I know what your thinking… it’s about to be June and you are posting a stew recipe. Are you crazy?!?! No. Because this lentil stew is unlike any other stew I’ve made. Yes, it’s hearty and yes it could be considered warm comfort food in the winter months but it totally works for a quick lunch on a summers day. So whatever time of year it is don’t fret this stew will have you yearning for more! In fact I just made another pot over the weekend because it’s that good (and the weather is in the 90’s here).
My mother in-law made this lentil stew for us a few months back. As soon as I took my first bite I was asking for the recipe. It’s so good and packed full of veggies and fiber. We even let my son, Ryder, try the stew and he loved it too. If you had a glimpse into my dinning room you would hear him smacking his highchair tray and cooing for more. When she made the stew she only had brown lentils on hand. It was delicious and worked perfectly. And when I reheated the lentil stew for lunch the next day I added in some cooked quinoa to our bowls. This is a very filling stew to begin with, but if you really want to stretch it and make it more filling add in a half to full cup of cooked quinoa and this lentil stew will really be filling.
The key to making this stew and making it quick and in time for a crazy weeknight dinner is to chop the vegetables small and cook them first. My mother in-law soaked the lentils before adding them to the stew. This ensures that they won’t soak up all the broth to the stew allowing a little bit of broth for you to slurp up at the end. So I did the same thing when I made this stew at home. I let the lentils soak in equal parts lentils to water. Then just before I added it to the stockpot I rinsed the lentils. It worked out great!
I’ve now made this recipe multiple times; each time tweaking it a bit. I will tell you that it doesn’t matter if you have red vs brown lentils. They both taste exactly the same and once the stew cooks down you can’t tell what colors the lentils once were. Also, I’ve made this stew with only a cup and a half of lentils and just added uncooked quinoa to the pot. We’ve enjoyed this for dinner twice. It’s a perfect meatless dinner, and for those who like a little meat with their meal I typically just serve up leftover chicken. The leftovers are even better the next day! If you like lentils and are ready to be adventurous I encourage you to try this lentil stew. It’s so delicious that everyone in your family will be asking for seconds!
Disclaimer: This is a paid contributor post that first appeared on FoodFanatic.com As always all opinions are my own.
- 2 tbsp grapeseed oil
- 1 Red Onion diced
- salt and pepper to taste
- 8 Carrots sliced 1/2-inch thick
- 2 Celery Ribs diced
- 3 cloves of Garlic minced
- 1-1/2 cups Red Lentils
- 1-1/2 cups Brown Lentils
- 2 teaspoons ground Cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground Coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon ground Turmeric
- 4 cups Chicken Broth
- 2 cups water
- 1 Sweet Potato peeled and finely diced; about 1 cup
- 6 cups Kale chopped
- 3 cups cooked quinoa divided
- Pre-soak the lentils for at least 30 minutes adding equal parts water to the lentils.
- In a large cast-iron pot over medium-high heat, add about 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil. Heat 1 minute until hot, add the onion. Season with salt and saute for 3 minutes until soft.
- Add the carrots, celery, and garlic and cook for 3 additional minutes. Drain and rinse the lentils then add the lentils to the pot and cook for about 2 minutes. Add the cumin, coriander, and turmeric, stirring for 1 minute. Add the chicken broth and water as well as a large pinch of salt and pepper. Stir, bring to a boil then reduce to low heat and gently simmer for about 10 minutes.
- Carefully stir in the diced sweet potato and kale. Cook for another 10-15 minutes, or until the lentils are cooked through but not mushy. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Enjoy with a 1/2 cup of cooked quinoa or by itself.