Hearty winter vegetable soup

May 27, 2020

This is a very nutritious and filling vegetable soup that uses easily stored and available ingredients.

This recipe will make a normal large kitchen pot of soup (about 4-5 liters).


  • 250g brown lentils or other legumes like beans (or red lentils)
  • 250g soup mix (rinse)
  • 2 x large onions
  • Sunflower oil or canola oil
  • 500g carrots (roughly chopped) (or butternut or pumpkin)
  • Half a large cabbage (or any green veg)
  • 2-3 stock cubes (any)
  • 1½  tsp coriander powder
  • 1½  tsp cumin powder (instead of cumin and coriander powder you could use 3 tsp of a mild curry powder instead.)
  • 1 TBS dried mixed herbs
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Fry roughly chopped onions in a generous splash of sunflower or canola oil.
  • When soft, add chopped vegetables and leave to sweat for a few minutes.
  • Then add rinsed lentils and soup mix with stock cubes, water (4-5 liters) and seasoning.
  • Bring to boil and simmer with lids on, for approximately 1.5 hours.
  • Keep adding more water when necessary to prevent sticking to the bottom. (lentils and soup mix absorb a lot of water).
  • When lentils are soft, blitz soup with a hand blender to desired texture and add extra boiling water if necessary. The soup is meant to be a thick soup.


Lentils and soup mix

Soaking the lentils and soup mix in tap water overnight will reduce the cooking time of the soup. (even if the lentil packet says no need to soak). If you forget to soak them, you can soak in boiling water for a couple of hours before making the soup as well. Soaking is not necessary though; it just shortens the cooking process.

Recipe by Karen Protheroe

Karen is a registered dietitian and author of numerous books on nutrition. She also runs a private practice in Stellenbosch. Read more about Karen here.

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