Our 27 Must Try Vegetarian Lentil Recipes! (2023)
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I’ve got 27 of the best lentil recipes for you to try out, because lentils are a great food to base vegetarian recipes around!
High in protein and fibre, low in fat and packed with nutritious goodness, vegetarian lentil recipes are really something.
What’s your favorite way to eat lentils? There are so many healthy meals you can make, from tasty lentil burgers, to a hearty lentil stew.
There are also so many different types of lentils to use, all with different flavors and textures. Lentils have to be the most varied part of the legume family by far!
Let’s have a quick look at the kinds of lentils you might encounter in these easy lentil recipes.
Different types of lentils!
Brown Lentils: These are probably the most common lentil, alongside red lentils. They are brown with a mild earthy flavor. These work well for lentil burgers, soups, salads and meatloaf. They hold their shape very well.
Green Lentils: Also a very popular type of lentil. Green lentils have a slightly peppery flavor. They hold their shape and texture extremely well, so are great in salads.
Red Lentils/Yellow Lentils: These lentils range from red to yellow and the only kind sold in smaller fragments (split!). This means they are the kind that disintegrate when cooked. They are best used for smooth soups and curries (like dahl).
Speciality Lentils (beluga, puy): Beluga lentils (or black lentils) are black and shiny and look like caviar! They have a rich earthy flavor. Puy lentils are grown in volcanic earth in a certain region of France.
They have a strong peppery flavor. Both these lentils should be the star of whatever dish you make with them – they are by far the most expensive and flavorful types of lentils!
Vegetarian lentil recipes
Bonus: hearty salad, fresh flavors
Looking for an easy tabbouleh recipe? Get a load of our lentil tabbouleh – a protein packed take on the classic dish!
Bonus: comfort food, filling
Love a good bolognese but trying to eat less meat? Try our healthy, plant-based lentil bolognese – you’ll never look back!
Bonus: warming, fragrant
Follow our fool-proof simple cooking steps for the perfect coconut curry lentil soup. Packed with protein, fiber and a high-summer taste!
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Bonus: high protein, flavorful
In this superfood salad red lentils and quinoa are jazzed up with crunchy almonds, tangy olives and creamy avocado.
Bonus: super filling, simple
This protein packed vegan lentil and potato salad is a perfect weight loss recipe. It’s filling, healthy and nutritious, while still tasting amazing!
Bonus: full of fibre, loads of veggies
A tasty bowl of lentils with vegetables in a tahini sauce and cashews. This veggie comfort food is just what an autumn day calls for.
Bonus: high protein, low effort
Looking for a healthy vegetarian dinner? Try this simple oven roasted broccoli with halloumi & lentils. 32g protein each!
Bonus: creamy, comforting
This healthy high protein vegetarian moussaka is a true veggie delight with Greek soul and full of flavour and texture!
Bonus: smooth, vegan
A beautiful vegan soup starring cauliflower and lentils, spiced with a taste of Morocco. High in protein, works for lunch or dinner.
Bonus: nutritious, easy
The sexiest lentil stew you have ever eaten. A nutritional powerhouse, this recipe is here to kickstart your year – and your health.
Bonus: adaptable, firm texture
These awesome high-protein vegetarian lentil fritters can be used as lentil burgers or fritters, and even made vegan, too! Make me ahead and store in airtight containers in the fridge, for the perfect meal prep!
Bonus: fun to assemble, flavorful
These veggie lentil tacos are our new go-to meal. SO TASTY and stacked with lentil protein and fiber, it’s time to take dinner up to the next level.
Bonus: vegan, gluten free
Turkish Lentil Salad with a honey mustard dressing. Easy and quick, ready in 7 minutes. A delicious lentil recipe that is full of fiber, protein and vitamin K.
Bonus: vegan, high iron
High protein, iron and fibre in exotic Arugula and Lentil Salad that’s healthy and vegan. Only 12 minutes to make with easy to find ingredients.
Bonus: filling, simple
Four easy steps to a delicious and nutritious crispy, crunchy potato lunch. Make your colleagues jealous!
Bonus: warming, healthy
Looking for a healthy vegan soup to add to your repertoire? This lentil vegetable soup is the perfect option! Check out the recipe card now!
Lentil LoafCheck out the recipe here
Calories: 390 kcal
Ready in: 1 hour 20 minutes
Recipe by: SplashOfTaste
Bonus: filling, festive favourite
Brimming with lentils, nuts, veggies, spices, & topped with a tasty BBQ sauce, this is the best lentil loaf recipe ever!
Lentil ChiliCheck out the recipe here
Calories: 280 kcal
Ready in: 45 minutes
Recipe by: MyQuietKitchen
Bonus: hearty, quick
Even though this lentil chili is quick and easy enough for a weeknight, it just might be the BEST vegan chili you’ve ever tasted. Seriously!
There are a few tricks to making meaty, thick, deeply flavorful vegetarian chili, and once you taste the difference you’ll be hooked.
French Lentils with Caramelized Onions & PistachiosCheck out the recipe here
Calories: 234 kcal
Ready in: 40 minutes
Recipe by: CadrysKitchen
Bonus: flavorful, healthy
You’re going to love this French lentils recipe with caramelized onions and chopped pistachios. It’s wonderful as a main or side dish. Serve it over sautéed kale or alongside salad.
Cauliflower Spinach DalCheck out the recipe here
Calories: 463 kcal
Ready in: 35 minutes
Recipe by: VeganPunks
Bonus: creamy, high fibre
This red lentil curry with cauliflower and spinach is a hearty bowl of delicious lentils, with a thick sauce and a simple blend of spices.
Cauliflower and spinach make for a healthy and delicious meal. Vegan cooking doesn’t get much better than this!
Cabbage Fry RecipeCheck out the recipe here
Calories: 573 kcal
Ready in: 25 minutes
Recipe by: SavorySpin
Bonus: light, easy
This Cabbage Fry Recipe with Potatoes and Canned Lentils is such an easy, quick, and comforting dish for these cold evenings. It is a plant-based dish that is packed with flavor and totally salt free, thanks to the spices used.
Turkish Lentil SoupCheck out the recipe here
Calories: 310 kcal
Ready in: 30 minutes
Recipe by: LavenderAndMacarons
Bonus: warming, gluten-free
This traditional Turkish Lentil Soup also called Mercimek çorbası is a uniquely fragrant, cozy and satisfying soup perfect for chilly days.
You can make it in no time and enjoy for lunch or hearty dinner. This lentil soup recipe is vegan and gluten-free.
Lentil Kofta in Tomato Curry Coconut SauceCheck out the recipe here
Calories: 315 kcal
Ready in: 1 houe 40 minutes
Recipe by: TheVeganLarder
Bonus: vegan, gluten-free
These mixed lentil koftas (which are also gluten free) with tomato curry coconut sauce are easy to make. The ‘meaty’ koftas with the creamy tomato sauce are the perfect combination. Tons of flavor!
Beetroot Lentil BurgersCheck out the recipe here
Calories: 92 kcal
Ready in: 20 minutes
Recipe by: TheVeganLarder
Bonus: vegan, versatile
Yummy burgers stuffed full of plant based goodness, Lentils, Beetroot and spices! Easy to make and delicious to eat! A healthy lentil recipe for your next burger night (for more banging veggie burger recipes, try these).
Grated Carrot Red Lentil Soup with CabbageCheck out the recipe here
Calories: 279 kcal
Ready in: 40 minutes
Recipe by: TheVeganLunchBox
Bonus: vegan, hearty
A simple recipe for a hearty and healthy pot of grated carrot & red lentil soup with cabbage. Filling and delicious. Why not cook up a large pot and eat it through the week?
Mushroom Lentil RaguCheck out the recipe here
Calories: 132 kcal
Ready in: 45 minutes
Recipe by: TinnedTomatoes
Bonus: comfort food, filling
A rich mushroom and lentil ragu served with tagliatelle the Italian way. An easy your family and friends will love. Suitable for vegetarians and vegans.
Bonus: healthy alternative, high protein
There is no time for chit-chat when fluffy lentil pancakes are to be cooked. Just follow a few deliciously easy steps. Check it out now!
- Blend the egg, water, vanilla extract, banana, lentils, whole grain flour, baking powder, sugar and salt until you have a thick homogeneous batter. Some lentil streaks will be visible, but don’t worry, they won’t be noticeable when the pancakes are cooked.1 egg, 2 tbsp water, 1 tsp vanilla extract, 1 medium banana, ½ cup lentils, cooked, ½ cup wholegrain flour, 1 ½ tsp baking powder, 1 tsp sugar, ½ tsp salt
- Heat a non-stick pan and add about ⅙ of the batter (the recipe makes 6 pancakes total). Turn the heat to low and cover with a lid. Cook until the top of the pancake appears to be dry, then turn and cook until the bottom of the pancake has browned. Repeat with the rest of the batter.
- Serve lentil banana pancakes with strawberries, maple syrup and low fat greek yogurt as toppings.½ cup strawberries, 1 tbsp maple syrup, ½ cup low fat Greek Yogurt
- Be careful of not over blending the batter, this will activate the gluten and the pancakes won’t be as fluffy and soft. To facilitate the process add the liquid ingredients first to the blender.
- These are great frozen and reheated in the oven. So for people who want a quick breakfast or snack you just have to make a few batches, freeze and reheat whenever you want.
- The pancakes are great on their own, so for people who want to cut more calories I recommend skipping the maple syrup. Do not skip the yogurt though, because it adds good protein.
- Using 1/4 cup flour and 1/4 oats instead of ½ cup flour is very good as well. Resulting in less calories but also slightly less protein.
Vegetarian lentil recipes FAQs
How many calories are in lentils?
Per 1 cup (cooked): Puy lentils have 400 kcal, yellow lentils have 226 kcal, brown lentils have 230 kcal, green lentils have 230 kcal, beluga lentils have 170 kcal, red lentils have 226 kcal.
What mixes well with lentils?
Most things go well with lentils as they have a pretty plain flavor profile. Try them with roasted vegetables and fresh herbs, in a soup made with vegetable broth or a curry with sweet potatoes, coconut milk and curry powder.
Are lentils good for vegetarians?
Yes! They are high protein, high fibre and low fat. One cup of cooked brown lentils contains 17.9 grams of protein, 15.6g fibre and only 0.8g fat!
The best part is that they are a 100% plant-based protein, so there are so many vegan lentil recipes you can make. Lentils really are pantry staples for vegetarians!
How do you add flavor to lentils?
Seasoning! Try black pepper, cumin, paprika, red pepper flakes to bring out the smokiness of your lentils, and olive oil to bring out the rich flavor. Cooking them in vegetable broth also adds a lot of flavor.
Are lentils high in protein?
Yes! 1 cup of cooked brown lentils contains 17.9 grams of protein.
I hope you enjoyed trying these delicious vegetarian lentil recipes! Which different lentils did you use? Did you find a great recipe you’ll use again and again?