Spicy Chorizo Red Lentil Soup with Kale

February 13, 2013 • Alaska from Scratch, Beef & Pork, Main Dishes, Recipes, Seasons, Soups, Winter

Weather: 25 degrees, everything is white
What I’m listening to: Les Miserables Soundtrack

The snow is flying around outside the windows and inside I’m craving something hot, substantial, and spicy.  I have a thing for spicy food, but I’ve gotten into the trap of making fewer spicy dishes at home for the kids’ sake. I know some of you have kids who will eat everything you eat, including the hot stuff. Those are just not my kids. I remember that my affinity for all things hot and spicy grew over time, as I got older, and I hope that my children will be the same. I imagine that someday they come to love spicy food as much as we do. In the meantime, sometimes it’s worth it to make a spicy dish just for the spice-lovers in the house and make something simple like a turkey sandwich for the non-spice-lovers, so we can occasionally get our heat on, so to speak.


This soup soothed my heat-deprived soul. It was everything I was craving – thick, meaty, nutritious and jam-packed full of hot, spicy flavor. Since there were just two of us eating it, we had leftovers for a couple of days. You know something is good when you crave the leftovers for lunch the next day. And the next. I always drank a cup of milk with my bowl of soup, to balance the heat.

Spicy Chorizo Red Lentil Soup with Kale

Yields: 6 servings

  • 1 pound ground chorizo (Mexican style)
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
  • 2 cups kale, chopped
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes in juice
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • salt to taste

Place a large pot or dutch oven over medium-high heat. Brown the chorizo. Add the onions, garlic, celery, and kale to the pot and sauté with the chorizo until the vegetables start to become tender, about 5 minutes, stirring often. Add the lentils, tomatoes, and chicken broth and bring it all to a simmer. Turn the heat down to low, cover the soup, and simmer for about 20 minutes or until the lentils are soft, stirring often so that the soup doesn't stick as it thickens. When the lentils are soft and the soup has thickened, taste for seasoning. Add salt as needed and serve. Serve with crusty bread.