Photo: Johnny Autry; Styling: Cindy Barr
Hands-on Time
28 Mins
Total Time
28 Mins
Serves 4

The hearty crunch of pumpkin seed adds wonderful contrast to this rich, creamy soup.

How to Make It

Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion and garlic to pan; sauté 4 minutes. Stir in 3 cups broth, lentils, and next 4 ingredients (through red pepper); bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes or until lentils are tender. Place the lentil mixture in a blender. Remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure blender lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid (to avoid splatters). Blend until smooth. Return lentil mixture to pan over medium heat. Add remaining 1/2 cup broth, 1 cup water, and pumpkin to pan; cook 3 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Stir in ginger and lemon juice. Ladle 1 1/2 cups soup into each of 4 bowls; top each serving with about 2 teaspoons yogurt, 1 tablespoon pumpkinseeds, and 1 tablespoon cilantro.

Ratings & Reviews

Great Flavors!

December 10, 2016
I really enjoyed the mixture of red lentils and pumpkin.  I used just 1 tsp. oil and doubled the cumin and red pepper.  Also added 1/2 tsp. each of smoked paprika, ground coriander, and turmeric.

Delicious - worth a try for those who love pumpkin

November 07, 2015
The pumpkin flavor is not as prominent as the lentil and the cumin, but it's a thoroughly delicious soup, and I love blended soups. 

Loving the pumpkin

October 26, 2015
I have a Turkish Red Lentil Stew that has similar elements to this recipe so I knew I had to try this one. Agree with other reviews - must amp up the spices. I added coriander and fenugreek to the mix and I also added Mezzetta Hot Chili Peppers (hard to find but totally worth the flavor - start with Sendicks). If you use fresh pumpkin or squash I recommend you bake it first in the oven. Well and any excuse to pull out my Emersion blender is fine by me.


October 24, 2015
I made it exactly as written, and it's a decent soup, but a little bit bland. Mostly, it tastes like lentils and cumin, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but it could use more spices as other reviewers have noted. It's also a little on the thin side.

bjane1's Review

October 25, 2013
While hubbie loved this soup, I thought it needed more spice and heat. Wish I would have read the reviews first!

Lusine's Review

March 31, 2013
I added a pinch of paprika and turmeric and a moroccan blend spice mix which had cayenne. Turned out tasty, but a bit thin. Will try to double amount of lentils next time and maybe more pumpkin for color.

carolfitz's Review

February 08, 2013
Made this to get us through the Feb blizzard! Tweaked a bit to suit our tastes, but basically followed recipe. Added 1tsp garam masala, used more pumpkin & subbed broth for the water. Gorgeous in the bowl, very nice soup.

PKcookin's Review

January 27, 2013
It's got good flavor. It just seems like baby food. It's not bad, just not what I like.

nepgirl16's Review

December 21, 2012
Used an entire can of pumpkin and upped the spices as suggested by others. Also added in some tumeric and nutmeg. I thought it had a nice, smoky Mediterranean flavor. Really good with greek yogurt mixed in.

detailaddict's Review

December 07, 2012
I agree that this would have been a little bland without extra spices. After reading the other reviews I increased them by half and waited until the end to add the garlic. Even so, I was reluctant to dilute the flavor by adding the water, but the consistency would have been too thick without it. I too had to use mostly brown lentils, so my result didn't look like the picture. And having misread the title I was hoping for a more "pumpkin-forward" soup. I might make this again, but maybe with more pumpkin - or leaving it out altogether and keeping the lentils intact, as they were tasty enough by themselves.