Instant Pot Jalapeño Bacon Lentils

Tender, nutrition-packed lentils, crispy bacon and spicy jalapeños come together in these Mexican-style Instant Pot Jalapeño Bacon Lentils.

Instant Pot Jalapeño Bacon Lentils #lentils #mexicanlentilsoup #instantpotlentils

Instant Pot Jalapeño Bacon Lentils

A follower recently told me she was curious to see how I prepare Mexican lentil soup since it seems so many people have different variations. It is true, just a simple Google search for Mexican lentil soup brings over 4 million results!

As many of the recipes I share, I have to say I am particularly fond of this one because I learned it from my mom. I grew up eating my mom’s sopa de lentejas (lentil soup) loaded with jalapeño, pieces of crispy bacon and so much flavor.

When I got married, this was one of the first recipes I learned from her. Now, it is one I make a few times a month because it is one of my husband’s favorites. I also love making it for my kids because lentils pack so much nutrition and protein. They are still too young to enjoy jalapeños, but there’s a simple solution to that. Check out the end of the post for my kid-friendly tip.

Check out these two other soups that are also great for the whole family!

Sopa de Tortilla (Tortilla Soup)

Mexican Meatball Soup

Using the Instant Pot

I used to cook my lentils just like my mom, in a good ole stovetop pressure cooker. You can also cook lentils on the stovetop and I have included directions for this method in the recipe. However, now that I am a proud owner of an Instant Pot (which was actually a Christmas gift from my mom), I took it upon myself to use this new, handy device to recreate this favorite.

Whichever way you choose to cook this meal the result will be amazing. Creamy, tender lentils, crispy bacon and a spicy kick from the jalapeños, it is just so good!

How to Make Instant Pot Jalapeño Bacon Lentils

To begin, sort through 1 1/2 cups of brown lentils. Pick out any debris or pebbles. Then, place the lentils in a strainer or colander and rinse thoroughly under running water.

Cleaning lentils #lentils

Add the lentils to your Instant Pot along with 2 cups of water and 3 cups of chicken broth.

Place the lid on the Instant Pot and move the valve to seal.

Pressure cook on high for 12 minutes (if your prefer softer lentils cook them for 15 minutes). Then allow the pressure to naturally release for 10 minutes. Move the pressure release valve from the sealing position to the venting position to release any remaining pressure.

Stovetop Directions

If you do not have an Instant Pot, the lentils can also be cooked on the stovetop. To do so, add the lentils, water and chicken broth to a medium pot. Bring the liquid to a rapid boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to a gentle simmer.

Cover and simmer for 20-35 minutes until the lentils are soft and tender, but not falling apart. To ensure this, check on them at 20 minutes and if they are not done, check on them every 5 minutes until they are at the right consistency.

Back to the Recipe

Whether you choose to use the Instant Pot or stovetop, the following steps are the same.

While the lentils cook, dice 5 strips of bacon into small pieces. If your bacon is extra fatty, remove some of the excess fat. In a deep pot or Dutch oven, fry the bacon pieces on medium heat until crispy.

Once crispy, add in 1 diced jalapeño, 1/2 a diced white onion, and 2 minced garlic cloves. Sauté for 3-5 minutes until the onion and jalapeño are tender and fragrant.

Add 1 diced tomato and sauté for another minute.

Bacon and veggies

Now add the cooked lentils with any remaining liquid. Add one half to one cup of hot water to your desired “soupy” consistency. Season with 1 teaspoon of salt, a pinch of black pepper, and 2 tablespoons of chopped cilantro.

Instant Pot Jalapeño Bacon Lentils #lentils #mexicanlentilsoup

Let the soup boil for 5 minutes then taste for seasoning. I usually add about another 1/2 teaspoon of salt.

Ladle into a bowl and serve with bread, quesadillas or warm tortillas. My mom always serves this along with some delicious empanadas that will be coming to the blog later this year.

Instant Pot Jalapeño Bacon Lentils #lentils #mexicanlentilsoup

Kid-Friendly Tip

For a kid-friendly version, omit the jalapeño and keep the rest of the steps the same. I always ladle out their servings at the end. Then I add the jalapeño to the remaining soup in the pot and let it simmer for a couple more minutes before serving the adults.

There you have it, Instant Pot Jalapeño Bacon Lentils. A contemporary version of my mom’s amazing recipe for sopa de lentejas that will hopefully become a favorite in your home.

I hope you enjoy!

Instant Pot Jalapeño Bacon Lentils #lentils #mexicanlentilsoup #instantpotlentils

Do you have some old favorites you cook in your Instant Pot? I’d love to know in the comments below.

5 from 4 votes
Instant Pot Jalapeño Bacon Lentils #lentils #mexicanlentilsoup #instantpotlentils
Instant Pot Jalapeño Bacon Lentils (with Stovetop Directions)
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
45 mins
Total Time
1 hr
 

Tender, nutrition-packed lentils, crispy bacon and spicy jalapeños come together in these Mexican-style Instant Pot Jalapeño Bacon Lentils.

Cuisine: Mexican
Servings: 4
Author: Gemma from Everyday Latina
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups dried, brown lentils
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 5 strips of bacon
  • 1 diced jalapeño
  • 2 minced garlic cloves
  • 1/2 diced white onion
  • 1 diced Roma tomato
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 2 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 1 tsp salt (plus more to taste)
  • 1 pinch black pepper
Instructions
Preparing the Lentils (See Notes for Stovetop Directions)
  1. Sort through the lentils. Pick out any debris or pebbles. Then, place the lentils in a strainer or colander and rinse thoroughly under running water.

  2. Add lentils to the Instant Pot with 2 cups of water and the chicken broth. Place the lid on the Instant Pot and move the valve to seal.

  3. Pressure cook on high for 12 minutes (if your prefer softer lentils cook them for 15 minutes). Then allow the pressure to naturally release for 10 minutes. Move the pressure release valve from the sealing position to the venting position to release any remaining pressure.

Preparing the Other Ingredients (Whether you use the Instant Pot or stovetop, the following steps are the same.)
  1. While the lentils cook, dice the bacon into small pieces. If your bacon is extra fatty, remove some of the excess fat. In a deep pot or Dutch oven, fry the bacon pieces on medium heat until crispy.

  2. Once the bacon is crispy, add the diced jalapeño, diced white onion, and minced garlic cloves. Sauté for 3-5 minutes until the onion and jalapeño are tender and fragrant.

  3. Add 1 diced tomato and sauté for another minute.

  4. Add the cooked lentils with any remaining liquid. Add one half to one cup of hot water to your desired “soupy” consistency.

  5. Season with 1 teaspoon of salt, a pinch of black pepper, and 2 tablespoons of chopped cilantro.

  6. Let the soup boil for 5 minutes then taste for seasoning. I usually add about another 1/2 teaspoon of salt.

  7. Ladle into a bowl and serve with bread, quesadillas or warm tortillas. 

Recipe Notes

Stovetop Directions

Add the lentils, water and chicken broth to a medium pot. Bring the liquid to a rapid boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to a gentle simmer.

Cover and simmer for 20-35 minutes until the lentils are soft and tender, but not falling apart. To ensure this, check on them at 20 minutes and if they are not done, check on them every 5 minutes until they are at the right consistency.

Kid-Friendly Tip

For a kid-friendly version, omit the jalapeño and keep the rest of the steps the same. Ladle out their servings at the end. Then add the jalapeño to the remaining soup in the pot and let it simmer for a couple more minutes before serving the adults.

Looking for another way to cook lentils in the Instant Pot?

One of my new favorite ways to cook lentils in the Instant Pot comes from a recipe by Urvashi Pitre. Check out the link to her recipe for Lebanese Lentils and Rice here.

I also have her Instant Pot cookbook and it is amazing!  Checkout the link to her cookbook below and a link to the Instant Pot I own and love.

{This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using this link.}

10 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This sounds incredible! I’ve been obsessed with lentils lately and I’m excited to try them with some spice. Thanks so much for sharing, I’ll be keeping this one for the fall!

    Reply
    1. everydaylatina Author

      You can also make it without the jalapeños. That’s how I prepare it for my kids and it is still so good because the bacon gives the lentils such great flavor.

      Reply

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