As Fall is approaching I have been thinking a lot about some hearty and nutritious soups. There really is no fall food as comforting as a warming soup or stew. The longer it has been simmered, the tastier it gets. I usually look for easy and fast recipes. It’s perfect if I can just put everything in the slow cooker early in the morning and let it all take care of itself for a few hours, without worrying about it. It’s really convenient and I think the slow cooker is truly one of the best inventions of the 70’s!

I love love lentils! They are my favorite legume. They don’t require pre-soaking and make a perfect non-meat light dish. Not just because of their smooth and mild taste, but they also provide an adequate amount of protein ,fiber and iron. Their fiber content makes them filling and their taste pleases my kids’ taste buds, as well. Double win! I like to prepare this soup entirely vegan-style in order to give our systems a break at least once a week. I’m using vegan bouillon broth cubes by Rapunzel, which you can find in the soup aisle of every health food store or good supermarket. They have a superior taste and make any soup broth absolutely amazing. I also skipped the usual ham. Instead, I prefer a wider mix of vegetables. The flavor of the cooked red bell pepper replaces the need for meat, and the colorful mix of vegetables is truly satisfying.

Here is what you need:

1 large onion, diced
4 carrots, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced finely
4 pieces of celery, finely chopped
2 large, potatoes, diced
10 cups of water
5 cubes of Rapunzel Vegetable Bouillon with Herbs
2 cups dried green lentils
2 -3 cups chopped collard greens
1 tsp dried basil
fresh pepper
4 garlic gloves, diced

Put all ingredients in the slow cooker and let simmer at LOW HEAT for about 7-9 hours or HIGH HEAT for 3.5 – 4 hours.