Reader Request: My Favorite Recipe – Four Corners Lentil Soup

I have had so many requests for my favorite recipe, that it’s high time I make the big reveal! I have no idea how the idea for this delightful soup even got into my hot little hands, but I have always been a huge fan of Indian Daal (lentil soup) and I suppose I just figured out how to make my own version after devouring it countless times at restaurants.
This soup is always my “back-up” for when I have last-minute company over, since I can keep all of the ingredients on hand, and it is by far the most requested recipe whenever I serve it. And the reason I call it Four Corners Lentil Soup? Because I know for a fact that this recipe has been made on every major continent on planet earth. I have friends living all over the world, and each one of them cooks it on a regular basis! From the busy streets of Singapore, to the remote wilderness of northern Ontario, from the scorched deserts in the American southwest, to the rainy seasides of Denmark, this soup really has traveled the four corners! So simple to make, highly nutritious and packed with flavour, this lentil soup is an economical crowd pleaser that will warm the hearts of anyone you serve it to, most importantly, yourself!

For the Love of Lentils
Lentils are a great legume for impatient people! They cook in a very short amount of time and require no pre-soaking like other pulses do. They have a velvety texture and delicate flavour – perfect for purées and soups. I often add blended lentils to soups or stews to make them creamy without the cream! They are low in calories, virtually fat free, but very filling because of their high fiber content.

In addition to providing the body with slow burning complex carbohydrates, lentils can increase your energy by replenishing your iron stores. Particularly for menstruating women, who are more at risk for iron deficiency, boosting iron stores with lentils is a good idea – especially because, unlike red meat, another source of iron, lentils are not rich in fat and calories.

Four Corners Lentil Soup
1 cup red lentils, picked over and rinsed very well
1 large onion, or a couple leeks, chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. minced ginger root
1 Tbsp. Ground cumin
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
1 15 oz. can of tomatoes; or 4 large, fresh tomatoes, chopped
4 cups stock
salt to taste
1 un-waxed, organic lemon

1. Rinse the lentils very well until the water runs clear.
2. Heat oil in a medium pot and sauté onions, garlic and ginger for 5 minutes until soft. Add a pinch of salt.
3. Add spices and stir for another minute or so, until fragrant.
4. Add tomatoes, 3 slices of lemon and rinsed lentils, then add vegetable stock. Stir well.
5. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer for about 30 minutes, or until the lentils are soft. Squeeze in the rest of the lemon juice.
6. Serve hot with some cilantro, green onions or parsley on top with a slice of lemon. Delicious!

Serves 4.

Hey…let’s keep this soup traveling! Let me know where you are in the world and maybe I’ll stop by for a bowl someday. It is my favorite, after all.

info source:

Copyright 2012 My New Roots at


  1. Katarzyna

    Krakow, Poland! Can’t wait to eat, it’s boiling 😉 thank u and greetings. Awful rainy and windy day that makes this soup a perfect warming dish right now.

  2. Karen Corlett

    Greetings from Adelaide, South Australia! I love this soup. It has become my go to, quick and easy soup for winter. It’s wonderful served with corn dumplings (gf) and a little splash of home made chimichurri. Thanks for sharing, Sarah 🙂

  3. Katie

    I’m crushing hard on this soup in Atlanta, GA. My oh my! It is my go to soup now, and I’m prepping a few batches for the freezer. Thank you!!

  4. Corinne Chin Mackley

    Hello from your hometown of Toronto, Canada! Made this soup last night and it was so delicious. I did add about 3 tsps of maple syrup to round out the flavours. Definitely a keeper.

  5. Julie

    Discovered your site via a link on Edgar’s Mission website (caring for abused/neglected farm animals). Soup went down a treat on Gold Coast, Australia. Can’t wait to try your other recipes as we convert to vegan. Cheers!

  6. Jackie

    This is my new favorite soup, amazing! I love,love,love your blog which I just found yesterday. We grow papayas in our back yard and will be making your Bali Papaya Salad often. Aloha from Hawaii!

  7. Emily G

    Just made some on the Mornington Peninsula in Australia. My little 2 year old wolfed it down with some curried brown rice and goat’s yoghurt and asked for more soup, so that’s a win! Thanks for sharing.

  8. Lotte mey haakansson

    Your soup has reached Lusaka, Zambia, its right this minute shimmering on the stove!
    Couldent find any decent stock, so i might need a little taste, we will see

  9. Sarah

    I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to make this recipe! It’s perfect and warming on a sunny but cold New Brunswick day after playing and sliding in 40 cm of freshly-fallen snow 🙂

  10. Alice

    Making this soup tonight in Campbell River on Vancouver Island! So happy to receive your book as a christmas present this year! Working my way through the winter section right now!

  11. Daria

    This soup is insane!!!!
    When I first made it, I though “oh that’s good”. A day later it was ‘oh my god!!!!!!! It’s amazing!!!!’. Totally my go to.

  12. Natalia

    Sarah, I recently discovered your blog and loved every single recipe I’ve made so far. I bought your book this weekend and found this lentil soup recipe and it’s delicious! You’re inspiring!

  13. Jennifer

    Making this soup right now in San Diego. I see a storm brewing over the mountains to the east and few things are as pleasurable as soup in cold rainy weather!

  14. Julia

    I made this over the weekend for a girls beach weekend in Cayucos, CA! They all loved it so much that they all wanted the recipe, so it will soon be made in San Francisco, Los Angeles and Santa Monica, CA as well! 🙂

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  18. Samara

    I’m making this soup for my mama and I in Tampa Florida tonight. It’s been a rainy day all day so we’re both looking forward to a cozy bowl of warm soup! Thank you 🙂

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  21. Jo

    I just made this despite the 90* heat in NYC. It was delicious and then I pureed it and now it so creamy and perfect… even better than before which I did not think was possible. Thank you for another easy, foolproof dinner!

  22. Holly

    I have made this soup twice in the last two weeks and it is great! Last night I added somee spinach and creme fraiche which was a nice twist. Thank you! Holly (Zurich)

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  24. Sarah Moody

    My friend in York, UK recommended this to me with addition of chickpeas….I’m here in Dtalybridge, Cheshire, UK and I added kale too and it is just divine. You are a very clever (vegan) sausage! Xxx

  25. Adelya

    Greetings from Amsterdam. Im going to make this soup for lunch, even though its 18 degrees now outside, i will surely enjoy it! Kisses and hope to see you very soon again!

  26. Liz

    Thanks for the recipe, it’s simmering and smelling delicious! Going to enjoy it here in Lakewood, California.

  27. Laura

    We’ve just had the first week of post summer rain in Perth, Western Australia, and your soup is bubbling away on my stove, smelling like a dream. Can’t wait to snuggle up on the couch with a bowl- the first taste of autumn. Thankyou as always, Sarah, for you soul nourishing recipes!

  28. Fiona

    Making this as I type in Ireland! Thought it would be perfect for a warm spring day- can’t wait to try it!

  29. Charly

    I made this soup last night in New York City! And I LOVE it! It is now my favorite soup! And I have just eaten the leftovers for lunch… sad there is none left, so I will be making more very soon! Thank you for the great recipe – so simple and yet, so delicious!

  30. Lindsay at KitchenOperas

    Ok, I had to make this after seeing your instagram photo of making it with coconut milk… so I’ve got a loaf of Life Changing Bread and your soup (without the coconut milk for now), and it is OH-SO-DELICIOUS. Thanks for the healthy inspiration — I love how lemony the soup is, just what I needed!

  31. Lenka

    Hey Sarah, this soup has quickly become my favourite too!!! Simply wonderful and so dellicious. So far, I’ve cooked it in two places: Prague and in my little village in the east of Slovakia. Everybody is amazed at how tasty it is and keeps wanting more. Thank you! x

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    • Tricia

      My daughter sent me the link for this soup. Always looking for good healthy recipes. I’ll be making it later this week. Columbus OH

      • Michelle

        Oh hi Mom! Hope you tried it… I’m making this again tonight in Brooklyn. 🙂

  34. Ingrid

    Mmmm…making the soup as we “speak” Miami. Thank you for all your recipes Sarah!
    Waiting anxiously for your book 🙂

  35. Brenda Morgan

    From Dallas, Texas. I just made this for dinner tonight. Oh so delicious!! I followed the recipe exactly. Yummy!!

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  37. Emily

    Making this right now on a rainy night with friends in Tacoma, Washington! This is my go-to recipe for when I’m running low on produce but need a delicious, warm, comforting, healthy pick-me-up. Thanks so much!!! 🙂

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  41. Jessica

    Hi! This soup looks like a perfectly cozy end to a cold, rainy day in Western Pennsylvania, but I’ve only got beluga and green lentils. Has anyone successfully tried this recipe with another variety of lentil? Thanks!

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  43. Hannake de Jongh

    Looks like a fantastic recipe! I live in Cape Town, South Africa, where it’s winter right now and soup a staple!

  44. Sloan

    Although its typically too hot to eat soup in Guam, this recipe looked so good I decided to turn up the AC and enjoy a bowl for dinner tonight. Thank you!!

  45. Zarinah

    The timer has just gone off and this dish is ready for my daughter when she gets home from school. The house smells great and the aroma has warmed up an otherwise cold and dreary day here in Melbourne. Thank you xo

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  47. Angie

    We’re sending you a warm and yummy thank you for the recipe! We are enjoying this scrumptious soup on a cold, rainy day here in Point Pleasant, West Virginia.

  48. VT

    Making this soup in Western New York tonight! I may have added a little too much Cayenne pepper, but my boyfriend likes everything spicy so I don’t think it will be a problem. Thanks for the recipe!

  49. Jemma Rowe

    Tonight I am making this soup in Hong Kong! Originally from Perth, Western Australia, I’ve been living in HK for a couple of years now and I’m always looking for easy, gluten and sugar free recipes because there’s not to many restaurants that fit that bill in HK! Thanks for the inspiration! Xx

  50. Maia

    Well, time to come to Vienna, Austria! Today whileo looking for your lentil salad (best ever) recipe, i found this one and it is ready to be eaten now! Thank you!

  51. Alyssa

    This soup is simmering on my stove as we speak. It smells and looks delicious! We added a healthy handful of cilantro to the soup before letting it simmer . . . I hope it turns out 🙂

    Enjoying your soup from Northern Minnesota!

  52. Laurel

    I quadrupled this recipe for my annual winter solstice open house and it was sooooo good!! It was all gone before the party ended! Making it again tomorrow. Thank you!

  53. Mia

    nice warming up soup for the start of a “winter injection” here in Andalucia. I added some curcuma and some coconut milk for a “softer touch” as I used canned tomatoes instead of fresh tomatoes. Welcome to taste it in our cave house 🙂

  54. Kathy-Lee

    I got suprised by rain on my way home today and warmed up near the stove while the soup was simmering and being prepared for tomorrows Lunch.
    I love your blog and I thanks to your simple yet stunning tasty recipes I found joy and satisfaction in eating again.
    Thanks and greetings from Germany~

  55. lianne

    i am gonna make this soup for dinner tonight in Utrecht, the Netherlands! love your style and recipes! do you also have a simple breakfast with a few ingredients?
    have a nice day!

  56. Tamás

    I’m from Hungary, Budakalász (near to Budapest), and I’m about to make your favorite soup 🙂
    I have to say, I really like the style of your blog (and the recipes as well), it warms my heart, so does the unbelievable quantities of not-well-known pulses, vegetables etc.
    Thank you very much for the inspiration!
    Best regards,

  57. Nicola

    Making this in Cape Town, South Africa tonight – your recipes have never failed to disappoint and I am super excited to try this out 🙂

    Much Love,
    An avid my new roots fan/disciple

  58. Suzanne

    30 minutes later…WOW, MEOW, HOLY COW!
    I’ve been feeling a bit on the edge of a cold, my body just thanked me enormously from head to toe. YUM!
    thanks for all you share, brightening my world!

  59. Suzanne

    Mmhh. . .Finally got a chance to make this. We’re simmering in Santa Cruz, CA! Less than 30 minutes. while I’m waiting, I have a question that you or others may be able to answer. I love brown rice, but I hate how it tastes after it’s been refridgerated. I KNOW I good dress it with salad dressing, but does anyone know a way to store or “revive” cooked brown rice, after it’s been refridgerated?
    PS Small typo…I think you left out how much and what kind of oil you use, in the ingredients list above.
    PPS Hope you had a great picnic in Toronto. I was definitely there in Spirit!
    Warm Regards,

  60. Suzanne

    My mum made this soup for me and my family a couple of weeks ago, we are in Brighton in the UK. I was just looking up the recipe now to share the love and make it again.

  61. Roz

    Have been stuck on liquid foods for a couple of weeks now after having jaw surgery and was starting to despair until making this beautiful soup of yours, it has completely revived me! Thank you for your wonderful blog and for being a constant inspiration! From Melbourne, Australia 🙂

  62. Claudia Mayfield

    Made your soup here in Oxford, Mississippi last night! It was perfect for the rainy weather we’re having!! I can’t wait to make it again this fall!! Thanks!

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  64. Victoria

    I made this soup today, along with your Black Quinoa Corn Muffins. My sister and I enjoyed them both for lunch in Chicago, IL. Thank you!

  65. Jess

    Sarah, Sarah Sarah… you are my food mentor:)
    I made your soup tonight, and I made a few additions of my own that I feel you may be interested by…
    Instead of stock I used about 3 inches of dried organic wakame, and 1 table spoon of the Miso dressing that you used for the sesame carrots in another recipe…
    I also added 1 T of grated tumeric, and didn’t have any lemon 🙁

    It is such a delicious soup… I actually had to tie my hands behind my back to stop myself eating until my tummy hurt.
    Thank you so much from your inspiration.
    From Melbourne Australia 🙂

  66. Natalie

    On the brink of a blizzard here in Massachusetts, and making this soup to make it through the upcoming cold! Thanks for providing just the recipe I was looking for :]

  67. Anja Castro

    Today, this is going to be our lunch in estepona,andalucia,southern spain.
    And my sister in germany is having it too.
    In fact its an every corner soup which somehow makes it round:-)
    Thanx for my favourite foodblog

  68. Lena Vanusa

    mhmm…made this soup again after a day out sledding down the snowy hills. its simply the best winter soup ever. guess you have to come to vienna, austria, to try it. 🙂
    all the best and happy spirit,

  69. Ketmala Phoumalavong

    We had it for dinner tonight and once again it was delicious (I made it 3 times already!) The perfect soup for a stormy evening here in West Chester , Pennsylvania as hurricane Sandy is blasting through! Thank you Sarah for your awesome website and healthy recipes.

  70. Lydia

    I made this for my parents the other night – we all loved it! I’m from Edmonton, Alberta. I plan to make it again tonight for my mother in law.

  71. Anonymous

    I’m so cooking this for lunch tomorrow!! Sounds delicious and I happen to have all the ingredients in my kitchen 😀 Regards from Iceland!

  72. katie

    Just made this soup for the staff at my school in Vancouver BC! stop by for soup day! I may have overdone it on the cayenne… 🙂

  73. jazziefizzle

    Making this soup today on the usually-sunny Gold Coast, Australia. I have had it bookmarked for a dreary day, and am so looking forward to it warming me up while it rains outside!

  74. Mrs. Mango

    Made this is Miami, florida. Loving all the recipes on here. Please keep it going. Loved the two videos too. Finally learned the secrets of quinoa. Are you going to be making any more videos?

  75. Mary Lee Jewelry Designs

    A crisp, cool early evening here in Summerside, PE and I’m enjoying this lentil soup with some hunter rye bread – scrumptious and such a comfort food. Thank you for introducing it to me. I’ve never had red lentils before and this will from now on, become a staple in my home. I have seen the documentary, Forks Over Knives and am reading The China Study. Both are incredibly informative on how a whole foods, plant-based diet can eliminate many of the common diseases killing North Americans every day. Your site is now my new recipe guide for delicious and healthy meals without dairy or meat products. Thanks so much for your blog and your contribution to improving everyone’s health and happiness.

  76. Anna Bishop

    Thank you, Sarah B. I made this soup in London last night as a pre-NYE party dinner. It went down a treat. Everyone loved the flavours and it was a solid start to a slightly excessive night. I will be enjoying the leftovers today (not in much shape to cook) and I think it’ll become a staple in my repertoire.

    Happy new year!! I hope 2012 is fantastic to you.


  77. Bellaroots

    i am in portland Oregon and am making this soup for the second time this week, it is that good!! the first time I was out of lemon but this time I have it. Do you put the three lemon slices in the soup with the peel?
    belly warming goodness. thanks for sharing your talent. By far my favorite food blog.

  78. Nikulya :)

    I am from Sacramento, CA. & I just made this delicious soup!! I don’t think I will ever make lentil soup by another recipe!! Stop on by, Sarah, we’ll make sure to save you a bowl of this delicious goodness! :)))
    Thanks for the awesome recipe!

  79. Pamela

    We just made this in Auckland, NZ after a hard work out! Served it with potato sourdough and it was quite possibly the best lentil soup I’ve tried! Delicious – thank you.

  80. Marianne

    Wonderful soup. Just the right amount of kick to it. Great winter warming soup. However, I don’t think I’ve ever seen red lentils–is there a difference? I used just the usual color — whatever color they are. My daughter sent me your blog. We are all about healthy recipes. Thanks!!

  81. Cindy

    I made this soup a couple weeks ago and my boyfriend and I devoured it! I am on the way to get more lentils to make it again. This time I will double it so we have leftovers.

  82. Grant

    Claire Ellisalde gave me your blog when we were living together in Byron Bay Australia. I read it all the time- and make lots of your yummy food. Nice photography too 🙂

    Anyway, I made this soup tonight. Well, its simmering now- and the place is smelling superduper delish. Thanks for helping me make food that does not suck.


  83. Kaitlin

    Now you have to come to Victoria…just made this tonight (and the lemon pound cake). I think it might help defeat the dregs of the flu that have been hounding me for a week. Miss your face.

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