Sopa de Lentejas: Spanish Lentil Soup

Spanish lentil soup

The Spruce / Diana Chistruga 

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 60 mins
Total: 75 mins
Servings: 12 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
553 Calories
18g Fat
53g Carbs
45g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 12
Amount per serving
Calories 553
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 18g 24%
Saturated Fat 5g 27%
Cholesterol 91mg 30%
Sodium 197mg 9%
Total Carbohydrate 53g 19%
Dietary Fiber 8g 30%
Protein 45g
Calcium 98mg 8%
*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.)

Every family in Spain has its own version of lentil soup (sopa de lentejas). Keeping that in mind, this recipe is one of the most classic ways to prepare it. Use this as a base and, once mastered, feel free to make any changes you'd like to better suit you and your family's tastes.

Sopa de lentejas usually is enjoyed as a first course for lunch as many Spaniards consider beans too heavy for dinner. This makes sense since most Spaniards eat dinner late—between 9 and 11 p.m. 

This easy-to-make soup is not only tasty but full of nutrients, too. The dry lentils are cooked with diced carrots, celery stalks, potatoes and garlic, and combined with pork loin and Spanish chorizo, a spicy cured sausage, to make a delicious and filling soup.

It is typical to eat this soup throughout the winter and even into the season of Lent, by simply omitting the pork meat.

The lentils must be soaked for one hour before proceeding with the recipe, so plan accordingly. 

1:35

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Ingredients

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for spanish lentil soup

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga 

  2. Begin by sorting through the lentils to remove any debris or rocks. Make sure to be thorough, as there is nothing worse than a stone in lentil soup.

    Lentils in bowl

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga 

  3. Then, rinse the dry lentils under cold water.

    Rinsed lentils in colander

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga 

  4. Place the lentils into a medium saucepan and cover with water. Soak the lentils for 1 hour.

    Lentils in pot

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga 

  5. While the beans are soaking, peel the potatoes and cut them into 1-inch cubes.

    Peeled and cubed potatoes in bowl

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga  

  6. Trim and peel the carrots and dice them into 1/2-inch cubes.

    Peeled and diced carrots on cutting board

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga 

  7. Trim and cut the celery ribs into a medium dice.

    Diced celery on cutting board

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga 

  8. Peel and mince the garlic cloves. Set the vegetables aside.

    Minced garlic on cutting board

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  9. Cut the pork loin into 1-inch cubes and the chorizo into 1/2-inch chunks.

    Cubed chorizo and pork

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga 

  10. Pour the olive oil into a large pot and heat on medium. When the oil is hot, add the vegetables and cumin and sauté for 3 to 5 minutes.

    Vegetables in pot with wooden spoon

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga 

  11. Add the pork cubes and chorizo, and sauté for 3 more minutes, making sure that the meat doesn't stick.

    Pork and vegetables in pot

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga 

  12. Add just enough water to the pot to completely cover the vegetables and meat. Bring the water to a boil.

    Add water to pot

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  13. Drain the lentils and add them to the pot.

    Add lentils to soup

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  14. Bring back to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until the lentils are cooked, about 1 hour. Check the pot every 15 to 20 minutes. Add additional water if/when needed.

    Lentil soup in pot

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga 

  15. When the lentils are fully cooked, season the soup with salt and pepper to taste.

    Wooden spoon stirring soup

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga 

  16. Serve in bowls with rustic bread on the side.

    Lentil soup in bowls

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga 

  17. Enjoy!

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