Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Soup, Vegan, Vegetarian

Delightfully Spicy Harissa Soup

Hearty veggie stew alert! If you haven’t figured out, I enjoy “cleaning out my fridge” and trying to use up every veggie–and sauce–possible. Harissa is a Northern African spicy chili pepper paste, consisting of mostly roasted red peppers. Depending on the style, some can be really mild or wildly spicy. If you use up any veggies in your fridge like onions, peppers, greens, and sweet potato with stuff in your pantry like a can of tomatoes or leftover grains and lentils, you can easily pull together a simple, hearty stew like Harissa Vegetable Soup. By using plant-based ingredients, it’s still high in protein. Plus, it’s a win-win for a deliciously health meal in exchange for cleaning out your fridge and pantry.

Ingredients (serves 4-5; makes 8 c).

  • 1 T avocado oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced,
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1/2 orange pepper, diced
  • 1/2 sweet potato, diced
  • 2 T tomato paste
  • 1/4 c harissa *
  • 4 c vegetable stock
  • 1 can (15 oz) diced tomatoes, no salt added
  • 1/3 c red lentils **
  • 1/3 c arborio rice **
  • 1/4 c quinoa **
  • 1 t cumin
  • 1/4 t chili powder
  • Dash of cayenne
  • 1/4 t salt — adjust to taste
  • 2 c chopped spinach, packed
*NOTE: taste your Harissa before adding! Trader Joe’s version is quite spicy, but others are mild. Add in to taste and your desired spice level.
** Feel free to use any sort of lentil and grain ratio that measures just under 1 c. I had such small amounts left of lentils, rice, and quinoa, that I combined all three.


  1. In a large soup pot over medium heat, add oil. Once sizzling, add garlic, onions, and pepper.
  2. Mix in sweet potato, harissa, and tomato paste. Sauté until fragrant.
  3. Add broth, diced tomatoes (undrained), lentils, rice, and quinoa. Bring soup to a boil. Stir in cumin and chili powder. Reduce to a simmer and cover for 20-25 min, stirring occasionally.
  4. Once lentils, rice, and quinoa are cooked, stir spinach. Season to taste with salt and cayenne pepper. Remove from heat once spinach is wilted.
    • You may want to add an additional 1 c of water here if you want a thinner consistency. The soup will thicken even more as it cools.
  5. Dish up 1½ to 2 c servings per bowl. Serve with whole wheat crusty bread, naan, or two ingredient flatbread (optional).
  6. Enjoy!

Nutrition for 1 of 5 servings.
342 calories  •  5.4. g fat (14%)  •  30.5 g carbs (36%)  •  43.2 g protein (50%)  •  10.9 g fiber  •  5.3 g sugar  •  459 mg sodium
* These are estimates based off specific products I used and how I entered ingredients in a fitness tracker. This is completely subjective and used to give a rough nutritional estimate.

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