Middle Eastern Lentil Soup from Analida’s Ethnic Spoon


“The idea for this Middle Eastern lentil soup came to me after eating a similar soup in a restaurant that was gloriously flavorful and comforting. One spoonful and I was in love with how it tasted,” says Analida Braeger. She’s the brilliant writer, creator and recipe developer at Analida’s Ethnic Spoon food blog, where French, Italian, Latin American, Spanish, Moroccan, Thai, Vietnamese, and Middle Eastern recipes are featured.

“This recipe has a few basic ingredients, but it is so delicious, you would think otherwise. The idea to use allspice was my son’s. I agree that it gives a lot of depth to the overall flavor. The lemon infusion at the end brightens up the flavors and enhances the taste. One great thing about lentils is that they don’t take as long to soften as other beans, so this Middle Eastern soup can be made in very little time.”

Middle Eastern Lentil Soup Recipe

Lentil artifacts have been found on archeological digs on the banks of the Euphrates River dating back to 8,000 B.C., and there is evidence of the Egyptians, Romans, and Hebrews eating this legume. Today, lentils are a very popular food, and have taken a prominent place among edible legumes, for farmers as well as restaurants and home chefs. Common types of lentils are green and brown; whereas, black, yellow, red and orange lentils are often seen in Middle Eastern cooking. Analida’s favorite lentil soup recipe is simple yet it has exotic flavors you won’t soon forget, she adds.


1 cup dried green lentils, rinsed

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1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil

1 large onion, diced

1 medium stalk celery, diced

2 medium carrots, diced

2 garlic cloves, minced

7 cups vegetable broth, more if needed

3 teaspoons cumin

1 teaspoon Kosher salt, to taste

1/8 teaspoon allspice

2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice, more to taste



Gather all ingredients and have them measured, chopped and ready to go: lentils, olive oil, onion, celery, carrots, garlic, vegetable broth, cumin, salt, allspice, and lemon juice. This is a simple, quick recipe so it is good to have it prepared for last minute lunches and light dinners.

In a soup pot, heat the olive oil on medium, and add the onions, carrots, celery and garlic. Sauté until the onion is translucent. Add 4 cups of the vegetable broth and stir. Add the lentils and bring to a full boil; cook until the vegetables are soft.

The lentils will expand; check the carrots with a spoon and see if they are soft. Add the cumin, salt, and allspice. Reduce the heat to low and allow to simmer for 30-40 minutes. Using an immersion blender break up the solids until mostly smooth.

Add the remaining vegetable broth, and simmer for an additional 15-20 minutes, stirring.  Add the lemon juice before serving.


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Analida Braeger at Analida’s Ethnic Spoon

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