Lentil Soup with Indian Spices

lentil soup with Indian spices recipe with step by step pictures

Lentils are my favorite legumes.

My body loves them and craves them very often.

Well, sometimes my body cannot decide between legumes and eggnog. But all-in-all, I really love lentils.


I’ve made this particular soup for the first time in my life.

I make lentil soups quite often but not the Indian ones.

The thing is that I had been playing with the idea of making this kind of soup for some time and all I needed and was trying to find were the right Indian spices.

The day I saw Garam Masala and Turmeric in one magical shop my vision was finally free to turn into reality – the yummy Lentil Soup with Indian Spices.

So, here’s what I did and how I improvised…

lentil soup with Indian spices recipe with step by step pictures

These are the ingredients that I’ve used.

lentil soup with Indian spices recipe with step by step pictures

And here they are again.

Mmm, this looks promising.

lentil soup with Indian spices recipe with step by step pictures

1. Firstly, let’s get some chopping done – chop the onion and the chili pepper finely. Then dice up the tomato. And give the garlic cloves a nice fine chop as well.

lentil soup with Indian spices recipe with step by step pictures

2. Rinse the lentils under cold running water. Place them into a pot and cover with water (3 1/2 cups – 870 ml).
3. Cook the lentils until just almost ‘fully tender’. We need them to be almost done.

I was using halved red lentils and this process took only about 4 minutes. If you use whole red lentils it might take a little longer. To check how tender the lentils are just eat a few. Easy!
lentil soup with Indian spices recipe with step by step pictures

4. In the meantime, heat the oil in a larger pan or pot.


5. Add the mustard seeds and watch the magic happen – they will enjoy the warmth of the oil so much that they will start to pop with joy. As a result, they will taste sweet and nutty.

Let the seeds pop for about 20 seconds.


6. Then add the cumin seeds, turmeric and chopped onions.

Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring constantly.

lentil soup with Indian spices recipe with step by step pictures

7. After that, add the garlic. Stir and cook together for about 1 minute.

lentil soup with Indian spices recipe with step by step pictures

8. Add the chopped tomato and chili pepper.

Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring every now and then.

lentil soup with Indian spices recipe with step by step pictures

9. Then add the lentils and their cooking water.


10. Add the garam masala powder and salt to taste (I used about 3/4 tsp).
lentil soup with Indian spices recipe with step by step pictures

11. Let come to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer for about 5 more minutes.

lentil soup with Indian spices recipe with step by step pictures

And that’s it!

This is an unbelievably simple, delicious and quick-to-make soup.

Enjoy, dear friends!

It’s healthy, yummy and good for you.
(This recipe makes 3-4 portions and takes about 30 minutes to make.)

Source: Saboot Masoor Masala Dal from ItsLife.in.

15 thoughts on “Lentil Soup with Indian Spices

  1. 1

    Your enticing pics makes me hungry now! Very comfort food. Pics are very clear and beautiful. 🙂

  2. 2
    Miryam says:

    You just remind it me about the lentil soup that I am going to be making tomorrow. Did not know what to do for lunch so after seeing your post, lentils it is 🙂 Love them.

    By the way great post on Vienna, I am so jealous you are in Europe. Soon, for me, soon…….

  3. 3
    Tes says:

    Your soup looks super delicious! I love aromatic lentil soup. This sounds really perfect for the cold weather that is going to come 🙂

  4. 4
    jana says:

    Mouthwatering, yet again! Seriously, your posts are like food p()rn. I loooooove lentils. And Indian cuisine. I’ve been using a “dal” recipe from my Pakistani-Autralian friend’s mom. Now, I am going to add yours to our repertoire. I am sure Jordan will love it as much as I already do.

    Slightly off the topic of lentils – do you make your own eggnog? If you do, any plans sharing the recipe on the pages of Zoom Yummy?

    • 4.1
      ZoomYummy says:

      Thank you Janka! I don’t make my own eggnog, YET! The day I make it I’ll definitely share it with you! But when I think about it, that might start a very dangerous game. 🙂 Petra

  5. 5
    Debi says:

    hi Petra,

    I am a silent follower of yuor blog and i love to follow your blog for 1 main reason.. no wait 2.. let me say many reason.
    Great picture, good easy tried and tested food and the biggest being your Step wise photographs along with the recipe. its like a visual treat. For a person like me i believe in visual teaching and your blog does just that.

    well Lentil soup is my favourite. i am from India and i reside in bangalore but a bengali by birth (a lil complicated indian culture we follow here). you hve captured all the spices and it looks good. Next time u could boil the lentils more and make a more mushier soup which is extremly yummy during winters. if u could season it with splash of mustard oil-it would be lip smaking. 🙂

    i am an avid cook, but dont have any blog. you could reach out to me in case you want any typical indian recipes or such.

    Good day!
    take Care.

    • 5.1
      ZoomYummy says:

      Hi Debi! Thank you so very much! Also, thank you for the advice on the lentil soup – it’s appreciated. I love Indian cuisine and would surely love to learn more – so don’t be surprised when you find an e-mail from me in your inbox one day. 🙂 Have a wonderful day! 🙂 Petra

  6. 6

    oh wow this looks yummy! i’m excited to try it! 🙂

  7. 7
    Brigitte says:

    This might seem like a silly question, but I was talking to my sister about making this recipe, and she got me wondering about this by telling me she usually cooked her lentil soup for about an hour an a half: Did you use canned lentils for this, or dry ones?

    Anyways, thanks for these wonderful recipes. The photos are lovely and help little-beginner-cook me in being sure what I’m doing is right. ^^

    • 7.1
      ZoomYummy says:

      Hi Brigitte. That is not a silly question at all. The regular lentils (the brown ones) – they cook longer. But these red ones seem to need shorter time. And (!) I was even using halved ones. These needed literally minutes. But don’t worry. Whichever kind you choose, just taste them to know whether they are cooked or not. It’s easy! 🙂 Petra

  8. 8
    Krista says:

    Num! I made this for dinner tonight!

  9. 9
    Fuzzy says:

    This is the best lentil soup EVER! I made it a while ago and can’t stop thinking about it lately so IT’S ON TONIGHT!

  10. 10
    Pradeep Rajkumar says:

    Please try yo cook South Indian Sambhar recipe…

    Pradeep’s Sambhar

    1 st Step
    a)Soak the Toor Dhal 1coffee cup in cold water 2 hours
    b) Soak Double Horse tamarind for 2 hours in cold water(after soaking u can get ½ tumbler of tamarind pulp)
    2nd step Pressure cooking
    Recommended vegetables to be pressure cooked with 3 green chillis+2 Stems of Curry leaves+1.125 teaspoon turmeric+1 tablespoon of Goldwinner Sunflower oil are:
    Drumstick, Carrot, Brinjal and Pumpkin
    Pressure cook the ingredients for 10 whistles in medium heat

    3rd step Take a vada chatti or Kadai to
    Take 3 Red Spring onions chop finely fry it till gets brown in colour
    Add half tubler of tamarind water with Sambhar powder (Get Bangalore’s Famous Iyengar and CO & MTR and add 1 tablespoon each ) fry for a minute in low heat
    Add 1 ½ Bangalore Tomatos chopped with ½ tumbler of water cook in medium heat, till it gets SEMI dry.
    Then transfer these ingredients to the pressure cooker and cook in low heat for 20 mins by closing it the pressure cooker with a plate or glass
    Add half a bunch of coriander when you cook for 20 mins…

    Sambar ready…

  11. 11
    Tamara says:

    I’ve made this a few times already and it’s on the menu tonight! I like to double it though for lots of leftovers 🙂

  12. 12
    Lylah says:

    It can be tough to find the right ingredients for this blend in my area so I actually purchase the garam masala spice blend from RawSpiceBar’s and it was great!

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