Instant Pot Lentil Soup Is Fragrant, Filling, and Oh-So Easy

updated Jan 15, 2021
Instant Pot Lentil Soup

Packed with vegetables and a warm, lightly spiced broth, lentil soup is one of the easiest meals you can make in your Instant Pot.

Serves6 to 8

Prep5 minutes

Cook35 minutes

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Credit: Yossy Arefi

Over a decade ago, at a New York City deli, I had my first taste of good lentil soup. The fragrant, slightly smoky broth was filled with tender (not mushy!) lentils, and strewn with ribbons of bright spinach and thick-cut carrots and celery. Just the thought of that soup warms me with comfort, and I never settle for anything less when I make my own version at home.

Enter: my all-time favorite homemade lentil soup, which, thanks to the Instant Pot, also happens to be the easiest. It’s simply a matter of chopping a few vegetables, opening a few cans, dumping everything into the pot, stirring it together, and tightening the lid. Really, that’s it. You don’t have to sauté anything or linger over the stove, and yet the results would make you think otherwise. When the cook time is up and you open the lid, you’re gifted with a steaming, perfectly spiced soup with tender lentils and just the right amount of vegetables. It’s the absolute best thing to warm up with this week.

Credit: Yossy Arefi

The Best Lentils for Instant Pot Lentil Soup

Choosing the right variety of lentils is crucial here, because not all lentils produce the same result. French or regular green lentils are the best choice for this soup because they hold their shape well after cooking. Avoid red or brown lentils, which will fall apart or become mushy.

This recipe makes a big batch of soup, so consider freezing leftovers in single portions for easy lunches in the chilly winter weeks to come.

More Lentil Soup Recipes We Love

Instant Pot Lentil Soup

Packed with vegetables and a warm, lightly spiced broth, lentil soup is one of the easiest meals you can make in your Instant Pot.

Prep time 5 minutes

Cook time 35 minutes

Serves 6 to 8

Nutritional Info


  • 1

    medium yellow onion

  • 3

    medium celery stalks

  • 3

    medium carrots

  • 3 cloves


  • 2 cups

    French or green lentils

  • 1 teaspoon

    ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon

    ground coriander

  • 1 teaspoon


  • 1 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon

    freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 (32-ounce) boxes

    low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth

  • 1 (15-ounce) can

    fire-roasted diced tomatoes

  • 5 ounces

    baby spinach (about 5 packed cups)


  1. Prepare the following, placing them all in a 6-quart or larger Instant Pot or electric pressure cooker: Dice 1 medium yellow onion and 3 medium celery stalks, peel and cut 3 medium carrots into 1/2-inch thick rounds, and mince 3 garlic cloves.

  2. Add 2 cups lentils, 1 teaspoon ground cumin, 1 teaspoon ground coriander, 1 teaspoon paprika, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, 2 boxes vegetable or chicken broth, and 1 can fire-roasted diced tomatoes and their juices. Stir to combine.

  3. Lock the lid on and make sure the pressure valve is closed. Set to cook under HIGH pressure for 15 minutes. It will take about 20 minutes to come up to pressure.

  4. When the cook time is up, quick release the pressure. Add 5 ounces baby spinach and gently stir to combine.

Recipe Notes

Storage: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 1 week or freeze for up to 3 months.