Situ’s Lebanese Makhlouta Recipe

Lebanese Makhlouta

Prep Time: About 90 minutes
Makes About 8 servings

This is one of my very favorite soul food recipes. This Lebanese Makhlouta recipe is a soup my grandmother used to make when I was growing up. When I would ask her what makhlouta meant, she would say, “Everything thrown in the pot” I took that to mean, a little of this, a little of that and finish it off with whatever else you have in the fridge.

I like to soak the lentils for this recipe overnight before cooking. The outer shell of the lentils contain anti-nutrients that can interfere with digestion.

When you soak the lentils overnight, you neutralize the anti-nutrients. When you are ready to use them, rinse them with fresh water before using. Here is an article about soaking beans if you are interested in learning more about the benefits of soaking.

My grandmother’s Lebanese Makhlouta recipe was always hearty and made me feel warm inside. She always added some chickpeas (garbanzo beans) and some pasta to make it a meal on its own. I have done my own subbing and instead of regular pasta, I use gluten free. There is no meat or cheese in Situ’s Lebanese Makhlouta recipe so no subbing needed there.

So many of the fantastic dishes my grandmother made were meatless. When I told her I was transitioning to vegetarian, she always remembered and would only make me foods without meat. And, she always remembered my favorites. This one is for you, Situ!

Ingredients Needed for Situ’s Lebanese Makhlouta Recipe

Ingredients for Lebanese Makhlouta

1 TBS coconut oil
1 yellow onion, diced
6 cloves of garlic, diced
2 cups of green lentils, soaked in water overnight
(they will expand to 4 cups when soaked)
12 cups vegetable broth
1 can garbanzo beans
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 TBSP dried mint leaves
2 stalks celery, sliced
2 carrots, diced
½ cup lemon juice
1 cup brown rice elbows or other small gluten free pasta

How to Prepare Situ’s Lebanese Makhlouta

Melt the coconut oil in a large soup pot
Add the onion and sauté until clear and translucent
If needed, add ¼ cup of water to the sautéing lentils so they don’t burn in the pot
Add the garlic and sauté a few more minutes
Add the rinsed lentils and stir around to combine well with the onions and garlic
Cook for about 5 minutes
Reduce heat to medium low
Add the broth and stir everything to combine
Add the garbanzo beans, cinnamon, cumin, mint, celery and carrots
Add the lemon juice
Let everything simmer in the pot, stirring occasionally
The soup will start to thicken and the lentils will start to breakdown
Add the pasta
Cook for about an hour and give the soup a taste. If the lentils are not quite done, return to cooking for a bit longer
Serve warm!

For more delicious vegan, gluten-free recipes, check out our recipes page on

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