Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup (Instant-Pot + Slow Cooker)

This Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup is my all-time FAVORITE! It can be made in an Instant Pot pressure cooker, slow cooker, or on the stove, for an easy and crazy tasty soup everyone will love!

Instant Pot Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup Recipe

Cue the jazz hands, people! Today we’re making a luscious, flavor-packed, rock-your-face-off vegetarian tortilla soup.

After much deliberation (ok like 5 seconds) I decided the marriage of my Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup and Lentil Veggie Chili would make the most delightful union.

Obviously I was right (otherwise we would be talking about kale chips or spinach salads today) and I’m so stupid excited to share this one with y’all today!

Healthy Instant Pot Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup Recipe

Wait! Back to the recipe! It channels the flavor of my go-to tortilla soup perfectly, with the added bonus of extra veggies, extra legumes, and a swirl of creaminess that makes this easy, every day dinner soup feel like a luxurious indulgence.

As for the leftovers, yowza! I’m happily scarfing a leftover bowl of this Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup while typing this, seriously! The flavors mingle and jingle and it’s just plain magic.

You should totally plan on snagging a bowl to take to work/school the next day and another to pair with a cheesy quesadilla for dinner. You can even stash a bowl or two in the freezer for heat and eat “fast food” without the fuss OR the sketchy ingredients.

It’s also a great use for rescuing all those broken tortilla chips at the bottom of the bag. Instead of tossing those crispity crunchity crumbs, use them as a tasty soup topper!

Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup in Instant Pot or Slow Cooker

Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup

This easy peasy recipe yields 6 cups of deliciousness. That’s enough for 6 side-dish sized servings or 3 big bowls! Pair it with your favorite Mexican main (anything from tacos to enchiladas to burritos) or a fresh salad for a delicious dinner that won’t disappoint.

Meal prepping? Make it in advance and enjoy for lunches or dinners all week long! It’s FABULOUS the next day and oh so flavorful!

Vegetarian :: Vegan Option :: Gluten-Free :: Freezer-Friendly

Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup (Instant-Pot + Slow Cooker)
4.95 from 181 votes
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Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup

This uber easy and crazy flavorful Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup can be made in a pressure cooker, slow cooker, or on the stove, making it one of our favorite make-ahead soup recipes!

Recipe yields approx, 6 cups of soup.

Course Main Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 284 kcal
Author Jenn Laughlin - Peas and Crayons

Ingredients

  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1 tsp avocado oil (or olive oil)
  • 1 bell pepper diced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper diced
  • 2.5 cups vegetable broth (or chicken broth if needed)
  • 15 oz canned tomato sauce or crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup mild or medium salsa verde (or your favorite salsa!)
  • 1 TBSP tomato paste
  • 15 oz can black beans (drained + rinsed)
  • 15 oz can pinto beans (drained + rinsed)
  • 1 cup corn (fresh, canned, or frozen)
  • 3/4 cup dried red lentils
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4-1/2 cup heavy cream* (optional - see notes)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Pile on the toppings!

  • crushed tortilla chips (my favorite!)
  • shredded cheddar or mex-blend cheese
  • sliced or diced jalapeños
  • chopped red onion
  • pico de gallo
  • sliced avocado
  • fresh cilantro
  • sour cream or greek yogurt

Instructions

  1. Below are the electric pressure cooker and slow cooker instructions, see blog post below for directions to make this bad boy on the stove.
  2. First, chop your veggies and measure out the ingredients. 
  3. Next add everything but the heavy cream your toppings.
  4. This includes bell pepper, jalapeño, corn, lentils, black beans, pinto beans, broth, tomato sauce, tomato paste, salsa verde, and all your herbs + spices. Toss them in and set IP to high pressure for 15 minutes. Walk away; FREEDOM!
  5. Allow natural pressure release.
  6. Stir in the cream, add all your favorite toppings, and enjoy!

SlOW COOKER INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. First chop your veggies and measure out the ingredients. This will make everything super easy to toss together!
  2. Next add everything except the heavy cream and toppings.
  3. Cook on high for 4-6 hours or low for 7-8 hours, until dried lentils are cooked through and veggies are tender. My soup was perfect after 5 hours on high.
  4. Swirl in the cream, add all your favorite toppings, and dive in!

Recipe Notes

* In place of the heavy cream, feel free to use half-and-half or cream cheese. Skipping the cream? No problem! This recipe can be made without it - let your tastebuds be your guide.

For a thicker soup, feel free to add some corn tortillas (torn into pieces) to the soup or simply swirl crushed tortilla chips into the soup after serving!

Feel free to adjust the consistency of the soup to your liking. The soup can be thinned with a little broth or tomato sauce if desired or thickened with extra cream or beans/veggies! If you add a lot of extra liquid, consider amping up the spices a smidge to compensate. You can also make this as mild or as spicy as you'd like. As written it's on the medium side. The type of salsa used, jalapeños, and cayenne pepper will control the heat factor.

Want it super chunky? Feel free to add extra beans and veggies! Simply amp up the seasoning as needed depending on how much extra goodies you add to the pot.

A NOTE ON SALT AND PEPPER :: I leave salting the dish to the end to prevent over-seasoning. Depending on the brand and type of broth, tomatoes, and beans that you use, the sodium content will vary. I usually don't add any salt until the end once I am able to taste the soup.

Pressure cooker recipes always leave out the details so here's a breakdown of what you can expect time-wise: About 13 minutes to come to pressure plus 15 minutes cook time and 15 or so to release pressure. You won't need to be anywhere near your kitchen for this all to partake, the Instant Pot will handle it all and switch to warm once it's done. So fabulous right? For the slow cooker, simply set a timer and you're good to go.

Estimated nutrition facts below calculated before optional cream + toppings.

Nutrition Facts
Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup
Amount Per Serving
Calories 284 Calories from Fat 18
% Daily Value*
Fat 2g3%
Sodium 1364mg59%
Potassium 1049mg30%
Carbohydrates 52g17%
Fiber 17g71%
Sugar 9g10%
Protein 15g30%
Vitamin A 1475IU30%
Vitamin C 40.8mg49%
Calcium 85mg9%
Iron 5.2mg29%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

If you get a chance to try this tasty vegetarian lentil tortilla soup, let me know! Leave some love in the comment form below or tag your photos with @peasandcrayons on Instagram so I can happy dance over your creation!

healthy instant pot slow cooker vegetarian lentil tortilla soup recipe

special diets and swaps

VEGAN CHEFS

Skip the cream and the cheese and you’re good to go

T-REX CHEFS

Use chicken broth if needed and you’re 100% welcome to add chopped or shredded chicken to this BUT promise me you’ll still add all the veggies and legumes too? Deal?

optional stove-top soup instructions

Bring a large pot to medium heat and add a drizzle of your favorite cooking oil. Sauté your onion until edges are golden, then add your bell pepper, jalapeño, and corn. Cook until peppers are tender, approx. 5 minutes.

Next add veggie broth, tomato sauce, salsa verde, beans, and spices; stir to mix. Let mixture come to a boil and add your dried lentils. Once boiling, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, covered, for 25-30 minutes.

The longer you let it cook the more pronounced the flavor will be. Feel free to cook a little longer if time permits, up to you! Lastly swirl in your cream. All that’s left to do is scoop out a bowlful, pile on the toppings, and face-plant into this tasty vegetarian lentil tortilla soup!

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Comments

  • Marci

    5 stars
    This was delicious. Next time I think I will add some diced green chilies. Thanks for the new recipe. My family loved it.

  • Dave

    I’ll have to give this one another try. Burnt the heck out of it. If you follow the directions, you will burn it in the instant pot. Instead of adding the veggies first, add the liquids first, then the solids. Even with a good stir, I received the “burn” message on the instant pot. Scraped and reset and the same thing happened again (probably burnt from the first go around). Looks like I’m ordering pizza tonight. Very disappointing. .

    • Sorry to hear it Dave. May I ask what size Instant Pot you used and if red lentils were used (green and brown will burn) or if any swaps were made? When my friends and I make this as directed it works 100% of the time for us, so I’m here to help troubleshoot if you need it! xo

  • Amanda

    5 stars
    This was delicious! Making it for the 2nd time today. Awesome easy recipe😊

    Thanks for sharing!

  • Ashley

    Will be making this soon! You can sub coconut milk or coconut cream for the heavy cream if you’re trying to stay vegan, or if you are trying to avoid dairy 🙂

  • Kendra

    5 stars
    Delicious!! Easy and now an all time favorite. Delicious on its own but the toppings: chips, cheese and cilantro really top it off, thick and creamy and healthy.

  • Sarah Christensen

    5 stars
    Delicious!

  • annette Marchbanks

    5 stars
    I have made this several times and absolutely love it! My son and his buddies gave it big thumbs up as well.

  • Michelle

    5 stars
    My hubby and I really enjoyed this!!! I am making it a second time, but will be freezing some of it.

    • Aww yay! So glad y’all enjoyed it!

  • Karen Binder

    Made this for dinner with a few slight changes. It was fantastic.

  • Diana Cooper

    5 stars
    Love this recipe!! So delicious. I used half a pack of cream cheese instead of cream. Thank you!!

  • Anita

    5 stars
    Hi! This was my first time making this recipe and I’m relatively new to the instant pot but loved it! I didn’t use cream because I was trying to be vegan friendly but I think I was missing some of the creamy consistency. Do you have any suggestions for substitutes for heavy cream that are healthier options? Also I have a 3qt instant pot duo mini and felt like I was going over the 1/2 to 2/3 fill line. Are these proportions for a larger instant pot? I used chickpeas instead of pinto beans and also loved that.

    • Hi Anita! These proportions are for a 6 Quart Instant Pot. I’m so glad you loved the recipe!

      For the creaminess, you have a few options! You’ll want to add it at the end (after cooking in the Instant Pot, just like the heavy cream step) to prevent any sticking/burning but you can actually blend white cannellini beans (canned – drained and rinsed) up into a puree and add them to the soup for extra thickness/creaminess. Homemade cashew cream has also been used by quite a few readers to add creaminess to the soup as another healthy and tasty option.

  • Mary Anton

    5 stars
    Have made this three times. What a keeper! Flavor is addictive. Thank you for such an easy and delicious recipe.

  • Haily

    Hi Rachel! Wondering how I could sub canned lentils for the dried ones? Should I reduce the amount of vegetable broth?
    Thanks!

    • Hi Haily! Drain and rinse the canned lentils first and they should work great! You can keep the broth amount the same for a brothier soup (totally what I would do!) or reduce it by 1/2 a cup.

  • Amy Dyer

    I have no lentils. Can I use quinoa instead?

    • Hi Amy! I have a few delicious quinoa chili recipes that have been tested but in this particular recipe, I have not tested the swap. Quinoa fluffs up three times its size so the recipe would need to be reworked around it and experimented with.

  • Court

    5 stars
    Loved this recipe!!! Added soy milk for the creamy factor and added chili beans too. Puréed 1 1/2C of the soup and added it back in for an awesome texture! My family and I are trying the Vegan lifestyle and this was great! Thank you!!!

  • Rachel

    Um, you can’t really call it tortilla soup unless you have actual tortillas in the soup. Like in the soup itself, not crushed tortilla chips as a garnish on top. Part of what makes tortilla soup so magical is that the bits of corn tortilla melt into the broth as an essential flavour component. I’m sure this soup is delicious. Call it a Mexican soup. But a tortilla soup it is not.

    • Hi Rachel! There’s a note to add optional torn corn tortillas to the soup for those of use who love the addition and want to make it more authentic. I personally add them whenever I have some handy but also love the soup both ways.

  • Carmen

    5 stars
    Making it right now and I got distracted and out 1/2 cayenne hoping it wont be too spicy and I have kids eating it! Slow cooking right now and can’t wait to try it! So easy to whip up!

    • Hope they were able to power through the cayenne! Sometimes I can sneak it by my little one, lol!

  • Brenda

    I could not find the Insta Pot instructions, can you let me know where to find them?

    • Hi Brenda! The first set of instructions within the recipe card is for the Instant Pot and the second is for the slow cooker. You’ll follow the steps 1-6 from right under the “instructions” portion of the recipe card basically. xoxo

  • Sonali

    Hi! This looks soooooo yummy. I’m planning on making it this weekend. Are you able to tell me how big is 1 serving?

    • Hi Sonali! It’s a little over a cup and a half per serving. Since it’s loaded with healhty veggies I usually portion out a little extra for myself and make it a meal! xoxo

  • Sheetal

    This looks delicious, but I’m allergic to lentils….is there something else you would suggest using to substitute for those? Thanks!!

    • Thanks Sheetal! In place of the lentils use 1 extra cup of canned/cooked black beans or pinto beans and you’re good to go!\.

  • Erin

    5 stars
    This recipe was delicious. Thank you for sharing.

  • Elisabeth

    5 stars
    So great. I subbed a few things based on what I had in my kitchen and it was still excellent!

    -I used whatever beans I had on hand (one can cannellini and one can mixed black/pinto beans), and I used green lentils because I didn’t have any red.

    -I subbed one poblano pepper for both the bell pepper and the jalapeño.

    -I didn’t have any corn so I omitted it, but fresh corn would be an amazing addition!

    -I garnished with cilantro, slices avocado, grated cheese, sour cream, and crushed tortilla chips.

    Super easy and yummy. Compared to other veggie soups, I loved how little chopping was involved.

  • Lisa

    5 stars
    This was so delicious that I can’t wait to make it again. It was a bit too spicy for me so I may cut back a bit on the chili powder. It tasted wonderful both without and with the creme. I think next time I make it, I will add more veggies. What else I like about it is that it’s filling thanks to those lentils! I did not use a crockpot and instead just made it in my normal put in about 30 minutes. Fresh corn, as opposed to frozen, makes a real difference. I threw that in at the last minute so that it wouldn’t be soft and mushy. Thank you so much for sharing this!

  • Stephanie White

    Very easy to make. Me and my family enjoyed this recipe.

  • Sue Euliano

    5 stars
    I will definitely make again!!😃

  • Esmerelda White

    5 stars
    I made this wonderful soup. The flavors blend nicely. The only thing I left out was the heavy cream. I don’t think you need it especially if you are eating it with sour cream. This dish was very easy to make a very tasty. Thank you for sharing.

  • Karen

    Wondering if you could use coconut milk (vegan) instead of the cream or do you think it would be too strong of flavor?

    • Hi Karen! Because coconut milk can be pretty flavorful (though I love it sooooo much!) I would skip the cream entirely. A lot of readers have gone cream-free and some have used a homemade cashew cream to add vegan creaminess. Also if you feel like you want to experiment with one bowl you can drizzle a little coconut milk in and have a taste test!

  • Andrea

    What type of bell pepper do you typically use? Red, green, orange? Going to try making this in my slow cooker this week! Can’t wait!

    • So excited you’ll be trying the soup! I usually grab whatever I have handy! Orange, yellow, and red will be a bit sweeter and green bell pepper will add a bite of earthiness. All are deeeeelicious!

  • Mira

    Skipped the corn and heavy cream. Was soo good. Thank you!

  • Kandi

    5 stars
    I have made this soup twice now. I have an almost 3 year old and a 4 year old who are very picky eaters and my husband is all about meat…. everyone loves it. It’s super strange not to have someone complain about what they are eating. I sent the recipe to a friend and she said everyone in her family had seconds (which is a big deal). I made it for some long time bean and lentil fans last night and was told it was the best soup they have ever had. It’s so easy to make and so delicious. I don’t add the jalapeño pepper and only do half the amount of cayenne pepper (my family can’t handle spicy foods) and it was perfect. Mild with just the right about of kick. I’ve also made it with both chicken broth and vegetable broth; it’s great with way! I am so happy to have found this recipe! Thanks!

  • Bobby

    Hi! First time using the recipe and got the burn notice twice!!

    Can you tell me the way to layer the ingredients?

    • Hi Bobby! I missed this comment last night (sick kiddo at home here) but hope you were able finish cooking the soup! Instant Pots are really sensitive with their recipes and everything has to be pretty exact or it gets all pissy, lol. Size differences in pots can also pose challenges and require adjustments. I layer it based on order of ingredients listed (ex. broth towards the beginning and lentils towards the very end) With any recipe, if needed, you can transfer it into a pot on the stove and finish cooking that way just to not deal with the Instant Pot’s attitude.

  • Ana

    How many people does it feed?

    • Hi Ana! The recipe makes 6 servings.

      • Ana

        Perfect! Thank you so much for the quick reply. I’m making it today. 🙂

  • Meera

    Has anyone made this exactly the way it’s written minus the lentils?

    • Hi Meera! I haven’t yet but would love to test it out for ya this Fall! My first thought would be to add an extra cup of beans in place of the lentils or just make it as is minus the lentils. It will be a brothier soup but still super tasty!

  • Stephanie

    Making this today and super excited about it! I accidentally added the heavy cream to my crockpot though instead of waiting to add it later with the toppings. Will that cause a problem?

    • Hey Stephanie! It might curdle a teeny bit from the heat but I wouldn’t stress it too much. All the veggies should hopefully mask it if that happens. xo

  • Veronica

    5 stars
    This soup is AMAZING!! This is THE BEST tortilla soup I’ve ever had. I did not miss the meat at all…

    I made this in a 3 QT at instant pot, for 20 minutes cook time instead of 15. It just barely hit the do-not-overfill line. I was a little worried, but it turned out great. I omitted the bell pepper because the one I bought for this went bad.

  • 5 stars
    I love my instant pot because it’s fast and easy to clean, but until now i had not found an instant pot recipe to RAVE about!

    This recipe is AMAZING! I sent it to everyone I know who has an IP. I love that it is easy and also easy on the pocketbook! I used a whole onion and two red bell peppers and two jalapenos, but other than that I followed it completely. I can’t wait to have it for leftovers tomorrow! I will definitely be trying out your other recipes!

    • Thanks for your rave review Lanna! DAY = MADE!!!

  • Tina

    5 stars
    This is very good. I like the subtle heat from the jalapeño. I might try it without the lentils one time to make it more broth like (just a bit different texture but same yummy flavours). Thank you

    • Tina

      PS. I made this without cream and it was perfect.

      • Yay!!! So so glad you enjoyed the soup Tina! Thanks!

  • Hannah

    5 stars
    This is so good I made it twice in one week! Veganized by using cashew cream and extra broth

  • Denise Mosby

    5 stars
    This soup is so, so good! Flavors are perfect. My daughter is a vegan so we skipped the heavy cream but diced up a few corn tortillas and added with the rest of the ingredients. It had a nice, thick consistency and was very hearty and filling. This will be in our regular dinner rotation, so convenient for busy weeknights.

  • Amy

    5 stars
    I used a total of 1.5 cups dried beans that I soaked overnight, in place of the canned beans. I added 10 minutes to the instant pot cooking time and it came out delicious.

  • Bonnie

    I only have a family of 4 so we have a 3qt. IP. What size IP did you use to make this?

    • Hey Bonnie! I used a 6 quart since it makes quite a bit of soup and the lentils need some space to expand.

  • 5 stars
    Amazing! My teenage boys absolutely loved this and asked when are we having it again. I did end up blending the soup for a smoother texture.

  • Ava

    4 stars
    Super easy, delicious and family friendly. Can definitely be punched up or down with spicier salsa, more garlic, maybe a little bit of juice from canned chipotles? Best kind of recipe – great as is, fun to experiment with.

  • 5 stars
    Amazing, vibrant, inviting photos. I’m in ! Thank you very much and enjoy your day 🙂

  • Michelle L Gudauskas

    Choosing this for our FIRST instantpot recipe! We just received it. We got the 8qt for our family of 6. I will triple the recipe. Looks amazing! Thanks!

    • YAY!!!! Hope you fall in love with the soup, Michelle! Thanks!

  • Rachel Bailey

    This chili is SO good!!! I saw it serves 6 but was wondering what the portion would be, 1 cup each? Do you know how many cups this makes? Thanks!

    • So glad you’re loving it Rachel – thanks! I think the total yield is around 10 cups whenever I make it so the serving size is a pretty hearty one!

  • Kristy

    5 stars
    So I found your recipe on Pinterest and made it several times, even came in 3rd during a chili cook off 😉This is the best lentil soup ever! I just made it today during a weekly weight loss challenge, this week is vegetarian and I’ll be eating this all week for work. Thank you for an amazing vegetarian recipe! 😊

  • Catherine Collins

    5 stars
    I’ve used recipes from blogs for years and have NEVER commented on any of them until now. This is my absolute favorite lunch. I eat this several times each week and have since I discovered this recipe last winter. I leave out the heavy cream and just add a scoop of nonfat Greek yogurt to my serving. I’ve used all pinto beans, all black beans, left out the corn, used poblanos instead of jalapenos – the recipe is so versatile and so easy in the Instant Pot. The servings are incredibly filling. Thank you for sharing!

  • Suzanne

    This looks so delicious! It can be difficult to find things without meat that are hearty enough and have lots of protein!

  • Lucia Fisher

    5 stars
    This soup was delicious. I’m new to both vegetarianism and instant-potting, so I’m feeling tbe need to expand my repertoire. I love one-pot meals using ingredients I pretty much always have on hand, so this is perfect. I know my kids will love it, too.

    • Thank you Lucia! This soup for sure checks a lot of boxes and I’ glad you’re loving it!

  • Mary Ann Felix

    5 stars
    This dish sounds delicious and I can’t wait to try it! Question: have you ever tried swapping out the heavy cream for plant based milk?

    • Hi Mary Ann! Yes totally – it’s great with a drizzle of coconut milk or coconut cream or you could also use a little cashew cream! I think several readers have used cashew cream for theirs and LOVED it!

  • Rebecca Wallace

    Making tonight! What is the avocado oil for?

    • Hi Rebecca! Sorry for the delay and I hope you loved the soup! The avocado oil is something I like to add to my soups to add just a touch of richness to it. It’s totally optional!

  • Sam

    5 stars
    This is my favorite thing to make ever. I’ve made it every week for the past year. It’s super easy to make vegan and literally tastes amazing! I’m so impressed and happy I found this recipe!

  • Amie Turner

    Is this soup spicy hot with adding jalapeño as one of the ingredients? I’m making this for a family who has kids so I don’t want it to be spicy.

    • Hi Amie! It’s not spicy to me but you can certainly skip the jalapeño just in case and allow the adults to add sliced jalapeño on top of their bowls if desired!

  • Heather

    5 stars
    This was delicious! The whole family loved it. I did use green lentils so it actually had a bit more of a chili consistency but I think may have preferred that since we all love chili. I doubled the spices and did not add the cream. Other than that, I didn’t change anything. For those new to the instant pot, I did the natural release for 15 minutes after cook time ended and then quick released the rest of the steam. This will definitely end up in our regular meal rotation now that we’re trying to eat vegetarian a few days a week.

  • Amanda T

    5 stars
    Thank you! I’ve been trying to eat more vegetarian meals throughout the week and using lentils is genius! I can now make my favorite tortilla soup again! I’ll definitely be making it over and over. 😁

  • Emily Armstrong

    5 stars
    This was a fantastic crock pot recipe! I prepped it the night before and put it on the stand in the morning and it turned out wonderfully! I left out the jalapeno and used one quart of broth because I had green lentils. I topped it with sour cream and my husband loved it!

  • Rj

    5 stars
    Made this in my IP. Followed directions exactly. Turned out great. It needed salt, but that’s easy to add. Even better the next day. We garnished with black olives and avocado. This one is a keeper and I don’t typically like recipes as is.

  • 5 stars
    This is fabulous! We went vegetarian about 6 months ago and finding new recipes especially for my Ninja, has been a struggle. One of our family favorites was chicken tortilla soup so I figured that this was worth a try. Boy am I glad I did! It’s so good I would feed it to anyone vegan, vegetarian, or carnivore, it’s that good.
    Unless I’m mistaken, it’s also gluten free! Win win! Thank you so much for this recipe.

  • Ashley

    This looks delicious! However, i’ve been to 3 different stores and cannot locate red lentils. I saw below that brown lentils can be substituted, but there aren’t exact measurements. I’m new to cooking and don’t want to mess this up. Does anyone know exact liquid measurements when using brown lentils?

    Thank you

    • Hi Ashley! Brown lentil’s liquid measurement will vary based on what method you’re using. Do you plan on making the soup in the IP, stove-top, or slow cooker?

    • Kim

      Hi Ashley, i found canned red lentils at WalMart and you can also order dry red lentils through Amazon Pantry.

    • Lateefa

      Any place that sells organic food (like Earth Fare, Whole Foods, or Trader Joe’s) will have red lentils! I buy mine from Publix!

  • Nancy

    Made this yesterday w/o salt or cream- it’s by far my favorite thing I’ve made. I could eat this daily and never get tired of it- so flavorful. I doubled the spices!! Thank you so much.

  • Lindsay Smith

    5 stars
    Wow! I had this recipe saved for a while and it’s too bad it took so long to make it. My grocery store only had green lentils, so I was glad to see a comment below to cook them separately. That was my only change. This will be one to make over and over! We appreciate leftovers and this made a ton!

  • Cynthia

    5 stars
    Delicious! Will make it many more times. I used the Instant and it was so easy. Thank you for sharing this recipe!

  • Kudzai Dombo

    5 stars
    Absolutely amazing!

  • Kristian

    I couldn’t find red lentil at the store so i will be substituting with brown. Is it a must that i cook them before ? Cook them all the way? This will slow cook while at work so i dont want to come home to mushy lentils! Thanks for any advice 🙂

    • Hey Kristian! If you’re slow cooking with a crock-pot or other traditional slow cooker you will still be able to make the soup as long as you add enough liquid to cook the brown lentils. Green and brown lentils are thicker/larger than red so they absorb more liquid and take longer to cook than red. General slow/low cook time for brown lentils in a slow cooker is 8 hours on low so they’ll cook while you’re at work. I’ve only done this soup with red lentils in the slow cooker so I can’t fully advise on how much liquid you’ll add to wind up with the same exact results as the recipe above. I’m thinking at least a quart of broth will be needed, possibly some extra liquid and then the seasonings will need to be increased a little to make the soup maintain its flavor. Let me know if you get a chance to experiment! I’ll try to test this recipe with brown lentils over the summer when I have some spare time! xoxo

  • John Morris

    If I double the Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup in my instant pot do I still pressure cook it for 15 minutes or should I add more time for pressure cooking?

    • Hey John! Super stoked you’ll be making the recipe but wanted to give you a heads up – there was someone who tried to double the recipe in an 8 QT and reported that it would not work and switched to the safety auto-shutoff feature (aka the dreaded burn notice) b/c the pot cannot handle that much soup. They totally need to come out with a 10 QT for us so we can make big batches of soups!

  • Meg

    4 stars
    Made as directed except doubled up on chili powder and cumin….tasty! Almost felt like it needed something else..carrots? Not sure. But it was filling in that wholesome, fiberous sort of way!

  • Monique

    5 stars
    Amazing recipe! Well done 🙂
    I did choose salsa verde and half and half cream and it was delicious. One bowl your full it’s yummy and I also added some lemon pepper chicken. What a flavorful dish that I cooked during the week night!

  • Nova @ The High Strung

    5 stars
    Great flavors, and a healthier take on the original! I Would definitely make this again! So tasty and very filling; much heartier than traditional tortilla soup thanks to the lentils. This is now my favorite red lentil soup recipe!

  • Chan

    5 stars
    Honestly one of the best soups I’ve ever made. I made about half the serving size since it was just me eating but my family tried some and ended up loving it as much as I did and asked me to make it for them sometime! Thank you for sharing!

    • Ahhh yay! Thank you Chan – so glad it was a hit!

  • Paige

    5 stars
    We love this soup! One question, can it be frozen? If I just add all the ingredients uncooked to a freezer bag would it still work? What would I need to adjust to make that possible?

    • So glad you’re loving it Paige! It freezes really well one cooked, but I’ve never tried freezing it before cooking. I’m sure it’s possible but I would have to test it to be able to answer questions about cook times and adjustments. Let me know if you get a chance to experiment before I do! xoxo

  • Paige

    5 stars
    We love this soup! One question, can it be frozen? If I just add all the ingredients uncooked to a freezer bag would it still work? What would I need to adjust to make that possible?

  • Lela

    5 stars
    This has been a staple in my house for months now. We LOVE it and it is such an easy “go to” for us. I roughly chop everything and toss it in the instant pot. I do make a few modifications.
    1)I use 1 whole onion instead of 1 cup
    2)I skip the oil and tomato paste (first time as an accident and we didn’t notice a difference)
    3)I add about 6 cloves of garlic
    4)I use 4 to 5 fresh Roma tomatoes instead of canned sauce/tomatoes
    5)I use the corn from 3 to 4 fresh cobs
    6)I use fresh salsa verde
    7)I add about 2 tablespoons of creme fraiche at the end instead of heavy cream
    8)I use my immersion blender and blend it all together at the end for a balanced flavor.

  • Karri

    This is soooo yummy! My hubbys new favorite!

  • Kameron

    5 stars
    This was amazing! The kids also loved it. I subbed coconut cream in but it was good without it too. Thanks for the great recipe.

  • Malerie

    5 stars
    This was one of our first recipes made in our Instant Pot and we now make it EVERY week. This soup is so delicious. We add 2-3 jalapenos because we like the soup spicy but we wouldn’t change anything else about the recipe! The soup smells amazing and it is even super yummy reheated as leftovers. So happy we found this recipe!

  • Amber

    5 stars
    This is a great recipe. I made this tonight. My husband loves it, I love it, and even my picky 4-year-old wanted more. I will definitely be having this again.

    Thank you! 🙂

  • Kari

    can you do this with dried lentils and pinto beans? Or do I have to make them beforehand? Thanks!

    • Hey Kari! You’ll use dried red lentils (If you’re using green/brown def pre-cook b/c they like to soak up all the soup and activate the auto shutoff feature) but any beans added have to be precooked. Dry beans typically take about 45 min to cook in the IP, and they would soak up all the water and turn the veggies into mush if done all at the same time. Hope this helps! You can certainly cook the beans early in the week to have on hand for soups and side dishes all week long! xoxo

  • Amy

    5 stars
    This recipe is absolutely amazing and an instant family hit! For the cream, due to allergies, I used coconut cream!

  • Christy

    5 stars
    So good! I didn’t use the cream or salt and pepper (mostly bc I forgot) but it didn’t need either in my opinion. A good, clean, real ingredients meal!

    • So super glad you enjoyed the soup Christy, thanks!

  • Danielle

    5 stars
    This was amazing! It will be a new staple for us. I followed the recipe exactly except I didn’t use any cream, and it was perfect.

  • Juli

    5 stars
    We make this one every few weeks at our house because it’s so easy, healthy and flavorful! I skip the cream at the end and it’s still great without it.

    • So honored the recipe made repeat status Juli – thank you!

  • Lace H

    5 stars
    This is the BEST tortilla soup we’ve ever made! I added a bit more spices and used “better than bullion vegetarian no chicken base” instead of veggie broth. Even the picky kids loved it! Though, crushing the chips to add on top might have had something to do with that lol. This is now a staple in our home

    • So so happy to hear it Lace! Whenever someone reports that their kiddos loved it I basically do an extra happy dance around the kitchen – I know they’re always brutally honest haha! xoxo

  • Melissa K.

    5 stars
    I have made this at least 10 times! I agree it is “the soup!” On weight watchers, even if you add 1/2 cup of heavy cream, it’s only 1 pt per serving! Thanks for making something that is, not only delicious, but friendly on the waistline too!

    • Thank you so much Melissa! I’m so honored it’s become a go-to soup for you!! Eeee!

  • Casey Masen

    2 stars
    Interesting that there are only 5 star ratings listed. This should have been a red flag. I followed recipe exactly-used the insta pot. Turned out gross. Hardly any flavoring and was too thick. I couldn’t even eat more than a couple spoon fulls. I’m usually pretty good at rescuing a recipe, but nothing I could do here. I would not recommend this recipe, not that this comment will ever be posted.

    • I think it’s just that most of us really love the soup, Casey. It’s okay that you didn’t, no recipe in the history of recipes pleases 100% of people, but this one is delicious to most!

  • Anne Sasko

    5 stars
    This soup is fantastic! A definite do-over. Thank you for sharing the recipe.

  • Tess

    5 stars
    Amazing recipe! Even my insanely picky boyfriend liked it 🙂 definitely a new staple for our house!

  • Jen

    5 stars
    Omg this was excellent!! I messed up the lentils but that was 100% my fault, oops. Regardless this is a go to for any cold day! I did mine in the crockpot but I do have an instapot so may try it in there when I need food quick. Thanks for an awesome soup!

  • Amelia

    5 stars
    I LOVE this soup so much! I add about 6 cups of vegetable broth and a little more garlic but it is one of my favorite comfort foods. Both my friend and I make it and we call it “the soup” because we both love it so much and make it so often. 🙂 THANKS!!!

    • OMG it’s “the soup!!!!” <--- you have no idea how much this makes my day/week/month haha! Thank you Amelia!

  • Youngmi

    5 stars
    Made this in my Instant Pot and it turned out perfectly. Love that I could just dump everything in at once! I followed your recipe exactly and the flavor was lovely. Thank you for sharing!

  • 5 stars
    This looks perfect for a cold, snowy day! So warming.

  • Amy

    5 stars
    This is absolutely amazing! I’m getting ready to make it for the 3rd time in 3 weeks. 🙂 It’s so flavorful, filling, and versatile. I’ve shared the recipe with a close friend and she fell in love as well. Thank you so much for this deliciousness! I don’t use the heavy cream, and it’s amazing.

  • Kristin

    5 stars
    I made this for dinner today, and it was really easy and delicious! It has a really good flavor. I prefer making soups on the stovetop, since I just never know how long things are REALLY going to take in my crockpot, SO I was going to follow your stovetop directions, BUT being a busy mom, I was too busy after school that I needed to do the easy crockpot method. I started my crockpot around 9:30 a.m., and we started eating around 5:30 p.m. I actually didn’t notice too many whole lentils anymore, so maybe I did it too long? The flavor is delicious, and it’s so good and filling that I personally don’t notice the lack of meat in it. Thanks for a great recipe!

  • Laurel

    5 stars
    Super good and easy! Made this before work on a snowy, icy day and came home to a wonderful meal. We used plain coconut milk yogurt as the cream. Can’t wait to have leftovers today!

  • 5 stars
    Oh, I’ve been craving mexican all week! This will do it for sure.

    BTW – I love your ombre hair (random, I know).

    PS – I have never seen so many comments on a blog before. What’s your secret to such great engagement? it’s awesome!

    • Thanks Caren!! I wish all my posts had this kind of engagement lol! This recipe just makes everyone want to scream yum from the rooftops I guess. Love it so!

  • Marcy Smith

    5 stars
    My vegetarian child adores this soup. I have a hard time keeping up with the demand! How much could I make in an 8 qt. instant pot? Triple batch? I could also make in the slow cooker if you think those could hold more since no worries about pressure. Thanks for sharing this fabulous recipe.

    • So glad it’s a hit Marcy – thank you! I don’t have an 8 qt. to test it with (just the 6) but you could try a double batch in the 8 and if it’s past the max fill line just move it over to the slow cooker and cook it up there! For sure LMK how it goes! xoxo

  • Erin

    5 stars
    I made this using homemade cashew cream instead of heavy cream and also used vegan cheese. It was delicious! I think I’ll add more spices next time, and I also added some oregano which I find goes well in Mexican type dishes. Definitely will make again!

  • Samantha Webb

    5 stars
    This recipe is amazing! I am so glad I discovered it. I like to eat mostly vegetarian at home but it can be hard to find recipes that are veggie but still packed with flavor (and protein). I used 1/4 cup of the cream and it is perfect. I have tried some vegetarian recipes in the past that are lacking in the flavor department but this is NOT it! It is so flavorful and delicious.

  • Lastalda

    5 stars
    I just made this (or a variation, since in Germany the only canned beans I could find were kidney beans and white beans, so I used these) and it was fantastic! Thanks for the awesome recipe!

    Btw, though, I noticed there are actually no tortillas in this tortilla soup (apart from the optional tortilla chips as toppings). Is this still a tortilla soup, anyway?

    Definitely yummy, though, no matter by which name!

    • Thank you Lastalda! A traditional tortilla soup typically uses chicken and/r chicken broth and relies on the addition of chopped corn tortillas within the soup to add a little bit of thickness and lend it it’s name. I didn’t want to clog up the pressure cooker with the tortilla so I left them as a topping with the option of stirring some in after cooking as well! It’s a bit less traditional but I love it so! I’m so happy you enjoyed the soup! xo

  • ALEXANDRA JANNETTA

    5 stars
    this was the BEST soup I’ve ever made. And I make a lot of soup. I used cream cheese (instead of cream), my favorite red spicy salsa (instead of verde) and jalapeno juice (instead of jalapeños). and OMG I want to make this every day. Seriously. Just some crushed up tortilla chips on top totally added the crunch it needed and WOW.

    • So glad you’re loving it Alexandra! Tell me more about this jalapeño juice – I am fascinated! xoxo

  • Sydney

    No store around me carries red lentils and I’m making this for dinner tomorrow. Can I sub for regular lentils?? And if so do I need to change anything?

    • Hey Sydney! If you’re using a slow cooker you’ll only need to add 30-60 minutes to the slow cook time and some extra liquid you should be good to go! For the Instant Pot it likes to freeze up with a burn message because the green/brown lentils soak up a lot more liquid and take longer to cook. LMK which method you’re going for and we’ll figure something out! xo

  • Christina Kuhn

    5 stars
    Thank you for this recipe! It is so cold where I live right now, and I needed something yummy like this to keep me warm..this is an AWESOME recipe. I made it earlier and my husband and I sat under a warm blanket, watched a movie, and had this wonderful meal…yummy!

  • Star

    Hi do you have a recipe for the salsa verde you use. Is there an alternative that you can put in instead? (In uk)

  • Melissa

    5 stars
    Thank you! This was excellent!!! Love your writing and the recipe was fantastic! My guests gushed over the soup and I thoroughly enjoyed it!

  • Jakitta S.

    5 stars
    This was DELICIOUS! like the BEST vegetarian soup/chili I’ve ever had! I’m not a vegan or vegetarian but my goal is to eat less meat and more veggies. I didn’t miss the meat at all in this recipe I’ll definitely be making more of your recipes!

    • So so happy to hear it Jakitta, thank you! I’m excited to hear what you try next!

  • Deborah

    This sounds yummy. What size instant pot did you use to make the recipe? I have the mini instant pot and I am wondering whether I will need to cut the recipe in half.

    • Hi Deborah! I used a 6 QT. Halving the recipe should be perfect for the mini if the max fill line gives you enough space! xo

  • Allison Cornett

    Do you really use 14 cans of 15oz tomato sauce or crushed tomatoes?

    • lol I’ll change the wording if it helps! it’s a 14-15 oz (so any size between 14 and 15 oz) can. Just the one.

  • Georgette

    5 stars
    I made this tortilla soup in my crockpot, absolutely delicious! We are vegan so no cream used and subbed vegan cheese as garnish. This will be my go to recipe when we need a comforting, delisious meal!

  • LaTasha Duncan

    I LOVE how you added the preheat/come to pressure time. I’m new to using electric pressure cookers and was so confused. Sounds delicious, will be trying.

  • Kellee

    5 stars
    Made this last night for my vegan daughter. It turned out delicious! I added a can of diced green chilies and put a couple of corn tortilla in it, which helped it thicken nicely. Didn’t add cream because of the vegan, but it was still wonderful. Served with vegan and regular sour cream, cilantro, lime, green onions, tortilla strips, cheese, and avocado. Will make again! Thank you!

    • So happy y’all enjoyed it Kellee, thank you! Loving the addition of green chilies and tortilla too – delish!

  • Lyss

    5 stars
    I was skeptical about this soup (skeptical about a lot of things vegetarian), but it was DELICIOUS! No lack of flavor here. I will be making this again. Thanks for sharing!

    • Yay!!! SO SO happy to hear it Lyss! Thanks!

  • 5 stars
    Hubby and I made this recipe tonight in a vegan version. We are plant based and oil free (WFPBNO) and it was super easy to adapt. I have lots of leftovers to take for my lunch at work this week, yum!

  • Jennifer

    5 stars
    My family is vegan, but this recipe is totally adaptable to our plant based lifestyle. I made it for dinner last night and it was delicious! I chopped some fresh red onion, purple cabbage, and avocado to add to the top and even had a little vegan “cheese” to sprinkle on the finished product. It was so yummy! Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  • Marie

    5 stars
    Easy & Delicious!!!

  • Maribel

    This recipe looks amazing! Just bought an instant pot and I’m excited to use it!

    Can you tell me what kind of lentils and how much to use? I don’t see that listed anywhere on the ingredients.

    Thank you!

    • So excited for you to try the recipe Maribel! You’ll use 3/4 cup uncooked dry red lentils — you’ll want the thin reddish orange lentils (not the green/brown ones that take much longer to cook and need extra liquid)

      • Maribel

        Awesome! Thank you so much!

  • Shaily Shah

    5 stars
    THis is the 2nd time i made this. Everyone loves this soup. Very easy and turns out delicious.

  • Cindy

    5 stars
    My daughter has recently become a vegetarian. I made this tonight in my instant pot and she and her friend LOVED it. They are college students, and were thrilled with this dinner. My husband loved it too! Thank you so much for sharing this amazing recipe.

  • Jenn

    5 stars
    This was delicious! My carnivorous clan scarfed it up. I made the slow cooker version. The house smelled wonderful & multiple bowls were consumed. Totally adding this to our dinner rotation!!!

  • Megan

    5 stars
    I made this tonight for a group get together and it was a hit! I may have to make it again tomorrow night. 🙂

  • Carole Payne

    5 stars
    Can’t tell you how much we enjoyed this soup recipe. I most appreciated all the options for cooking this soup that you provided. I have an old fashion pressure cooker, so I added all the ingredients to the pressure cooker with an addition of 2.5 cups of vegetable broth. I cooked the soup for 15 minutes and let it rest for 15 minutes before opening the pot up, per your instructions and the soup was ready. This is a busy time of year and to have a delicious meal on the table in under an hour was wonderful. Thank you again for sharing this soup recipe with us. And Merry Christmas!💕

  • Safia

    5 stars
    This recipe looks absolutely Amazing, and I’m making it tonight, but I have a question, Can I add tortellini to it?

    • Yes absolutely! I wouldn’t put tortellini in the Instant Pot — just cook it on the side in boiling water for 7 min or as directed on package and add it after. For slow cooker you can add it in towards the last 10-15 min of cook time or cook on the side and add in. Hope that helps! Enjoy!

  • Jackie

    5 stars
    So yummy and easy to make

  • 5 stars
    Yum! Just made this tonight and it was a huge success. Thanks for a great recipe 🙂

  • Emily R in Modesto

    5 stars
    Great recipe! We left out the heavy cream and it was still fantastic. Thanks for sharing it. 🙂

  • Cindy Gordon

    5 stars
    This is SO good! I made it this week and added in a can of coconut milk instead of heavy cream! Turned out great! YUMMMM

  • Jen

    5 stars
    This was absolutely amazing! I am so happy that there are leftovers, I can wrap them in a tortilla for lunch tomorrow. I was so happy to see that the ingredients are part of our pantry staples, and it will be easy to throw in celery and carrots if I’m out of peppers. This is definitely going to be part of our weekly rotation. Thank you!

  • Jessica

    5 stars
    This recipe is definitely a keeper! It’s so easy to put together and is a great alternative to chili. Leftovers are delicious (and there was enough to feed my family of four for dinner, plus two generous lunch helpings for me) Next time I’ll play around with the seasonings a little to make it just a little more flavorful, but I like that, as written, it wasn’t too spicy for kids.

  • Amy Marie

    5 stars
    This is incredible! My husband eats nothing but red meat and junk food and potatoes and he devoured this. Fabulous Tex mex flavor and so hearty. I doubled the cumin and chili powder and used chix broth. Served w cheese, chopped cherry tomato and yes tortilla chips. Love this!

  • Erin

    5 stars
    Made this tonight. Family loved it!! Definitely going into our weekly rotation. Thank you!! I tried to give it 5 stars but it wouldn’t let me. Sorry!

    • The stars need their coffee clearly lol! Thank you Erin! I’m so glad you and your family loved the recipe.

  • Tammy Anderson

    5 stars
    So good! I made the stove top version and added about 2 tsp. of cumin. Will definitely add to my rotation of homemade soups.

  • Andrea

    This is so good does anyone know how many weight eatchers points this is?

  • Danielle

    5 stars
    Just wanted to say I am so glad I found this recipe! My daughter and I are both picky eaters, so it’s hard to find meals that all 3 of us in my family will eat. This has become a staple, being made at least every other week. My husband adds in some extra heat to his bowls, and my daughter puts it on a tortilla shell and eats it like a burrito! We all really love it!!

    As for tweaks, we use chicken vs veggie broth, sweet peppers instead of green/red, salsa verde, and we do add the cream. I also sometimes put in a splash of lime juice.

    • Yay!!! Thank you Danielle! So glad y’all are loving it and the burrito hack is GENIUS! xoxo

  • Rajvi Gemawat

    5 stars
    Thank you for this recipe!!! Tastes amazing and was so easy to make!!

  • Wendy

    5 stars
    I have made this so many times! And shared the link/recipe with about 20 people. This is hands down fantastic. Making again tonight. Thank you!!

    • Thank you Wendy!!! So honored it made repeat status and I’m so grateful you’ve been sharing it with friends!

  • Paula

    5 stars
    For a vegan option, you can also use cashew cream (1/2 cup soaked cashews, drain, put in blender with 1/2 c to 1 c of water depending on desired thickness, blend on high until smooth).
    This recipe is amazing! I love it and it will definitely be in my recipe book forever!

    • Love the addition of cashew cream Paula! Thank you!

  • Tina

    What’s a good veggie broth (brand) that you use? Can’t wait to make this!

    • So excited for you to try the soup Tina! Pacific Foods’s vegetable broth is one of our favorites and most stores carry it.

  • 5 stars
    This exceeded my already high hopes. It was DELICIOUS!! I will definitely make it again and again!

  • Carolyn

    5 stars
    This was perfect for a cool fall night. Thank you!

    • Woooot! So happy to hear it Carolyn! xo

  • Donna Bonne

    5 stars
    This was amazing!!!! We had a late, big lunch and needed something lighter and healthier for dinner. This was perfect and leftovers will be great for lunch this week. Thank you!

    • I’m super stoked y’all enjoyed it! Thanks Donna!

  • Kelly

    5 stars
    Just made this for the first time and it was AMAZING! I’ve been a vegetarian my whole life and always wanted tortilla soup, but none were ever vegetarian.

    • Thank you Kelly! I was seriously stumped that vegetarian tortilla soup was never really a thing so I just had to make one! We can’t stop making it now! xoxo

  • Kathy

    Sounds delicious! Question – did you use the Soup setting on the IP? I’ve used mine mostly for rice and I’m not completely with the difference among all the settings. I wonder if the setting used could be the reason some people have had with burning. Apologies if the recipe tells which one to use and I missed it when reading it.

    • Hey Kathy! I try to write all my recipes with the manual setting. For this recipe, you’ll the IP to “High Pressure” for 15 minutes. I believe the soup button has a 7 minute high pressure cook time. The main culprit of the dreaded BURN message in the IP is usually altering a recipe’s ingredients. Reducing liquid measurements is a big one as well as using a longer cooking lentil (green/brown) in place of fast-cooking red lentils. LMK if you have any questions and I’d be happy to help! xoxo

      • Kathy

        Thank you! I made it tonight and it was great! My pressure was still releasing after 26 minutes, so I went ahead and released it myself. I’ll definitely be making this again!

  • elisabeth

    5 stars
    love it!!! made this in the slow cooker with a little less broth and more lentils so it would be thicker.. swapped whole jalapeno for a bit of hot sauce to keep it more mild, and skipped the cream. with pepperjack cheese and tortilla chips on top – YUM!! definitely will make this again.

  • Dene

    5 stars
    I made this today and it’s delicious. My husband had 2 bowls.

  • Carolyn M

    5 stars
    This is probably my favorite go to recipe of all time now. The flavor profile is amazing and I’m already making it for the third time! It is healthy and hearty/comforting, yet at the same time doesn’t have that heaviness comfort food can leave. Thank you for posting!

  • Melody

    Can I use can lentils ?

    • I would drain and rinse them first and you should be good to go! You can probably reduce the cook time from 15 minute to 10 minutes as well since the canned lentils will already be cooked. xo

  • Greg

    5 stars
    Hey! I just made this amazing soup for the millionth time. We love it!! Before I posted some additions I made and now I have another suggestion. I found the 15 minute cook time in the Instant Pot left the green and red peppers and the corn too mushy. So this time I threw in everything except the peppers and corn and cooked for 8 minutes, then a quick release. Then I added the peppers and corn and brought it back up to pressure and cooked another 7 minutes with a natural release. It’s perfect, the corn and peppers are still soft but not mushy. I love this soup!!

  • Jade

    5 stars
    This soup is a family favorite, I use chicken broth instead of veggie broth and I blend up the salsa and tomato so my kids will eat, They love it every time!

  • Julie

    5 stars
    This is one of my all time favorite soups now. I make it every otherweek and love it with ALL the toppings. I use Ripple vegan half and half. It turns out amazing!!!

  • Rosemary

    Wonderful recipe! Used the slow cooker and was rewarded with a soup that couldn’t be beat! I was invited out the following day and would have much preferred to stay home and partake of this soup. Many thanks for the recipe and the instructions!

  • Amanda

    5 stars
    Made this, vegan style, and damn it’s good! She’s right in that it gets better as the week goes on, (if it lasts that long!) I personally don’t add salsa, and don’t feel it needs it! I also just use water, and there seems to be plenty going on here for flavor. With chips and avocado? SO good!!!

  • Kristen

    5 stars
    Just made this on stove and it is heavenly! I live alone and can’t wait to portion out in containers. I thought I’d miss meat but not at all. Added a little chipotle chili powder and lime juice but really wonderful recipe. It’s gonna be a staple. Thank you!

  • JEANNETTE

    This is truly my favorite soup! I love that it’s spiy and I love that it’s vegetarian and since I live alone, I love that I can freeze it. I sound ‘over the top’, but it is so good on so many levels. Thank you so much!

  • Lisa J

    5 stars
    This recipe was amazing! I added some cream cheese at the end instead of the cream and loved it. This is a definite do again, and I might try doubling the spices too. Reminds me of a chicken tortilla soup I have at a local restaurant for which I have always wanted the recipe! Definitely could see adding some shredded chicken to this too.

  • Melinda Samaniego

    5 stars
    Made this on the stove yesterday and it was so good! Will definitely make again. This recipe is a keeper!

  • Jordan

    5 stars
    I made this tonight in the Instant Pot and used green lentils. I read through some of the comments and saw comments about it burning. I added an extra cup of broth and it came out awesome! The Instant Pot wasn’t done naturally releasing pressure after 15 minutes, so I just quick released the rest. I made no other changes and would definitely recommend the recipe as is, but holy shit Greg’s alterations sound delicious! Husband is a vegetarian and we always have trouble finding meals that are filling without being all veggies or pasta. I just found your website and this recipe hit the spot! We will definitely be putting this in our rotation. Can’t wait to make more of your recipes!

  • Greg

    5 stars
    This soup is amazing! I’ve made it 3 times now. I did add and swap some stuff to make more and give it some more Mexican sabor. I used 3 cups of my homemade veggie broth and doubled the dry spices except the cayenne, I swapped the garlic powder for 3 big minced cloves of fresh garlic. I used a large onion and added a red bell pepper with the green one. Also increased the corn to one 15 oz can. I added one can of garbanzo chickpea beans, I tsp of oregano, one bay leaf, a few dried peppercorns, and a dried chili arbol. After cooking I stirred in some low fat cream cheese, juice of half a lime, and some lime zest. Cool, fridge and eat the next day with a squeeze of lime, Mexican queso fresco, tortilla chips, avocado, and cilantro on top. My friend from Mexico gives it 2 thumps up!

    • Love these zesty additions Greg and I’m so honored you’ve been making it on repeat! Woot! The queso fresco and garbanzo beans need to happen next time I make it – yum!!!

  • Frances

    5 stars
    Loved this, perfect. Will make often Thank you

  • Kelly

    5 stars
    Absolutely obsessed over this soup! It was one of the first meals I made in my instant pot when I first got it. I have shared it with many of my instant pot loving friends as well.

  • Kolbi

    Okay so this recipe is a HUGE hit and I share it all the time! Cooking right now as I type this, in fact.

    Everytime I make this soup in the IP, I end up burning the bottom and then needing to transfer it to the stove. Wondering if there is something I’m doing wrong?

    Any help is appreciated!

    • Hey Kolbi! So stoked you’re loving the soup! A few things could be contributing to this! Too thick of a mixture due to adding extra ingredients or more of something listed above. Even something as small as adding green/brown lentils in place of red lentils (which are very thin and cook faster plus soak up less liquid) can burn ze soup in the IP. Overfilling the pot (doubling the recipe or adding additional ingredients) is also a huge culprit. You mentioned it happens a lot, are there small changes/swaps/additions you tend to make to the recipe each time? Let me know and I’m super happy to help troubleshoot, as this recipe for sure has enough liquid to prevent you from having to transfer it every time and I’d love to make your life easier! 🙂 Chat soon – and thank you Kolbi! xo

  • Frances

    5 stars
    I thought this looked good and it was terrific. I think this is a favorite soup. Only change was doubling the spices and adding dried oregano also. Very impressed with the recipe,

  • Brittany

    5 stars
    Phenomenal!! So easy and so flavorful! We skipped the heavy cream but did everything else. Amazing. This will be a go to on a regular. Also easy for food prep.

  • Monique

    5 stars
    This recipe is on our family’s go-to list. Its filling just in its own and freezes well, so you can pack it as individual servings and pull them out of he freezer for an easy lunch or dinner any time.

  • This soup looks amazing! I could go for a big bowl right now!

  • Melissa

    5 stars
    Got my InstaPot yesterday and this was my first recipe. I’ve had multiple “burn” error messages and just kept stirring and scraping stuff up from the bottom. Didn’t seem to affect the taste, it was absolutely scrumptious. Reading the other comments about “burn” messages helped. Not sure what I did wrong, for once I actually followed a recipe, but I’m sure there was some “fudge” factor in my measurements. Still, it was really delicious so I gave it 5 stars.

    • So glad you enjoyed it Melissa, thank you! Chunky soups, chilis, curries, etc… are one of those things that can make the IP go wonky with that dreaded burn notice if even a single ingredient is off (it’s maddening, I tell ya! lol) so I’m glad you stuck with it! Too much of the thicker ingredients or less of a water/broth/liquid ingredient can make things go a little batty. We’ve also noticed that regular brown/green lentils vs the red lentils in the IP can soak up all the liquid.

      Again I’m so glad you stuck through it and hooray for your first IP recipe! So excited you chose mine! I’m stoked for you to try a bowl of the leftover soup tomorrow – gah! SO GOOD the next day!

  • 5 stars
    My 6 year old said this is the second best food she’s ever tasted that’s not a dessert. Thank you! We cooked it together and made it with mild red salsa and no jalapenos. We omitted the tomato paste and used roasted diced canned tomatoes. Topped with sharp cheddar cheese, tortilla chips, and avocado. Delish!

  • SS

    4 stars
    This smelled insanely good at each step! Thank you to the reviewer who suggested Rotel tomatoes instead of salsa. The soup tasted as good as it smelled and didn’t need the cream but I only had one issue- so many beans! You really have to like beans to like this soup. I don’t mind beans in my food but the proportion was off for me. The lentils completely dissolved and made the soup creamy which is great but I wanted to be able to feel their texture. I would say this is more like a very tasty vegetarian chili. I really enjoyed the flavors so I might try this out with chickpeas instead of the beans. Thank you for an easy and delicious recipe. I just wanted to be honest in case someone else had similar tastes.

  • Joye

    5 stars
    This was so good! I would never have thought to use the red lentils for thickening. You could not even tell they were in there. I used regular salsa as I didn’t have salsa verde on hand but can’t wait to make this again with the green salsa.

  • Val

    Wondering if this would work with dried green/brown lentils…. they are larger than red lentils, but are currently in my cupboard.

    • Hi Val! The only issue I’ve come across with the brown/green lentils is that they take longer to cook and need a lot more liquid. They soak up a lot of the broth and can burn in the Instant Pot if they soak it all up. I haven’t had a chance to see exactly how much extra this recipe needs but I’d say at least a few more cups of broth, which would also require a little more seasoning as well to cover any dilution. If you get a chance to experiment for sure let me know! Flavor-wise this recipe would be just as glorious with the standard lentils! 🙂

      If you’re using the slow cooker method then the green lentils are perfecto! They may need a bit extra time to cook and a smidge more liquid but won’t run into the same issues as the IP 🙂 For the stove-top method, I’d cook the green lentils on their own in boiling water then add them to the soup! 🙂

      • Brian

        5 stars
        I made this soup with green lentils because I had them on hand. I added an extra cup of broth at the beginning and then a second cup a few hours into slow cooking it because the liquid was reducing. The soup turned out great! I would like to make it with red lentils next time, but if I only have green, I would make it again. I added a bit extra of each spice and the soup came out flavorful and cooked it for an extra hour.

        Also, the soup was even better then next day as the lentils continued to soak and the flavors combined.

        • So super happy to hear it Brian, and I’m crazy appreciative of you sharing your process for using the green lentils in this recipe with the slow cooker method! Thank you oh so much! 🙂

  • Janelle B.

    5 stars
    Wow! My family loved this chili. My 2 yr old especially loved it. I’ll definately make this again.

  • Lisa

    5 stars
    MAde this tonight! Yum! I’ve had issues with Burn with several recipes I have tried and was so glad to have one turn out so fab. I used red salsa and ketchup instead of tomato paste since I didn’t have any and it was great! Thanks.

  • Made this tonight and it was yummy. Didn’t add any cream and didn’t miss it. Added a bunch of fresh cilantro at the end. Loved this!

  • Jay

    Hi again!

    “1/2 cup salsa verde (or your favorite salsa!)”

    Was looking online getting salsa verde but turn out it extremely difficult get it in UK.

    So can I use normal salsa instead (red ones)?

    • Hey Jay! Absolutely! It works great with any salsa really – I’ve made it with whatever salsa is lurking in my fridge and it’s always yummy 🙂

      • Jay

        Fab! That make it much easier!

    • Another Jen ;)

      4 stars
      Tesco has green salsa with the Mexican stuff. Quick question, I love making this but burn my lentils every time. I tried to find the solution in the comments but can’t! Help please!!

      • Hey Jen! We can troubleshoot here or I can shoot you an email if that’s easier? Let me know! My first questions would be, are you burning just the lentils or the whole dish? Instant Pot? If so what size? Also which type of lentils are you using? I’ll help ya get to the bottom of this! xoxo

        • Jen O

          Sorry it took me so long to respond! I didn’t get an email that you had written. It’s just the lentils burning, I have a stove top pressure cooker not an instant pot so maybe that’s why…I’m using red lentils. Thanks!

          • Thanks for popping back over Jen! I’ve been reading more and more about the differences between stove-top pressure cookers and electric like the Instant Pot, and it seems like there’s a definite PSI/pressure difference between them with the stove-top cooker having a much higher pressure. They also cook about 3x faster as well (which is awesome!) but can leave to overcooking/sticking/burning when using a recipe developed with an electric pressure cooker — that could be where things get dicey each time you try to cook lentils! They also have a different capacity right? Is there a fill-capacity line that you know of with your pressure cooker? If so do you think the recipe goes past it? If it’s nowhere near the max fill line for your cooker, I’d say we can try upping the liquid to lentil ratio and decreasing the cook time quite a bit!

  • Niti Raman

    5 stars
    LOVE this soup! So tasty and delicious! I did leave out the heavy cream and tomato sauce since I didn’t have any in stock. Instead, I added 1 tbsp of tomato paste with the veg broth.

    • Such a great swap Niti, and I’m excited to know it works this way as well (I’m always running out of things, lol!) Thank you! 🙂

  • CeCe

    5 stars
    I just made this vegetarian lentil soup in the instant pot and OMG it is SO SO good!!! I am so excited to try your other recipes! Thank you for sharing!

  • Peggy

    Make Instant Pot instructions with your commenter’s advice to save us time. Just like the Instant Pot.

  • ARS

    5 stars
    If I am doubling the recipe, do I need to change the timing for the pressure on the IP?
    I’ve made this recipe 3 times for my family, and have shared the recipe with my cousins too- it’s a hit.

    • I’m so glad y’all are loving the recipe! 🙂 Thank you! A reader recently tried to double the recipe in an 8 QT and reported that it would not work and switched to the safety auto-shutoff feature b/c the pot cannot handle that much soup. They totally need to come out with a 10 QT for us that love to batch cook lots of food for freezer meals and potlucks/gatherings!

  • Jay

    “For a thicker soup, feel free to add some corn tortillas (torn into pieces) to the soup”

    Do I add that with everything before start cooking or I add that at end after cooking? I not quite sure.

    Thanks 🙂

    • Great question Jay! Since the IP is super finicky, I’d actually add it right after cooking and let it sit/cool. Tear or chop them up real small and the piping hot soup will use them to thicken as it cools. I’d say maybe 2 small corn tortillas worth? 3 max if you like it crazy chunky! 🙂

      • Jay

        Hi

        Thanks replying! I wanted to check make sure. I don’t have instant pot yet (none in stock in UK at moment). I am planning use your recipe for my first instant pot cooking. Want get all info ready.
        🙂

        • I’m so excited for you to get your Instant Pot Jay! It’s for sure a fun appliance! Kudos for doing all your research too – love that 🙂

          • Jay

            5 stars
            Hi. I finally get my Instant Pot from UK. They delayed many months and now finally use your recipe for my first instant pot meal today. So very good! Defo will make it again in future.

            Thanks for help answering all my questions before.

          • HOORAY! Jay I’m so glad you enjoyed it! Thanks for chatting it up with me and I can’t wait to hear what you try next!

  • Christi Schiffer

    5 stars
    The perfect soup for a dreary day. Best of all I had everything on hand. I loved the luxury of the Instant Pot. I did leave out the heavy cream, but only because I forgot to add it.

  • Inanna

    Very good

  • Lara

    I have a question as I am new to pressure cooking. I see you call for canned black and pinto beans but dried lentils. Why can’t you use dried black and pinto beans too??

    • Hey Lara! Great question and I can totally explain this one for ya! 🙂

      What basically happens is that the delicate vegetables go beyond the point of tender and turn to complete mush. 30-40 minutes of high pressure (plus pressure build and release time) are usually needed to cook the beans and that is a lot of pressure for the veggies to endure, so they lose their shape and texture.

      My favorite time saving hack for skipping cans entirely is to make my beans in the IP meal-prep style and then freeze them all measured out in 1 cup or 2 cup servings after cooking/cooling. This way when I need beans for a recipe I can use my cooked-from-dried beans that I’ve cooked up in my IP and bypass the need for cans entirely! I try to do this whenever possible bc it’s such a time + money saver in the long run!

      Hope this helps and that you get to try the recipe soon – It’s one of my favorites soups, especially when it’s so crazy cold out! xoxo

  • 5 stars
    Oh, my dear daughter shared this recipe of yours with me. Thank goodness as I was needing to come up with something for dinner. I didn’t have several of the ingredients, but was able to substitute well enough (creamed corn for the corn, chickpeas and shredded chicken, fire roasted spicy chili tomatoes for the salsa), but I thought it would add more depth of flavor if I sauted the onions and spices a bit before throwing everything else in….DON”T DO IT! I believe it made the bottom too hot and it started to burn before the time was up. Luckily I was able to scoop out most of it without having a scorched taste. Test? My hubby LOVED it! Just one of those, don’t do what I did 😉

    • So glad the swaps worked and that dinner was delicious! Thank you Brenda!

  • Bren

    4 stars
    Use cashew cream instead of cream to make it vegan. Cashew cream is Cashews and water blended together to form thick cream.

  • Tiffany

    How would you do this on the stovetop? My son dropped and shattered my crockpot insert .

    • Oh no! This will toooootally work stove-top! There are instructions at the very bottom of this blog post, LMK if you need me to email them or anything! 🙂

      • Diana

        Where it says put it on medium-low and simmer… that confuses me. I leave it on the stove top for 25-30 minutes on that heat setting? Usually if something says to leave it to simmer, I set the heat to simmer.

        • Hi Diana! I don’t have a simmer setting so I leave it on one of the lower settings so the soup maintains a simmer. On my stove-top if I set it too low it just sits there warm and doesn’t actually do much so I wasn’t sure how to best explain it, if that makes sense? Whatever it takes to simmer the soup for you – simmer away! 🙂 It needs to be hot enough to cook the lentils basically.

  • MC-S

    5 stars
    This soup is SO delicious and satisfying. I had purchased a 7oz can of salsa verde, so I used the whole thing instead of just a half cup, but that was the only change that I made. I froze mine in individual servings to take in my lunch, and it tastes just as good.

  • LJ

    Can this recipe be doubled and still yield the same results? Sounds delish but 6 cups is about one serving for my man ?

    • LJ

      Whoops nevermind, I just read all the comments 🙂

      • LOL I could easily chug the whole Instant Pot of this stuff 😉 Next time I make it I’ll see if I can cram a double serving in — I think I’d have to leave a few ingredients out and then add them in at the end so it’s not overfull — Will update next time we make it!

        • Kristen

          5 stars
          Doubled the recipe in an 8Qt instant pot and it said burn. Emptied out half, burn again. Emptied a little more, came to pressure and then said burn. I would stick to the one serving but it was delicious and I would definitely make it again.

          • Aw man these pots are just so finicky when it comes to a boatload of soup/chili! I’m glad to know for sure that it can’t be doubled so thank you so so much for updating me Kristen! (and I’m stoked you enjoyed it once it finally decided to cook for ya! lol)

      • Cindy

        I wonder if it would work to 1 1/2 times the recipe in the IP instead of doubling it?

        • I think it still might be too close to the fill line in the 6 QT but maybe in the 8 QT it won’t be too full? Let me know if you channel your inner scientist and experiment with a larger portion Cindy! I’m still so chicken I’ll just make it twice in a row to have some for now and some for the freezer. LOL! xo

  • Christy

    5 stars
    I have never commented on a recipe blog before, but I feel obligated to this time because I am so unbelievably addicted to this recipe. I have made this for dinner probably five times a month for the past six months. So. Good. Thank you.

    • Christy I am SO honored! I’m basically happy dancing over here and so stinkin’ glad you’ve been loving the recipe – thank you! 🙂

  • Chris

    5 stars
    So good

  • JEN

    5 stars
    HI! My family absolutely loves this soup! Thanks for the recipe. If I double it in the instant pot, do you know how I would adjust the time to cook? Thanks!

    • Hey Jen! Thank you! 🙂 Hookay so I use a 6 QT and it seems pretty full every time I make the soup, what size IP do you have? It might be able to double in an 8 QT but I’m not entirely sure, eek! I know it doesn’t work if it’s filled past a certain point in the liner. Keep me posted!

  • Leslie

    This looks so good and would love to make this without a cooker of any kind. What would I need to do differently? Thank you!!

    • Thank you Leslie! At the very bottom of this post I have stove top instructions that will work great 🙂

      • Leslie

        Right in front of my face. Thank you!

        • You’re super welcome! Hope you *adore* the soup, Leslie! 🙂

  • 5 stars
    This is one of my favorite Instant Pot recipes. This soup is hearty, tasty, and full of healthy ingredients! In fact, I’ve recommended it to everyone in my life who owns an IP and they all LOVE it! Good work, Jenn!

    • Thank you Parita! So honored you’ve been sharing the recipe!

    • Beccie

      This will be the first thing I make in my new instant pot. Any recommendations on how to set the machine? How much time? Thanks so much in advance!

  • Tiffany

    5 stars
    This was amazing. I’m vegan so I added homemade cashew cheese instead of cream and it was a hit with everyone. Thank you for the recipe!!

    • Looove that it worked with cashew cheese (yum!) – Thank you Tiffany!

  • Susan O'Malley

    4 stars
    Tried this. 5 hours in the crock pot on high turned this to total mush unfortunately. Great flavors but the consistency was not good. I’m wondering if it should be 5 – 6 hours on low? I want to try again but will use the stove top method.

    • Hi Susan! I wonder if some slow cookers run hotter than others?

      Mine was still a little too al-dente at 4 hours so I did 5 hours high in my crock-pot and it was perfection. I checked a few other lentil crock-pot recipes (using dry lentils like this one) for times and a friend’s recipe is 5-6 hours high and 7-8 hours low

      Stove-top should be perfecto for next time (so glad you’ll be making it again – LOVE this soup!) and for your slow cooker I would either check it at the 3-4 hour mark when using high or do low and check around the 5-6 hour mark. I’ll add a note in the recipe about checking at the 4-hour mark for those that may have a similar slow cooker.

  • Anna

    5 stars
    This was so good! I skipped the cream and just added in 1-2 tbsp greek yogurt per bowl. Delicious! It is very thick and could probably work as a dip too! We definitely ended up scooping some up with tortilla chips. I will definitely be making this again!

    • Girrrrl YES! I think it would make a fantastic dip too, love it! Thanks Anna! 🙂 xo

  • Breana

    5 stars
    My husband made this last night and it was amazing!! So much flavor packed into every bite. We chose to skip the dairy options but it was still delicious. Adding the tortilla chips helped make it more creamy and thick. I topped it with avocado and chips. We will definitely be making this again!!

  • Mama Schick

    5 stars
    Have you ever tried doubling it? I made this in the IP and it was DELISH! Thinking of making a double batch for company, but I can’t remember how full my pot was last time… I have a 6qt Instant Pot.
    Thank You!

    • Thank you Mama Schick, so glad you loved the soup! I wish the 6 qt could handle a double batch but it would be overfilled way past the max unfortunately. Do you have a friend who also has an IP? I’d totally be calling up friends to borrow their pot so I could serve a big crowd lol 🙂

  • Scott

    5 stars
    This was really fantastic. Skipped the cream.

  • Jim M.

    5 stars
    Made this with my daughter in our new Instant Pot It was absolutely fabulous. Made exactly as indicated. Cant believe this cooked in 15 minutes! Looked and tasted like it was cooking for hours.

    I think the garnish (in our case the yogurt and plenty of cilantro) was key!

    Thnks for the great recipe!

    • Love mine with yogurt and garlic too – YUM! Thank you Jim!

  • Julie

    5 stars
    I love this recipe and have made it several times. Just wanted to say if you want it creamy but vegan to add vegan sour cream to either individual bowls or the pot. Tastes great!

    • SUCH a great idea Julie, thank you! Loooove me some vegan sour cream <3 <3

  • Shelly

    After this is made in the crock pot, does it freeze well?

  • Kat

    5 stars
    This was the first Instant Pot meal I’ve ever made and it was delish! Thanks for a great start to my new toy! Added the smoked paprika too.

    • So glad you enjoyed it Kat, thank you!

  • Rachel

    5 stars
    This is awesome!!!! Followed it exactly but just added an additional bell pepper (one red, one green). Probably the best thing I made in my instant pot so far. Thank you!

    • Huzzah!!! So happy to hear it Rachel, thank you!

  • Rachel

    Help! I only have dried regular lentils. Will that work? I have everything ready to go but the right lentils.

    • Just got home and saw this – any lentils work great! 🙂

  • Adrienne Forest

    I’m making this for the third time. Don’t change a thing. It’s AMAZING!

  • Ars

    5 stars
    I made this recipe WITHOUT changing anything , and it was delicious ! Thanks for the recipe . Perfect for winter !

    • So happy to hear it Ars, thank you!! 🙂

  • SARA G

    5 stars
    THANK YOU FOR SHARING THIS DELICIOUS RECIPE! i MADE IT VEGAN BY SKIPPING THE CHEESE AND SUBSTITUTING THE HEAVY CREAM FOR COCONUT MILK. i ALSO ADDED A SWEET POTATO AND IT WAS ONE OF THE BEST SOUPS I’VE MADE.

    • Oh gosh the sweet potato sounds amazing here, thank you Sara! Glad you’re loving it with these tasty vegan swaps! 🙂

  • Anh

    For the instant pot, is it possible to add small pieces of raw chicken breast into this at the same time as all the ingredients? And do you think that’ll make the chicken moist? Thanks

    • Yes you may absolutely use chopped raw chicken to the pot and cook as directed with a natural pressure release. The 15 minute cook time plus NPR should be adequate to cook the chicken as well as the lentils. Chicken breast may be used but in my experience, the moistest juiciest option is to use chicken thighs. I use both breast and thighs when I make chicken curry in my IP and found myself favoring the thighs majorly! Hope this helps! xo

  • Traci

    5 stars
    This was AMAZING!!! I was hopeful i would like it and i ended up loving it!! Thank you!

    • YAY!!!! So glad Traci! 🙂 Thank you!

  • Sarah Parker

    Has anybody tried this in an Instant Pot yet with the Dried beans and upping the cooking time. If so can you Post aS to how it turned out? I Am trying to stay away from canned beans but would of course prefer not to have to precook the beans before making the soup.

    • Hi Sarah! So I make a black bean dip with dried black beans and peppers/onion mixed in and what basically happens is that the delicate vegetables go beyond the point of tender and turn to complete mush (which is great since I’m blending the dip with a blender and all I need them for is flavor) so I’m not sure if this recipe can be made with dried beans. 30-40 minutes of high pressure (plus pressure build and release time) are usually needed to cook the beans and that is a lot of pressure for the veggies to endure, so they lose their shape/texture/etc in my experience.

      My favorite time saving hack for skipping cans entirely is to make my beans in the IP meal-prep style and then freeze them all measured out in 1 cup or 2 cup servings after cooking/cooling. This way when I need beans for a recipe I can use my cooked-from-dried beans that I’ve cooked up in my IP and bypass the need for cans entirely! I try to do this whenever possible bc it’s such a time + money saver in the long run! 🙂

      Hope this helps and that you get to try the recipe soon – It’s one of my favorites! xoxo

      • Sarah Parker

        Thanks for your prompt reply. I am going to try the recipe this weekend and will do the beans first! Thanks.

  • Ryan

    5 stars
    Just made this and the entire family loved it! Added some cheddar to the soup and used the full 1/2C Heavy cream. Topped with your pico de gallo, cheese, sour cream and tortilla chips. It was so tasty and one of the very best ip recipes i’ve made to date. Thanks!

    • ahhhh yay! So happy to hear it Ryan, thank you! 🙂

  • Kelly

    4 stars
    Making this for a second time. Loved the first batch, but today I’m using soythwest seasoning. Hope I like it just as much!

    • Ooh fun – let me know how the seasoning goes! Thanks Kelly! 🙂

  • Patty

    I made this last night with a side of cheese quesadillas. My husband really enjoyed it. Super tasty.

  • lindsay

    5 stars
    This. is. amazing! Tons of flavor. easy. a huge hit in my house.

  • Gina

    5 stars
    From the moment I saw this recipe, I knew I had to try it. And let me tell you, it did not disappoint! I’ve been a pescetarian for three years and find myself craving tortilla soup often, but most recipes include chicken. I was so happy to find one that I could try! I don’t have an instant pot or slow cooker, but it worked great on the stove as well.

    • Yayyy! Thank you Gina! So glad it worked great on the stove and that you enjoyed the recipe!! 🙂

  • Nathalie r

    Love this recipe, make it once a week in the instant pot. Family loves it too. Thanks for sharing.

  • karen Cassens

    In the crockpot now! I used Trader Joes frozen roasted corn, blistered my grape heirloom tomatoes on the stove and pureed for the sauce, and then charred two Poblano Peppers on the stove too for the salsa and chopped, increasing the spices, as I did not have any Salsa Verde in the house. It smells yummy and I’ll report back! Think I’ll add Masa to thicken if needed, but I’ll wait to see how it turns out! Love the recipe!

    • Sounds awesome Karen, thank you!! I can’t wait to hear what you think! 🙂

  • lucy

    5 stars
    Thanks for converting it, that sounds about right but I’m sure I could add more liquid if not. Our kitchen is being refurbished at the moment but I will do this sooooon!

    • Happy to help! Hope you adore the soup, Lucy! xoxo

  • lucy

    How many millilitres/pints is a “cup” exactly? A cup could be any size so it would be helpful if you specified the quantity. This is my ideal soup but I don’t want to make it too watery. ^.^

    • The US is kind of lame for not having jumped on the metric train ages ago, LOL! I write them up with the measurements I was raised on but feel free to convert them or shoot me a message anytime you need a conversion Lucy, xo!

      Our 1 cup liquid measurement is 240 mL which I believe is also half a pint. (I used this chart)

  • Priti

    Hi! What kind of onion do you use for the diced onion? Yellow? white? red? 🙂 THanks! Making it today!

    • Hi Priti! 🙂 Great question! I’ve used both yellow and white here and both are great! Red would probably work as well if you’re a fan of red onion (I haven’t met an onion I didn’t like, lol!)

  • 5 stars
    I actually make this without draining the beans. I think maybe when I originally read the recipe I wasn’t sure what to do so I just dumped them in. It works out well though! I just don’t add any additional salt. I also use a combo of red lentils and green lentils. Really good and easy to throw together! Thanks for the recipe!

    • Ooh Stephanie I bet it acts as a great soup thickener too – that’s awesome that it works great both ways! Thanks chica! 🙂

  • Avery Koch

    5 stars
    I’ve made this so many times..and have gotten so many coworkers hooked. To compltely skip the prep work, I throw in half a bag of Trader Joe’s frozen fire roasted bell pepper and onion mix..game changer! I also skip the cream and just add a dollop of nonfat greek yogurt on the top when it’s prepared, makes it perfectly creamy! I eat on this for dinner all week long – can’t get enough!

    • WOOT! Loving these tips/shortcuts Avery and I’m so stoked you’re enjoying the recipe! Thanks! 🙂

  • Ann Marie

    5 stars
    Hi Jenn, I made this for dinner and it was very good! The problem that I had it was more of a chili rather then
    a soup. I made it in my IP and followed the directions to a T. Any suggestions?

    Thank you!

    • Hey Ann Maire, I’m so glad you liked it! Thank you! There’s a note within the recipe that mentions the consistency since everyone is a little different in their preferences. I like my soups a bit more stew-like (kind of like a chili as you described) but this recipe 110% tastes great “souped up” with extra vegetable broth! Add as much broth as you’d like to reach the perfect soup to veggie/bean ratio and, if needed, you can amp up the spices to compenstae if you find yourself adding lots of broth. It’s super easy and you can even do this with the leftover bowls! 🙂 Hope this helps! xoxo

      • Ann Marie

        5 stars
        Hi Jenn, Thank you for the response! I apologize I didn’t see that in the original recipe. I definitely will be making this again and will add more broth and spices.

        • Hey love, no worries at all! Make that bad boy as soupy as you’d like! 🙂 It’s so flexible and great every which way that we’ve made it. Happy slurping!

  • Katie Schratz

    Hi there Jenn!
    This recipe looks awwwwesome – do you think French Green lentils would work, too? – maybe like I should parboil or like partially cook them first?

    • Hey Katie! Go for it! They’re the same size as the red lentils so I don’t think you’ll need to parboil at all 🙂

  • Jackie

    Hi there! I plan on making this tomorrow but could only find canned lentil beans at the store (no driied lentils). Is that okay?

    • Hey Jackie! Canned lentils are a-ok! Drain and rise them first and you’re good to go! Since the dried lentils suck up so much liquid and the canned will not, you can probably get away with using half the broth the recipe calls for, and then just adding any extra to taste after the recipe has finished cooking. This way you can control how soupy or chunky the soup is 🙂

      If using the Instant Pot method you can also cook the soup faster too without the dried lentils. I’d set the cook time to about 5 minutes or so.

      • Jackie

        Thank you! I’m making in the slow cooker, so I should I add the canned lentils in the beginning when I add all the other ingredients, or wait until it’s all done cooking before adding the lentils?

        • When I make this in the slow cooker I add all the other beans at the beginning so I’d say go ahead and toss ’em in with the others! 🙂

  • Allie

    5 stars
    I found this recipe through a spontaneous google search, made it exactly following the instructions in the slow cooker and oh my is it DELICIOUS. Seriously, I had it for dinner last night, lunch today, and I’m already looking forward to eating more for dinner! If you eat dairy do yourself a favor and eat it with the cream added, it is out of this world. This is a keeper! Thank you!

    • I’m totally happy dancing my face off right now – thank you Allie!!! 🙂

  • Lala

    Thanks for the recipe. I made this tonight. My only change was I added smoked paprika

    • LOVE smoked paprika! So excited you enjoyed it Lala! 🙂

  • Laura

    I’m worried about 15 min on high for he instant pot. I set it, but..almost.everything is cooked. That’s a long time. Oh, and natural release? It keeps cooking. I’m trusting you. Hope I don’t get mush.

    • Hey Laura!

      It works great for me each time I’ve made it (I also fear mushy veggies, I totally understand!) but for this particular recipe I do really love texture from the burst lentils (it makes the soup so creamy!) If you’d like to cut the power early or even quick release the valve, go for it! The soup can always be cooked longer after the fact. xoxo

  • Jasna

    5 stars
    I love the recipe, will do it up without oil and dairy. I was thinking, instead of using dairy, you could soak some raw cashews and blend them and add to the soup for some creaminess.

    • Jasna that sounds marvelous! I’ve been meaning to try a cashew cream sauce forever – YUM!

  • Hilda

    I’m using dried beans, can they be used instead of the canned? If so, how many cups?

    • Hi Hilda! So excited for you to try the recipe!

      I’ve talked to a few other people on the Instant Pot Community on Facebook and they all seem to make their beans from dried on their own in the pot, then use what they need for the soup and freeze the rest. I think if you put the dried beans in with the soup and cooked it for the 40 or so minutes the beans need the veggies might end up suuuuuper mushy, though I’ll have to test it to know for sure!

      You’ll use about 2 cups of black beans and 2 cups of pinto beans 🙂 Happy cooking!

  • Cc

    This was amazing! Did not even need cream at end.. lentils break down and make it creamy

    • So thrilled you enjoyed it! Thank’s Cc! 🙂

  • Jen

    5 stars
    Just made this! Outstanding and the kids love it. One is eating with rice the other with chips. I can tell you there is a sweet potato that will have this poured over it tomorrow for lunch. Great stuff! Thanks so much. I did some crude math and without the toppings this not only delish but a caloric dream!

    • So super happy to hear it Jen, thank you! That sweet potato tomorrow is going to be EPIC! 🙂

  • Tabatha

    Made this for lunch for hubby & I this afternoon. He’s a gotta-have-meat-with-every-meal kind of guy, but he LOVED it. Said the kick of heat at the end of each bite was perfect and requested I add it to our Football Sunday rotation (but add chicken. Darn, thought I had him lol!). I forgot all about the cream, but it was still super yummy. Thanks for this winner!,?

    • Yay!!!! So glad it was a touchdown, haha 🙂 Thank you so much Tabatha! I always do a little happy dance when a straight up carnivore gives a bowl-o-veggies a thumbs up! You could totally make some veggie only freeze-for-later bowls and I bet he’d be like oh that’s fast easy and available? DONE DEAL! Meat who? 😉 I play entirely too many tricks on my man lol

  • 5 stars
    Just made this for dinner tonight, OMG it’s so good!!!! Thanks for a keeper!

    • Aimee you just made my day! Thank you 🙂

  • Regan

    5 stars
    Recipe was very good. I tweaked it for personal spice preferences. Leftovers were frozen and were good reheated.

  • Megan

    If I wanted to cook this in my slow cooker on low, do you know how long that would take? I’m at work all day and wouldn’t want it to over cook if I left it on high for 8-9 hours. Thanks!

    • Hey Megan! On low soups typically take about 6-8 hours to cook in the slow cooker but sometimes tomato based soups taste slightly metallic when cooked that long. If you’ve made anything tomato based for 8+ hours in your slow cooker and didn’t have any issues you should be good to go! 🙂 Let me know how it goes!

  • Paula

    5 stars
    I made this recipe today as part of my lunchtime meal prep for next week and tried a portion for my dinner tonight. WOW! It’s amazing! I upped the veggie broth to 4c and doubled my spices, as I split it into 8 servings (5 for lunches, 1 for the dinner I mentioned, and 2 to freeze for my leftover week). I skipped adding the heavy cream and will add Greek yogurt to each portion after warming it up. This will definitely be going into my regular rotation! Thanks for the great Gluten Free (I’m a Celiac) recipe!

  • Hilda

    Hi there, can’t wait to try this receipe, it looks delicious. Just wondering please – at what point does the Salsa Verde go in, in the Stove Top version? Thanks!

    • Oh gosh I must have spaced out, thank you Hilda! I’m updating the stove top version to include the step — it goes in with the broth and tomato sauce 🙂 xoxo

  • Breanne

    How many calories and what is the serving size?

    • Hi Breanne! Depending on swaps and substitutions, the recipe yields 6 one cup servings at approx. 352 calories per serving, before toppings.

  • CatUnderwood

    5 stars
    It was absolutely delicious and very filling. Thank you.

    • Thank you Cat! I’m so stoked you enjoyed it! 🙂

  • M

    Just made this with my own slight adjustments and it’s amazing. Do you have an estimated calorie count/nutritional info? Thank you!

    • Hey M! I don’t currently have a recipe widget that I trust to calculate something so super technical (I’d hate for it to be wrong and mislead anyone!) so I don’t have the nutrition facts. My old widget said the soup was 50 calories per serving which was clearly off, given the protein density of the lentils.

      I’d venture to guess it’s fairly low calorie + high protein thanks to all the lentils and veggies. The toppings and substitutions/adjustments made would also play a big part in your final calculation.

  • 5 stars
    I have made this and it is amazing! Instead of cream I subbed masa harina and just threw it into the mix. So great, thanks for the recipe.

  • Kara

    5 stars
    I made this for dinner last night and it was so amazing, I can’t say enough about it. I’m trying to phase out meat from my diet and you definitely don’t miss it in this recipe and it really keeps you full. I cooked this on the stove top and I subbed fresh garlic for the garlic powder and used 1 tbsp of chilli powder. I actually ended up forgetting to add the heavy cream but it wasn’t even missed. This is 100% a keeper.

    • So over the moon to hear it Kara, thank you! 🙂

  • Kim

    5 stars
    We made this last night and decided it’s a keeper! Thanks for this great recipe. I had lunch for the next day as well as extra in the freezer for a lazy day.

    • Ahhhh yay! Thank you Kim!! 🙂 Thank freezer bowl for sure will come in handy!

  • Miller

    5 stars
    Oh my goodness what a wonderful soup!! Made this on Cinco de Mayo and it was so hearty and flavorful we did not even miss the chicken. We are trying to eat less meat…
    Unfortunately we are having a pot luck at work tomorrow and I offered to bring this soup…but that was before I tasted it. Now I want to be greedy and save it all for us!! I think I will be making this again very soon.

    • Thank you! Thank you! So super thrilled you loved the soup and I hope it’s a total hit at the potluck! 🙂 It freezes really well too if you ever want to squirrel a few bowls away for later too, love it so!

  • 5 stars
    I made this today and it is super delicious! Thanks for the simple healthy recipe.

  • Sasha

    I made this soup in the slow cooker today. I used half and half at the end. I love this soup. It’s even better with blue corn tortilla chips crushed in it.

    • Digging the addition of crushed blue corn chips (YUM!!) and so glad you loved the soup, Sasha! 🙂

  • Ganrielle

    I am sneakily (is that even a word?) trying to convert my family to eating vegetarian. Currently I am in phase one of my covert operation which includes cutting out meat for breakfast and lunch. So far if my husband has notificed he hasn’t spoken up about it. I made this in my instant pot for our lunch this week and WOW it is so tasty! Not to mention easy as it get! I used brown lentils because that’s all my grocery store had, also omitted the cream and it the soup was still flavor packed. Thanks for sharing!

    • Love it!! Your sneaky plan sounds like a great veggie-filled adventure and I’m so thrilled you enjoyed the soup! 🙂

  • Beth

    5 stars
    Made this tonight in my Instant Pot – it came out PERFECTLY! It was so delicious and my boyfriend loved it too. Saving this to make on a regular basis!!

    • So super thrilled to hear it Beth, thank you! 🙂

  • Carol

    Do I drain the canned black beans, corn, and pinto beans?

    • Yes ma’am! I’ll update the recipe with more details in case anyone else has this question 🙂 Thanks Carol + I hope you adore the soup!

  • Lisa

    5 stars
    This soup was absolutely fabulous! I didn’t even need to add the cream, and I tried it with and without cheese, and with cilantro and a little sliced avocado. It was just the perfect amount of spicy, and so hearty with the lentils and kidney beans. Thanks so much for posting this delicious recipe with all the helpful suggestions!

    • Thank you Lisa! So so happy to hear it! 🙂

  • 5 stars
    I just made this in my IP and had to let you know how very much I like this recipe. I didn’t have any heavy cream or cream cheese, so I left it out. It’s a great recipe and I know that I’ll make this time and again.

    • So happy to hear it Paula! Thank you!! 🙂

  • Anni

    Just made this on Sunday for quick, re-heatable weeknight dinners and it turned out great! Not only is it delicious, it only took 15 minutes of prep and then my slow cooker did the rest. I used slightly more chicken broth than the recipe called for, 4oz of cream cheese in place of the heavy cream, and a full 15oz can of corn rather than one cup, it came out like a thick Mexican chili. 🙂 Awesome recipe!!

    • Thank you Anni! So happy you enjoyed it! I LOVE when it comes out all thick and chili-like and the cream cheese in place of the cream? SWOON! Thanks for popping back over to let me know how it went – totally makes my day!

  • Shannon

    5 stars
    Made this tonight. So good! I followed the recipe exactly. At the end, I added the heavy cream, a cup of shredded sharp cheddar and 2 bbq chicken breasts chopped into pieces. Will definitely make again

    • Thanks Shannon, so stoked you enjoyed it! The bbq chicken and cheese sound like a delicious topper! 🙂

  • Rebecca

    I don’t see how much corn to use as it’s not listed on the ingredient list. I’m headed to the store now to pick up these ingredients so I can make this for dinner. Looks yummy.

    • Oh gosh Rebecca my brain must be broken! You’ll use a cup of corn for this one or can use up to 2 cups if you’d like more! 🙂 Fixing it right now (thanks for letting me know!) and I’m so excited for you to try the soup! xoxo

  • Tara

    Looks delicious! What kind of lentils do you use in this one? I’m a lentil newbie 🙂

    • Thanks Tara! I’ve been using red lentils and LOVE them! Bob’s Red Mill has them at my local grocery store and here on amazon too: Red Lentils I updated the post with the specifics too – great question!

  • because saying you all is totally archaic? It’s like saying “let us go to dinner” instead of “let’s go to dinner.” Y’all just makes more sense, imho.

    you know what else makes sense? This amazing tortilla soup. It looks so good and so easy. YUM.

    • Girl, I’m with you – it makes all the sense to say it, yet it feels SO foreign on my tongue. It’s almost like I feel like I’m running around speaking with a British accent and everyone’s looking at me like, no ma’am! If that makes sense? #ineedcoffee Hope you get a chance to try the soup Annie! xo

      • Beth

        Can you tell me how many servings this recipe makes? I’m planning on making it for my party.

        • Hey Beth! Super excited for you to try it! The recipe yields approx. 6 one cup servings. 🙂

          • Beth

            5 stars
            Thanks! I made it and it was a huge hit! Thanks!

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