Oma's Red Lentil Soup Recipe

A hearty red lentil soup recipe, aka rote Linsensuppe, is so easy to make. Once cooked, the red lentils take on a reddish-golden color and taste similar to yellow split pea soup. It's a staple in winter, but is good all year round. 

Prep Time

5 minutes

Cook Time

20 minutes

Total Time

25 minutes


  • 1 package (1 pound) red lentils, rinsed
  • 8 cups water
  • 2 - 3 vegetable bouillon cubes
  • 1 onion, large dice 
  • 2 carrots, large dice 
  • 1 - 2 stalks celery, large dice
  • 2 - 3 raw potatoes, large dice 
  • 1 pound (approx.) meat (such as smoked meat, kielbasa, sausage, ham, or wieners )
  • salt, pepper 


  1. Put rinsed lentils in large stock pot. Add water, bouillon cubes, onion, carrots, celery, potatoes, and meat.
  2. Bring to boil. Cover and simmer for at least 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. 
  3. Season to taste. 


  • If soup is too thick, add extra water. If it's too thin, stir in some instant mashed potato flakes.
  • You can adjust the quantities of potatoes, onions, carrots, celery, and onion to your taste.
  • If you like, add some chopped garlic or garlic powder. 
  • Green (or brown) lentil soup is made the same way - you may need to add extra water. This will also take longer to cook - I usually simmer this for about one hour. Stir occasionally. 
  • Check out this vegan lentil soup that I make this one in the slow cooker.
  • Instead of the bouillon cubes, I often just use Vegeta powder to taste, before I season with salt.

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