The leaves are changing colors, the evenings are noticeably cooler, and it even rained last week. Yep, believe it or not, the fall season is officially happening here in Southern California. And that means soup season is officially happening too!
I love the cozy feeling of wrapping up in a fuzzy blanket and eating a hot bowl of soup on a chilly day. The best! What’s even better is when that soup takes basically no effort to make.
Enter: the crockpot.
I’m not sure what rock I’ve been living under for 27 years, but it took me that long to discover the joys of the crockpot. Quite possibly one of the easiest ways to cook delicious food. It’s seriously magical.
This Armenian Lentil Soup is one of my absolute favorite soup recipes. During my sophomore year of college I made a batch every week. At least once. I didn’t have a crockpot then, though, so it took more effort and attention to make. But it was so worth it.
I think my sister got pretty annoyed having our apartment constantly smelling like cooked lentils though.
Or maybe it was because I never shared. I tend to be
a lot a little food selfish, okay?
Thankfully I’ve evolved since then, and now as a wife I’ve learned to share food with my husband. Sometimes. Alright, like once in a while if I’m getting full and won’t be able to finish all my food anyway.
The great thing about this recipe is that it does make enough to share with others while keeping the feelings of food greed to a minimum. Lots of soup for everyone! And since it’s a snap to make with a crockpot, it’s no biggie to just make another batch when it runs out.
The base ingredients are simple enough – lentils, barley, onion, spinach, tomatoes, water. Just let that slow cook for a few hours, and then once that’s all simmer-y and glorious you add in the sassy seasonings – lemon juice, onion powder, cumin, dill weed, basil, garlic, salt.
And FYI, I always use frozen diced onion for this recipe because I significantly dislike chopping raw onions. So if you’re feeling lazy and hateful towards raw onions, just use the frozen stuff and it won’t even matter! Saves time, energy, and your tear ducts.
I love serving this soup with warm pita bread and homemade hummus with fresh veggies for dipping. The perfect feast for an autumn day!
- 1½ cups dry lentils, rinsed and sorted
- 10 cups water
- ½ cup dry barley
- 1 cup diced onion (frozen or fresh is fine)
- 1½ cups frozen chopped spinach
- 1 14-ounce can no salt added diced tomatoes
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp onion powder
- 1 tsp salt, or more to taste
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp dried dill weed
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- ½ tsp dried basil
- Add first six ingredients (lentils through diced tomatoes) to crockpot. Cook on high for 4-5 hours, depending on preference of lentil doneness.
- Add remaining ingredients (lemon juice through basil) to crockpot and let cook an additional 15-20 minutes.
- Serve with warm pita bread and hummus with fresh veggies for dipping.
- Leftovers (once cooled completely) can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to at least 5 days.