This traditional Turkish Lentil Soup also called Mercimek çorbası is a uniquely fragrant, cozy and satisfying soup perfect for chilly days. You can make it in no time and enjoy for lunch or hearty dinner. This soup is vegan and gluten-free.
Cozy and creamy soups are the best for cozying up to in cold winter months.
Today's Turkish Lentil Soup is the perfect recipe for that.
I love Turkish cuisine. Despite that I've never been to Turkey, its food is famous for being ultra flavorful and delicious.
If you had a chance to try my Turkish Muhammara Dip, you know that it's true.
Ingredients are usually simple, but their combination is what usually produces phenomenal results.
This traditional Turkish Lentil soup consists of simple ingredients. You may already have them in your pantry.
- olive oil, butter
- lentils. Traditionally red lentils are used. Make sure to rinse them well before cooking
- onion, carrot - white or yellow onion
- flour - you may use gluten-free flour
- tomato paste
- spices - cumin, ground red pepper or sweet paprika
- black pepper - so this soup is a bit spicy. The recipe calls for 1 teaspoon of black pepper but if you're serving it to young children or you don't like it spicy, feel free to reduce the amount of pepper to ¼ or ½ tsp
- chives - optional
This vegan Turkish Style Lentil Soup is extremely easy to make. That's why it makes an excellent choice for busy weeknight dinners.
1. Sauté the onion
Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion and sauté stirring occasionally until translucent, 5 to 7 minutes.
2. Add the rest of the ingredients
Add flour and stir for a minute. Add tomato paste and stir for another minute. Add carrot, lentils and water, cover the pot with a lid and simmer on a low heat until lentils are soft, about 15 minutes.
4. Prepare the red pepper sauce
While the soup is cooking, melt butter in a small skillet and over medium heat. Add ground red pepper or paprika, stir for 10 seconds and remove from the heat.
3. Puree and season the soup
Using an immersion blender, puree the soup. Add cumin and season with salt and pepper.
Ladle soup into a bowl, garnish with red pepper sauce and sprinkle on some chives if desired.
Mercimek soup tastes best when consumed on the same. If however, you have leftovers or do meal prep, keep in mind that soup tends to thicken with time.
You can store it in an airtight container in a refrigerator for up 3 to 4 days. When you're ready to eat it, I recommend thinning the soup with a bit of water and simmering in a pot for a few minutes.
Turkish Red Lentil Soup Recipe
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion minced
- 1 tablespoon flour use GF flour if needed
- ½ tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 large carrot diced
- 1 c red lentils rinsed
- 4 c water
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 tablespoon vegan butter
- 1 teaspoon ground red pepper or sweet paprika Note 1
- 1 teaspoon chives chopped, optional
- Heat olive oil in a large pot and over medium heat. Add onion and sauté stirring occasionally until translucent, 5 to 7 minutes.
- Add flour and stir for a minute. Add tomato paste and stir for another minute. Add carrot, rinsed lentils and water, cover the pot with a lid and simmer on a low heat until lentils are soft, about 15 to 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, melt vegan butter in a small skillet and over medium heat. Add ground red pepper or sweet paprika, stir for 10 seconds and remove from the heat.
- Using an immersion blender, puree the soup. Add cumin and season with salt and black pepper.
- Ladle soup into a bowl, garnish with red pepper sauce and sprinkle on some chives if desired.