Ridiculously Easy Lentil and Vegetable Stew

by on October 28, 2010
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Ridiculously Easy Lentil and Vegetable Stew

I’d hoped to be sharing a Halloween recipe with you, but life has been getting in the way of cooking lately.  The other night I went into the kitchen to make a last-minute dinner of my Dirty Little Secret Soup but wound up making so many changes that it took on an entirely new character.  I had about 2/3 of a cup of leftover pumpkin puree that I wanted to use up, so I changed the other ingredients and seasonings to complement it.  And do you know what happens when you add pumpkin and quinoa to soup?  It thickens so much that it’s not soup anymore but stew!

The recipe is ridiculously easy because I used frozen vegetables and canned lentils, but if you want to do it the slow way, chop your own veg and cook your own lentils.  I’m sure fresh ingredients will make this flavorful and deeply satisfying stew even more delicious.

P.S.  I may still get around to creating a Halloween dish, but until then, check the bottom of this post for links to vegan Halloween treats.

Ridiculously Easy Lentil and Vegetable Stew

Ridiculously Easy Lentil and Vegetable Stew

(printer-friendly version)


  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 12-ounce packages frozen vegetables* (or 2 pounds fresh vegetables cut in bit-sized pieces)
  • 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes, preferably fire-roasted
  • 1 15-ounce can cooked lentils (or 1 1/2 cups cooked lentils and cooking liquid)
  • 4 cups vegetable broth or “no-chicken” broth
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon Mexican oregano (or regular oregano)
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/3 cup quinoa, rinsed very well
  • 2/3 cup pumpkin (canned or cooked and water pressed out)
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


  1. Cook the onion in a large, non-stick Dutch oven until it begins to brown. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for another minute. Add next 7 ingredients and cook until vegetables thaw and broth begins to boil. Add quinoa and cook on medium heat until it is tender, about 15 minutes. Add pumpkin and salt and pepper to taste and cook for 5 more minutes, adding a little water if it seems too thick. Serve hot, garnished with parsley, if desired.


*I used an Italian blend containing carrots, zucchini, cauliflower, lima beans, red bell peppers, and Italian green beans, but any blend of chunky-cut vegetables will do.

Preparation time: 5 minute(s) | Cooking time: 25 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 6

Nutrition Facts

Nutrition (per serving): 181 calories, 8 calories from fat, <1g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 535.7mg sodium, 311.7mg potassium, 33.4g carbohydrates, 8.5g fiber, 8.7g sugar, 9.7g protein, 2.9 points.

For a Spooktacular Vegan Halloween:

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{ 129 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jessica @vegbooks October 28, 2010 at 9:35 am

Yum! I can’t wait to try this — the addition of pumpkin is inspired!


2 Helen October 28, 2010 at 9:39 am

This looks so yummy! Definitely on next week’s menu!


3 Diane Barnett October 28, 2010 at 9:45 am

Is there a difference between smoked paprika and smoked “hot” paprika? I have never seen the latter. Thanks


4 SusanV October 28, 2010 at 10:05 am

Diane, it’s just a spicier version of smoked paprika. If you have the regular kind, you can use it and add a pinch of cayenne pepper if you want a touch of spice. Chipotle chile pepper would also make a good substitute.


5 JL Goes Vegan October 28, 2010 at 9:53 am

Ridiculous and Easy….two of my favorite words!!! :) This looks delicious!


6 Samantha October 28, 2010 at 10:00 am

Mmmm… I love stew! So perfect for this time of year, too.

Thanks for linking to my Witches Fingers! I hope you do post a Halloween recipe – I love seeing the creativity of food bloggers at this time of year. :)


7 Sayward October 28, 2010 at 10:42 am

Hey Susan! Love your blog as always, and LOVE lentil soup. I am so happy it’s soup season again. =)

I look forward to hearing you speak at VCon – I’ll be speaking there as well. It’s going to be such an amazing event!


8 DeeDee October 28, 2010 at 11:35 am

Susan`-> My family loves lentil and vegetable stew, especially during snowstorms.
Thank you for your recipe. We always knew your blog was and is on the very short list of best of the best: elegant, generous, creative…. other vegan aficianodos’ fill in the blanks.


9 Kimberly October 28, 2010 at 1:37 pm

This sounds great, I’ll definitely try this recipe. I always love super easy/quick recipes since some days after work chopping a slew of veggies just is NOT what I feel like doing. I’ve tried many of your recipes in the past and loved them all, thanks!


10 Marian October 28, 2010 at 1:46 pm

This was so easy-peasy AND delicious! it’s got a nice “bite” to it – maybe from the combination of the fire-roasted canned tomatoes & the cumin. SO YUMBO! thank you, Susan!!


11 Gloria Kersh October 28, 2010 at 2:45 pm

Congrats on the win!!! I really enjoy your blog and your recipes. And I’m def going to try this with fresh veggies.


12 Jeanette October 28, 2010 at 2:59 pm

Congratulations on winning the VegNews Magazine blog award. I really enjoy your blog, so I’m thrilled for you. This recipe sounds really hearty and warm. It would probably be good with barley too. I’ll have to make this for my friends with cancer. It’s really nutrient dense.


13 DJ Karma (VegSpinz) October 28, 2010 at 3:21 pm

I love making anything that is ridiculously easy, especially when it looks so tasty! Also, thank you for including me in your Halloween round-up! :)


14 Mary (What's Cookin' with Mary) October 28, 2010 at 5:56 pm

I love when the title can be no other than ‘ridiculously easy… (fill in the blank)’. Just makes the food nerd in me smile :)

Lentils are definitely one of my most favorite foods. Especially as we come into fall. I made my first successful Indian dal dish the other day (click over if you’d like to see pictures) with wonderful results and this recipe looks like it would fit the bill too! Thanks for this great recipe Susan.

I’m sure you’ve answered this before, but what is the difference between Mexican and regular oregano ?

I feel like this would be realllly good in the slow cooker too. Love that!! Will definitely have to try this one out. – mary


15 Amber Shea @Almost Vegan October 28, 2010 at 7:20 pm

The stew looks GREAT, a BIG congrats on winning in VegNews, and maybe-just-maybe the stars will align and I’ll make it to Vida Vegan!


16 thegreatmimi October 29, 2010 at 3:08 am

Susan, you have to get rid of the drop down ads. I use a netbook and it is impossible to read the blog with a drop down every 2 minutes. Love your recipes.


17 SusanV October 29, 2010 at 7:40 am

Sorry about that! They’re only supposed to appear once per visitor. Can you write me and let me know which ad or ads it is? kitchen AT fatfreevegan DOT com.


18 Tracy October 29, 2010 at 10:53 am

Easy indeed! Thanks for the share,it would be ridiculous not to try this=)


19 Robin Robertson October 29, 2010 at 12:06 pm

Hey Susan,
Congrats on winning the VegNews award! And thanks for including a link to my Halloween menu — I call it a “Halloween Boo-fet”!


20 Joanne October 29, 2010 at 2:27 pm

Congratulations on the award. That’s terrific and you so deserve it.

I love all these recipes you post. They make my mouth water every time.

Not sure if interested, you or your readers, but I have a terrific 5 day Yoga course giveaway. Please go to my site and check it out. Thanks and Congrats once again :)


21 Sarah October 29, 2010 at 2:29 pm

I’ve never thought to add pumpkin to a lentil vegetable stew – I must try this!


22 Madhu October 30, 2010 at 12:22 am

Congratulations on the award. The stew looks colorful and delicious. What sort of lentils did you use? Brown lentils or red lentils?


23 SusanV October 30, 2010 at 12:40 am

Thanks, Madhu! I used brown lentils, specifically Westbrae Organics canned lentils.


24 Laina October 30, 2010 at 2:02 pm

You’re the winner in my book. Tasty, healthy, lowtono fat, vegan recipes………what more could I possibly want. hee hee!!!

I made this last night and it was delicious. I used the last of my veggies from my garden, zucchini and eggplant. I also used celery, carrot, onion, garlic and the rest of your recipe ingredients.

I didn’t have the hot paprika so I add some crushed red pepper. I upped the spices a little. I also added a dash of cloves and a heaping tablespoon of brown sugar. This is a winner!!!!!!!! I’ll probably add some chives on top of it today.

Thanks, Susan for another wonderful recipe. I really love the pumpkin in it and also the quinoa!


25 Angela October 30, 2010 at 6:46 pm

Congratulations on the award, Susan, you deserve it! I love reading your posts and all the recipes I have tried from it get rave reviews (from my family, guests and me!)

Happy Halloween!


26 amanda October 31, 2010 at 8:28 am

this looks like the perfect healthy stew for a busy, poor graduate student! thank you so much!!!


27 Megan October 31, 2010 at 8:46 am

Hi Susan! I love making your “Secret Soup” so this will definitely be something I’ll try. Also, I think I will probably be attending the conference in Portland next summer. It’ll be great to connect with other bloggers and actually get to put faces with so many blog-names.

Congrats on your award. You deserve it!


28 Leslie October 31, 2010 at 3:01 pm

This is cooking one my stove as I write this. I used fresh veggies, zucchini, carrot, celery, bok choy, parsnip, onion and leek. I simmered the veggies for about 20 minutes til tender then added the quinoa. Can’t wait to try it. Thanks!


29 Michelle October 31, 2010 at 3:31 pm

I just want to thank you for your blog. I return to it anytime I am stumped for dinner ideas. Your hard work is well appreciated!


30 Alessandra October 31, 2010 at 7:53 pm

Yes this is easy and sounds delicious! First time here, great space, I’ll be back :-)


31 Jenna October 31, 2010 at 11:05 pm

Congrats on the award! You definitely deserve it. As a fellow southerner, it makes me so happy to see such a successful healthy vegan blogger from the deep south.

I made this tonight almost exactly as written except I cooked the lentils and added some cardamom – it was quite tasty!

One question: Do you have any tips for rinsing quinoa? I have a tiny-holed, metal sieve and the itty bitty quinoa grains still get through. I really enjoy quinoa, but sometimes avoid it because I always have so much trouble rinsing it.


32 SusanV October 31, 2010 at 11:18 pm

Thanks, Jenna! I like to think I’m doing my part to veganize the South–no matter how long it takes! :)

As for the quinoa, I have an old, beat-up strainer that I use, one of those that looks like it’s made from screen (like from a window). It’s the only thing I have that will keep the grains in, and when it finally falls apart and I can’t find another one, I’ll probably go to the hardware store and buy some screen and use it to line a colander. So that’s my weird but practical suggestion. Good luck!


33 Fiona November 24, 2010 at 7:09 pm

You can buy re-usable produce bags at Whole Foods that are made of a mesh-like material. I use these not only in place of plastic bags at the grocery store, but for rinsing quinoa under the tap. It works really well!


34 The Vegetable Lady November 1, 2010 at 3:44 pm

It sounds delicious. I suppose the ingredients would make a good soup, too.


35 jodye @ 'scend food November 1, 2010 at 3:49 pm

I love the idea of this stew; it’s a combination of all of the foods that I normally eat in separate dishes, so this would make my dinner preparation about 20 times easier! Looks delicious, as always!


36 pb November 1, 2010 at 10:35 pm

This looks easy and full of good nutrition as always..

congrats on winning!


37 Kim November 2, 2010 at 12:05 pm

Just wanted to say I absolutely love this site! Great recipes!


38 Rhonda November 3, 2010 at 8:31 am

Hey Susan..can I use sweet potato instead of pumpkin? Out of it now after Halloween :-)


39 SusanV November 3, 2010 at 8:42 am

Sure! Cooked sweet potato could be mashed, like pumpkin, but I also think it would be nice to cut raw sweet potato into small cubes and add it at the beginning.


40 Mary November 3, 2010 at 10:05 pm

Susan you did it again! Another winner. I portioned out the stew into several containers. Do you think it will freeze well?


41 Lizzy November 5, 2010 at 4:47 am

I had the same question as Rhonda..I hate pumpkins so was looking out for an alternative…Thanks for the tip


42 Melyssa November 5, 2010 at 11:09 pm

I made this for dinner tonight and it was soooo very good! Thank you.


43 Renee November 6, 2010 at 11:57 am

Just got done eating a bowl. YUMMY! I cannot believe so much goodness (and good for you) in one bowl. Loved it! thanks for sharing.


44 Jen November 6, 2010 at 12:33 pm

This looks like a great recipe Susan and I’m planning on trying it this weekend. My stomach is already growling! :)


45 Johanna November 6, 2010 at 3:15 pm

Wow, this looks yummie. Mmm.


46 JoLynn-dreaminitvegan November 6, 2010 at 6:22 pm

Congrats on winning the Veg News Blog Award! I really hope to make it to the blogger conference.
I’m making a lentil soup tonight.


47 Collette Osuna November 7, 2010 at 8:57 am

Hello…..for some reason I wasnt subscribed to your feed!! I just fixed that STAT:)

Love your blog….being a vegetarian…its sometimes hard to find different meal ideas:)

Thank you!

Stop by and say Hello ♥
Enter my Awesome ModCloth Giveaway


48 Elaine November 7, 2010 at 5:31 pm

This is really easy and really good. I have been having it for lunch and it is very satisfying.


49 Jen @ LitasWorld November 7, 2010 at 10:49 pm

Congratulations!!! I’m so happy for you!! This recipe is just what is called for this week in this house…sounds so very yummy!!

I’m going to look in to going to the vegan blog conference in August!! Thanks for sharing the info on it!


50 Vibeke November 8, 2010 at 11:04 am

Supper tonight! Thanks for posting!


51 Angela (Oh She Glows) November 8, 2010 at 11:28 am

Congrats Susan on your award! That is such an honour! :)

Also thank you for the link shout-out about my Halloween dessert.


52 Aussie Fi November 8, 2010 at 9:00 pm

Cooked this the other night for me and my carnivore partner. We both loved it…..when I suggested it become a weekly meal, carnivore replied “Oh for sure babe!”.

Great mid week pick me up with all the vegie’s. I used fresh vegie’s (capsicum, carrots and zuchinni) and cooked for 20mins.

Can’t wait to have it again!!

Congrats on the blog win- you deserve it!!


53 JOSH L. November 9, 2010 at 8:38 pm

Thanks for the recipe..do you know how to adapt this to a pressure cooker? I love using the pressure cooker in order to save time so if anybody has figured it out would appreciate it.


54 Sheva November 11, 2010 at 7:42 pm

This stew looks amazing. Can’t wait to try this recipe myself!


55 Michelle J. November 12, 2010 at 11:26 pm

This is an amazing recipe! I cooked the stew tonight for a ladies fellowship that I hosted at my home. Everyone raved about it! I gave you all the glory for the recipe and directed them to your website for more fabulous, healthy recipes. I will be making this very often! Thanks for a wonderful dinner recipe!


56 Carolyn November 14, 2010 at 11:27 am

Thanks for the recipe!

Just made it and substituted lentils with kidney beans. Also didn’t have the smoked paprika, so I added a bit of harissa and red wine vinegar to bring out the flavours. Delish!


57 Laura November 15, 2010 at 7:41 pm

:-( I tried this and mine really didn’t thicken at all. I have a nice pot of watery soup with some vegetables. I can’t figure out what I did wrong. Advice?


58 SusanV November 15, 2010 at 8:19 pm

I don’t know what went wrong, but you could try to thicken it by adding more quinoa. Hope it turned out edible anyway!


59 Carla November 16, 2010 at 2:01 pm

Truly delicious! Raves all around. Used Better than Bullion “No Chicken” broth…my new favorite ingredient. Plus veg I froze from the garden this summer and about 3/4 cup of lentils cooked in 2 cups of water (turned out to be more than the recipe called for, but used it all). Anyone could make this and enjoy.

This will be a new staple in our meal rotation.



60 Vegan In the Kitchen November 16, 2010 at 10:26 pm

Congrats on your award! You deserve it. I look forward to hearing you speak in Portland. :)


61 Lindsay@Another Almost Vegan Blog November 20, 2010 at 6:30 pm

Congratulations again!!!!!! You deserve it.

I’m going to have to try out this strew. I love lentil soups, I love quinoa, and I love pumpkin…I’m interested to see what they’d all taste like together.


62 Pam November 21, 2010 at 3:36 pm

Tried this yesterday and it was wonderful! I used regular smoked paprika with no cayenne, which gave it a nice smoky taste but no spicy heat. My DH loved it. Perfect dish for a rainy cold Saturday. Thank you, Susan.


63 Cyn November 22, 2010 at 4:31 pm

Can’t wait to try this recipe. One question about the quinoa… should it be cooked or uncooked? I’m fairly new to quinoa and when I see it unspecified in recipes I’m never sure if I should use cooked or uncooked. Thanks!


64 SusanV November 22, 2010 at 5:39 pm

Hi Cyn–It’s uncooked quinoa in this recipe. It cooks in the stew. Hope you enjoy!


65 Kim November 23, 2010 at 6:03 am

Made this last night and it was exactly as stated-ridiculously easy. Was also really tasty. I can’t get quinoa so used bulghur. Also didn’t have time to pre-cook the lentils so just added them and cooked dish a bit longer. Thanks again Susan for a wonderfully easy and healthy recipe.


66 Kim November 23, 2010 at 6:19 am

Made this last night and it was exactly as stated-ridiculously easy. Was also really tasty. I can’t get quinoa so used bulghur. Also didn’t have time to pre-cook the lentils so just added them and cooked dish a bit longer.

Re-heated the leftovers for my three year old twins’ lunch today and one said “yum yum”. The other “I love it!”.

Thanks again Susan for a wonderfully easy and healthy recipe.


67 Fiona November 26, 2010 at 12:02 pm

I thought this soup was pretty good, and my fiance really liked it. It’s definitely good enough to make again, especially considering how easy it is. I could barely taste the 1/3 c. pumpkin so I kept adding more and more until finally the whole can was in the pot. I was happier with that anyway since otherwise I would have had 2/3 can of pumpkin to toss out. I used a 3 grain blend from Trader Joe’s that included quinoa and I think next time I would add a little more grain to the soup because it didn’t seem there was much in there. I also didn’t cook it as long as the directions state because I felt my vegetables would be overcooked. So I basically added the grain very soon after the frozen vegetables and then added the pumpkin during the last 5 minutes of cooking time. So the total cooking time went down which made this recipe even easier!


68 Fiona September 8, 2011 at 6:01 am

Just made and enjoyed this recipe again! I made it a bit differently this time but it came out just as tasty. I accidentally overcooked my red lentils in the multi-cooker so the soup was very thick from the lentils, and I added fresh chopped pumpkin instead of canned. I don’t like well-cooked vegetables so I just added my frozen vegetables and cooked for maybe a minute or two at the end; just enough time for them to get hot. Healthy, easy, tasty – yay!


69 KCalla November 28, 2010 at 12:53 pm

I made this stew for dinner last night. It was fabulous. I could not find canned lentils locally, so cooked lentils from dry as recommended as an alternative. Also, as suggested, I added a little cayenne because I had only smoked paprika, not smoked hot paprika. Substituted Italian seasoning for oregano (again, what I had on hand). A really, really great stew. Fortunately we have a little left over to enjoy again today! Thank you for another wonderful recipe.


70 Running On Juice December 3, 2010 at 9:52 pm

Hmm I am enjoying this right now. I recently started using a local farm delivery and wanted to use up this turnip. Something I rarely cook. So I made your dish with some turnip! Fantastic!!


71 Jenn December 6, 2010 at 7:37 pm

I’m so glad I found your site! I just made this while juggling loads of laundry and coaxing food into my teething 1 year old’s mouth (not an easy task these days) and you were right, it was ridiculously easy. This is such a great combination of pantry staples; it’s warm, yummy and a perfect antidote to the 30 degree weather outside my window.


72 jenna December 23, 2010 at 9:21 pm

GREAT post! Thank you for sharing this! I love it. It looks so yummy! I am a physician who advocates a plant-based diet. A friend and I recently started a blog on plant-based diets as a resource for those who are interested in transitioning to a plant-based diet. I would love to feature your blog on our site if you would be interested. We have lots of other plans too, but one step at a time. lmk and thanks again for the great post. Glad I found your blog…subscribing now! Jenn (www.theplantrx.com)


73 Azahara December 28, 2010 at 8:23 am

This was really hearty and filling. Perfect for a cold day like today. This dish will certainly become a regular on my winter menu.
Thanks for making it so easy. I think I’d starve without this blog!


74 Laurene Davison January 4, 2011 at 4:42 pm

I made your Lentil and Vegetable Stew and was pleasantly surprised! It is delicious! My husband said he will try it when he gets home from work. Thanks and keep the delicious recipes coming!


75 dot January 9, 2011 at 8:15 am

made this yesterday, and it was awesome =)


76 SusanB January 14, 2011 at 1:58 pm

This was fantastic! The pumpkin was subtle and really yummy! So easy and delicious!


77 danielle January 24, 2011 at 11:52 am

I have fallen in love with this soup. It’s fun to change it up to what you have on hand. I was sick the last few days and had a bunch of veggies starting to look droopy, so I took the basic idea of this soup and threw it all together. The pumpkin was amazing. I feel better already! Thanks!


78 Pat January 28, 2011 at 6:08 pm

I have always loved lentils even as a little girl but I was a terrible eater also; my mother could never understand. Anyway, my son. who is a deli guy, said that it was quite good and ate every drop. Many thanks.


79 ziv February 2, 2011 at 5:20 am

It was so tasty! That should be dietary, but it was not. We eat so much. Just kidding it looks great and taste better


80 Megan February 4, 2011 at 10:35 pm

So excited to try this! Discovered a sad can of pumpkin from thanksgiving that was sitting in my cupboard… now I don’t have to wait until the next fall holiday to use it!


81 Mandie Best February 10, 2011 at 12:48 pm

I’ve never seen or heard of a dutch oven.. What is it? Where do I get one? How do you cook with it? Why is it different from a slow cooker? haha
I’m full of questions.


82 SusanV February 10, 2011 at 1:02 pm

Great questions! A Dutch oven is simply a thick-walled pot with a tight-fitting lid. They’re usually made of heavier metals like cast iron. You cook with them just the same as with any pot. They hold the heat in well, especially when covered, so you can turn your stove down very low. Most of them can also be used in the oven, allowing you to bake and yet keep the steam inside the pot. Here’s a link to the one I have: Lodge Logic EC6D43 Enameled Cast-Iron 6-Quart Dutch Oven (but mine’s a pretty blue).


83 Jerry February 12, 2011 at 6:06 am

I plan to try this special recipe- i aint no great cook but this one “smells” great!!


84 Cat March 19, 2011 at 9:53 am

Ok. I´ve just finished doing this amazing recipe and once I did the final tasting I knew I had to come here and leave a comment. I’m not a great cook, In fact I’m very well known for my kitchen disasters but this amazing stew came out perfectly and it is very very tasty. I played a little with the spices and it is amaziing. Sorry for the excitement guys, but this is one of my first kitchen successes. Thank you so much Susan. :)


85 Carolyn April 12, 2011 at 11:06 pm

This was so good! I’ve been struggling to get my 4 year old to eat her veggies lately, but she ate them tonight in this stew! She had seconds of this and practically licked her bowl clean each time. I’ll serve this for lunch tomorrow, too. I’ll be putting this in the menu rotation, for sure.

I made a couple of modifications to my recipe. I actually used 1 cup of dry lentils, cooked (the small orange ones because I couldn’t find the regular ones), and you hardly knew that there were lentils in this because they disintegrated. Actually I think that I’m the only one who knew, which is good because usually my family balks at the idea of lentils in any of our meals. I also used two jars of squash babyfood instead of the pumpkin since that’s what I had in my pantry, plus my husband is allergic to pumpkin but not squash.


86 Kristen October 2, 2011 at 11:11 pm

I made this tonight, and not only was it delicious, but I learned something new and very important: there is such a thing as canned lentils!!! I’ve never seen them where I shop and had no idea they existed. I’ve always hated cooking dry lentils (or dry beans of any sort)–I just don’t have the patience for it. So when I found the canned lentils on Amazon, I bought a case of 12. That was only a couple of weeks ago, and I’ve already used half of them! :-)


87 Lynne October 13, 2011 at 6:56 pm

Loved this recipe. I used a little less broth and served it over baked tortilla strips. OMB I went back for more. You have the best recipes. Thanks so much


88 Dominique October 29, 2011 at 10:46 am

This sounds absolutely delicious. I just have one question: where I live it’s not easy to get canned pumpkin, in fact I’ve never seen it anywhere. Can you substitute it or just leave it out in this recipe? Thanks!


89 Dominique October 29, 2011 at 10:48 am

Obviously I could get an actual pumpkin, but that would make this recipe a lot less ridiculously easy. 😉


90 SusanV October 29, 2011 at 11:00 am

True! To keep it ridiculously easy, you could leave it out or chop up some winter squash (which isn’t exactly easy but would taste good.)


91 Dominique October 29, 2011 at 12:37 pm

Good idea, thank you!


92 Angela Horn September 9, 2012 at 5:37 am

Sweet potato works well as a squash/pumpkin substitute. I peel and dice then pop it in a covered dish in the microwave for a few minutes with a little water, until it’s soft, then add to the stew.


93 braelin October 31, 2011 at 9:23 pm

Excellent and easy- thanks, Susan!


94 Abra November 13, 2011 at 10:16 pm

I made this tonight for my family. I am the only one eating vegan and loved it. My husband liked it well enough to take for lunch tomorrow. My kids on the other hand not so much. Oh well, what do they know. :). I will make it again for sure


95 chamaeleonsky December 8, 2011 at 1:25 pm

I don’t see anywhere in the recipe instructions for when to put the lentils in!!


96 Susan Voisin December 8, 2011 at 1:36 pm

“Add next 7 ingredients and cook….” The lentils are third. :-)


97 chamaeleonsky December 8, 2011 at 2:20 pm



98 ashlie January 3, 2012 at 10:20 am

Just had this for lunch – it was delicious and very warming on a 20 degree Ohio winter day! I made mine in my slow cooker. I didn’t have the vegetables on hand but it was still really good anyway. And I love the texture the pumpkin gives. Next time if I don’t have the veggies I’ll probably double the tomatoes.


99 Gill January 3, 2012 at 3:50 pm

This recipe is fantastic had it for dinner tonight having the rest for lunch tomorrow – cant wait!


100 Andrea A January 25, 2012 at 8:32 am

Can I use dried lentils? I don’t have canned….


101 Susan Voisin January 25, 2012 at 8:42 am

Yes, just cook them first and then measure out a cup and a half to use in this recipe.


102 Andrea A January 25, 2012 at 9:16 am

could you cook them with the soup?


103 Susan Voisin January 25, 2012 at 9:24 am

You could put them on after the onions–use 3/4 cup of dry lentils–with the vegetable broth. Cook for 20 minutes or so then proceed with the quinoa and the rest of the recipe. Let me know how it works please!


104 Almiel January 31, 2013 at 11:26 am

I did something similar to this last night. I threw my onions into the pot then added ½ cup green lentils, 1½ cups water and let them simmer 15-20 minutes, then proceeded with the recipe.

I used bulgur and fresh cilantro as subs for quinoa (I’m out) and the Mex. oregano. Came out fabulous. I could make this one a regular. Oh, and I used the frozen Mexican blend of veggies + frozen green beans. I love flexible recipes! I bet red lentils would be good in this too. :)

105 shirley January 25, 2012 at 10:17 am

If I were to use fresh vegetables would I wait for them to be cooked before adding the quinoa?


106 Susan Voisin January 25, 2012 at 10:49 am

No, I would just add them, bring to a boil, and add the quinoa. You may need more water/broth than I did with frozen veggies.


107 nicole February 11, 2012 at 8:26 pm

Just wondering, do you drain the canned lentils and canned tomatoes before adding them?


108 Susan Voisin February 11, 2012 at 8:28 pm

No, both go into the pot undrained.


109 Christina March 24, 2012 at 6:29 pm

This was so hearty and tasty!!! Very easy too…..could have been easier if I could find canned lentils :-(. I’ve looked everywhere and could not find them so I had to cook them myself. Do they even make lentils in a can other than lentil soup??


110 Staci @ ClickandCookRecipes May 16, 2012 at 8:36 am

Hi Susan! I love the idea of this soup, but I’m living in Saudi right now and can’t find pumpkin anywhere. So, what else could I do to make it just as tasty? They have actual pumpkins here (small ones) but I’ve never cooked one. I can also get butternut squash. Any tips would be greatly appreciated! Thanks for the wonderful recipe!


111 Susan Voisin May 16, 2012 at 9:11 am

Staci, it’s so easy to cook a pumpkin or butternut squash! Then you could mash it up and use it in the recipe. You can bake, steam, or even microwave it until it’s soft, let it cool, and then scrape it out of the shell with a spoon. How long you have to cook it will depend on its size, so do a google search of your preferred preparation method to get some idea of cooking temperature and time. Good luck!


112 Angela Horn September 9, 2012 at 5:33 am

I love this – and I’m not even a vegetarian, let alone a vegan! I love the fact that it’s flexible, and so filling. Here in the UK you don’t see tinned pumpkin in the shops, but I use any type of squash (fresh, peeled and chopped up then microwaved in a covered dish with a little water for about 5-10 mins until it’s soft – much quicker if you do this before adding to stew, otherwise cooking in the stew takes 45 mins or so). Sometimes I substitute sweet potato for the pumpkin/squash – again, microwave it first to radically reduce cooking time. Love it with fresh coriander leaves on top (aka Cilantro in the USA). And for non-vegans, a little crumbled feta cheese on top goes well.
Not sure which lentils you recommend, but I’ve made this with both green lentils and red lentils. The bonus of the red lentils is that they can be put in dry and will cook in the stew if you leave it for 30 minutes or so.
Thank you so very much for this great blog – I’m doing more meat-free meals for my family and it’s a wonderful resource.


113 brooke September 29, 2012 at 5:14 pm

THIS IS SOOOOO good! Just made it for dinner and it’s absolutely delicious!


114 G. Dolby October 22, 2012 at 12:00 am

yuummmmmyyy!! I did cauliflower and collard greens 😀


115 Barb Romberg November 4, 2012 at 10:54 am

Question…could barley be substituted for quinoa and still taste good?


116 Susan Voisin November 4, 2012 at 11:00 am

Sure, it will taste fine, but I suggest that you cook it before adding it to the stew. It takes much longer to cook than quinoa, and the rest of the stew will be ready before the barley is cooked.


117 Cheryl November 4, 2012 at 7:51 pm

Love this recipe, used fresh vegetables instead and baked in the oven after inside of a pumpkin. Huge hit with the kids.


118 Angela Horn November 7, 2012 at 4:31 am

Found another lovely addition to this stew, which has become one of my family staples: sun-dried tomatoes. I used the dried ones, which last forever and are much cheaper than the ones in oil. I cut them into small pieces and add to the stew. It adds a richness to the flavour and makes the colour more red-brown. We like this with chili powder too.
In the UK, Iceland and Tesco both do frozen mediterranean veg mixes which go well with this. I always add some extra courgette and a butternut squash.


119 Mary December 9, 2012 at 12:58 pm

This is scrumptious!


120 Susan March 26, 2013 at 1:54 pm

Just found this website a couple of weeks ago and absolutely love this stew – had it 4
times already! Instead of the frozen vegetables we put in fresh carrots, turnip, parsnip, cauliflower and broad beans. Also made little dumplings to cook on top of the stew. Thank you so much for the recipe.


121 roberta Trew September 23, 2013 at 1:02 pm

This is a delicious recipe. I didn’t have cumin so I subbed Anise the first
time around. Today I am making it with dried lentils and subbing fennel
for the cumin. My husband is wild about the this, and I am, too.


122 chic2chef@inbox.com October 26, 2013 at 9:24 am

I am definitely going to try this recipe this weekend! My husband & I are first time vegans and your website is a godsend! We’ve already tried your Korean Inspired Black-eyed Peas & Kale Bowl, Sausage-flavored Breakfast Beans & Grits, and Thai-style Vegetable Curry! All we can say is Yummy!!!!
Keep them coming! Thank you very much!


123 Rebecca February 24, 2014 at 6:24 pm

I just made this stew this evening–it was awesome and so filling. I added some leftover whole-wheat fusilli. It’s such a perfect, delicious meal for a cold winter day like today.


124 Katie August 24, 2014 at 2:09 pm

I really loved this recipe! I used zucchini, green peas, sweet potato, and green beans. I forgot to put the oregano in, but it was still so flavourful. I will definitely make this again and again :) Thank you for sharing


125 Molly October 12, 2014 at 5:13 pm

This looks great! I see the nutrition info but am a little confused. Is 180 calories for a cup?


126 Susan Voisin October 12, 2014 at 5:31 pm

It’s for a whole bowl or 1/6th of the recipe. How much that come out to be will vary depending on how much liquid boils off and other factors, but I would guesstimate about 1 1/2 to 2 cups per serving.


127 Liza May 25, 2015 at 12:34 pm

Hi Susan

Really enjoyed it, thanks! We live in South Africa and quinoa is really expensive here. What can I use as substitute? Bulgar wheat, couscous or something else?

Secondly, can I freeze this?


128 Susan Voisin May 25, 2015 at 2:52 pm

Bulgar, couscous, millet–all are good substitutes. It should freeze just fine.


129 Leo Sigh August 15, 2015 at 10:43 pm

Just wanted to tell you I made this last night for dinner and it was SO good. And I still have enough left over for lunch and dinner again tonight. May even make it tomorrow and eat it again :) Low calorie too.


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