Everything tastes better when you eat it around a campfire! And this scrumptious Lentil Bacon Soup recipe gives you all the coziness of a campout, whether you’re eating by a tent or at the dining room table.
Versatile, earthy lentils are the main ingredient in this recipe. They’re the ideal protein source because they also come loaded with fiber.
Fiber can improve your heart health and help lower your cholesterol, not to mention satisfy your hunger and encourage your body to burn fat. And when your lentils taste this good, all that just feels like a bonus!
Lentil Bacon Soup is the first recipe in our Cozy Campout Fun Menu, joined by Flank Steak and Vegetable Wraps with Chimichurri Sauce, Campfire Grilled Peaches, and Freeze-Dried Fruit, Nut, and Seed Mix. There’s plenty of amazing recipes that are perfect for camping, whether it’s in the wilderness or your own backyard…
1Heat a Dutch oven over medium heat (or indirect heat over a campfire) and add the bacon; cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp, 7-8 minutes.
2Use a slotted spoon or tongs to transfer the bacon to a plate lined with a paper towel to drain.
3Pour off all but 2 tablespoons of bacon fat from the pan and return it to the heat.
4Stir in the onion, garlic, celery, carrot, oregano, and bay leaf; cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are very tender, 14-15 minutes.
5Add the lentil, broth or stock, and tomato paste, and bring to a boil.
6Immediately reduce the heat to medium-low, cover the pan, and simmer until the lentils are tender, 28-30 minutes.
7Remove the bay leaf and stir in the bacon, salt, and pepper. Serve and enjoy!
* "Picking over" your lentils means sorting through them to remove any small stones or other debris that may be mixed in during harvest. By soaking your lentils before cooking, you make them easier to digest and maximize their nutrition. To soak, simply place lentils in a glass mason jar and cover with water. Add 1-2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and soak 4-12 hours, covered. Rinse, then proceed as directed in recipe above.
This recipe is part of the Cozy Campout Fun menu, with Lentil Bacon Soup, Flank Steak and Vegetable Wraps with Chimichurri Sauce, Campfire Grilled Peaches, and Freeze-Dried Fruit, Nut, and Seed Mix. Check out the Cozy Campout Fun Menu and Guide for links to all the recipes, plus more handy tips and activities for a fantastic campout, even in your own backyard!
Originally published in The Virgin Diet Cookbook, Grand Central Life & Style, 2014
Want more yummy, healthy recipes? Check out jjvirgin.com/recipes.