Hearty Lentil Stew

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Since I was a little, this lentil soup has been a staple in our house. I remember having it for breakfast during the winter months. Here, my simple to make, updated version is given layers of flavors from turmeric, red pepper flakes, onions, shredded potatoes and Persian spices. After cooking for an hour, the lentils turn soft and onions and shredded potatoes melt away, making a stew-like soup packed with nutritious ingredients and an irresistible aroma.


2 cups of green lentils, rinsed & picked over
1 cup of red lentils, rinsed
1 medium white onion, diced
2 medium Yukon gold potatoes, peeled & grated
1 tsp dried turmeric
2 Tablespoons Bensons Table Tasty
1 tsp dried red pepper flakes (or more to taste)
8 cups of water
3 Tablespoon of tomato paste


1-In a 5qt. pot, dry sauté the onions with turmeric until the onions are caramelized. Add water a little at a time to the pot should you need to.
2-Once the onions have caramelized, add the green lentils, red lentils, grated Yukon Gold potatoes, red pepper flakes, and water.
3-Bring to a rapid boil, then turn down the heat to low.
4-Cook on low for about an hour, until all the water has been absorbed and its a thick consistency.
5-At this point, add the tomato paste and stir until the the tomato paste has been well absorbed.

Please leave your comments questions here and Shayda will reply.

12 thoughts on “Hearty Lentil Stew”

  1. Thank you Shayda! That is a lovely recipe! I love stews and soups; they feel me up and are truly comfort food.

  2. Have you tried this recipe in the instant
    Pot? I’ve made lentil stew in the instant pot and I have to try your recipe… looks

  3. Looks good! Shayda, I’m unable to get Benson’s Table Tasty in my country, would you please share the original spices your grandmother used (in proportion to the recipe). Is salt the only flavouring you replaced in this recipe?

    1. Hi Charmir,
      My grandmother used salt and pepper, to taste. But when I started making it, I like foods with a little kick, so I added the red pepper flakes.

  4. Shayda, I am in Australia and we cannot get the Bensons Table Tasty. Would another spice blend like Ras-el-Hanout or an Advieh persian spice mix work in this recipe. Thanks in advance

    1. Hi Shaun,

      Not sure about adding Advieh to this dish as I usually use it for rice dishes. As for the other spice you mentioned, I don’t know what that is or what’s in it. Any salt free seasoning will work.

  5. Linda Goldstein

    How would you change Hearty Lentil Stew recipe to convert it into an instant pot recipe?
    Thank you.

    1. Honestly I wouldn’t make it in instant pot as the best part of this dish is the slow cooking of it. Somethings just taste better when cooked slowly on the stove top.

  6. Shayda, on youtube you suggested adding angelica spice. How much do I add? Also, is angelica similar to za’atar? I would really love to hear you discuss all your favorite Middle Eastern spices and how you use them, best place to purchase, etc. Thank you.

    1. Hi Beth,
      I’m not sure about the spice za’atar, so I cannot say that it would be a good substitute. The only way to know is for you to try it. As for adding the Angelica powder, honestly it’s personal preference. I would start out with 2 teaspoon for the whole pot and if you feel you would like to add more, then you can.

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