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Golden lentil soup with coconut spinach and lime, photographed from overhead in a deep blue bowl, garnished with a dollop of coconut yogurt. There is a wood board with sliced bread nearby. All is photographed on a beige linen tablecloth.

Golden Lentil Soup with Sweet Potatoes, Coconut Milk & Lime

A soul-satisfying golden lentil soup with sweet potatoes, coconut, spinach & lime. This healthy slow cooker recipe is simple and cozy.
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, Oil-Free, Plant-Based, Vegan, Vegetarian
Diet Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword all seasons, cayenne, cilantro, coconut milk, garlic, ginger, lime, mustard seed, red lentils, spinach, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, turmeric
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 20 minutes
Servings 6


  • Slow Cooker


  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled (mine was around 375 grams)
  • 1 medium yellow onion, peeled
  • 1 ½ cups split red lentils
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
  • 3 inches fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1 14.5 ounce 428 ml can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 14.5 ounce 428 ml can light coconut milk
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper, or more to taste
  • 1 ½ teaspoons black mustard seeds
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2-3 dried curry leaves (optional)
  • ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups tightly packed baby spinach (or more if you like!)
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • sea salt, to taste
  • chopped cilantro


  • Set a box grater over/inside your slow cooker insert. Grate the sweet potato directly into the insert. Grate the yellow onion directly into the insert as well.
  • Rinse the red lentils thoroughly, until they stop foaming up in the strainer. Shake the excess moisture off and transfer them to your slow cooker insert.
  • To the insert, add the garlic, ginger, crushed tomatoes, coconut milk, water, turmeric, cayenne, mustard seeds, cumin, curry leaves, and black pepper. Give it all a good stir. In all honesty it’s going to look sort of gross at this point.
  • Place the insert into your slow cooker unit, lock the lid on top, and set the cooker to “high.” Let the soup cook for 4 hours.
  • Once the 4 hours are up, carefully remove the lid and stir the soup up a bit. Add the spinach, lime juice, and enough salt to season to your liking. Stir the soup one more time and lock the lid back on. Keep the soup going on the “high” setting until the spinach is wilted.
  • Serve the golden lentil soup hot with chopped cilantro.


  • I only add the salt at the very end because I’m paranoid about adding it early and the lentils becoming tough as a result.
  • This recipe is naturally oil-free, but I stirred a little coconut oil into the cooker at the end for that lush, fatty slick up top. Not necessary though!
  • Grating sweet potatoes makes a huge mess, so I really do recommend doing it right within the slow cooker’s insert to keep it tidy.
  • I dropped a dense dollop of coconut milk yogurt on top of our servings and it was heavenly. Highly recommend it!
  • I think you could swing this on the “low” setting for 7-8 hours. One thing to remember is that spices tend to lose their power once you get into the 6-8 hour timeline. Taste and adjust if need be!