Wintertime recipes for busy caregivers

Turkish Lentil Soup

A guest entry from a friend of Hakuna, David Bennett!

David makes large batches of this soup at home. They will enjoy some the same day but also put the soup in individual-portion sized containers for a supply of healthy meals in the freezer.

A few minutes in the microwave and there’s a hearty winter meal ready to go.

Plus, lentils are great!

  • Lentils are high in protein, folate and magnesium.
  • Their high fiber content promotes heart health, digestive health, lowers cholesterol and helps to stabilize blood sugar.
  • They even help with weight loss! Lentils are high in protein but have a low calorie count.

Ingredients (4 servings):

  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 large potato
  • 1 onion
  • 1-2 stems celery
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1 quart vegetable stock
  • Olive oil

Spice mix:

  • Butter
  • 1 teaspoon dried mint
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sumac
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin

To serve:

  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges


Prepare the vegetables:

  1. Wash the lentils in cold water and set aside. 
  2. Chop the vegetables and garlic finely. This soup is often blended but for a chunkier soup you can chop ingredients instead of blending.

Cook the soup base:

  1. Caramelize the vegetables in the pot and use a generous amount of olive oil.
  2. Stir in lentils.
  3. Add the vegetable stock and simmer for 30-40 minutes.

Prepare and mix the spices:

  1. Mix the dry components of the spice mix.
  2. When soup is almost ready, cook spice mix in butter for 1-2 minutes then stir through the soup.

Serve (or freeze)!

  1. Serve with lemon wedges or mix plenty of lemon juice into the soup before serving. 
  2. To freeze, serve into watertight containers and allow to cool before putting in the freezer.

This makes a thick, stew-like soup that will be quite solid when cooled. If you want it to be a bit thinner, add more water. 

This soup can be a meal in itself but optionally eat with bread or stir in any leftover cooked rice you may have in the refrigerator.

Do you have a great wintertime recipe you would like to share? Email Hakuna at and we can post it on our blog!




Lentils - superfood!

Lentils - superfood!

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