We know what you’re thinking: Cabbage soup isn’t sexy. But is it? Cabbage and fennel just met and they’re now inseparable. This soup is just the beginning of their love affair! Made with Italian seasonings, fresh fennel, and lentils, this soup is savory, nourishing, subtly spicy, and light yet satisfying!
Made in just 1 pot, it’s the perfect easy meal for a cozy weeknight in! Grab your ladle — soup’s on!
This cozy, 1-pot soup starts with sautéing onion, fennel, and carrot until soft and sweet.
Next we add cabbage and kale, giving this soup a boost of greens for nourishment (hello, folate, fiber, potassium, and vitamins C, K, and B6). Talk about packed with the good stuff!
Then it’s on to the key flavor players: Garlic, fennel seeds, smoked paprika, and red pepper flakes combine for an Italian-inspired seasoning mix.
Potatoes and lentils join the party for heartiness and fiber, and it all simmers away in vegetable broth and tomatoes until tender.
We hope you LOVE this soup! It’s:
& SO delicious!
It makes a cozy meal topped with a sprinkle of vegan parmesan and served with our Best Vegan Garlic Bread or Fluffy Gluten-Free Focaccia. Or for more protein, pair with our Vegan Pepperoni, Easy Vegan Sausage (Soy- & Gluten-Free!), or Pesto “Parmesan” Turkey Meatballs.
More Nourishing Cabbage Recipes
If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo @minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!
Servings 6 (~1 ½ cup servings)
- 2 Tbsp olive or avocado oil (plus more for serving // if oil-free, sub twice the amount of water)
- 1 large onion, peeled and finely chopped (1 large onion yields ~ 3 cups or 225 g)
- 1 medium fennel bulb, trimmed and finely chopped (or sub 2 stalks of celery // 1 medium fennel bulb yields ~ 2 cups chopped or 210 g)
- 2 large carrots, peeled and finely chopped (2 large carrots yield ~3/4 cup or 90 g)
- 1/2 tsp each sea salt and black pepper
- 6 cups green cabbage, sliced into 1/4-inch slices
- 2 cups chopped kale (curly or Lacinato), sliced into 1/4-inch slices (or use more cabbage — we like the added color and texture of the kale)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp fennel seeds, crushed lightly in a mortar & pestle or spice grinder (or leave whole)
- 1 heaping tsp smoked paprika
- 1/2-1 tsp red pepper flakes (to taste)
- 8 cups vegetable broth (or store-bought)
- 1 medium-large yellow potato, peeled and chopped into 1/2-inch chunks (1 potato yields ~3 cups or 300g)
- 1 (15 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
- 3/4 cup dry green lentils
Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Once hot, add the onion, fennel (or celery), and carrot. Sauté gently for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are soft. Stir in the salt and pepper — don’t be tempted to turn the heat up to speed this up or the veggies won’t get as sweet.
Add in the cabbage and kale (if using), and sauté for another 5 minutes until wilted. Then stir in the garlic, fennel seeds, smoked paprika, and red pepper flakes. Cook for 1 more minute until the fennel seeds are fragrant.
Stir in the vegetable broth, diced potatoes, crushed tomatoes, and lentils. Bring to a simmer, cover (with the lid slightly ajar), and simmer on medium-low for 30-40 minutes, or until the lentils are tender but not mushy.
Taste and adjust as needed, adding more salt for overall flavor or red pepper flakes for heat.
Leftover soup will keep well in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated without optional ingredients.
Serving: 1 serving Calories: 251 Carbohydrates: 43.6 g Protein: 9.5 g Fat: 5.8 g Saturated Fat: 0.8 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.8 g Monounsaturated Fat: 3.5 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 1089 mg Potassium: 851 mg Fiber: 11.4 g Sugar: 12.9 g Vitamin A: 785 IU Vitamin C: 52 mg Calcium: 161 mg Iron: 4.2 mg