Instant Pot Thai Red Lentil Soup

This warm and spicy Thai-inspired Instant Pot red lentil soup is the perfect weeknight meal. It is packed with veggies, plant-based protein, creamy coconut milk and a ton of flavor! This soup is gluten-free, dairy-free and vegan-friendly.

If you love the flavors and aromas of Thai cuisine – think zesty lime, fresh cilantro, fragrant curry, ginger, garlic and coconut – you will really enjoy this creamy, hearty Instant Pot red lentil soup. 

Made with nutritious red lentils, this soup is packed with plant-based protein and fibre; plus, it’s got added spinach for extra iron and antioxidants. It’s warm, a little spicy and great for those chilly nights.

Red lentils don’t need much time to cook, so you can make this soup quickly and easily in the Instant Pot. The texture of the soup is somewhere between a lentil dal and a soup. It’s got a little crunch but is quite creamy and smooth with no pureeing required.


Thai red lentil soup in Instant Pot


As with most Thai recipes, this red lentil soup features aromatics such as onions, ginger, garlic and cilantro. We are using red curry paste and a little soy sauce (or fish sauce if you’re not vegan), and vegetable stock. You can use dry red lentils or another color in this recipe. No need to soak the lentils, just give them a good rinse. 

The final ingredients are baby spinach and coconut milk, which we add right at the end. A little squeeze of lime, extra fresh cilantro and any crunchy toppings you like. All of these ingredients are easily accessible from a supermarket or online. 

Instant Pot red lentil soup ingredients: onions, ginger, garlic, carrots, lentils, curry paste, coriander



Making this Thai red curry soup is super easy. You will find the full recipe ingredients, instructions and nutritional breakdown below but here are some step-by-step pics to guide you along.

Step 1. Saute the aromatics and carrots with curry paste. 

Step 2. Add the lentils and vegetable stock. Stir through and pressure cook on HIGH for 10 minutes. Release the pressure naturally for really soft, almost pureed lentils and do a quick release if you prefer the lentils to retain a little more shape and firmness.

Step 3. Stir in the coconut milk and taste for spice and salt. If it’s too spicy, you can dilute it with more coconut milk.

How to make Instant Pot red lentil soup

Step 4. Set the Instant Pot to Saute function and add the spinach. You can use fresh spinach or defrosted frozen spinach. Cook for a couple of minutes until the spinach is wilted. 

Red curry lentil soup with spinach

The soup is ready to be served! We love topping it with extra cilantro and a drizzle of coconut milk. You can add pumpkin seeds or crushed nuts and fried shallots for a lovely texture. Serve with crusty bread or toasted rice cakes, or stir in a little cooked rice for a complete protein combination. 

Pressure cooker red lentil soup with spinach and coconut milk


Yes! This red lentil soup freezes really well and can be kept for up to 3 months. Defrost in the fridge overnight or in a microwave and reheat well. If storing in the fridge, the soup should keep for up to 5 days.

Instant Pot red lentil soup with coconut and spinach



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Instant Pot red lentil soup Thai

Instant Pot Thai Red Lentil Soup

  • Author: Instant Pot Eats
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Instant Pot
  • Cuisine: Thai


Thai-inspired red lentil soup cooked in the Instant Pot is the perfect vegetarian and gluten-free dinner for the whole family. Keeps and freezes well and great for batch cooking.


To cook:

1 tablespoon coconut oil

1/2 large onion, diced

1 large carrot, diced

A knob of ginger, halved

1 large clove garlic, diced

A handful of cilantro, stems chopped and leaves reserved for garnish

1.25 cup red split lentils (dry)

2 tablespoons red curry paste

1 vegetable stock cube

1 tablespoon soy sauce (for gluten-free, use Tamari or fish sauce)

4.5 cups water

To finish:

1 cup coconut milk (not the diluted drink)

3-4 cups roughly chopped spinach leaves or baby spinach

2-3 tablespoons lime juice

To garnish:

Fried shallots


Extra fresh cilantro/coriander

Chopped scallions/spring onions


  • Turn the Instant Pot on and set to Saute. Add the oil, onions, carrot, ginger, garlic and cilantro and cook for 2-3 minutes. Stir in the red curry paste. Turn the Saute function off.
  • Add the rest of the cooking ingredients, stir and close the lid. Set to Pressure Cook/Manunal, HIGH pressure for 10 minutes. After 3 beeps, the Instant Pot will begin to build the pressure and then the timer will start (note that cooking begins even during the pressure build up).
  • Once cooking time comes to an end, release the pressure naturally for really soft, puree-like lentil soup and do a quick release for more textured, firmer lentils.
  • Open the lid and stir in the coconut milk, baby spinach and lime juice. Set to Saute for 2-3 minutes to cook the spinach.
  • Taste for seasoning and add more salt if you like. If the soup seems too spicy, add more coconut milk.
  • Serve with preferred toppings and extra fresh cilantro.


Split lentils vs whole lentils: please note that the split lentils will cook quicker than whole lentils. If cooking larger lentils, add 5 more minutes to the cooking time.

Spinach: you can add fresh spinach or defrosted frozen spinach to the soup.

Coconut milk: we used full-fat canned coconut milk (not diluted coconut milk drink); either shake the can really well or use the thickened part of the coconut milk and discard the reallyw watery liquid.


  • Serving Size: 2 cups
  • Calories: 396
  • Sugar: 3.2 g
  • Sodium: 815.9 mg
  • Fat: 16.9 g
  • Saturated Fat: 13.7 g
  • Carbohydrates: 47.5 g
  • Fiber: 8.3 g
  • Protein: 17.6 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg


Thai Instant Pot Red Lentil Soup With Spinach (Vegan, Gluten-free)

Instant Pot Recipes
By Instant Pot Eats

About us: We are a team of Instant Pot enthusiasts, who love good food and cooking. Our blog is dedicated to delicious Instant Pot recipes you can make using your trusted pressure cooker.
PS. This post may contain Amazon affiliate links, which means we receive a small commission for purchases made through these links. 

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  1. Yummy I added baby eggplant and the greens were half beet greens nd half spinach. I made the mistake of adding salt.
    I will make this again without the additional salt

  2. Loved this recipe! The only reason I gave it 4 stars and not 5 is because for me it was under seasoned. No biggy, just taste and adjust to your own liking 🙂 This will definitely be on the menu time and time again!!

  3. This one is definitely a winner! Although I’ve not made it as a soup yet since I prefer to eat it over basmati rice. I’ve made it with and w/o chopped jalapenos — both versions were excellent. I’ve also used Russian kale and leaf cabbage along with spinach. Moreover, I use the juice from two limes instead of one, and add about a teaspoon of tumeric in the second cooking phase.

    Another change I’ve made is that I use vegetable stock in addition to about 1.5 cups of water.

  4. Made this for my family and everyone could not stop talking about how fantastic it was! It will be a staple for sure.

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