Detox Red Lentil Veggie Soup

Raise your hand if you spy someone who overindulged and under-exercised over the holidays and is now trying to pay for sins with healthier options. In the fall, I was all about cookies. But now that January has hit, and it’s been so “Texas cold,” I’ve been all about soups, and this is a good one.

As with all soups, it’s best not to get too persnickety with the exact ingredients. Use the veggies you like – I substituted butternut squash for sweet potato, for about half the calories and carbs. 

If you have an immersion blender, it’s perfect for this recipe. If you don’t, I’ll tell you it comes in so handy for things like soup and is $20 at Amazon – so much easier than dumping back and forth to the blender. (Happy Valentines Day, anyone?) OK, here’s the recipe.

Splash or two of extra virgin olive oil
1 large leek, chopped
3 cloves garlic, crushed or chopped
3 sticks celery, sliced
1 cup carrots, slided
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 large sweet potato, chopped (can substitute butternut squash)
1.5 cups red lentils, uncooked
1 t. turmeric
1 T. cumin
1 t. salt (to taste)
8 cups water
1/ 2 lemon, juiced

Heat olive oil in large pot over medium high heat.

Add leek, garlic, celery, carrots, red bell pepper, sweet potato, turmeric, cumin and salt. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add red lentils, water and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer covered for 20 minutes.

Using a hand blender, blend soup right in the pot to desired consistency.

Stir in lemon juice and taste check for any additional salt.

Adapted from Colorful Recipes

What do you think?