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Top down shot of a bowl of lentil soup topped with herbs and pepper flakes.

Lentil Kale Soup

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  • Author: Catherine Perez
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan


This Lentil Kale Soup is hearty and loaded with nutrient dense French lentils and mushrooms, garlic, lots of herbs and finished off with balsamic vinegar. Easy to put together and meal prep for meals throughout the week.


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 cups mushrooms, sliced
  • 8 leaves fresh sage, chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 1/2 cups French lentils
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 8 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 23 cups kale, roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp good quality balsamic vinegar or the juice of one lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Warm your oil in a large pot over medium heat. Sauté the onions and celery with a pinch of salt until the onions have softened, about 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add in the sliced mushrooms and continue to sauté to release a majority of their moisture, about 3-4 minutes. You should notice your pan starting to dry up a little bit with some of the caramelized bits from your onion and celery at the bottom.
  3. Stir in the garlic and sage and sauté until the garlic is fragrant, about 2 minutes.
  4. If needed at this point, deglaze the pan with a splash of vegetable broth then add in your nutritional yeast and coriander and stir well to combine.
  5. Add in your lentils, and toss around to coat with your ingredients.
  6. Pour in the vegetable broth and add the thyme, rosemary and bay leaves.
  7. Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce to a low simmer, allowing the soup to cook for about 25 minutes.
  8. Stir in the kale and cook for an additional 5 minutes until the kale has wilted.
  9. Remove from heat and stir in the balsamic vinegar and adjust salt and pepper to taste before serving.


Fresh herbs make a big difference. While you can absolutely use a combination of dry herbs, you get more fresh and robust flavor from using fresh herbs. I used a combination of sage, thyme, and rosemary.

I recommend French lentils as they are small and maintain their texture when cooked. However, brown and green lentils work well too if you can’t get your hands on smaller lentils. Red lentils cook differently, so if you need a red lentil specific recipe I’d recommend trying my Sweet Potato Red Lentil Soup.

Left out tomatoes in this recipe to help those with sensitivity to it, but feel free to sauté 1 tablespoon of tomato paste or 1 cup crushed tomatoes with your vegetables before adding the broth.

Adjust the amount of broth based on your preference. At the end, if the lentils absorb too much broth, you can add a little more broth to help get it to your desired broth to lentil ratio.

I like this soup chunky and brothy, but if you prefer creamy, you can use an immersion blender to blend up some of the soup to your preference.