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Recipe | Chard, Lentil & Potato Slow Cooker Soup

Chard, Lentil, and Potato Slow Cooker Soup

Chard, Lentil, and Potato Slow Cooker Soup
What’s your favorite cookbook?

I own a ton of cookbooks, but if I had to choose the one I use the most often in my kitchen, it’s Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker by Robin Robertson. This is the book that has notes scrawled all over the pages and food spatters on the most frequently used recipes. If you’re a vegetarian and you own a slow cooker, you should really buy this book!

Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker
The thing I love about it is that the recipes are mostly unfussy. You might have to saute some ingredients before putting them in the crockpot, but other than that, things are pretty uncomplicated, which is what I like in a cookbook. I want realistic, everyday meals, you know? Something I can use, not just something with lots of pretty pictures of recipes that are such a pain to assemble, I will probably never make them.

Chard, Lentil, and Potato Slow Cooker Soup
When I was working full-time and going to library school full-time (yeah, that happened), I worked my way through a good half of the recipes in this cookbook. They were easy and I could let them cook in the crockpot all day and dinner would be ready when we got home. And without fail, they were all winners. The best part was that there were always leftovers, so we could have them for dinner the next day or freeze them. The only thing easier than a slow cooker meal is a leftover meal! Or stopping at Chipotle on the way home from work. (Yeah, that happened too.)

Chard, Lentil & Potato Slow Cooker Soup
This recipe is adapted from a kale and lentil soup that’s in Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker. It’s not super fancy, it’s not a show-stopper, but it’s a delicious, hearty soup for a chilly fall evening. I replaced the kale with chard and used a lot more than the original recipe calls for because we love Swiss chard and if I was buying a whole bunch anyway, why not use it? I even threw in the stems, so nothing goes to waste. I also added some Yukon potatoes to make this even more filling, but sweet potatoes or butternut squash would probably be just as tasty.

Chard, Lentil & Potato Slow Cooker Soup Recipe

Chard, Lentil & Potato Slow Cooker Soup

A hearty fall soup adapted from Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker's Lentil Soup with Ribbons of Kale.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 20 minutes
Servings: 6


  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion chopped
  • 1 celery stalk sliced
  • 1 large carrot sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 large bunch Swiss chard leaves torn into bite-sized pieces and stems sliced
  • 1 c. dried brown lentils picked over and rinsed
  • 4 medium Yukon Gold potatoes cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 6 c. vegetable broth
  • 1 tbsp. soy sauce or tamari
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion, celery, carrot, garlic, and stems from Swiss chard. Cover and cook until softened, about 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add cooked vegetable mixture, lentils, potatoes, broth, and soy sauce in a 4- to 6-quart slow cooker. Stir to combine, cover, and cook on low heat for 8 hours.
  • Just before soup is finished cooking, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Place reserved chard leaves in boiling water and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Drain well and stir into soup. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Craving more veg-friendly recipes? Shop our collection of vegetarian and vegan cookbooks!

There are affiliate links in this post, so if you click through and buy Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker, I’ll get a few cents out of the deal. I promise not to spend it all in one place!

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  • Reply
    September 18, 2014 at 10:32 pm

    I was wondering, could I replace the lentils with, for example white beans instead? Would I have to cook the beans first? I am allergic to lentils but this soup looks amazing! The only beans I can eat are the haricot kind, either black red or white. (So lentils, kidney beans, peas, chick peas are all a no go)
    Thanks 🙂

    • Reply
      Kiersten Frase
      September 30, 2014 at 4:38 pm

      Yes, you could replace the lentils with white beans, but I think they’d need to be cooked first.

  • Reply
    Global Diner
    October 3, 2014 at 11:25 pm

    I cooked the recipe the requisite time but the potatoes didn’t end up as soft as I thought they would. Do you think 6 hours at high would be better than 8 hours at low?

  • Reply
    November 6, 2014 at 1:22 am

    Looks so yummy! I was wondering if I could sub “small whole green lentils” for brown lentils? I got this bag of lentils at Trader Joe’s, and I couldn’t seem to find any brown lentils there. But I’m wondering if the green lentils are more likely to turn to mush.

  • Reply
    January 7, 2015 at 7:37 pm

    Hi! This looks delicious, and I can’t wait to try it! One question though; can I use kale instead of chard? My family prefers kale, and it’s much easier to get here than chard. If so, can I add the whole bunch of kale (trimmed and torn) to the crockpot, or does kale add the same bitterness as chard? Thanks!!

    • Reply
      Kiersten Frase
      January 14, 2015 at 3:11 pm

      Yes, you can definitely use kale! And you can add it directly to the pot.

  • Reply
    February 13, 2015 at 9:19 am

    I have vegetable stock not broth. What difference will it make if i use the stock? Is only broth recommended?

    • Reply
      Kiersten Frase
      February 13, 2015 at 2:45 pm

      Vegetable stock and broth can be used interchangeably in most soups – the difference is that broth is seasoned with salt, while stock is not. So you may need to add additional salt.

  • Reply
    February 27, 2015 at 1:58 pm

    These comments were most helpful, as I, too, want to use a bunch of kale I bought to make this! Thanks, folks!

  • Reply
    Doug V
    May 18, 2015 at 6:51 pm

    Well timed. I made a few adjustments. I cooked it on high instead of low. It was ready in about five hours. I added the chard directly to the pot, instead of boiling it first, in the last 15 minutes. I wasn’t concerned about any bitterness it might impart into the soup. I also added fresh thyme. I tasted it after about two hours and found it too bland so I added a pinch (well, two) of herbes de Provence. Very good. Thanks.

  • Reply
    May 18, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    Hello, could you tell me what percentage of the recipes are tofu or seitan-based? I am not a fan of either and was looking to buy eithe the vegetarian or vegan cookbook by this author. But I cannot figure out how many recipes need these ingredients.


  • Reply
    December 1, 2015 at 10:13 pm

    I can’t get over how delicious this soup was! WOW! My husband made it last night – well, we put all the ingredients into the crock pot and left it in the fridge overnight, then set it in the morning. We used green lentils because that’s what we had, and kale because the store had no chard. Something reminded me of the delicious winter soups I had in Japan years back. So satisfying.

  • Reply
    August 13, 2016 at 3:23 pm

    I am looking for foods to freeze. Will this work once frozen?

    • Reply
      August 19, 2016 at 8:36 am

      Yes, this soup is freezer-friendly.

  • Reply
    August 21, 2016 at 3:39 am

    How would you cook this recipe without a slow cooker?

    • Reply
      August 25, 2016 at 8:56 pm

      Use a large pot and sauté everything in the first step in there, then add the remaining ingredients, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook until the potatoes and lentils are tender (probably 20-30 minutes).

  • Reply
    February 27, 2017 at 9:46 am

    If using kale, would I want to add it to the pot later as I would the chard or with all other ingredients at the onset?

    • Reply
      February 28, 2017 at 9:07 am

      I’d add it at the same time – if anything it might just take a minute or two longer to cook.

  • Reply
    sohani patel
    August 31, 2017 at 11:24 am

    Just made this for dinner and it was fantastic. I’m not much of a soup eater, but with all of these clean and wholesome ingredients, I will definitely make this again. It is popping with flavor and I feel great about eating it

  • Reply
    deepika singh
    September 12, 2017 at 12:00 am

    i’m just curious about texture. and taste. i’m all about everything but they kind of remind me of other soup. like i’m not sure how i would feel. not meant to be rude at all

  • Reply
    Kathleen East
    November 27, 2017 at 7:43 pm

    Would love to try this soup so I hit the Print button . . . and nothing happened. I tried it on 2 recipes and got the same result. I’m using Google Chrome. Should I use a different browser?

    • Reply
      Katie Trant
      December 2, 2017 at 8:34 am

      Hey Kathleen, we’ve been having some problems with the print button and our IT people are working on solving it!

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