Hearty Lentil Soup

Well, it’s been a year. Lots of water under THAT bridge. I received several expressions of “missing” The Triangle Plate from some of you that enjoy reading and cooking from this blog. The thing is, I’ve been cooking as much as ever (because I haven’t stopped enjoying good food), but wanted to make a few adjustments on the blog before starting again. And finding time to do that in the midst of a normal week just wasn’t happening. But as I love sharing my food discoveries and old favorites with you, getting the blog up and running again has been a New Year’s resolution. Meanwhile, I’ve been using Instagram as my outlet for documenting my cooking, so feel free to follow along there @sbkunstle if you enjoy having lots of visual inspiration.

So, in the spirit of firing this thang back on up… I’m just doing a quick post on a favorite winter soup. A totally mundane recipe for a busy weeknight in my mind, but whenever I serve it I hear “this is sooo good!” and “can I have the recipe?” I realized that some things that I find kind of non-exciting are new to others (and vice versa!), and so I promise I’ll start sharing more of those this year.

The short story on this soup dates back to nearly twelve years ago in a forest in Bavaria. We had gone for a gorgeous hike on a drizzly day with my cousin, Aaron, who was visiting and a colleague of Dave’s who was showing us around our new stomping grounds. It was a beautiful trail that wound up the mountain, and to my total DELIGHT there was a hut at the top that was just bustling with other hikers who had stopped in for a beer and a hearty soup or sausages. Hiking in Colorado is just breathtaking and rivals anywhere in the world with beauty, but little huts serving freshly cooked food for any old person who might show up, it has not. So I was excited. We sat down to the most delicious lentil soup with sausage that from that day on, changed the way I saw lentil soup. Previously, it was just health food to me that was hard to get too worked up about. And when you are in your twenties, hiking about mountains and eating up soup with pork sausage is just perfect. Now firmly planted in the latter half of my thirties, I’m using chicken apple sausage so the heartiness will be more about a happy tummy vs. looking hearty.


Hearty Lentil Soup

recipe by Stephanie Kunstle

Note: You can make this in a crock pot and cook on high for 6-7 hours, or you can do it stovetop for about 2 hours cook time. Totally up to you and your availability. If you do it stovetop, just make sure you keep adding water as much of it will cook away in this faster cooking process.


  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, ends trimmed, slit lengthwise and chopped
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped in whatever chop floats your boat (I like to half or quarter mine lengthwise before chopping)
  • optional: 2 small potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 3 chicken apple sausages (about 1 lb.) or sausage of your choice, slit lengthwise and chopped into bite size chunks
  • 2-3 cups green lentils, picked over and rinsed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tsp. Better than Bullion chicken base or 2-3 cups chicken stock
  • water to cover about 2 inches above lentil mixture (6-8 cups or so)
  • salt to taste (do not season until after soup is cooked)


  1. Stir well to combine all ingredients EXCEPT salt in crock pot or a large pot on the stove.
  2. If you are using a crock pot, just put the lid on and set the time for 6-7 hours on high. Walk away and have your day! I prefer this method as I think the lentils are just more flavorful after so many hours cooking together with the sausage and veggies.
  3. If you are doing this on the stove, you will bring the ingredients to a boil over medium high heat, then turn down to simmer the soup for about 2 hours until lentils are tender.  You will need to add water as needed, so be sure to stir occasionally and check the water.
  4. Once the soup is cooked, add the salt. Adding it prematurely can make it tough for the lentils to soften and you may end up with salty soup. The sausage and bullion have salt already, so that will season the soup quite a bit.
  5. Add salt to taste (may be around 2 tsp or so).
  6. Serve with a a rustic bread and a fresh salad!
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14 Responses to Hearty Lentil Soup

  1. Rita says:

    Yay! Welcome back! I’ve been wanting this recipe from you. It really is so delicious and such a comfort food. Thank you!

  2. MB says:

    mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm – we had lentils for dinner tonight – the only recipe I know – thanks for this!!!

  3. Emily says:

    Finally! I’ve always wanted to up my lentil soup game and this does it! I’ll be makin this ASAP! And so glad you’re back in the saddle!! I need your inspiration!!

  4. Pop says:

    Yes, Yes. Just had this the other night at Stephanie’s table. My tummy is still warm and happy.


  5. Etirsa says:

    Sweet!! We are DF/GF, along with other stuff, so I’ve been looking for something of yours to try that didn’t look too hard! My son loves lentils, but not mine! :) Have
    never found a recipe that turned out good for me, but excited to try this! :)

  6. Stephanie says:

    Thanks Rita, MB, Emily & Pop for the enthusiasm and encouragement! And Etirsa, I’d love to hear what you think of this after you make it! I hope it’s a hit at your table.

  7. Gina says:

    Headed to the store now with shopping list in hand! So you think adding kale or spinach would be ok with the flavors…? I try adding it to most my soups! Can’t wait!

  8. Stephanie says:

    Morning, Gina! I think kale or spinach would be delish…now you’re taking this recipe from the forest near Munich, over Brenner Pass and into Alto Adige! My kind of cook! Tell us how it turns out.

  9. Beckie says:

    I am thrilled you are back at it! I do appreciate each and every one of your recipes.

  10. Stephanie says:

    Thank you dear Beckie! I’m so glad!

  11. Beckie says:

    All ingredients in the crock pot. Perfect day for soup.

  12. Stephanie says:

    Ohhhhh! Yes! Happy soup day, indeed! Guten appetit!

  13. Emily says:

    Funny story..
    So I grabbed all, well almost all of the ingredients for this soup a few weeks ago, so excited I was to try it. When I was at the store, I felt pretty positive that I had a bag of green lentils in my pantry and when it was time to add them, I grabbed the bag, sorted them, noting that they looked shockingly bright and green, and extra round, but again, so thankful I had them. After a couple of hours, I went to stir them, and they were falling apart and so very soft! I then tasted them, and sure enough, my suspicions were confirmed. They were split peas!! Hahahahaha! I had saved that bag of split peas since forever, because I’m not a huge fan, but with this recipe, they tasted great. The best split pea soup I’ve ever had. It was my destiny to make these, apparently.

    And I did make this recipe properly with lentils a couple of weeks ago. Delish!!!

  14. Stephanie says:

    Emily- so glad this recipe worked for the split peas! How new ideas are born every day! Hahaha! And glad you enjoyed the lentils too!

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