- 1 large sweet onion, chopped
- 4 large cloves garlic, minced
- olive oil
- 1 large green bell peppers, diced
- 4 large carrots, sliced
- 1 cup celery, chopped
- 2 (8-oz.) packages baby bella mushrooms, sliced
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar (or white vinegar)
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 1/2 teaspoons fennel seeds
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 1/3 cup dry lentils
- 1 1/2 cups no-chicken chicken stock
- 2 (15-oz.) cans petite-diced tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 (5-oz) bag baby spinach
- 1 1/2 tbsp grated lemon zest (important)
Heat a large soup pot, then add some olive oil (about 2 teaspoons) and onion. Sauté 5 minutes, until onions begin to brown.
Add the garlic, peppers, carrots, and celery, and cook 5 more minutes.
Then add everything else up to the cumin, and cook 15 minutes over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
Now add all but the spinach and lemon zest. Cover and cook on low until the lentils are soft and have absorbed most of the liquid– it takes about an hour on the stovetop.
Add spinach and lemon at the very end, and cook 2-3 minutes until the spinach wilts.