diced potatoes and cauliflower, or chopped cabbage and canned tomatoes, sliced mushrooms, cooked chestnuts, shredded spinach or kale, or even diced eggplant and fennel.
Also try different kinds of lentils. After all, they come in red or orange, slate green, black and brown. All of them make great soup, with peeled, split, reddish lentils turning almost into a purée on their own, while the black and green ones stay nicely firm.
The lentils and vegetables go into the pot at the beginning, broth included, no sautéeing first. This keeps the soup lean and quickly gets the mixture to a simmer.
This soup can be made with any of three different consistencies. Try them all to see which you prefer.

Nutritional Information Per Serving
Calories: 238
Total Fat: 0g
Carbohydrate: 42g
Protein: 15g
Dietary Fiber: 10g
Sodium: 747mg

Source: AICR

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Filed under: Recipes for Diabetics

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