Low Calorie Soup With Vegetables & Lentils (Instant Pot or Stovetop)

Inspired by the cabbage soup diet recipe but with more substance and flavor, this Instant Pot low-calorie soup is filled with vegetables and lentils, providing plenty of fibre and just enough protein to keep you satiated. It’s a light, healthy soup with around 100 calories per serve and is perfect if you’re having to restrict calories or doing a fasting 5:2 diet; or if you simply need a little cleansing meal after an overindulging weekend.


LOW-CALORIE SOUP BENEFITS

  • Filled with vegetables, fibre and protein-rich lentils and made with no added fats or oil, this cleansing soup comes at around 100 calories per serve (a generous cup). 
  • It’s light yet nutritious containing 10 vegetables and legumes, well known for their longevity and health benefits. 
  • It’s surprisingly satiating and has a great flavor with a little spice kick.
  • Super easy to make and great for batch cooking and meal prepping. You can store it in individual portions in the fridge for up to 5 days or freeze it for later.
  • Suitable for low-calorie diets, intermittent fasting 5:2 diet, Weight Watchers, gluten-free and vegan needs. 
Vegetable Lentil Soup (Instant Pot Recipe, Low-Calorie)
Ingredients Icon

INGREDIENTS FOR VEGETABLE LENTIL SOUP

This is a very forgiving soup recipe that you can use with pretty much any vegetables, herbs and spices you have.

Vegetables: we used a variety of low-calorie vegetables with the addition of 1 medium potato, you can swap things based on what you have on hand. Dice or chop everything into similar sized cubes. Prepping the vegetables is the part that takes the longest, the rest is easy peasy and very quick! 

Legumes: canned lentils are low in calories and high in fibre and plant-based protein making them a fantastic ingredient for this soup. You can use chickpeas or white beans instead. 

Seasonings and aromatics: onion and garlic, dried herbs (you can use whatever you have in the pantry), salt, pepper and a mild curry powder which compliments the tomatoes and gives this soup a nice spice kick. You can substitute curry for paprika or cumin, or a mix. A little splash of soy sauce for extra umami flavor. 

Liquids: canned tomatoes, water and vegetable stock cubes for extra flavor.

HOW TO MAKE LOW-CALORIE SOUP IN THE INSTANT POT

You will find the full recipe with ingredients and nutritional breakdown in the recipe card below. Here are some handy step-by-step photos of how to cook this healthy soup. You can use a 6-quart or 8-quart Instant Pot. For Instant Pot mini, halve the ingredients.

Step 1. Wash and dice all the vegetables, onion and garlic. This will take you the longest but is well worth it!
Step 2. Once done, add all vegetables to the Instant Pot or a large saucepan if made on a stovetop. No oil or sauteeing is happening in this recipe as we want to keep the calories down!

How to make low calorie soup step 1 - add all the veggies and spices


Step 3. Now add all the herbs, spices, salt and pepper, crumbled stock cubes, soy sauce, drained lentils and chopped canned tomatoes. Follow with 1 litre of water (4 x 250 ml cups) and stir through well.


Step 4. Secure and lock the lid. Select Pressure Cook/Manual and adjust the time to 3 minutes on HIGH pressure. Yes, it’s that quick, however, it will take about 10-15 minutes to build up the pressure in the post due to all the food and liquid.
Step 5. Once the timer is done, leave on natural release for about 5 minutes. You could let it release by itself all the way. Otherwise, use the quick release and open the pot.


Step 6. Stir the soup and taste for salt. Stir in a little lemon zest and juice if you prefer a little more tang. Top with fresh chopped parsley and serve.

Healthy Vegetable Soup With Parsley on top

STOVETOP METHOD

Follow the first couple of steps as above. Once everything is in the pot, place it on medium heat and cover it with a lid. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to medium-low and cook, covered, for 15 minutes, or until the potato is soft to bite. Once cooked, let it sit for a few minutes before finishing it with some lemon zest, lemon juice (if you like more tang) and fresh parsley. Feel free to season with more salt and pepper.

HOW TO STORE SOUP

  • Divide the soup into containers (individual portions are very handy) and let it cool down. Store airtight in the fridge for up to 5 days and reheat until very hot. 
  • Follow the above instructions for the freezer. Label the containers and store them once cooled down completely. Freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost in the fridge overnight, in a microwave or directly in the pot over low-medium heat. 
How to freeze vegetable soup

MORE HEALTHY INSTANT POT SOUP RECIPES

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Low Calorie Soup With Vegetables & Lentils (Instant Pot or Stovetop)

Low-Calorie Soup With Vegetables & Lentils (Instant Pot or Stovetop)

  • Author: Instant Pot Eats
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 8 cups 1x
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Instant Pot
  • Cuisine: Healthy
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

This stovetop or Instant Pot cooked low-calorie soup with vegetables and lentils has loads of veggies, fibre and protein-rich lentils and is made with no added oil or sugar. It’s naturally low in calories and full of nutrients and flavor. Perfect for healthy eating, Weight Watchers or fasting 5:2 diets, and it’s gluten-free and vegan-friendly. around 100 calories per serving in this healthy vegetable lentil soup.


Ingredients

Scale

2 cups diced white cabbage (about 200 grams)

2 cups diced spinach (English or baby)

1 cup diced carrot (1 large)

1 cup diced celery (1.5 stalks)

1 cup diced green beans (3 oz / 100 g)

1 1/2 diced zucchini (1 medium zucchini)

1 medium white potato, diced into cubes 

1/2 yellow onion, diced finely

3 cloves of garlic, diced

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

1 tablespoon soy sauce or Tamari

1 teaspoon dried mixed herbs

1 teaspoon mild curry powder

2 cubes of vegetable stock

1 can chopped tomatoes (about 14 oz)

1 can lentils (about 14 oz), drained

4 cups (1 litre) water

To finish: 

1/4 cup chopped parsley or cilantro

Zest of 1/2 lemon

Juice of 1/2 lemon


Instructions

  • Wash and dice all the vegetables, onion and garlic. This will take you the longest but is well worth it!
  • Once done, add all vegetables to the Instant Pot or a large saucepan if made on a stovetop. No oil or sauteeing is happening in this recipe as we want to keep the calories down!
  •  Now add all the herbs, spices, salt and pepper, crumbled stock cubes, soy sauce, drained lentils and chopped canned tomatoes. Follow with 1 litre of water (4 x 250 ml cups) and stir through well.
  • Secure and lock the lid. Select Pressure Cook/Manual and adjust the time to 3 minutes on HIGH pressure. Yes, it’s that quick, however, it will take about 10-15 minutes to build up the pressure in the post due to all the food and liquid.
  • Once the timer is done, leave on natural release for about 5 minutes. You could let it release by itself all the way. Otherwise, use the quick release and open the pot.
  • Stir the soup and taste for salt. Stir in a little lemon zest and juice if you prefer a little more tang. Top with fresh chopped parsley and serve.

STOVETOP METHOD

  • Follow the first couple of steps as above.
  • Once everything is in the pot, place it on medium heat and cover it with a lid. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to medium-low and cook, covered, for 15 minutes, or until the potato is soft to bite.
  • Once cooked, let it sit for a few minutes before finishing it with some lemon zest, lemon juice (if you like more tang) and fresh parsley. Feel free to season with more salt and pepper.

Notes

You can serve this soup as is or add croutons or grated cheese for extra calories. 

Using dry lentils: You can use dry lentils but we recommend cooking them first in the Instant Pot. Rinse 1 cup of dry lentils and add to the Instant Pot with 3 cups of water and a few pinches of salt. Cook for 5 minutes on HIGH with quick release. Strain and then follow the recipe with pre-cooked lentils. They will be al dente but will cook further in the soup. The reason for pre-cooking lentils is that vegetables only did a short cooking time which would not be long enough for lentils if made altogether.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 cup (250 ml)
  • Calories: 111
  • Sugar: 5.8 g
  • Sodium: 555.8 mg
  • Fat: 0.6 g
  • Carbohydrates: 22.5 g
  • Fiber: 6.7 g
  • Protein: 6.2 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg

Keywords: Healthy Soup, Vegan, Vegetarian, Gluten-Free, Diet, Weight Watchers, 5:2 diet, vegetables, soup recipes

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Low- Calorie Soup With Lentils & Vegetables (Instant Pot or Stovetop)

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 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. 

More about us here »

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Comments

15 Comments
  1. Made this soup yesterday for a light lunch. And I was amazed at how filling and flavoursome it was with not too many calories. Really nice soup, no bread needed to go with it – perfectly lovely on its own! Thanks for the recipe.

  2. Love how flavorful and delicious this soup is. Perfect for the weather here. Thanks for sharing.

  3. This looks like a delicious vegetable soup! I’m going to substitute chard for the spinach. Yum!

  4. What a fantastic recipe! It’s so great to be able to make this hearty, nutritious, flavorful soup in the instant pot. So glad it’s gluten free, too. Another winner from Instant Pot Eats!

    1. Hey, you can use dry lentils but we recommend cooking them first in the Instant Pot (1 cup lentils in 3 cups water for 5 minutes on HIGH, quick release), straining and then following the recipe with pre-cooked lentils. They will be al dente but will cook further in the soup. The reason is that vegetables only did a short cooking time which would not be long enough for lentils if cooked all together. I will add this note to the recipe itself!

    1. Hey, you can use dry lentils but we recommend cooking them first in the Instant Pot (1 cup lentils in 3 cups water for 5 minutes on HIGH, quick release), straining and then following the recipe with pre-cooked lentils. They will be al dente but will cook further in the soup. The reason is that vegetables only did a short cooking time which would not be long enough for lentils if cooked altogether.

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