roasted red pepper lentil soup

Roasted Red Pepper Lentil Soup

How do you deal with a crummy weather forecast?
Make soup…

Tomato-based soups are my favourite but the acidity of canned tomatoes can often use a little taming. That’s where the molasses comes in. It takes the edge off and adds great complexity and flavour. It’s sweet with oomph.

This is the kind of soup that you can make your own. Cook the base (which is delicious on its own, by the way), and then add a few more ingredients depending on your mood. Sometimes I go the Mexican route and sometimes I’m more in the mood for Moroccan flavours.

If you prefer a thinner soup play with the amount of broth to get the consistency that works for you. Or add extra tomatoes. This is a soup after all. Very forgiving.


Roasted Red Pepper Lentil Soup in 30 Minutes

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5 from 1 review

  • Author: Crosby Molasses
  • Total Time: 30 mins


  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper
  • 1 can (28 oz) of crushed tomatoes or jar of strained tomatoes
  • 24 cups vegetable broth or water
  • 1 jar of roasted red peppers, rinsed and finely diced (about 1 ½ cups worth)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3/4 cup dried red lentils
  • ½ Tbsp Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • Sea salt to taste
  • Squeeze of lemon



  • ½ tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • Pinch of smoked paprika
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked white beans
  • 2 generous handfuls of baby spinach
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro or parsley


  • ½ Tbsp chili powder
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • 1 ½ cups frozen corn
  • Handful of chopped cilantro


  1. In a large pot over medium heat saute the onion in the oil until just starting to brown.
  2. Add the garlic, crushed red pepper, tomatoes, broth, and bay leaf.
  3. Stir and bring to a gentle boil.
  4. Add the red peppers and the lentils and bring to the boil again. Stir often.
  5. Once the lentils are cooked add the molasses and oregano.
  6. Season with salt and a squeeze of lemon.
  7. Eat as is or add the Moroccan extras or the Mexican.
  8. Heat just until additional ingredients are warmed through.
  9. Serve immediately.

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  • January 28, 2023


    Delicious! We have enjoyed this recipe in its original form as well as, the Moroccan style. Looking forward to trying the Mexican version next. Thanks for sharing this hearty and adaptable recipe.

  • January 28, 2019


    Hello Bridget, being originally from NS, I simply LOVE your recipes !! I have not tried this recipe yet. I’m wondering if I could use black lentils rather than the red lentils ?

    • February 13, 2019

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Anastasia, Yes, you can use black lentils but the cooking time will be a little longer. As well, it won’t be as thick. But it will still be tasty.

  • October 1, 2018

    Crosby Molasses

    Hi Carol, We’ll send a copy your way.

  • January 19, 2017


    Making this soup for a crowd this weekend. Soups yummy.
    Thanks for highlighting this recipe.
    Happy January

    • February 1, 2017


      This recipe is wonderful. I have made it a few times now and have shared it with friends. The Moroccan version is really tasty too.

  • January 10, 2017

    Being from N.B. originally, I grew up on Crosby molasses enjoying your emails (recipes). Do you have a recipe book?,If so, I would dearly love a copy..of any molasses recipes….My Address is: 582 Trafford Crescent, Oakville, Ontario L6L 3T3..My name is in the following box.. Thank you for taking my email..

  • October 7, 2016

    Linda Crolla

    I would dearly love a copy of recipe book. I have memory probs and it’s much easier when it’s hard copy. I follow easier. Thx
    #1007-625 Evans Ave. Etobicoke, ON. M8W 2W5

    • October 13, 2016

      Kelsey Reid

      Hi Linda, we would be happy to put one in the mail for you.

  • January 13, 2016


    I’d just like to know just how many ‘SERVINGS’ are your recipes for??? As you don’t mention ANYTHING about it!!!

    • July 5, 2016

      Hi Enid, this recipe could serve up to 4 people, perhaps more if you were to add more broth or water. Hope this helps!

  • January 17, 2014

    Kathy Walsh

    Hi I think I’d like to try the Mexican variation looks very yummy. The only thing I’m not liking is the roasted red peppers I’ll take them any other way just not roasted. Can I just add fresh diced red peppers? Can’t wait to try this.
    Thanks Kathy.

    • January 20, 2014

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Kathy, The soup would be delicious with fresh red peppers. You could just sauté them a bit at the beginning, along with the onions. Enjoy!

      • January 24, 2021

        Odette Borg

        Could I get your latest recipe book mailed to me. My address is:
        5484 Winston Road
        Burlington, Ontario L7L 3B4
        Kind regards

  • January 15, 2014


    Can I have your latest recipe book mailed to me?
    Big Fan!
    2800 Courtice Rd.#57,
    Courtice,Ontario,Canada L1E2M6

    • January 20, 2014

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi David, We’d be happy to mail you a copy of our Family Favourites cookbook. Watch for it in the mail over the next couple of weeks.

  • January 6, 2014

    Pearl Grewal

    with regards to lentils; I was always taught to soak my lentils overnight. They cook quicker.

    • January 7, 2014

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Pearl, I agree that most lentils are best soaked but the red lentils are split and tiny so cook up quickly without soaking. Although you could still soak them…

  • September 25, 2013


    Just made this and the flavor is wonderful. However, it took me a long time to make. I did roast the peppers myself, not using the bottled. I boiled my lentils awhile as the onions, garlic, etc. simmered but they are still quite hard. They are a mixture (from Costco), not just red lentils. Any suggestions about the lentils?

    • September 25, 2013

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Bonnie, I love the idea of using a variety of lentils. If you simmer the soup a while longer the lentils should cook through. You might need to add more broth though, since the lentils will continue to absorb liquid.

  • February 21, 2013


    I cooked up a dutch oven of this soup last week planning to freeze most of it, but I’m still eating it and I’m not sure any of it is going to make it as far as my freezer! I ended up adding a can of Romano Beans I happened to have, and half a package of frozen spinach that needed using up, and spicing it with Ras El Hanout which I bought in Marrakesh some years ago, and have discovered a bit of periodic simmering does this soup no harm whatsoever! I found it a bit tomatoey, so I’ve been smoothing out the acidity with a bit of milk. Yum!
    I’ve already put all of the above on my shopping list – except for the smoked paprika, which I didn’t have but have already bought – so I can make another batch soon! Thanks…

    • February 21, 2013


      Hi Margaret,
      Your version sounds delicious and I appreciate that you took the time to tell me about it. Don’t you just love a soup recipe that is so adaptable?!

  • February 9, 2013

    edie rossirer

    Wonderful recipes I love molasses and enjoy new ways of using it…thank you

    • February 11, 2013


      Hi Edie,
      Glad you like them. Enjoy!

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