How Many Calories in Lentil Soup?

Lentil soup is made from lentils, a type of small, disc-shaped legume, similar to beans. High in both carbohydrates and proteins and relatively low in fat, lentil soup is both delicious and nutritious. Lentils are also high in dietary fiber.

A 1-cup serving of lentil soup contains 191 calories. Carbohydrates contribute around 106 calories, while fats deliver 45 calories and proteins provide 40 calories per serving.

A 1-cup portion of lentil soup weighs 248g. Approximately 26.5g are carbohydrates, 10g are proteins, and 4.5g are fats. The remainder consists of water and other nutrients.

Lentil soup also contains several important dietary minerals including iron, magnesium, phosphorus, selenium, zinc and potassium. Several essential vitamins are also available within the serving and include vitamin A, B6, E, K, thiamin, niacin and folate.

Eating sufficient amounts of dietary fiber can help to maintain normal bowel function, assist in weight loss and reduce blood cholesterol levels, which may help reduce the risk of heart disease. A serving of lentil soup provides more than 12g of dietary fiber or more than 37 percent of the average amount of fiber the typical adult needs each day.

How to Slow Cook Lentil Soup?

Slow cookers are at their best with no-fuss recipes that yield lots of flavor and nutrition for relatively little effort. Lentil soup prepared in the slow cooker fills all these requirements and then some. A basic slow cooked lentil soup recipe contains not much more than dried lentils, vegetables, seasonings and stock, but you can alter these main ingredients with everything from exotic herbs to meat to make a soup that is uniquely to your taste.

Step 1
Plug in the slow cooker and turn it to its highest setting to preheat. Heat the olive oil in the saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onions, celery, carrots and garlic and cook for four to five minutes, until all the vegetables are softened but not browned. Put the cooked vegetables into the slow cooker.

Step 2
Rinse the lentils in a strainer or colander until the water runs clear. Put in the slow cooker along with the stock or water and thyme. Use a spoon to mix the ingredients thoroughly.

Step 3
Put the slow cooker's cover in place. Turn to the low setting for six hours of cooking time, the high setting for two to three hours of cooking time or cook on high for one hour, then on low for two hours.

Step 4
Add the balsamic vinegar and kale or spinach and season with salt and pepper approximately 15 minutes before the cooking time is complete.

Tips and Warnings
If you're pressed for time, skip sauteing the vegetables. Put all the ingredients into the slow cooker and cook -- it will still turn out tasting great. For hearty meat eaters, add sliced sausage, ham or bacon to the skillet when you're sauteing the carrots, onions, celery and garlic. The rest of the recipe remains the same. Alter the taste of your lentil soup by experimenting with the herbs and spices you use as seasonings. Try crushed red pepper, cumin and cayenne for a spicy hot variation; add basil and oregano for an Italian-flavored soup.

Luxurious Lentil Soup Recipe

This Luxurious Lentil Soup recipe is bursting with the aforementioned lentils, in addition to a variety of vegetables ranging from kale to potatoes. For some Middle Eastern panache, this soup is seasoned with savory notes of cumin and lime. This warm bowl of comfort food is also surprisingly wallet-friendly for being so well-rounded. In fact, lentils are the most cost-effective source of protein available.

Lentils are recognized as one of the healthiest foods in the world -- they are high in protein, fiber and essential amino acids. Furthermore, they have twice as much iron as other legumes, as well as plenty of vitamin B and folate (which is extremely important for pregnant women). Keep in mind that an iron deficiency results in fatigue, problems with concentration, a weakened immune system, headaches, cold hands and feet, and several other symptoms; due to their monthly cycle, women are naturally prone to iron deficiency and should take corresponding precautions in their diet.

Celebrate National Nutrition Month by preparing this simple soup recipe for an elevated, healthy meal. And don't stop there -- schedule a physical check-up with your doctor, challenge yourself to a new workout, and educate yourself about popular health issues for women and how to prevent them. Spread the word about National Nutrition Month, and share this healthy recipe and others with your loved ones!

  • 2 cups lentils
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 3 celery stalks, diced
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 red potatoes, chopped
  • 5 leaves kale, chopped
  • 1 (14-oz) can crushed tomatoes
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp parsley
  • 1 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 limes, juiced

In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil. Saute the garlic, onion, celery and carrots. Add the butter, and cook until vegetables are tender (approximately five minutes).

Next, add the lentils, crushed tomatoes, potatoes and vegetable broth. Season with salt, parsley, cumin and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer.

Adding water as necessary to thin the soup, simmer for one hour. Finally, add the chopped kale and lime juice. Continue cooking until kale is cooked through and softened.

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