FoodLink - Purdue Extension

Corn and Turkey Meatball Lentil Soup with Whole-Wheat Pita Chips

15 min
1 hr 10 min
Total Time
1 hr 25 min
Servings: 6


For the meatballs
Nonstick cooking spray
2 slices whole-wheat bread
3/4 pound lean ground turkey
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon fresh basil leaves
For the lentil soup base
2 tablespoons olive oil
8 garlic cloves (peeled and crushed)
2 1/2 cups sweet kernel corn
1 1/2 cups carrots (peeled and diced into ¼-inch pieces)
1 cup celery (chopped)
2 1/2 cups tomatoes (diced)
1 1/2 cups dry lentils (rinsed)
11 cups fat-free, reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
Salt and pepper to taste
Low-fat shredded mozzarella cheese for topping
Whole-wheat pita chips


For the meatballs

  1. Dry out the whole-wheat bread by leaving it out, uncovered for 24-48 hours. Or, place it in a 350°F oven for 15 minutes.
  2. Heat oven to 375°F and spray a large baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.
  3. Place dried bread in food processor, and process until you make breadcrumbs that are relatively uniform in size.
  4. In a large bowl, combine the breadcrumbs with the turkey, eggs, and basil. Mix all ingredients thoroughly.
  5. Roll the mixture into 1-inch meatballs and place them on the baking sheet.
  6. Bake for about 25 minutes, turning the meatballs every 3-5 minutes to prevent them overly browning.

For the lentil soup base

  1. In a large stock pot or dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
  2. Add the garlic, corn, carrots, celery, and tomatoes and cook until the vegetables are soft and the tomatoes are reduced (about 20 minutes).
  3. Stir in the lentils and stir, then add the chicken broth, chili powder, and cumin.
  4. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Stir one more time, then reduce the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook until the lentils are tender (about 45 minutes). Season to taste with salt and pepper.

To serve

  1. Stir the meatballs into the soup, being careful not to break them when you stir. For the best taste and to increase thickness, let the soup simmer for an additional hour. Serve hot with mozzarella on top. Enjoy with a side of pita chips for dipping!

Quick Tips

Breadcrumbs are best made with stale bread.