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Horizontal image of orange-rimmed blue bowls filled with a vegetable stew next to a wooden cutting board with bread

Italian Lentil Soup

  • Author: Kelli McGrane
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x


This Italian lentil soup is so easy to make and bursting with vegetables. With its simple, comforting flavors, it tastes just Nana’s.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup diced carrots (about 2 medium)
  • 1/2 cup diced yellow onion (about 1 small)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 810 cups water, divided
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cups green lentils, rinsed
  • 10 ounces frozen spinach
  • Grated Parmesan, for serving (optional)


  1. Add oil to a large stockpot over medium heat. Once oil is hot, add onion and carrots. Cook 8-10 minutes, or until onions are translucent and carrots are slightly softened, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute or until fragrant, stirring constantly. Add dried herbs, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine, and cook another 30 seconds.
  3. Add diced tomatoes, 8 cups water, bay leaf, and lentils. Stir to combine. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil.
  4. Once boiling, cover and reduce heat to a low simmer. Simmer for 30-45 minutes, or until lentils are soft. Depending on how much water was absorbed, you have the option to add the remaining 2 cups of water to thin out the soup as desired.
  5. Remove lid and stir in spinach. Cook until spinach is heated through, about 5 minutes. Remove bay leaf and serve immediately.
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian

Keywords: lentil soup, Italian, lentil, tomato, spinach