Lentejas (Mexican Lentil Soup)

Sopa De Lentejas is a popular Mexican soup that is healthy, delicious and ready in 30 minutes or less. It’s full of flavor! You can’t go wrong with a big warm bowl of lentil soup.

Two bowls of soup with limes on the side.
This Lentejas Soup is healthy & delicious!

***This post was originally published on June 2019. It has been updated to be more helpful.

Sopa De Lentejas

This Lentejas soup is ready in less than 30 minutes, but it tastes like a Mexican soup that’s been simmering all day! This is one of our favorite dishes, especially since it’s made from all staple ingredients.

I love making soups! My most popular soups so far are Traditional Sopa and Fideo Soup ! Just like this sopa de lentejas, they are healthy, easy to make, delicious and ready in no time.

A white bowl with lentil soup
Receta de Lentejas fácil y deliciosa!

“This dish turned out absolutely amazing and was so easy! I garnished with some extra cilantro and fresh squeezed lime juice. I am not a soup person at all but I will definitely be making this again.”

SUSANA S.

Ingredients

For this Lentejas soup I keep to the basics when it comes to the ingredients. It doesn’t need much to produce amazing flavors!

  • Carrots for texture
  • Tomatoes for sweetness
  • Celery & onions for depth.
  • Fresh cilantro, wilted into the bubbling mixture while it cooks, is a must!!
  • Quality vegetable or chicken broth: homemade is always the best but if this is not an option always buy the one that comes in a box. The canned stuff just doesn’t cut it!
  • Bouillon: You can use chicken bouillon or Vegetarian No Chicken Base (better than bullion for a vegetarian option.
  • Note: The one ingredients we’re not adding here is bacon to keep it healthy. The original recipe calls to garnish with crispy bacon but it’s not necessary in my opinion ;).

Equipment

The Soup Pot: I use a 4 Quart Dutch oven to make this soup, but a medium soup pot works well too. 

All ingredients for this recipe on a white board.
A branch graphic for posts.

How to make Sopa De Lentejas

  • Prep all of your ingredients by cutting everything into small squares as shown on the image above.
  • Heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the 1 tablespoon oil.
  • When the oil is hot, add the diced onion, carrots, celery and garlic. Sauté until the vegetables become a little soft, about 3 minutes.
  • Add the broth, tomato, lentils, better than bullion, salt, pepper and oregano.
  • When it starts to boil, add the cilantro and cover pot with lid. Bring to a simmer.  
  • Cook, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are soft, about 18 minutes. Check for taste and add more salt & pepper if desired.
  • Serve hot. For extra flavor add a few dashes of hot sauce and a little squeezed fresh lime juice.

This lentejas soup is totally hearty but healthy comfort food. It’s packed with flavor and fills you up so this soup is an all-around win!


Chef's Hat Icon.

Chef’s Tips and Notes

  • Make Ahead: This soup can be made ahead by 3 days and kept covered and refrigerated. If making ahead, the lentils may soak up more liquid. When reheating, add more vegetable stock or water to desired consistency.
  • Storing: Store in the refrigerator for 3-4 days in an airtight container. 
  • Freezer Friendly? Yes Please! This lentil soup freezes with ease. Allow soup to cool completely, then transfer to a lidded freezer container for longer storage.
  • Reheating: If frozen, thaw in the fridge overnight and gently reheat stovetop. Depending on how thick the dal gets, you may need to add more water or broth when reheating.
Two white bowls with lentejas soup and a spoon.
Easy Lentejas Soup Recipe

People also ask:

What is Lentejas made of?

Lentejas are made with basic ingredients like carrots, celery, onions, tomato, garlic and broth. They are slowly simmered until soft and can be enjoyed with hot sauce and lime juice. This is a popular way to eat lentils in Mexico.

What kind of lentils are best for soup?

The best lentils for soup can be green or red. Both kinds cook quickly as they are small in size. They don’t require to be soaked prior to cooking as they cook quickly regardless.

How long do lentils take to cook?

Lentils cook in about 18 minutes in medium-low heat. This is the perfect timing to not undercook or overcook them.

What do you eat with Lentejas?

This soup goes perfectly with homemade Corn Tortillas or flour tortillas, bolillo, crusty bread, or anything, really. To compliment this soup you can serve:

A close up image of sopa de lentejas.
Mexican Lentil Soup

💫 If you enjoyed this recipe I’d love it if you take 5 seconds to rate and review it below on the blog. It’s also super helpful to me and other readers if you share any changes you made to the recipe. I’m so grateful you’re here! 🙏🏼

Print Recipe:

A white bowl with soup and a spoon inside.

Authentic Lentejas (Mexican Lentil Soup) Recipe

Servings 6 servings
Ana Frias
5 from 11 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Sopa De Lentejas is a popular Mexican soup that is healthy, delicious and ready in 30 minutes or less. It's full of flavor! You can’t go wrong with a big warm bowl of lentil soup.
6 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 1 tablespoon avocado or grapeseed oil
  • ½ small white or yellow onion diced in small squares
  • 2 medium carrots diced in small squares
  • 1 celery stick diced in small squares
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • 5 cups chicken or vegetable broth warm
  • 1 medium tomato diced in small squares
  • 1 cup dry lentils rinsed and dried
  • 1 cube chicken bouillon or ½ teaspoon Vegetarian No Chicken Base (better than bullion)
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • ¼ cup cilantro chopped

Instructions
 

  • Heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the 1 tablespoon oil.
    1 tablespoon avocado or grapeseed oil
  • When the oil is hot, add the onion, carrots, celery and garlic. Sauté until the vegetables become a little soft, about 3 minutes.
    ½ small white or yellow onion, 2 medium carrots, 1 celery stick, 1 garlic clove
  • Add the broth, tomato, lentils, bullion, salt, pepper and oregano.
    5 cups chicken or vegetable broth, 1 medium tomato, 1 cup dry lentils, 1 cube chicken bouillon or ½ teaspoon Vegetarian No Chicken Base (better than bullion), ½ teaspoon kosher salt, ½ teaspoon fresh ground pepper, ¼ teaspoon oregano
  • When it starts to boil, add the cilantro and cover pot with lid. Bring to a simmer.  
    ¼ cup cilantro
  • Cook, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are soft, about 18 minutes. Check for taste and add more salt & pepper if desired.
  • Serve hot. For extra flavor add a few dashes of hot sauce and a little squeezed fresh lime juice.

Video

*Ana’s Notes:

  • This soup can be made ahead by 3 days and kept covered and refrigerated. If making ahead, the lentils may soak up more liquid. When rewarming, add more stock or water to desired consistency.

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NUTRITION

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 134kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 6mg | Sodium: 988mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 3g

The nutritional information and US conversions are calculated automatically. I cannot guarantee the accuracy of this data. If this is important to you, please verify with your favourite nutrition calculator and/or unit conversion tool.

💛 Lentejas Health Benefits

Lentils are low in calories and high in nutrition, they are the perfect legume to eat for health and to keep you fuelled up all day long!

  • High in protein – A ½ cup serving of cooked lentils provides about 12 grams of protein.
  • Lots of fiber – ½ cup of cooked green lentils packs in 32% of your days’ worth of fiber!
  • Iron – 1 cup of cooked lentils provides 6.59 mg or iron.
  • Vitamin C: 2.97 mg (1 cup of cooked lentils)
  • Potassium: 731 mg (1 cup of cooked lentils)

Also Lentils contain prebiotics that help promote the growth of Lactobacillae in the gastrointestinal tract. This, in turn, may promote gut health according to Webmd.

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Recipe Rating




17 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I love making this soup over and over again! I suffer from iron deficiency and this soup has helped me add more iron to my diet. The flavors are so delicious! Thank you so much for this lentejas recipe!

  2. Hola Ana
    I am from Chihuahua and live in NYC
    My grandmother added cumin to this soup on constant rotation
    how much cumin should i add to your recipe?
    I love your recipes!!!!

    1. Hola Lili!! I would add about 1/2 teaspoon to start since cumin is a very strong spice. Add it when you add the salt & pepper and adjust to more or less the second time you make it! Like I always tell my husband: You can always add but you can’t take away …. I hope that makes sense LOL!

      I love NYC! I was there a couple of months ago. I hope this recipe reminds you of your grandmother! Please come back to let me know how it turned out with the cummin.

      Happy holidays! Ana

  3. 5 stars
    This dish turned out absolutely amazing and was so easy! I garnished with some extra cilantro and fresh squeezed lime juice. I am not a soup person at all but I will definitely be making this again.