I get a lot of emails from readers with recipe suggestions and I love them all, but don’t get the opportunity to make many of them. Every once in a while, though, an email comes through with a recipe that happens to be exactly what I’m in the mood for eating that week. That’s what happened when I got an email from Rachel with a link to this amazing Moroccan Lentil and Chickpea Soup from Wegmans.com. The first thing that I noticed is that it has almost the same blend of warm and intoxicating spices that makes my Yellow Jasmine Rice so irresistible. So, of course I had to try it!
I switched up the spices a bit to match what I had on hand (no coriander and changed quantities). I had a half bag of lentils in my pantry, so I just went with that instead of a whole pound. To make up for the smaller amount of lentils, I used a larger can of chickpeas and added a half pound of frozen cauliflower florets, which were also hanging out just waiting to be used up. The cauliflower was an absolutely perfect match for this soup and I think it made the ratio of beans to vegetables perfectly balanced.
I can’t express how much I love this soup. It has so much flavor and texture, plus it’s filled with fiber and anti-inflammatory spices. Then, after making it and wolfing down a bowl, I noticed that, “Hey! This is vegan!” That’s the best type of vegan food—the kind that’s so good that you don’t even notice till you stop and think about it.
I didn’t have time, but I highly suggest making some Homemade Naan to dip in the amazing broth. Do it. You won’t be sorry.
- 2 Tbsp olive oil $0.16
- 1 medium yellow onion $0.36
- 4 cloves garlic, minced $0.32
- 4 stalks (about half a bunch) celery $0.65
- ½ Tbsp ground cumin $0.10
- 1 tsp turmeric $0.10
- 1 tsp cinnamon $0.10
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper $0.02
- 1 (19 oz.) can chickpeas $1.89*
- 1 (28 oz.) can diced tomatoes $1.39
- ½ lb. frozen cauliflower florets $0.83
- 6 cups vegetable broth $0.63**
- 1 cup brown lentils $0.68
- 1 bay leaf $0.15
- Dice the onion and mince the garlic. Sauté both in a large pot with olive oil over medium heat until softened. Dice the celery while the onions and garlic are sautéing, then add to the pot and continue to sauté for 2-3 minutes more.
- Add the cumin, turmeric, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper to the pot. Stir and cook the spices with the vegetables for 1-2 minutes.
- Add the diced tomatoes (with juices), chickpeas (rinsed and drained), and cauliflower florets (no need to thaw). Stir the pot until everything is well mixed.
- Add the vegetable broth and bay leaf, turn the heat up to high, place a lid on the pot, and allow it to come to a boil. Once it reaches a boil, add the lentils. Stir and let it come back up to a boil, then turn the heat down to low. Let the stew simmer on low, with the lid, for 30 minutes.
- After simmering for 30 minutes, the lentils should be tender. Remove the bay leaf and give the stew a taste. Add salt if needed (this will depend on the type of vegetable broth used. I did not add any additional salt), then serve.
**I use Better Than Bouillon soup base to make my broth.
Step by Step Photos
Begin by dicing one onion and mincing four cloves of garlic. Sauté both in a large pot with 2 Tbsp of olive oil over medium heat until softened.
While the onions and garlic are sautéing, dice four stalks of celery (about a half bunch). Add the celery and sauté for a few minutes more.
Add a 1/2 Tbsp cumin, 1 tsp turmeric, 1 tsp cinnamon, and 1/4 tsp cayenne to the pot.
Sauté the spices with the vegetables for one to two minutes. This toasts the spices a little and amplifies their flavor. They may stick to the bottom of the pot a little, but that’s okay. Just take care not to let them burn. Turn the heat down slightly, if needed.
Add one 28oz. can of diced tomatoes (with the juices), one 19oz. can of chickpeas (rinsed and drained), and about a 1/2 lb. of frozen cauliflower florets (no need to let them thaw).
Stir it all up and let the moisture dissolve the spices from the bottom of the pot. Look at all that vegetable goodness!!
Add six cups of vegetable broth (I use Better Than Bouillon) and one bay leaf. Turn the heat up to high, place a lid on the pot, and let it come to a boil. Once it reaches a full boil, add one cup of brown lentils. Stir the pot, let it come back up to a boil, then turn the heat down to low. Let it simmer on low (with lid) for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, the lentils should be tender. Give the stew a taste and add salt if needed. I use Better Than Bouillon for my vegetable broth and it’s plenty salty enough, so I didn’t need to add any, but if your brand has less salt, you may need to add a pinch. Remove the bay leaf and serve!
I LOVE how these spices make my house smell. So good! Serve with homemade naan. Oooh it makes my knees weak!