Ruth's Red Lentil and Potato Soup


I made up this lentil potato soup recipe one chilly weeknight to stave off a cold. I was surprised at how delicious the soup was! The filé powder makes it nice and thick, but it may be left out. A warm loaf of sourdough bread is all you need to complete your meal!

close up view of Red Lentil and Potato Soup with carrots and kale in a blue and white bowl, with a spoon
Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
45 mins
Total Time:
1 hr


  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 1 large sweet onion, chopped

  • 4 stalks celery, chopped

  • 4 medium red potatoes, chopped

  • 1 carrot, chopped

  • 3 cloves garlic

  • ¼ teaspoon ground allspice

  • ¼ teaspoon cumin seeds

  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • teaspoon ground cloves

  • 1 dash pepper

  • 1 quart vegetable broth

  • 1 ½ cups dry red lentils

  • 2 cups water

  • 1 cup roughly chopped kale

  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro

  • 1 teaspoon file powder


  1. Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Stir in onion and celery; cook until tender. Mix in potatoes, carrot, and garlic. Continue to cook and stir until potatoes are well coated with butter, about 5 minutes. Season with allspice, cumin, cayenne pepper, cloves, and pepper.

  2. Pour in vegetable broth; mix in lentils. Add water, adding more if needed to cover all ingredients. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and stir in kale. Cook, stirring occasionally, until lentils are tender, 35 to 45 minutes.

  3. Stir in cilantro and filé powder. Continue cooking to desired thickness, about 5 minutes.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

164 Calories
3g Fat
29g Carbs
7g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 12
Calories 164
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 3g 3%
Saturated Fat 1g 7%
Cholesterol 5mg 2%
Sodium 172mg 7%
Total Carbohydrate 29g 11%
Dietary Fiber 7g 25%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 7g
Vitamin C 13mg 67%
Calcium 39mg 3%
Iron 3mg 14%
Potassium 542mg 12%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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