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.