I love albondiga (meatball) soup and came up with this recipe to include lentils. I just added the vegetables and broth I had on hand. I'm sure this could easily be made in a slow cooker, but I prefer the stovetop method to make my house smell wonderful! If you have any suggestions, I would love to hear them! Serve with crusty bread and extra cilantro on top if preferred.


Recipe Summary

1 hr
1 hr 20 mins
20 mins
4 servings


Original recipe yields 4 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Combine water, tomatoes, chicken broth, cilantro, serrano pepper, garlic, cumin, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Bring to a boil. Add lentils and onion and return to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and let simmer, stirring after 10 minutes, about 25 minutes total.

  • While soup is simmering, mix ground beef, rice, bread crumbs, milk, garlic powder, remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon salt together in a bowl. Mix to combine and form into small meatballs. Add to the pot, making sure they are covered with liquid, adding a small amount of water if necessary.

  • Bring to a boil, cover, and let simmer for 10 minutes. Stir gently; add potato and carrot and cover. Let simmer until tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Taste and adjust salt if necessary.

Cook's Note:

You could easily use beef or vegetable broth in place of chicken broth. If you use a full-sodium broth, use less salt in the recipe.

Nutrition Facts

435 calories; protein 27.9g; carbohydrates 60.4g; fat 8.4g; cholesterol 37.9mg; sodium 521.5mg. Full Nutrition