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A richly spiced Moroccan-inspired soup, full of flavor, nutrients and soul-warming color. Saffron, dried apricots and preserved lemon give this Chicken Lentil Soup depth. It is easy to throw together, making it perfect for any day of the week!
It is not how much we have, but how much we enjoy, that makes happiness. ~Charles Spurgeon
My son Fin and I have committed to a walk around the block, with Bo dog, just before bedtime. Leaving the cozy warm house is not always easy, however, as soon as we step outside there is something so tranquil and calming about the darkness and the feeling of the night air on our skin. It is like our cells recognize the season and we become more grounded and settled sensing place and time of day. It is a lovely simple ritual that slows us down and brings us right into the moment. I try to remind myself that someday I may be longing for times like these with my boy, giving me incentive to carry on with simple actions that bring joy.
This time of year also signifies soup season for me. I can eat it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner… it just feels so nurturing! Plus it is easy to pack nutrition into the soup.
This Moroccan inspired Chicken Soup is pretty easy to throw together. The colors of this soup make it that much more delicious. Perfect for winter’s dark days, a little color does wonders for body and soul.
Gather up ingredients. Taking time to enjoy the aromas of the spices.
With organic ginger root, don’t bother peeling.
Start sautéing with onion and ginger.
Sauteing for about 5 minutes until the onion starts to soften and caramelize.
Saute’ another minute more to enliven the flavor of the spices.
Lightly crush saffron.
Add stock, lentils and whole chicken thighs. Simmer 30 minutes.
Remove cooked chicken thighs and shred.
Add shredded chicken back into the soup along with the fresh spinach, preserved lemon and honey.
Divide the fragrant brothy soup among bowls and enjoy with fresh baked pita bread or crusty bread.
I hope this Moroccon Chicken Lentil Soup recipe brings you some moments of happiness.
You may also enjoy:
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- Our 20 Best Broth-Based Soup Recipes
- Moroccan Lentil Quinoa Soup
- Moroccan Chickpea & Sweet Potato Salad
- Homemade Pita Bread
Moroccan Chicken Lentil Soup with Spinach, and Preserved Lemon
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Total Time: 50 minutes
- Yield: 6 cups 1x
- Category: Soup, chicken,
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: moroccan
- Diet: Gluten Free
A richly spiced Moroccan-inspired soup, full of flavor, nutrients and soul-warming color. Saffron, dried apricots and preserved lemon give this brothy Chicken Lentil Soup its depth. Easy to throw together, perfect for weeknight dinners.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
- 4 cups chicken stock or chicken broth
- 1/2 cup dry brown lentils
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon saffron
- 1/4 cup dried apricots, chopped in small pieces
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, (close to 1 pound)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons preserved lemon, minced
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 3–4 oz fresh spinach
- 1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley
- In a medium soup pot, sauté the onion and ginger in olive oil over medium heat, until soft and lightly caramelized, about 5 minutes.
- Add cumin, cinnamon, turmeric, paprika, and cayenne, saute another minute.
- Add chicken stock, lentils, salt, saffron, dried apricots, and chicken thighs.
- Bring to a simmer and cover with lid vented for 30 minutes.
- Carefully remove chicken and shred, pulling apart with 2 forks. Return chicken to the soup pot.
- Add the preserved lemon, honey, fresh spinach, and parsley, and serve!
Serve with crusty bread or fresh pita bread.
Soup will keep 4-5 days in the fridge.
- Serving Size: 1 1/2 cups
- Calories: 412
- Sugar: 7.7 g
- Sodium: 1088.9 mg
- Fat: 13.2 g
- Saturated Fat: 3 g
- Carbohydrates: 30.5 g
- Fiber: 4.1 g
- Protein: 42.6 g
- Cholesterol: 147.3 mg
Keywords: chicken lentil soup, moroccan chicken soup, moroccan lentil soup, moroccan chicken lentil soup recipe, chicken soup recipes, broth based soup recipe
So delicious!!! There are so many layers of flavor in this soup you can’t stop eating it. I, fortunately, made a mistake with the recipe and added 8 cups of broth rather than 4 and immediately recognized what I had done, so I started a new pan of the onions, spices, etc. to double the recipe. I’m glad I did. I could eat this soup for breakfast!! The combination of savory, sweet and tart is addicting. Easy and delicious.
Love that resourcefulness on your mistake. So glad you had more opportunity to enjoy 😉!
This soup is fabulous. I’m going to serve it to guests soon…what’s a good salad and dessert to compliment?
If you search Moroccan on the blog it will bring up some recipe ideas!
This soup is so delicious and flavorful! I will definitely add this to my soup recipe favorites!
Glad you enjoyed this one Anne!
I make this recipe a few times a year and love its heartiness and balanced flavor.
Great to hear Alyssa.
This soup is amazing! I somehow had all the ingredients on hand which never happens so I was excited to make this on a weekday. It was easy to pull together, smelled wonderful and was a hit with my family! I could not wait to have the leftover soup the next day! I shared the recipe with friends I was so excited about it and 3 of them made it and loved it too!!!
Yay Eva, so happy you all enjoyed this one!
This was absolutely delicious!
Awesome Lauren- so happy you liked it!
Hey Sylvia I’m thinking about the Moroccan Chicken Lentil Soup tonight…I’m Vegan. What are your thoughts w/o chicken? Trying to go lite on the Soy/Tofu, any thoughts would be great. Thanks.
Hi Jim, Start with a rich vegetable broth (we have a recipe on the site). You could add more veggies such as cauliflower, carrots, white sweet potato, oyster mushrooms. As well as chick peas or even jackfruit (you may need to balance the slight tartness with sweetener). Love to hear what you try!
For my first time making this recipe, I found it easy to pull together on a weeknight. The result was incredibly flavourful yet balanced. Next time, I will prepare the preserved lemon ahead of time and buy saffron.
Wonderful Jamie, great to hear!
I’ve made this twice now, both time for dinner guests who raved and asked for the recipe. A sure sign of a winning recipe!
Thanks so much for ALL your great recipes which I turn to over and over again.
So great to hear Leslie!
I have made this soup (more like a stew) twice. I used boneless skinless chicken breast this time – good – but more flavorful the first time with bone-in thighs. I also subbed 1/2 tsp ground ginger for fresh and added the apricots with the spinach so they maintain their texture a bit more. I’m certain leftovers will be over the moon.
Wonderful Diane, thanks!
My new favorite soup! So healthy, tasty and easy to make!
Loved this. I was just looking for a recipe where I had everything on hand, and this was it. Huge success! If you have a big eaters in your family, I’d say that this will only serve 3 hungry adults, because everyone went back for seconds! The key is the preserved lemon – it sends it over the top. A keeper!
Yet another keeper! This is ultra delicious and easy to make. We are big fans of preserved lemon and just loved the flavour profile. I used green cabbage instead of the spinach, as this is what I had left in the fridge. It worked out beautifully. Thank you for all your inspiration and spot-on recipes.
Thanks so much Bettina! Love the cabbage.
Very good. The preserved lemon is critical. One suggestion would be to specify the WEIGHT of boneless chicken you suggest. 4 boneless thighs could weigh anywhere from 14-24 ounces. I used around 15 oz. of boneless chicken breast, which seemed about right.
Thanks for the helpful suggestion Mary! Will note the recipe. 🙂
I have leftover roasted chicken. what would be the best way to incorporate it into the recipe?
I would just add it in the last 10 minutes of simmering.
Followed your advice. The recipe was excellent.
Awesome! Thanks E.B.
I made this on Monday and am really looking forward to the leftovers tonight. This is insanely delicious and a definite keeper. So much flavour. Great recipe!
Thanks Bettina. Leftovers are the best!
This is just insanely delicious! Such depth of flavour for so little time and effort. Wow.
Am lucky to have a Moroccan grocer around the corner so preserved lemon was no problem and so dang good! Also able to get “Marrakech“ chicken already in a moroccan marinade. Used prunes instead of apricots just because my husband doesn’t like apricots.
So eternally grateful for all the deliciousness you guys serve up!
Thanks so much Beverly! Prunes sound great. So happy you enjoyed!
HooHaw! Made this exactly per the recipe; wanted to use up some of my preserved lemons. What a treat! I got 2 full quarts of the soup which looks like 2 lunches for the 2 of us. I agree that winter is soup weather & will look at other of Silvia’s offerings.
Awesome Jim! So happy you liked it, and yay for lunches already made!
This looks delicious! I don’t have dried apricots. What do you think about subbing either currents or yellow raisins?
Either would work. Yellow raisins sound good!
Oh Tonia! This recipe was really, really good. I had to leave out the preserved lemon (will be preserving this week to have some on hand from now on), but the flavors of this soup were both a little exotic (to me anyway) and really comforting. My favorite combination. The saffron really shines in this soup, and the honey finish at the end shouldn’t be left out, in my opinion. It brings balance to all the flavor profiles.
Thanks Amanda! So glad you liked it!
Looks like a recipe inspired by Harira 🙂
Made this today but a super simple version of it. Skipped preserved lemons, honey, and apricots, and I used powder saffron. I also used frozen spinach leaves.
I reduced the recipe down to 2 people with an app, and the water was definitely not enough, I would double the water next time.
I used breast which was fine. And i marinated the chicken in the same spices used for the soup. I also braised the chicken in the pot before adding the water.
It was delicious nonetheless though! I will try with the honey next time for the sweetness. And will try with lemon juice at the end before serving.
Sounds Perfect Ing!