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Easy Spanish Lentil Soup Recipe – Sopa de Lentejas

How to make Spanish lentil soup and the vegetarian versions of Sopa de lentejas

Who doesn’t love a hearty Spanish soup during the cold days? Oh yes, Spanish winters can get cold! 

In this article, you will get an inside look at the historical background of the Spanish lentil soup, or Sopa de lentejas as it is known in Spanish.

spanish lentil soup with parsley topping

You will also learn how to make lentil soup, what ingredients you can substitute, and tips on storage and serving!

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Background of the dish

This Spanish lentil soup was originally developed in Southern Spain during the XVIII century. The main ingredient is lentils, they fulfill the role of providing energy for the cold days of Andalusia. 

By adding the chorizo, the people of Southern Spain made sure to get a filling and healthy plate that gave them enough energy to go through the day.

On the present day, it is known that there are multiple benefits of lentil soup, even famous Spanish Football athletes eat this dish to recover from different injuries.

So if you are looking for a recipe to improve your physical state and remain warm during the cold days, then give it a try to this Spanish lentil soup. 

It’s one of the top Andalusian foods to eat in winter and you can particularly find it in the restaurants of Cordoba. If you love hearty Spanish soups, don’t forget to check out our garbanzo bean soup our healing Spanish garlic soup recipe.

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Things You’ll Need

Thankfully, this is a pretty easy lentil soup recipe, so you won’t need much equipment or hard to find ingredients.

All the equipment that you’ll need is a large pot, so this is the best lentil soup recipe that you can make if you don’t want to clean many dishes.

When it comes to the ingredients, they’re all pretty easy to find and cook. You’ll just need some basic vegetables such as onions, potatoes, and garlic.

Besides that, you can find the lentils at any local store and if you have problems finding the Spanish sausages, there are other types of meat that you can use. 

Ingredients

sopa de lentejas recipe
  • 1 ½ cups dry green lentils
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 large potato
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Optional: 2 or 3 Spanish sausages (Chorizo) 
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons lemon juice (½ to 1 medium lemon), to taste
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • Salt (To taste)
  • Pepper (To taste)

How to make Spanish Lentil Soup – Step by Step Guide

spanish lentil soup with chorizo
  1. The first step on how to cook lentil soup is very easy! You have to soak the green lentils for about an hour before cooking the soup.
  2. After that, chop the potato into medium-sized cubes, and the onion into small pieces. Peel and mince garlic clove.
  3. Place a large pot into a medium heat stove and pour olive oil. Once that the oil is hot add onion and garlic, cook until the garlic gets a golden color and the onion looks translucent.
  4. Meanwhile, start cutting the Spanish sausage into medium-sized cubes. After that, add the broth and lentils into the large pot, and bring to a boil at medium or high heat and reduce it to simmer.
  5. Then put the potato, tomatoes, carrots and chorizo into the pot, if it doesn’t have enough water to cover every ingredient then add more. 
  6. Add spices.
  7. Cook the soup for about 40 to 45 minutes at medium heat or until the lentils get a soft texture. And that’s it, your best ever lentil soup is ready!

Substitution of ingredients

different lentil types

This lentil soup recipe is a classic lentil soup with sausage, but there are many changes that you can make according to your personal taste or diet. 

The easiest change that you can make is replacing the Spanish sausage with another meat such as ham or chicken, or you can lean into a more vegetarian recipe. 

Remember that if you do that, this will stop being a Spanish chorizo lentil soup.

Related: Spanish lentil soup with ham

Vegetarian version of Spanish lentil soup

If you want to make a vegetarian version of this dish, just add more vegetables such as chopped carrots, peppers, or use more spices.

For example, there is a curry lentil soup that is similar to this one, but you have to add one teaspoon of ginger, one tablespoon of curry powder, and add ¾ of coconut milk.

You can also make a Mediterranean lentil soup, which mixes dry green and brown lentils and instead of water uses vegetable stock.

It doesn’t have Chorizo and it calls for other spices such as turmeric and cumin, but it can be a nice replacement for the traditional homemade lentil soup.

Besides that, some recipes change the water for vegetable stock or chicken broth, but this isn’t the best idea because the lentils suck in a lot of moisture from the stock, so you will get a really salty soup.

Keep in mind that this is a healthy lentil soup recipe, so by avoiding the stock and using water, you will avoid all that extra sodium and help your physical health.

It’s one of the tastiest Spanish vegetable soups out there!

Tips on Serving

spanish lentil soup, tips on serving

There are multiple ways of how to prepare Spanish lentil soup once it is ready to serve.

Since this Spanish lentil soup is commonly eaten for lunch or dinner, the best thing that you can do is to serve it alongside some toasted bread and pour some grated parmesan or Manchego cheese on top. 

This way your soup will gain more flavor and it will be more filling!
You can also toast some chopped bread with olive oil and garlic, and then put it in a small bowl on the table, so the guests can add it to their soup if they like it.

I love to add some smoked paprika powder on top to decorate.

How to store Spanish Lentil Soup

food storage fridge

When it comes to storage, the first question everyone makes is can you freeze lentil soup? Thankfully the answer is yes! 

To be able to freeze it, you have to let it cool and freeze it the same day you cooked it, this way it’ll be fresher and it won’t lose any flavor.

Once that you are ready to freeze it, just pour the soup into a container or a ziplock bag, and then take it to the freezer immediately. 

Whenever you want to eat it, you’ll just have to take it out of the freezer and heat it, but remember that it shouldn’t be frozen for over 30 days, if that happens you should throw it away.

Besides that, you can store it in the fridge for up to 3 days and enjoy it whenever you want! 

If you can’t get enough of Spanish lentil soup, have a look at my sopa de lentejas webstory.

Recipe Card: How to make Spanish Lentil Soup

Yield: 6

Spanish Lentil Soup Recipe - Sopa de Lentejas

sopa de lentejas recipe

This Spanish lentil soup was originally developed in Southern Spain during the XVIII century. The main ingredient is lentils, they fulfill the role of providing energy for the cold days of Andalusia. 

There are vegan, vegetarian, and versions with meat of this Spanish lentil soup recipe.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups dry green lentils
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 2 carrots
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 large potato
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 or 3 Spanish sausages (Chorizo sausage)
  • Salt (To taste)
  • Pepper (To taste)
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons lemon juice (½ to 1 medium lemon), to taste

Instructions

  1. An hour before cooking soak the lentils in cold water.
  2. Chop the onion into small pieces and the potato into large cubes. Mince one garlic clove.
  3. In a large pot pour olive oil and once that it is hot add onion and garlic. Garlic should get a golden color and the onion should look translucent. 
  4. Add the broth, tomatoes, carrots and lentils, bring to a boil at medium or high heat and reduce to simmer. In the meantime cut the Spanish sausage into medium-sized cubes.
  5. After that, put the potato and the Spanish sausage into the pot.
  6. Add spices.
  7. Cook for about 40 to 45 minutes at medium heat, or until the lentils get soft. Serve warm.

Notes

This Spanish lentils recipe calls for green lentils, but you can use any of your choices.

Nutrition Information

Yield

6

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 257Total Fat 14gSaturated Fat 4gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 9gCholesterol 21mgSodium 390mgCarbohydrates 23gFiber 5gSugar 3gProtein 10g

All information presented and written are intended for informational purposes only. You should not rely on this information as a substitute for, nor does it replace, professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other health-care professional. The writers and publishers of visitsouthernspain.com are not nutritionists or registered dietitians. Statements within this site have not been evaluated or approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

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