Sep 23
2009

Lentil Soup with Italian Sausage & Spinach Recipe

Lentil Soup with Italian Sausage & Spinach

While I enjoy a good slab of meat as much as the next carnivore, sometimes a good hit of vegetarian protein is more than satisfying.  Okay, so I added in a little Italian sausage – I just can’t help myself.  According to Wikipedia, lentils have the third-highest amount of protein of any plant-based food.  They are beaten out of the top spot only by soybeans and hemp. Surprisingly, there are quite a few hemp soup recipes on the web.  Since I wasn’t look for that kind of hit, I decided to stick with lentils.  Now that Autumn is officially here, I find that a hearty bowl of soup, accompanied by a side salad, makes a satisfying meal.  After polishing off a pot of Sage & Gorgonzola Cauliflower Soup last week, my family was ready to dip into another flavorful soup.  The richness provided by the partially-puréed lentils and a dose of smoked paprika fit the bill perfectly.

Place 16 ounces of lentils in a strainer and rinse well with water.


Pour the lentils into a large saucepan and cover with 2 inches of cold water. Add 1 medium carrot, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces; 1 large stalk of celery, cut into 1-inch pieces; 1 tomato, quartered and seeded; and 2 teaspoons salt.


Bring the mixture to a boil, then cover, reduce heat, and simmer until the lentils are tender, 30 to 35 minutes. Strain the mixture, reserving the cooking water.


Put half of the lentils and all of the vegetables into a blender. Purée the mixture, adding enough of the cooking liquid (about 3/4 cup), to make it smooth.

Put the other half of the lentils into the large saucepan and pour in the lentil purée. 


Add 3 1/2 cups of chicken broth and 1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika, and stir well.



Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Remove 4 mild Italian sausages from their casings and add them to the pan, along with 2 minced garlic cloves and 1 finely chopped small onion.


Break up the sausage with a wooden spoon and cook until the onions are starting to brown and the sausage is almost cooked through, about 8 minutes.


Add the sausage mixture to the soup and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in 2 cups fresh spinach until the sausage is wilted.


Season with salt and pepper.

Serve with a dollop of crème fraîche or plain yogurt.

Other lentil recipes:
101 Cookbooks’ Lentil Almond Stir-Fry
Lentil Soup with Italian Sausage & Spinach
16 oz. lentils
1 medium carrot, peeled & cut into 1-inch pieces
1 large celery stalk, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 tomato, quartered & seeded
2 tsp salt
3 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp olive oil
4 links mild Italian sausage, casings removed
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cups fresh spinach
Salt and pepper
Place lentils in a strainer and rinse well with water.  Pour the lentils into a large saucepan and cover with 2 inches of cold water. Add 1 carrot, celery, tomato, and 2 tsp salt.  Bring the mixture to a boil, then cover, reduce heat, and simmer until the lentils are tender, 30 to 35 minutes. Strain the mixture, reserving the cooking water.
Put half of the lentils and all of the vegetables into a blender. Purée the mixture, adding enough of the cooking liquid (about 3/4 cup), to make it smooth.  Put the other half of the lentils into the large saucepan and pour in the lentil purée.  Add chicken broth and smoked paprika, and stir well.
Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the Italian sausages to the pan, along with minced garlic cloves and onion.  Break up the sausage with a wooden spoon and cook until the onions are starting to brown and the sausage is almost cooked through, about 8 minutes.
Add the sausage mixture to the soup and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in 2 cups fresh spinach until the sausage is wilted.  Season with salt and pepper. 

Serve with a dollop of crème fraîche or plain yogurt.

Serves 4.
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{ 31 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Divina Pe September 23, 2009 at 12:54 pm

This is one of my favorite soups. I love lentils and sausages together. And even if I have lentils and they're already flavorful, I would still like to add some sausages. This soups looks really good. It's raining right now and it's just the perfect soup for the weather. Thanks again for another wonderful recipe.

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2 Cajun Chef Ryan September 23, 2009 at 1:26 pm

Oh it is so soup time now! Love this one as lentils and sausage are so good a match with both flavor and texture combinations.

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3 Kalyn September 23, 2009 at 2:43 pm

Love it! This is my kind of soup.

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4 Jenn September 23, 2009 at 3:46 pm

If only the weather here in LA were a bit cooler, I'd be making this tonight. Looks yummy!!!

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5 wasabi prime September 23, 2009 at 3:49 pm

Uh oh… you're making me hungry… and I haven't even had breakfast yet!! Great soup recipe and perfect timing for the fall!

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6 lisaiscooking September 23, 2009 at 4:30 pm

I've been craving lentils like crazy lately. This sounds great with the spinach and paprika!

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7 redkathy September 23, 2009 at 5:16 pm

Oh my gosh, this looks fabulous, a double buzz if that is possible ;)I haven't had lentil soup in years! Now I have to try your recipe.

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8 Laura September 23, 2009 at 5:52 pm

What a great combination, spinach with lentils and of course smoked paprika. Yummy!

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9 The Duo Dishes September 23, 2009 at 6:00 pm

Blending up beans is a surefire way we thicken soups instead of adding cream sometimes. Not that cream is ever a bad way to go though! This sounds very healthy and filling.

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10 KrisKishere September 23, 2009 at 7:13 pm

That looks great! I make something similar with little meatballs in it. I love lentils :)

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11 citronetvanille September 23, 2009 at 8:15 pm

I really like lentil soups! There is a French version with smoked sausage. Your soup smells great even from my screen :o)

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12 Tasty Trix September 23, 2009 at 9:17 pm

I heart lentils, and I like that they add so much heartiness and thickness to a soup all on their own.

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13 pegasuslegend September 23, 2009 at 10:06 pm

Very beautiful pictures!

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14 Diana Bauman September 24, 2009 at 12:54 am

Now this is my kind of meal! One of my favorite dishes!!

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15 Cookin' Canuck September 24, 2009 at 3:17 am

Thanks so much for all of the positive comments. I ate the leftovers for lunch today and it was even better the next day.

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16 Mother Rimmy September 24, 2009 at 4:25 am

This looks fantastic. I love lentils.

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17 Southern Grace Gourmet September 24, 2009 at 7:23 pm

This looks so good! I love the addition of the fresh spinach, I am a spinach lover!

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18 AndreaQ September 25, 2009 at 1:48 am

looks and sounds wonderful!

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19 karen September 25, 2009 at 3:25 am

I'm trying to convince my family that soup season has started, even though it was in the high 80's (that would be above 30 for you Canadians ;))I think I could it soup 24/7/365. This recipe looks great. Bookmark!

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20 Table Talk September 25, 2009 at 10:32 am

My oldest daughter has been a vegetarian for 3 years. –We usually eat vegetarian (as a whole family) 2 times per week. The comment I usually get from my husband is "you know what would make this dish really good?…some sausage"
So, I had to laugh a little while reading this post :)

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21 Jessie September 25, 2009 at 1:59 pm

CC this soup looks absolutely delicious, comforting and very hearty! I love making soups like this because of how many left overs it has

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22 ncl117 September 25, 2009 at 8:17 pm

i am excited to start making soups atleast once a week! this one will be on the list!

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23 Gera @ SweetsFoods September 25, 2009 at 10:11 pm

This soup with an Italian sausage is positively outstanding…a hearty and comfort dish :)

Cheers!

Gera

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24 Kevin September 26, 2009 at 6:23 pm

What a tasty and healthy dish! I like this use of lentils!

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25 Shannon @ bakeandbloom.com September 28, 2009 at 4:19 am

good lord that looks tasty!

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26 Family Cuisine Food And Recipe September 29, 2009 at 11:29 am

Tasty and healthy. Thank you very much for sharing. Cheers !

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27 Anonymous October 19, 2009 at 5:52 pm

I made this last night – absolutely delicious! I will definitely add this to my repetoire of recipes!

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28 Jill October 25, 2011 at 9:17 pm

I have made this several times, it is so delicious. I always use spicy sausage and skip the yogurt. We love this recipe… yum!!!

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29 Tammy November 13, 2011 at 12:14 pm

I love this recipe and my lentil hating husband likes it a lot. Thanks for posting this recipe! It is definitely a keeper!

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30 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) November 13, 2011 at 8:42 pm

I’m so glad! Thanks so much for letting me know, Tammy.

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31 jenny September 9, 2012 at 5:12 pm

I just made this tonight! It was so yummy! We love lentil soup, love sausage, so it’s a perfect combination! I cook often, but have not used smoked paprika! Wow! What a bonus ingredient :)

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