Italian lentil soup

Preparation: 15 minutes
Cooking: 40 minutes
Makes 8 servings


  • 900 ml (3 2/3 cups) unsalted chicken stock
  • 375 ml (1 1/2 cups) green lentils, rinsed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • 4 tbsp. tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
  • 110 g (180 ml / 3/4 cup) pancetta, diced
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 4 sprigs of thyme
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 160 ml (2/3 cup) Parmesan cheese, finely grated + a little for garnish (optional)


  1. In a large saucepan, add 1 liter (4 cups) water, chicken stock, lentils, bay leaves and rosemary. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer covered for 20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, heat 2 Tbsp. a tablespoon of olive oil. Add pancetta and cook until golden brown, 4 minutes. Add the onion, carrot, garlic, thyme, salt and pepper and cook until the vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Add everything to the lentil pot and continue to cook, covered, until the lentils are tender, 15 minutes. Remove and discard the bay leaves, as well as the sprigs of rosemary and thyme. Add parmesan. Divide into bowls and add olive oil (2 tbsp total) and grated parmesan, if desired.


• Cook lentils and vegetables separately to save time and enhance flavors.

• Add Parmesan cream to the soup to give it even more flavor.

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