This Creamy Red Lentil Butternut Squash Soup is a healthy and delicious vegetarian meal that’s packed with protein and nutrients! Top it with smoked almonds, cilantro and a drizzle of Greek yogurt for an easy weeknight dinner.
Thanks to my friends at ADA Mideast for sponsoring this post. As always all opinions are my own.
This Creamy Red Lentil Butternut Squash Soup is one of my soup recipes that I consider a powerhouse soup. What do I mean by that? Well, it’s a soup that’s loaded with nutrients and won’t leave you hungry 30 minutes after you eat it.
So what makes this soup nutrient dense and filling? There’s several things, but let’s start with the red lentils. They’re a great source of fiber, complex carbs, protein, folate, potassium, iron and maganese. They’re a hearty substitute for meat and work great in vegetarian main dishes and side dishes.
Butternut squash, one of my favorite types of squash to cook with and eat. It’s full of antioxidants, tons of beta-carotene which helps boost your immune system and Vitamin A to help fight off inflammation. Just like red lentils, it’s also a good source of fiber and potassium.
The last powerhouse ingredient and one that I use in many of my recipes is plain Greek yogurt. If you’re ever looking for ways to boost the protein in a recipe, add Greek yogurt. 1 cup averages around 23 grams of protein. Yogurt also contains a unique package of nine essential nutrients that are key to a healthy diet. Experts recommend 3 servings of dairy foods every day and adding Greek yogurt to this soup is one way to help get you there.
Yogurt is also a lower fat alternative to ingredients like heavy cream or full fat coconut milk. It adds a nice bit of tang to this Creamy Red Lentil Butternut Squash Soup and you won’t lose any of the creaminess of the soup by using Greek yogurt, in fact I find that it actually makes the soup creamier!
The flavor of the soup is savory from the red lentils, garlic and onions and cumin. It has smoky notes from the smoked paprika, a little sweetness from the butternut squash and then that slight tang from the Greek yogurt.
Top the soup with smoked almonds and cilantro for extra flavor and texture, then devour this cozy bowl of nutrient packed goodness. Enjoy!
More Creamy Soups
Slow Cooker Creamy Green Chile Chicken Enchilada Soup
Slow Cooker Broccoli Cauliflower Cheese Soup
Creamy Red Lentil Butternut Squash Soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup diced red onion
- 2 teaspoons grated garlic
- 4 cups peeled and diced butternut squash
- 2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- 1 cup dried red lentils
- 4 1/2 cups low sodium vegetable broth
- 3/4 cup plain Greek yogurt, non-fat, 2% or whole all work
- Smoked almonds, cilantro, more Greek yogurt and smoked paprika for toppings
- In a large pot over medium heat add the olive oil. Once the oil is hot add in the onion and sauté just until soft, about 3 minutes. Add in the garlic and sauté another 30 secons. Add in the butternut squash, cumin, smoked paprika, coriander, turmeric, kosher salt and black pepper. Stir everything together and sauté for another minute.
- Pour in the red lentils and vegetable broth and stir together. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat and simmer for about 25 minutes until the squash and lentils are soft.
- Add the hot soup to a blender and purée until smooth. If your blender won't hold all of the soup, blend it in batches. Be careful not to fill the blender too full when blending hot soup to avoid the lid coming off.
- Once the soup is puréed add the Greek yogurt to the soup in the blender and blend until incorporated and smooth. Serve the soup topped with chopped smoked almonds, cilantro, a drizzle of Greek yogurt and an extra sprinkle of smoked paprika.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 185Total Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 3mgSodium: 319mgCarbohydrates: 31gFiber: 9gSugar: 8gProtein: 11g
Could this be done in the instant pot?
Kristy Seier says
I made this soup with frozen butternut squash so I didn’t have to fight with cutting up a whole squash. Which is a challenge some times! I also added jalapeño for a little spice, because I love spice in almost every thing. It went great with the smoked paprika and cumin flavor! Will definitely be a go to as it is quick and easy and flavorful! Thanks for the great recipe.
Wow this was great and much easier than first anticipated! Not sure what everyone is talking about with the ads – no problems for me!! That’s very much!
Is it canned red lentils or dry uncooked from a packet? Can they just be put in the soup? Do they need to be soaked prior?
Hi Aesha, it’s dry lentils and they don’t need to be soaked. Just pick through them to make sure there is no debris and give them a rinse.
A really simple but so delicious meal! I really enjoyed it. Thank you!!!
Glad to hear you enjoyed the soup Luisa! Thank you for trying it out.
Thinking of subbing coconut milk for the greek yogurt to make it vegan. Think it will taste good that way? Also, would I use the same amount as the greek yogurt?
Hi Kim, you can definitely sub coconut milk for the yogurt. I’d suggest anywhere between 1/2 – 1 cup depending on your tastes.
I think that it would taste great made that way but then I’m partial to coconut. Regarding the quantity of coconut milk to use, this soup is thick when made with the same proportions as in the receipe. It could easily absorb a cup of coconut milk.
I had some leftover butternut squash and went on the hunt for a recipe to use it up and this was a HIT! I made a 1/2 recipe (because I only had about 2.5 cups of squash) and didn’t add the almonds to the top- but this made for a creamy, hearty lunch. Even my sometimes-picky fiance loved it.
Thank you! This will be going into heavy rotation!
Happy to hear you both enjoyed the soup Meg! Thank you for trying it out.
Janet Theilen says
There are SO MANY ads covering SO MUCH of your blog I just gave up. But I came back to let you know. Only 2 comments? Maybe that’s why. Your recipe is COVERED with ads.
Thanks for coming back to let me know Janet. Now I have 3 comments. Ads are a large part of how I make an income and can provide you with free recipes, maybe I should remove them and start charging a subscription fee instead. Also, I just checked the recipe card and there are no ads covering the recipe ingredients or instructions.
I find all free recipes covered with ads. It’s frustrating but it’s free! Making this recipe now. Can’t wait to try it.
Should the butternut squash be cooked at all first before dicing it?
Hi Anna. The squash doesn’t need to be cooked before dicing it. It will cook in the soup with the rest of the ingredients.