Red Lentil Bolognese (Vegan)

Indulge in the deliciousness of this convenient Red Lentil Bolognese that’s completely vegan, comforting, and flavorful – a testament to the magic you can create from everyday pantry staples. With a base of red lentils, canned tomatoes, and a handful of aromatic herbs, it transforms into a rich, hearty sauce perfect for topping your favorite pasta.

The secret ingredient? Finely chopped walnuts lend texture, heartiness, and a nutritious punch to this plant-based delight.

Whether you’re a long-time vegan or just looking to switch things up, this bolognese is a pantry-friendly winner you’ll want to make repeatedly.

This Red Lentil Bolognese Uses Simple Ingredients

One of the best things about this vegan bolognese is that it’s crafted from everyday pantry staples!

  • Onion and Garlic: You’ll only need these two fresh ingredients.
  • Red Lentils: I opt for red lentils here because they cook up quickly and create the perfect texture.
  • Diced or Crushed Tomatoes: Whether you prefer a chunky or smoother sauce, both diced and crushed tomatoes work. Use them along with their juices.
  • Tomato Paste: Essential for a rich and robust tomato flavor.
  • Dried Herbs: I stick with dried basil and oregano for that classic spaghetti sauce taste, but feel free to use your preferred herbs.
  • Walnuts: These finely chopped walnuts add a hearty texture to the sauce and boost protein and healthy fat.

How To Make This Simple Red Lentil Bolognese

Creating this red lentil bolognese is a breeze, and it all happens in just one pot. Here’s how to do it:

  1. In a large pot, sauté the onion and garlic in olive oil.
  2. Add the diced or crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, salt, pepper, and dried herbs to the pot.
  3. Pour in the broth and add the red lentils. Bring everything to a simmer and cook until the lentils are tender.
  4. Stir in the finely chopped walnuts for that perfect texture.
  5. Serve it up while it’s warm and get ready to savor the deliciousness!

How to Make Variations With Your Bolognese

Dive into the world of variations with your bolognese. Here are some ideas to elevate your meal:

  1. Nut-Free Option: If you’re looking to go nut-free, simply skip the walnuts or swap them out with finely chopped sunflower seeds. A food processor works best for achieving that ideal texture.
  2. Lighten Up: For a lower-carb twist, serve your bolognese with spiralized zucchini noodles. It’s a fresh and healthy take on a classic.
  3. Extra Veggie Boost: If you want to up the veggie quotient, consider adding finely chopped bell peppers, carrots, or mushrooms. These colorful and flavorful additions are sure to enhance your bolognese experience.