This is a tasty vegan riff on my childhood favourite, chicken noodle soup. Just as comforting but possibly even more flavoursome with a rich miso-based vegetable broth, lentils, diced vegetables and gluten-free noodles. This is a wonderfully comforting vegan soup and a great way to sneak in some extra veggies for the kids, especially if you're battling coughs and colds!
Choose your cooking method - Stovetop, Instant Pot and Thermomix cooking instructions included!
Isn't it wonderful how food can instantly take you back to a moment in time? For me, one of the things I remember absolutely loving when I was a kid was chicken noodle soup. No, not the homemade healthy kind but the little packets of dried powder with pasta pieces and dubious little squares of “chicken” that you just add boiling water to and cook for 5 minutes. I haven't tasted that packet soup for decades now but this veggie noodle soup is my healthier, filled with vegetables, vegan version that I like to make instead.
"Veganising" the old favourites
Before I went vegan, I used to make homemade chicken noodle soup for my family every time we had a roast chicken. It was a great way to use up the leftovers and it was an easy dish for me to serve, knowing that all the kids would eat it without a fuss. However, now I've gone vegan and I'm trying desperately to get the rest of the family to eat more plant-based meals with me, I'm slowly veganising all our old family favourites.
So, I decided to tinker with my chicken noodle soup recipe and try to make a tasty vegan "no-chicken" noodle soup alternative. I think I’ve exceeded even my own expectations and I’m thrilled with it. It ticks all the boxes and still tastes like delicious comfort food at its best. I hope you agree!
This soup is packed with veggies and healthy lentils for some plant-based protein so it's sure to perk you up if you're feeling in need of some vegan comfort food.
- Vegetables - onion, garlic, carrot, celery - together with mixed herbs, these vegetables are classic aromatics to provide the base flavour for your soup.
- Legumes - dried brown lentils - you can use tinned lentils if you prefer, in which case you can cut down the cooking time as they are already cooked. Just add the noodles at the same time as the tinned lentils, stock and herbs and just simmer for 10 minutes (cutting out the 20 minute simmer step before).
- Gluten-Free Small Pasta Pieces - I like to use the Schar little straight noodles (Capelli D'Angelo) or small round pasta pieces (anellini) as they are also vegan and are the perfect size and shape for this soup. If you prefer, you could also substitute with rice.
- Vegetable Stock - the regular stock powder is fine for this recipe. I like Kallo or Marigold Bouillon.
- Miso Paste - I like to use sweet white miso because I like its soothing, mellow flavour but you can use whichever one you like. Just check that it is gluten-free if this is important to you as sometimes miso is made from barley which is not gluten-free. My favourite is the Clearspring Sweet White Miso Paste which is both vegan and gluten-free.
For quantities, please see the printable recipe card at the bottom of this blogpost.
Although this is not really a quick recipe, it is an easy recipe nontheless! The basic method for making this vegan lentil and veggie noodle soup is:
- Fry the onion, garlic, carrots and celery.
- Add the lentils, stock and herbs and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Add the noodles and simmer for another 10 minutes.
- Stir in the miso paste and serve.
Please see the printable recipe card at the bottom of this blogpost for full instructions and also for Instant Pot and Thermomix Instructions.
- Be careful with how much pasta you add. It may seem like a small amount in the recipe but you really don't want too much pasta as it will dilute the flavour. Remember it is a soup not a bowl of pasta so you don't want the pasta to take over the soup. It expands a lot in the soup so it's hard to gauge at first when you're throwing the dry pasta in.
- Aesthetically, I think it is nice to have the vegetables all cut into neat little cubes that are in proportion to the size of the lentils and noodles. This also helps them to cook evenly (and quickly if small).
- If you want an even more "chickeny" flavour, you could try using the no-chicken vegan chicken stock powders that are now available!
- Try to brown the vegetables when frying in the oil so that they get some of that deep caramelisation that adds depth to the soup. To do this, you will need to make sure you don't stir it too much as it needs to have contact with the hot pan for long enough to brown before you stir.
- I add the miso paste at the end of the cooking time to preserve the fermented goodness as much as possible. Fermented foods are so good for us so I like to use them as often as I can in our family meals.
Vegan Noodle Soup FAQs
Yes! This vegan noodle soup is very easy to make in the Instant Pot! I have added specific Instant Pot instructions to the recipe card below. Essentially it is as follows:
- Sauté onion, garlic, carrots and celery until browned (5-10 minutes).
- Add lentils, stock and mixed herbs. Lock lid and set to HP for 10 minutes.
- Quick pressure release, stir, add noodles, lock lid again and set to HP for 2 minutes.
- Quick pressure release, stir in miso paste and serve!
Yes absolutely! I have added Theremomix instructions in the printable recipe card below. The basic TM instructions are:
- Roughly cut the veggies into chunks. Add to the TM jug with the oil and set to 3 secs / sp. 5.
- Scrape down the sides with the spatula and set to 6 mins / 120•C / sp. stir.
- Next, add the lentils, stock and herbs and set to 20 mins / 100•C / Rev. sp. 1.
- Then, add the noodles and set to 10 mins / 100•C / Rev. sp. 1.
- At the end, stir in the miso paste with a spatula until melted and distributed evenly throughout the soup.
Lentils are a great wholefood ingredient for this soup but if you don't like them, you can substitute with chickpeas or beans or even with tofu or vegan chicken pieces!
This recipe is a healthy vegan alternative to chicken noodle soup, perfect for when you're not feeling well. If you want to make it even more like chicken noodle soup you could use vegan chicken pieces instead of lentils and you can use vegan chicken stock powder instead of vegetable stock.
Any leftovers can happily sit in the fridge for a few days. However, the noodles will continue to absorb the liquid so you may need to add a little more water or vegetable stock when you re-heat the soup.
If you're planning to make this ahead, then don't add the noodles and when you come to heat it up for serving, just cook the noodles in the soup for 10 minutes and then stir in the miso at the end.
More Delicious Vegan Soup Recipes
If you like this Vegan Lentil and Vegetable Noodle Soup recipe, you may like these other delicious vegan and gluten-free soup recipes too:
Recipe Card 📖
Vegan Lentil & Vegetable Noodle Soup
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion (large) diced
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 2 celery sticks diced
- 2 carrots diced
- 1.2 L vegetable stock (or vegan chicken stock)
- 100 g dried brown lentils rinsed
- 2 tbsp dried mixed herbs
- 80 g gluten-free small pasta pieces
- 1 tbsp sweet white miso paste
- salt and pepper to taste
- Sauté the onion in the olive oil over a low heat for 5-10 minutes until soft and lightly browned.1 onion (large), 1 tbsp olive oil
- Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute, stirring constantly.4 garlic cloves
- Add the carrot and celery and sauté for 2-3 minutes until glossy and browned.2 celery sticks, 2 carrots
- Add the vegetable stock, lentils, and dried herbs and bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer gently with the lid on for 20 minutes.1.2 L vegetable stock, 100 g dried brown lentils, 2 tbsp dried mixed herbs
- Add the gluten-free pasta pieces and simmer for 5-10 more minutes until the pasta is cooked and the lentils are soft.80 g gluten-free small pasta pieces
- Stir in the white miso paste until dissolved and well distributed through the soup. Season with salt and pepper. Serve with chopped chives or parsley sprinkled on top.1 tbsp sweet white miso paste, salt and pepper
Instant Pot Instructions
- Set the IP to "Sauté" and add the oil. Wait for it to heat up then add the onion, garlic, carrots and celery. Sauté, stirring frequently, for 5-10 minutes until the onions are translucent and the vegetables are slightly browned.1 tbsp olive oil, 1 onion (large), 4 garlic cloves, 2 celery sticks, 2 carrots
- Add the vegetable stock, lentils and dried herbs and mix well. Lock the lid and set the IP to High Pressure for 10 minutes.1.2 L vegetable stock, 100 g dried brown lentils, 2 tbsp dried mixed herbs
- After 10 minutes, do a quick pressure release (careful not to burn yourself!) and stir. Add the noodles then put the lid back on, lock in place and set the IP to High Pressure for 2 minutes. (Don't worry, it will come back to pressure very quickly).80 g gluten-free small pasta pieces
- After 2 minutes, do a quick pressure release, then stir in the miso paste and serve!
- Add the oil, onions (quartered) and garlic (sliced) to the TM jug and set to 3 secs. / sp. 5. Scrape down the sides then set the TM to 5 mins / 120°C / sp. stir.1 tbsp olive oil, 1 onion (large), 4 garlic cloves
- Add the carrot and celery (both roughly cut into chunks) and set to 3 secs. / sp. 5. Scrape down the sides then set to 3 mins / 120°C / Rev. sp. 1.2 celery sticks, 2 carrots
- Add the vegetable stock, lentils and dried herbs. Set TM to 20 mins / 100°C / Rev. sp. 2.1.2 L vegetable stock, 100 g dried brown lentils, 2 tbsp dried mixed herbs
- Add the gluten-free noodles. Set the TM to 6 mins / 100°C / Rev. sp. 2.80 g gluten-free small pasta pieces
- Add the miso paste. Set the TM to 15 secs / Rev. sp. 3. Serve.1 tbsp sweet white miso paste
- This soup is also delicious without the noodles, cooked for the same time (30 minutes) but just without adding the pasta.
- If you are not a fan of lentils, you could use chickpeas or even vegan chicken pieces instead.
- To cook with tinned lentils, just skip the 20 minute simmering and combine steps 4 and 5 so that you add the tinned lentils together with the pasta pieces and stock and herbs, and simmer for 10 minutes only.
- If you are making this soup ahead of time, do not add the pasta as it will absorb all the liquid and go mushy. Instead, add the pasta at the time of re-heating and cook for 10 minutes when re-heating, to ensure the pasta is cooked.
- Store in a sealed container in the fridge for 3 days but if the pasta is included, you may need to add more stock on re-heating.
I’d love to know how you get on with this vegan and gluten-free lentil and vegetable noodle soup recipe. Let me know what you think in the comments section below and please give it a star rating too! Thank you!