A hearty soup that incorporates those holiday ham leftovers you just might have lying around, this Healthy Ham & Lentil Soup is simple, savory, slurp-able Winter weather comfort food. Ladle it into bowls for a filling dinner, pack it into a thermos for a delicious guilt free lunch, or even take a batch to a friend.
I love my Christmas ham.
I truly do.
It wouldn’t seem like Christmas dinner without it.
Can I let you in on a little secret though? Even more than a good ham for Christmas (and even Easter) dinner, I love all the leftovers!
I think I look forward to leftovers just as much as the main event. I mean, how could I not? All the endless possibilities, and half the work of whatever meal they’re destined for is already done for me.
Typically, I dice it up and bag the ham chunks in meal-sized portions, usually about a cups worth in each baggie, stick them in a labeled gallon-sized zip-locking bag, and stock my freezer.
As I’ve gotten older, I’m slowly (but surely) learning to work smarter, not harder! Even the fat and bone gets saved for flavoring beans and the like.
This Healthy Ham & Lentil Soup is one of my favorite recipes to use leftover ham in. Hearty and heart-healthy, it’s a perfect after the holidays meal. Once you’re done chopping, walk away while it simmers and relax as the flavors slowly combine.
Are you sticking with yoga pants after indulging just a little too much in the past week? Lentils are low in fat, but high in protein and fiber. A perfect way to fill up and fuel up without worrying.
Take a deep breath, enjoy a warm bowl of soup, and smile. You’ve made it through another chaotic holiday intact.
Healthy Ham & Lentil Soup
- olive oil
- 1 onion diced
- 2 carrots peeled & chopped
- 2 stalks celery chopped
- 3 tsp minced garlic
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup lentils
- 2 cups diced ham
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp thyme leaves
- pepper to taste
- 5 oz fresh baby spinach, trimmed & washed
- Add a bit of oil to a dutch over, or other soup pot, and heat over medium heat.
- Stir in the veggies and saute until tender, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.
- Add the garlic and saute for about a minute, or until fragrant.
- Add the stock, lentils, ham, oregano, bay leaf and thyme - stirring to evenly incorporate. Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover and continue simmering the soup for an hour
- Remove the pot from heat and immediately stir in the spinach.
- As soon as the spinach has wilted, ladle the soup into bowls and serve with a hunk of crusty bread.