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Is your pantry as neurotically stocked as mine is?  I’ll bet some (most?) of you always have some type of canned tomato, canned or dried bean (which may or may not be stored with the popcorn), 3 or 4 different types of vinegar (I compulsively keep 7), and too much dried pasta to feel like you’ll ever use.  However, when it really comes down to it, you know that pulling together a meal directly from the pantry isn’t ridiculously out of the question.

For us, these past few weeks have been about our household economy.  We’ve been scrimping and saving during the past 4 years and especially in the past few months to put the finishing touches on our new house…so we can install things like this in our kitchen:

And so to keep our grocery bills way down, most of our meals have been planned around what’s in the freezer and pantry.  This lentil and black bean soup is the perfect example of one of said meals.  While you could certainly use chicken broth or stock, I opted for veggie broth.  At $2 per quart, I figured I’d splurge at little :), considering I already had all of the other ingredients in the house already.  I am always looking for new lentil soup recipes and this one, with the addition of black beans, hit the nail on the head.  We truly adored this soup and with its thick and almost chili-like consistency, it’s a filling and healthy meal that will continue to stick around on our menu long after we move in (and you know, rebuild our savings account).

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Vegetarian Lentil and Black Bean Soup
source: adapted from Cook Like a Champion, originally from Cookin’ Canuck
Ingredients:
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 large stalks celery, diced
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons paprika (I used 1 tsp sweet and 1 tsp smoked)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup dried brown lentils
  • 4 3/4 cup low-sodium vegetable (or chicken broth)
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 can (14 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained, divided
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium heat.  Add the onion, celery, and carrots and cook until the vegetables begin to soften, 6-7 minutes. Add garlic, paprika and bay leaves and cook for about 30 seconds or until fragrant. Add tomatoes and their juices, lentils, half of the black beans, the chicken broth and the water. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium-high and cook, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are tender, about 35 minutes
  2. Remove from heat and discard the bay leaves. Transfer half the mixture to a blender or food processor and pulse until combined but not pureed – make sure you vent the top of the machine with a cloth as the hot liquid will explode inside when you begin to pulse. (Alternatively, you could use a hand or immersion blender and blend half of the soup while it’s still in the pot, which is what I did.) Add mixture back to pot, along with remaining black beans. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed. Bring the soup back to a simmer over medium heat for another 10-15 minutes until the lentils are fully cooked through. Stir in parsley and serve.

[/print_this]

Vegetarian Lentil and Black Bean Soup

  • Prep Time: 10min
  • Cook Time: about 1hr
  • Yield: 4-6 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 large stalks celery, diced
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons paprika (I used 1 tsp sweet and 1 tsp smoked)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup dried brown lentils
  • 4 ¾ cup low-sodium vegetable (or chicken broth)
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 can (14 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained, divided
  • ¼ cup chopped parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • 01

    In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium heat.  Add the onion, celery, and carrots and cook until the vegetables begin to soften, 6-7 minutes. Add garlic, paprika and bay leaves and cook for about 30 seconds or until fragrant. Add tomatoes and their juices, lentils, half of the black beans, the chicken broth and the water. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium-high and cook, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are tender, about 35 minutes.

  • 02

    Remove from heat and discard the bay leaves. Transfer half the mixture to a blender or food processor and pulse until combined but not pureed – make sure you vent the top of the machine with a cloth as the hot liquid will explode inside when you begin to pulse. (Alternatively, you could use a hand or immersion blender and blend half of the soup while it’s still in the pot, which is what I did.) Add mixture back to pot, along with remaining black beans. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed. Bring the soup back to a simmer over medium heat for another 10-15 minutes until the lentils are fully cooked through. Stir in parsley and serve.

adapted from Cook Like a Champion, originally from Cookin’ Canuck

we love to see what you make!

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@smellslikehomeblog
  • February 20, 2012 at 7:40 AM

    Mmm this sounds so healthy and tasty! Love it!

  • February 20, 2012 at 10:04 AM

    This looks and sounds amazing! I’ve not done too much cooking with lentils so I really need to branch out. 🙂 And yes, our pantry looks and sounds a lot like yours!! Good to know I’m not alone.

  • February 20, 2012 at 10:15 AM

    7 bottles of vinegar? You’ve got nothing on me, gal! I gotta do a spring clean in my pantry fo’ sho’. This looks great. I’ve always wanted to do stuff with lentils, just diddn’t know where to start. This seems about perfect! House is looking great, I’m sure you can’t wait! 🙂

  • February 20, 2012 at 11:06 AM

    We’ve been doing meatless meals about once a week, so I’m always looking for a tried and true recipe for a weeknight meal. You haven’t failed me yet!

    So excited about your house- looks like you are going to have a stunning kitchen. I too have a ridiculous pantry with 15 types of pasta, beans, rice and flours. 🙂

  • February 20, 2012 at 12:38 PM

    Tara, what a delicious “scrimping” meal. I’d say all that saving was worth it to have a kitchen like you’re going to be enjoying very soon!

  • February 20, 2012 at 1:41 PM

    oh how I wish my pantry was that organized! Soup looks amazing too!

  • February 20, 2012 at 3:44 PM

    It may be a little strange, but I am so excited to hear that there’s someone else out there like me. Although I could only count 6 different kinds of vinegar in my supply, haha. Your soup looks fantastic, definitely saving this for that clean-out-the-pantry spree I’ve been meaning to go on 😀

  • Melanie
    February 22, 2012 at 2:22 AM

    I made this for dinner tonight! I ended up blending all of it, so the texture was slightly smoother than I like, but the flavors were great. I am a big fan of spicy, so I added a touch of sriracha, and man was it delicious.

  • February 22, 2012 at 8:39 AM

    I would have no problem “scrimping and saving” in order to have a kitchen like yours! Beautiful ovens!

  • February 23, 2012 at 10:56 AM

    Sounds like the perfect meatless Monday meal!

  • Ellen
    March 14, 2012 at 12:42 PM

    I just made this last night and it was DELICIOUS, didn’t even have to add any salt or pepper at the end. (I think the paprika may be the non-secret weapon!). Thanks for posting!

  • March 21, 2012 at 10:13 AM

    This soup is incredibly delicious!! I’m in love. I doubled it but didn’t double the water, and am glad I chose not to. Thanks for the recipe!! You are great. I posted about it on my blog: http://thefoodcharlatan.wordpress.com/2012/03/21/lentil-and-black-bean-soup/

  • caitlynn
    March 24, 2012 at 7:05 AM

    This sounds delicious, but you should probably take out the part about chicken broth since the name of the recipe is”vegetarian”

  • Kj
    March 25, 2013 at 5:59 PM

    Looks great! I’m going to leave out celery cause I hate it and add some sweet potato… Thanks for the recipe!

    • March 26, 2013 at 9:31 AM

      You’re welcome!

  • […] Lentil and Black Bean Soup from Smells Like Home […]

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