Red Lentil Soup

Turkish red lentil soup, known as mercimek corbasi is one of the most popular soups in Turkish cuisine. This gluten-free and vegan soup is a simple dish made with a few ingredients and has a fresh taste thanks to the lemon. This lentil soup was always served as an appetizer in Turkey, often with some freshly-baked lavash on the side.

Alright, let’s make some healthy lentil soup!

The best part is that you don’t need to soak lentils, they cook well in about 20 minutes.

To make this easy and simple red lentil soup, you need a few ingredients:

  • 2-3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 1 tsp all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • Salt
  • 4-5 cups water


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp chili powder or flakes
  • 1 tsp dried mint (optional)

Heat olive oil in a pot then add washed lentils.

The lentils are stirred and roasted on medium heat until they are lightened and smell nice. (This process is one of the most important tricks. As the color of the lentils becomes lighter, a pleasant scent will spread.)

Flour is added to the lentil which turns yellow and smells. It is roasted on low heat for one or two more minutes. Then the tomato paste is added and mixed for one or two minutes. Add lemon juice, water, salt, and a teaspoon of cumin. Bring the heat to medium-low and let it simmer stirring occasionally until everything is tender. Blend it until smooth using a hand blender. If it is too thick, you can add a little more water and adjust the consistency yourself. Put it back over the lowest heat and simmer for about 5-10 minutes.

  • For the olive oil drizzle, heat olive oil in a saucepan. Add in chili flakes and dried mint, stir once or twice and remove from the heat.
  • Serve the soup hot in bowls with a drizzle of the spicy olive oil.

Enjoy your soup…