Looking for a hearty and healthy pasta dish? Look no further than this red lentil bolognese recipe. Packed with protein and fiber, this dish is perfect for a quick dinner any night of the week.
One of my favorite dishes to make is lentil bolognese. It is a vegan version of the classic Italian dish, and it is so hearty and flavorful.
It uses red lentils for a softer texture, though you could substitute brown or green lentils if you prefer, or want a really hearty-tasting bolognese.
It can be served over your choice of pasta, or try zoodles for a gluten-free option!
Lentils, an often underrated legume, are a powerhouse of nutrition. Packed with fiber, protein, and minerals, lentils are an excellent source of sustenance for a plant-based diet. They are also a low-cost, pantry-stable food that can be cooked in a variety of ways. Despite their many benefits, lentils often get overlooked in favor of other pulses, such as chickpeas and beans.
I hope this tasty red lentil pasta sauce will show you just how delicious and versatile lentils can be!
Red Lentil Bolognese
- 1 large onion finely chopped
- 1 carrot grated or shredded
- 2 cans chopped tomatoes
- 2 cans red lentils
- 1 teaspoon Italian herbs basil, oregano etc, fresh or dried
- Spahgetti or pasta of your choice
- ¼ cup Reserved pasta water
- Drizzle of olive oil
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast or Parmesan cheese optional
- Bring a large lidded pot of salted water to the boil. Add pasta and cook according to packet instructions (approx. 10-12 minutes).
Cook sauce (while the pasta is cooking)
- Heat a drizzle of oil in a large fry pan over a medium heat.
- Add the onions and saute until translucent. Add carrot, celery, and herbs, and cook until softened and fragrant (approx. 5 minutes).
- Add canned tomatoes, lentils, and salt. Lower heat to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally until the sauce starts to reduce (approx. 5 minutes).
- Drain pasta when it has finished cooking, reserving ¼ cup of the cooking water. Return to the pan, stir through a dash of olive oil, and cover to keep warm.
- Add the reserved pasta water to the bolognese sauce and continue to simmer until sauce thickens to desired consistency [Note 1].
- When the bolognese sauce has thickened, add it to the pan containing the cooked pasta, and toss to combine.
- Serve the red lentil bolognese in bowls topped with nutritional yeast or Parmesan cheese.
- The reserved pasta water contains starch which will make the sauce silky and help it coat the pasta nicely.
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