This hearty, earthy Tuscan lentil soup is a perfect choice for cold winter evenings. Not only is it warming and comforting, but Tuscan lentil soup is also healthy. Packed with vitamins and minerals, this Tuscan dish will give you the nutrition you need to get through the day.
All about Tuscan Lentil Soup
Tuscan lentil soup is a filling soup made from a simple combination of ingredients. The featured ingredient is lentils, which are types of legumes. Other ingredients include Italian sausage, celery, carrots, onions, potatoes, tomatoes, garlic, and Italian herbs.
Tuscan lentil soup has become popular in many countries around the world due to its rich flavor and health benefits. Lentils are packed with protein, fiber, iron, and folate, which makes them an excellent source of nutrition. Serve this Tuscan lentil soup with crusty bread or a side salad for the perfect cozy dinner.
Ingredients You’ll Need for Tuscan Lentil Soup
- Italian sausage
- Vegetable stock
- Big potatoes
- Celery stick
- White onion
- Medium-sized tomatoes
- Garlic cloves
- Dried thyme
- Dried rosemary
- Bay leaf
- Olive oil
- Parmesan cheese for garnish (optional)
How to Make Tuscan Lentil Soup
- Finely dice the onion and celery.
- Slice the carrots.
- Cut the tomatoes and potatoes into chunks.
- Mince the garlic cloves.
- Heat the olive oil on medium heat in the Dutch oven or pot. Brown the sausage. Remove the sausage and set aside.
- Add the garlic, onion, carrots, celery, salt, thyme, rosemary, and bay leaf to the pot. Cook on medium heat until soft and fragrant (around 10 to 12 minutes).
- While the vegetables are cooking, go through the lentils to remove any small stones or debris.
- Add the browned sausage, lentils, potatoes, tomatoes, and vegetable stock to the pot. Cook on low for 20 to 25 minutes or until the potatoes and lentils are soft.
- Serve with grated Parmesan cheese on top, if desired.
Tips and Variations for Tuscan Lentil Soup
Here are a few tips to help you make the best Tuscan lentil soup:
- Start with good quality ingredients. Source the freshest vegetables, herbs, and lentils you can find.
- Don’t forget to go through the lentils to remove any small stones or debris. You don’t want to find a small stone in your soup, and it’s more common than you would think.
- If you want to shorten the cooking time, you can soak the lentils for 1 hour before making the soup. This will also remove some of the anti-nutrients present in the skin of the lentils, making them more digestible. But soaking is not necessary.
- Make this Tuscan lentil soup in a slow cooker or Instant Pot to save time. The ingredients remain the same, but you will need to adjust the cooking times accordingly.
- Try using different combinations of herbs and spices like sage, oregano, and basil for extra depth.
- Add chili flakes or hot pepper flakes for a bit of spicy heat.
- Use roasted tomatoes instead of fresh ones for a smokier flavor.
- Add or substitute roasted vegetables, such as bell peppers, zucchini, and eggplant.
- Add kale, spinach, or Swiss chard for added flavor, texture, and nutrition.
- Use bacon or pancetta in place of sausage for added richness.
- Serve with other Italian-inspired sides for an authentic experience. A simple green salad with an herby dressing is a great accompaniment, as are some slices of crusty bread with olive oil and herbs.
Tuscan Lentil Soup FAQs
How can I make this soup vegan?
To make a vegan version of this soup, omit the Italian sausage or substitute with textured vegetable protein (TVP) or vegan sausage. Leave off the Parmesan cheese or substitute with a vegan cheese.
How do I store leftovers of Tuscan lentil soup?
You can make Tuscan lentil soup in advance and store it in a sealed container in the fridge for up to a week.
Can I freeze this soup?
Yes, you can freeze this Tuscan lentil soup. I would remove the potatoes because potatoes do not freeze well. The texture of potatoes changes when they defrost.
Other Soup Recipes
Tuscan lentil soup is a hearty meal that’s sure to warm your soul on a cold winter night. And it’s a great way to add more legumes to your diet. Serve Tuscan lentil soup with crusty bread for an authentic Italian experience or add more vegetables for extra flavor, texture, and nutrition. And enjoy leftovers for days.
- 2 cups Italian sausage
- 55 oz vegetable stock
- 2 big potatoes
- 2 carrots
- 1 celery stick
- 1 white onion
- 2-3 medium-sized tomatoes
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1 bay leave
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Parmesan cheese for garnish (optional)
1. Start by prepping the vegetables by washing them and cutting them like follows:
- Finely dice the onion and celery
- Cut the carrots into wheels
- Dice the tomatoes in chunks
- Dice the potatoes in chunks
- Mince the garlic cloves
2. Add the olive oil to the Dutch oven or pot and heat it on medium. Add the meat and brown it.
3. Remove the meat and add the garlic, onion, and celery, and season with the salt and herbs. Cook until soft and fragrant (around 10-12 minutes) on medium heat.
4. While the vegetables are cooking go through the lentils to remove any possible small stones or debris.
5. Add back to the pot the browned meat.
6. Add the lentils, the potatoes, the tomatoes, and the vegetable stock. Cook for 20-25 minutes on low or until the potatoes and lentils are soft.
7. Serve with some grated parmesan cheese on top.
It is very important to go through the lentils to ensure there are not any small stones or debris. Believe me, you don’t want to find a small stone in your soup and it’s more common than you would think!
If you want you can soak the lentils for 1 hour before making the soup, this will shorten the cooking process and remove some of the anti-nutrients present in the skin of the lentils, making them more digestible (although not necessary)
This soup can be made in advance and can be stored in the fridge for up to a week in a sealed container. You can freeze it too, but for that, I would remove the potatoes since potatoes do not freeze well. (their texture changes when defrosted)