Here’s a coconut lime red lentil soup: a delicious blended soup that comes together in only 30 minutes. Lime and chili flavour a red lentil and coconut cream base delivering a tasty soup that also happens to be fully vegan. A real crowd pleaser, easy and quick to make, perfect in the summer as well as the winter.
Sometimes we don’t have time to spend in the kitchen and that’s okay. It’s those times that we need allies. Like this soup recipe. Give yourself 30 minutes and you will have a bowl full of good stuff. Plus, this soup tastes great! You get the kick from the chili and the tang from the lime, and those are the notes that kick you first. The blended red lentils and coconut cream create the lovely thick texture. This red lentil soup is pure pleasure.
Red lentils are a great plant-based source of protein and fiber. Coconut cream gives a lovely flavour and skipping dairy from time to time is actually not a bad habit. Chili is good for blood circulation, or at least this is the most mainstream excuse for high chili consumption in Italy. And then there’s lime giving the main flavour and shallot, playing in the background. And that’s pretty much it.
Ingredients and substitutions
This soup is gluten free, dairy free and vegetarian. In fact, it is actually full vegan. This means that this soup can suit most dietary requirement. As long as onion or chili are not a problem, this soup can easily please many a guest.
If you are intolerant to coconut, you may choose to use a dairy cream as thickener for your soup. A light vegetable oil (like canola) can substitute coconut oil. If you need to keep it dairy-free but also free from coconut, oat cream is an excellent alternative.
Chili and shallot are mostly there for the flavour. If you can’t eat onions, you can skip the shallot, but you may want to consider using an onion-free vegetable stock instead of just boiling water. Chili is mostly added for a little heat. If you skip it you will have a milder version. You may consider adding a sprinkle of sweet paprika as an alternative for a little extra flavour.
How to make coconut lime red lentil soup
- Peel and mince the shallot. Seed and mince the chili. Warm the coconut oil on medium heat and add the shallot and chili. Sauté 4 minutes, until soft.
- Add the red lentils and the boiling water. Stir in the salt. Add half of the lime juice and cook on medium heat for 10 minutes or until the lentils are cooked through and split.
- Stir in the coconut milk and the rest of the lime juice. Bring to a boil and cook 3 more minutes. Remove from the heat and blend.
I did not add cilantro to my ingredients as it is not a main ingredient, but I personally love topping my serving of soup with minced cilantro. My husband is not a fan, so he will skip it. Either way the soup tastes great. I just really appreciate cilantro whenever lime is involved.
Do red lentils need to be soaked?
No, you will not need to soak the red lentils. They are usually so small that the time it takes for this recipe is more than enough to cook them through and get them soft enough to be blended. This is why I appreciate red lentils so much. They are a time saver, as you can literally skip a step that with other dried legumes might be necessary.
Do you need to add boiling water?
Adding boiling water is not mandatory, but it does cut on the recipe time. Adding boiling water does not lower the temperature in the pot, allowing for this soup to be ready in 30 minutes. Cold water from the tap will take some extra minutes to warm up. I generally set the kettle on when I’m mincing the onion, so the water is ready by the time it goes in. We’re not brewing tea, so the water doesn’t need to be a specific temperature. I wrote boiling water because usually it’s still close to 100°C when I use it, but even if it dropped to 80°C it’s not a big deal. As long as you add it hot.
What kind of chili should I use?
I have made this recipe several times and every time I have either used piri-piri or daredevil (the one in the pictures). Piri-piri is much smaller in size but stronger on the Scoville scale. In both cases I noticed that using only a half chili the flavour of the soup was much milder, so I’d recommend using a whole one. Unless you are going for a much hotter variety – I don’t dare. If unsure start with a milder one; red is recommended.
You may also like
If you have shopped for this recipe and you have leftovers, here are some other recipes that use some of these ingredients:
- Raspberry cheesecake with lime and chili
- Butternut squash and red lentil soup
- Coconut cream panna cotta (vegan)
- Thai slaw with lime sriracha mayo
- Chunky guacamole
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Coconut lime red lentil soup
A vegan red lentil soup with lime and coconut. Inspired by the flavours of South-East Asia, this coconut cream soup is tasty, spicy and ready in 30 minutes.
- 100 g red lentils dried
- 1 chili eg. daredevil, piri-piri
- 1 shallot small, or half a large one
- 1 lime juiced
- 250 ml coconut cream
- 250 ml boiling water
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1/3 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp cilantro minced
Set the kettle on and bring the water to a boil.
Peel and mince the shallot. Seed and mince the chili. Warm the coconut oil on medium heat and add the shallot and chili. Sauté 4 minutes, until soft.
Add the red lentils and the hot water. Stir in the salt. Add half of the lime juice and cook on medium heat for 10 minutes or until the lentils are cooked through and split.
Stir in the coconut milk and the rest of the lime juice. Bring to a boil and cook 3 more minutes. Remove from the heat and blend. Top with fresh cilantro if desired (optional).
The nutritional information provided in this recipe card is made by an online calculator and meant to be used as a guideline only.