Versatile, substantial and delicious – and not to mention cheap – lentils are a brilliant plant-based protein that everyone should have in their store cupboard.
These little pulses come in many different varieties and are nutritional powerhouses: they’re high in fibre, full of protein, low in saturated fat and a source of essential micronutrients, including iron. And an 80g portion counts as one of your 5-a-day, too. They are brilliant for padding out meat in dishes, such as curries, stews and soups, or replacing it entirely in vegetarian cottage pies, shepherd’s pie and meat-free Bolognese.
So whether you’re on a meat-free mission or simply looking to reduce your meat intake, we’ve got easy and delicious recipes that hero the lovely little lentil.
For something fresh and zingy, this lentil tabbouleh salad will really hit the spot. The taste will get better the longer the flavours can infuse, so batch it up and keep in the fridge for your weekday lunches.
Transform a tin of brown lentils into these taverna-style keftedes (Greek meatballs). Topped with Greek-style yoghurt flecked with dill, lemon and garlic, and served with a green salad, this is one lovely lunch.
Liven up a pouch of pre-cooked lentils with tender broccoli, tinned anchovies, preserved lemon and a little fresh chilli for a store-cupboard dinner that’s ready in 13 minutes!
Crunchy veg, fresh herbs and fluffy bulgur wheat are the perfect plate fellows for yellow lentils in this sunshine salad. Great for barbecues, picnics or lunch boxes.
You can even add lentils to your brunch game by turning them into refried lentils and topping with fried eggs and a zingy salsa.
Lentils love a bit of spice and work a treat in this silky, coconutty soup. Make a batch at the weekend and your weekday lunches will be a dream.
If you’re looking for a fantastic vegan main, these stuffed onions are for you. Serve warm with a crispy rocket salad.
Hungry for more? You’ll find loads more delicious lentil recipes here.