clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Italian Lentil Soup New Year's Tradition

Italian Lentil Soup

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 14 reviews
  • Author: Roz | La Bella Vita Cucina
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x


This is a very traditional soup that Italians enjoy for ringing in the new year!  It’s absolutely delicious too!  But hey, we all need a little bit more good health and good fortune too!


Units Scale
  • 2 cups lentils, rinsed twice in a colander under cold water
  • 6 cups chicken broth (3 tall containers, not the cans)
  • 1 vegetable bouillion cube
  • 23 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil for sautéing the soffrito
  • 8 oz. pancetta, diced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 celery stalks with leaves attached, diced
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 cup fresh Italian parsley, stems removed, washed, and minced
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme
  • 1/4 cup freshly minced basil
  • 1 12oz. can Italian plum tomatoes (preferably San Marzano), crushed with your hands (or buy it already diced/chopped)
  • 1 small 6-oz. can tomato paste
  • 2 cups fresh spinach leaves or escarole, rinsed well and chopped
  • (optional) pinch of hot red pepper flakes (peperoncini)
  • 2 rinds of parmigiano reggiano cheese
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 short sprig fresh rosemary
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • salt and pepper
  • Serve with: freshly grated Parmigiano cheese, pass around to guests


  1. Rinse the lentils in cold water in a colander. Umbrian lentils are so tiny that a paper towel or thin towel is necessary to prevent them from falling through the holes of the colander.
  2. Drizzle olive oil into the Instant Pot and set it to ‘SAUTE’.  The Instant Pot will take about 5 minutes to pre-heat. 
  3. When the olive oil is hot, add the chopped pancetta and saute’ for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the soffrito of onions, carrots, and celery.  Stir.
  5. Cook, stirring often, until the onions, carrots, and celery are semi-soft, for about 2 minutes.
  6. Turn off Saute.  Stir in the garlic, tomatoes, tomato paste, chicken broth, and bouillon cube.
  7. Set the Instant Pot to ‘SOUP’ and bring everything to a boil.
  8. Add the lentils, parsley, spinach/escarole, seasonings, and cheese rinds.
  9. Place the lid on and make sure that the release valve is in the “sealing” position.
  10. Press the ‘MANUAL’ button and set the time for 10 minutes.  The Instant Pot will pre-heat for 10 minutes and then begin to cook.
  11. After 10 minutes, quick-release by flipping the release value to “VENTING” (a little bit at a time).
  12. Once venting is complete, remove the lid and stir gently.
  13. Taste and add additional salt and pepper to taste preferences if desired.
  14. SERVE!
  15. Buon Appetito!


  • For all of your meat-lovin’ family and friends, it’s nice to offer 1 pound of sweet Italian sausage links, (or spicy hot sausage if you prefer) cut into slices (to serve alongside the soup on New Year’s Eve.
Verified by ExactMetrics