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Peanut Curry Lentil Soup

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This peanut curry lentil soup recipe is full of feel-good ingredients and features the coziest blend of sweet, savory, spicy flavors.

September soup season has finally returned and I, for one, am here for it. ♡

Unsurprisingly, I already have a long (ok, very long!) list of soup recipes to share with you this season, and it was hard to decide where to begin. But today I thought I’d kick things off with this Thai-inspired peanut curry lentil soup that we have been absolutely loving lately. It’s bursting with seasonal feel-good ingredients, including end-of-summer sweet potatoes, bell peppers and kale, plus a hearty serving of protein-packed lentils. Then the broth — which I could happily drink from a mug — features the classic blend of Thai coconut curry flavors, balanced out with a bit of sweetness from natural peanut butter and a bright citrusy tang of lime.

It’s one of those recipes that magically seems to hit every flavor note, and tastes wonderfully hearty and rich without being too heavy. It comes together easily with minimal chopping time and a simple simmer on the stovetop. It’s naturally gluten-free and vegan, although you’re welcome to add in an extra protein (such as chicken, beef or tofu) if you’d like. And leftovers arguably taste even better the next day, so be sure and tupper-up any extras for lunch tomorrow.

Let’s make some soup, friends!

Peanut Curry Lentil Soup Ingredients

Here are a few brief notes about the ingredients you will need to make this peanut curry lentil soup recipe:

  • Lentils: We prefer using brown or green lentils in this soup, which hold their shape and have a satisfyingly firm texture once cooked. But feel totally free to sub in whatever variety of lentils you love best — just note that cooking times for different lentils may vary.
  • Veggies: Onion and garlic will serve as our base aromatics for the soup. Then we’ll add in some diced sweet potatoes and bell peppers, whose sweetness contrast nicely with the savory and spicy flavors in the red curry.
  • Greens: We typically add in lots of chopped fresh kale to this soup just before serving, but fresh spinach or chopped collard greens would work well here too.
  • Veggie broth: To keep this soup vegetarian, we recommend using any basic veggie broth as the base for the soup.
  • Thai red curry paste: This bold aromatic paste is the primary seasoning for the soup and brings classic Thai red curry flavor and complexity to the broth. If you are new to cooking with Thai curry pastes, please note that different brands can vary when it comes to spiciness. So if you are sensitive to heat, we recommend starting with a smaller amount than the recipe calls for, and then you can always add more to taste.
  • Coconut milk: We recommend full-fat coconut milk here for maximum creaminess, but you’re welcome to use low-fat coconut milk if you prefer a lighter soup.
  • Peanut butter: The sweet and nutty flavor of creamy natural peanut butter is always such a delightful addition to Thai red curries! Feel free to add more or less to taste.
  • Lime juice: We will use lots of freshly-squeezed lime juice to brighten up the broth and add some zesty, citrusy freshness.
  • Toppings: We recommend a generous sprinkling of chopped fresh cilantro and finely-chopped peanuts to top each bowl of soup.

Recipe Variations

Here are a few extra variations that you’re welcome to try with this peanut curry soup recipe:

  • Add a protein: Add chicken, steak, sausage, shrimp or tofu to the soup if you would like an extra protein.
  • Use a different nut/seed butter: Use almond butter or sunflower seed butter in place of the peanut butter.
  • Use different veggies: Add in different veggies, such as broccolini, butternut squash, carrots, cauliflower, eggplant, mushrooms, Yukon Gold potatoes or zucchini.
  • Use Thai green curry paste: Use your desired amount of Thai green curry paste in place of red curry paste.
  • Use cream: If you aren’t a fan of coconut milk, substitute an extra 1 cup of veggie broth + 1 cup of half and half (or heavy cream) in its place.

More Lentil Soups To Love!

Looking for more lentil soup recipes to try? Here are a few of our favorites:

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Peanut Curry Lentil Soup

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.6 from 8 reviews
  • Author: Ali


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced 
  • 5 to 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 1/4 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and diced into ¾-inch cubes
  • 3/4 cup brown lentils
  • 2 tablespoons Thai red curry paste
  • 1 (15-ounce) can full-fat coconut milk
  • 2 cups chopped fresh kale
  • 2 tablespoons natural creamy peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice (approximately 1 lime)
  • fine sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper
  • toppings: chopped fresh cilantro and finely-chopped peanuts


  1. Sauté the veggies. Heat oil in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and bell pepper and sauté for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and sauté for 1-2 minutes, stirring frequently, until fragrant.
  2. Simmer. Add the vegetable broth, sweet potatoes, lentils, curry paste and stir to combine. Continue cooking until the soup reaches a simmer. Then reduce heat to medium-low (or whatever temperature is needed to maintain a low simmer), cover, and cook for about 20 to 25 minutes or until both the lentils and sweet potatoes are tender.
  3. Finish. Stir in the coconut milk, kale, peanut butter and lime juice until completely combined. Taste and season the soup with salt and pepper, if needed. Feel free to also add in more curry paste or peanut butter to taste.
  4. Serve. Serve warm, garnished with cilantro and chopped peanuts, and enjoy!

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13 comments on “Peanut Curry Lentil Soup”

  1. This soup looks amazing. Would be able to provide instant pot instructions?

  2. This is simmering on stove now. So Delicious! Made exactly as written. Love your recipes!

  3. This is so good. I added heaping tablespoons of red curry and it was still subtle. I somehow wouldn’t even say this was Thai, but it was awesome. I will make it over and over thru the winter. I make half of the meals vegan for part of the family so I love that I can count on your recipes to be good for us all. I will double the lentils (thank you Trader Joe’s for easy cooked ones) next time bc they don’t overpower this and can add a lot of protein. I am grateful for all of your tasty recipes!

  4. I surprisingly had everything on hand to make this last night and it was excellent! We really loved the addition of the peanut butter.

  5. Absolutely a keeper!

  6. I would love to know how many servings this recipe is.

  7. Hi Ali:
    I was so drawn to the first pic on your blog, I just had to make it. Sure wasn’t disappointed. Made exactly as written, but next time will try with spinach. A little squeeze of lime in the bowl is the finishing touch! I rate my recipe printouts, and gave 5+ stars. Thank you.

  8. This one wasn’t really a hit with us, which was a surprise. The ingredients are great. I might try it again with a mix of sweet potatoes and regular potatoes for some more variety. I might also reduce the curry paste. Thanks for sharing your recipes! Much appreciated!

  9. If you have made this soup, how much does it make? I don’t see servings mentioned.

  10. This soup is delicious! Can’t wait to make again.

  11. This recipe was so easy to make and is absolutely delicious. The textures and layers of flavour make this soup a wonderful addition to your meal time plans.
    I will definitely be making this recipe again.

  12. This was creamy and warming. I ended up blending half of the soup because my kiddos aren’t huge on chunks. I also added some chopped chicken. I feel like I wanted more spice….I added some cayenne and cumin and smoked paprika and plenty of lime juice. It still seemed to be missing something that would send it over the top. But I love all the veggies (I used 1/2 sweet potato and 1/2 butternut squash). Thanks!