Hearty Orange Lentil Soup

(NC)—When scanning the grocery aisles, you may find yourself bombarded by the variety of juice options. Between frozen and fresh, concentrated and calcium-fortified, it’s hard to determine what type of orange juice is the best option for your family.

“Since extra sugars and additives find their way into some juices, it is important to reference product labels before adding items to your grocery cart”, says Lydia Knorr, MHSc., a registered dietitian with the Florida Department of Citrus. “The easiest way to determine if a juice is completely natural without added ingredients, is by making sure the front label reads “100 per cent pure juice.”

Just one serving of 100 per cent pure Florida orange juice (250 mL) contains folate, potassium, magnesium and more than a full day’s supply of vitamin C. Not only does vitamin C boost your immune system and help your body ward off dreaded winter illnesses, it also helps increase the absorption of non-heme iron to improve your overall health.

Florida orange juice can also add zest and nutritional value to your meals. Try this Hearty Orange Lentil Soup for a warm, refreshing meal option during the winter season.

Hearty Orange Lentil Soup


10mL (2 tsp) canola oil

1 onion, finely chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced

10 mL (2 tsp) chili powder

5 mL (1 tsp) ground cumin

500 mL (2 cups) red lentils

750 mL (3 cups) 100% pure Florida orange juice

875 mL (3 1/2 cups) sodium-reduced vegetable stock

75 mL (1/3 cup) low-fat plain yogurt


In a soup pot, heat oil over medium heat and cook onion, garlic, jalapeno, chili powder and cumin for 5 minutes or until softened. Add lentils and stir to coat well for 1 minute.

Add orange juice and 500 mL (2 cups) of the vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for about 20 minutes or until lentils are tender. Stir in remaining stock and heat through.

Serve in shallow soup bowls with a dollop of yogurt.

More information on the health benefits of 100 per cent orange juice and other citrus recipes is available online at www.floridacitrus.ca.