This Italian Lentil soup recipe makes a hearty winter soup full of delicious vegetables and a scrumptious Italian sausage made with turkey that brings everything together.
There are a couple of things that make this recipe for Italian lentil soup special. The fennel and leeks complement the lentils’ flavor and texture, making sure there’s some crunch to go along with the lentils’ earthiness.
The Italian turkey sausage provides the soup with deep rich flavors; something missing from a lot of lentil recipes.
It is possible to substitute grocery store Italian sausage, but it won’t be as flavorful as our Homemade Italian Turkey Sausage recipe that we feature here.
This soup freezes very well, which is why we often freeze half of the batch whenever we make it. Here is a roundup of 7 other soups and stews that freeze well.
This soup is a great choice if you’re looking for something healthy, that can stand on its own as a meal or as the sidekick for a good sandwich.
- 1 lb lentils
- 2-1/2 quarts (10 cups) chicken stock
- 2 cups fennel, chopped
- 1 cup celery, chopped
- 1-1/2 cups carrots, chopped
- 2 cups leeks, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2-1/2 cups mushrooms, chopped
- 2 cups spinach, chopped
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
Turkey Italian Sausage
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 2 cloves garlic, freshly minced
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp fennel seed
- 1/2 tsp marjoram
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- Prep the vegetables by chopping the fennel bulb, white part of the leeks, carrots, and celery into bite size pieces.
- Make the Italian sausage by mixing the fennel seed, 2 cloves minced garlic, marjoram, oregano, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper together with the ground turkey.
- Brown the turkey sausage in the same pot the soup is going to be cooked in. Browning the sausage in the same pot helps to build layers of flavor in the soup.
- Once the sausage has finished browning, add the fennel, celery, leeks, and the rest of the garlic and sauté everything for four to five minutes.
- Add the lentils, stock, salt, and pepper. Bring the soup to a boil, then turn the heat down to a simmer, add in the carrots, and continue cooking for 30 to 40 minutes.
- While the soup is cooking, prep the mushrooms and spinach by washing and rough chopping them into bite-sized pieces.
- After the lentils have finished cooking (they should be soft, but not mushy), add the spinach and mushrooms. Let the soup simmer for another 10 to 15 minutes.
- Taste the soup and adjust the seasoning as needed. Serve in large bowls with a good hearty bread.