Recipe: Lentil Ham Soup with Vegetables

Dinner Recipes, Pork + Beef Recipes, Soups + Stew Recipes

By: Chris Freytag, CPT

This lentil ham soup checks all the boxes. It’s cozy, super healthy and tasty, and a breeze to make. Loaded with vegetables, this makes such a good meal for when you’re feeling under the weather or when your body needs some extra nutrition.

Lentils have many health benefits and don’t get enough love which is why we love adding them to this ham and vegetable soup! These tasty legumes are high in protein, fiber, and have tons of vitamins! This soup is thick and rich and can easily be made vegetarian by omitting the ham.

We love to make this lentil soup with leftover ham. But a ham steak is easily purchasable, inexpensive and works very well in this soup too. The leeks, kale, and fresh thyme work really well together and create a very rich flavor. It’s a great way to sneak in extra veggies too. I will often use dried spices vs. fresh out of convenience, but the fresh thyme in this recipe really makes a difference!


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    How To Cook Lentils

    For this ham and vegetable soup, cooking the lentils couldn’t be simpler. No need to pre-cook! You’ll start by sauteing vegetables, then bringing the vegetable broth to a boil and simmering the lentils in with the other ingredients for 40 minutes.

    We love to use red lentils for this recipe, but have also used green lentils. Whatever you have on hand works great!

    How To Make Lentil Soup with Ham in the Instant Pot

    Love your instant pot? So do we! Here’s how to make this lentil ham soup in the instant pot:

    1. Add oil and saute vegetables for a few minutes using the saute function on your pressure cooker.
    2. Add tomato paste, coating the vegetables and then slowly add vegetable broth bringing to a simmer.
    3. Add in all other ingredients, change your pressure to manual and set for 30 minutes.
    4. Allow pressure to release naturally 10 minutes.
    5. Add kale, if using, and stir in until wilted 5 minutes.
    A bowl of lentil ham soup with chopped greens on top

    Other Healthy Soup Recipes

    Total Time: 60 minutes

    Yield: 8 serving(s)


    • 3 tablespoons olive oil
    • 2 yellow onions, diced
    • 2 leeks, washed and sliced
    • 3 cloves garlic, minced
    • 4 stalks celery, diced
    • 4 carrots, sliced
    • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
    • 8 cups vegetable broth
    • 1 1/4 cups split red lentil, rinsed (or other lentils such as green/yellow)
    • 2 bay leaves
    • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme (fresh really is best)
    • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
    • 2 cups chopped ham (leftovers are great or use a ham steak)
    • 2 cups kale, washed and chopped (optional)


    1. Add the olive oil to a large stock pot and cook the onions, garlic, leeks, celery, and carrots about 5 minutes or until veggies are partially cooked but not soft.
    2. Add in chicken broth, tomato paste and bring to a boil.
    3. Add in lentils, ham, bay leaves, fresh thyme, crushed red pepper, salt, black pepper and stir.
    4. Cover and let simmer about 40-45 minutes until lentils are cooked.
    5. During the last 5 minutes of cooking, add kale if using and stir in until wilted from the hot soup.

    Nutrition Information Per Serving

    Serving Size: 6

    Calories: 303

    Protein: 21 gram(s)

    Fat: 8 gram(s)

    Carbohydrates: 37 gram(s)

    Fiber: 15 gram(s)

    From the kitchen of:

    Rate this Recipe

    1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 4.40 out of 5)

    1 Comment

    on Reply

    This is a 5star recipe! Never cooked with lentils or leeks but will from now on. Did add ham but this would be a great vegetarian soup. Husband really liked it too.

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