Lentil and Black Bean Soup

Lentil and Black Bean Soup
Lauri Patterson / Getty Images
Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 30 mins
Total: 50 mins
Servings: 8 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
173 Calories
2g Fat
31g Carbs
10g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8
Amount per serving
Calories 173
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2g 3%
Saturated Fat 0g 1%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 285mg 12%
Total Carbohydrate 31g 11%
Dietary Fiber 11g 39%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 10g
Vitamin C 11mg 53%
Calcium 81mg 6%
Iron 4mg 22%
Potassium 641mg 14%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Comfort foods, which we mostly crave in the fall and winter, are often high in fat or calories and made with lots of cheese or meat—think mac and cheese or meat loaf. But that’s not necessary. This lentil and black bean soup is a great example of delicious, nutritious, and satisfying meal that is low in fat and high in fiber.

And the preparation of comfort food does not have to be time consuming either. The green lentils in this recipe don’t require soaking prior to cooking; you can add them right to the soup.

For the black beans, the recipe calls for canned, which is also very convenient. However, if you prefer to make the soup with dried black beans, you can do that too. Use 1 cup dried black beans to make 3 cups cooked beans, which is the equivalent of two (15-ounce) cans called for in the recipe.

For a vegetarian soup, use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth.

If you like the soup very mild, use less chili powder. On the other hand, there are several ways how you can spice up this soup. Add a diced fresh jalapeño, with or without the seeds (remove the seeds if you like it less spicy). To give the soup more of a Mexican touch, add finely chopped cilantro just before serving.

This soup has a chunky consistency; if you prefer it smoother, puree some or all of it with an immersion blender. You can also puree the soup in your stand mixer, but then you need to work in batches and only fill the blender halfway to prevent the hot soup from splashing. If you like the soup creamy, stir in a few tablespoons heavy or light cream or sour cream.

As with soups with beans and lentils, this soup also tastes very good reheated, which makes it an excellent recipe to be made ahead, and even after it's been frozen; for example, if you prepare weeknight dinners on a Sunday for the following week.


  • 2 teaspoons canola oil

  • 1 1/2 cups finely chopped onion

  • 1 large stalk celery, diced

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin

  • 1 tablespoon chili powder

  • 1 cup green lentils, rinsed and picked through

  • 2 (15-ounce) cans reduced-sodium black beans, drained and rinsed

  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes

  • 4 cups fat-free, low-sodium vegetable broth, or chicken broth

Steps to Make It

  1. In a large pot, heat the oil on medium heat. Sauté onion, celery, and garlic until softened, about 4 to 5 minutes. Sprinkle cumin and chili powder, cook for 1 minute until fragrant.

  2. Add lentils, black beans, tomatoes, and broth. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for 25 minutes, or until lentils are tender.

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