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Easy Vegan Bolognese Recipe with Lentils

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This vegan bolognese recipe is a hearty 30 minutes dinner- easy weeknight pasta that is simple, meatless, and so delicious. Simmer brown lentils with canned tomatoes, fresh herbs, spices, and olive oil for a hearty and easy sauce.

Enjoy with your favorite pasta, a bright and fresh salad, and a slice of thick crusty garlic bread. This is one quick and inexpensive recipe the whole family will love!

vegan bolognese recipe with lentil pasta sauce recipe vegan gluten free no salt added lentil bolognese without salt

We are huge pasta fans over here – and always looking for hearty homemade sauces to make during the week!  This vegetarian bolognese recipe is a fantastic weeknight meal, that uses lentils instead of ground beef, and has the same meaty texture.

I tossed this lentil Bolognese sauce with whole wheat linguine, but you can use a wide pasta noodle, or any pasta shape you prefer. I also used brown lentils for a hearty texture, but red lentils also work well in this sauce.

This Vegan Bolognese with Lentils Recipe Is:

  • Bright
  • Bold
  • Hearty
  • Thick
  • Comforting
  • Filling
  • Ready in 30 Minutes
vegan bolognese how to make a lentil bolognese vegan no salt added lentil bolognese low sodium healthy no salt tomato sauce vegan gluten free

A Great Inexpensive Pantry-Staple Pasta Sauce

This easy Bolognese is a great plant-based take on a traditional bolognese sauce recipe made with lentils instead of ground meat. Full of simple ingredients like onions, fresh garlic, herbs, spices, and lentils. A yummy vegetarian bolognese sauce that is great for a quick weeknight meal that the whole family will love.

This is one of the best vegetarian recipes that is simple to make, and makes a hearty dinner.

What’s In No Salt Added Lentil Bolognese Sauce?

Be sure to visit the recipe card below for full ingredient amounts and recipe instructions!

  • Yellow Onion, Garlic, Carrots, Parsley 
  • Brown Lentils: I love using brown lentils in recipes like this, because they are heartier than red lentils and keep their shape better, which makes enjoying them in this sauce so much fun!
  • Olive Oil
  • Tomato Paste: thickens the sauce with a deep bold tomato flavor.  I only use a no salt added tomato paste, so you can control the amount of salt in the dish.
  • Diced Tomatoes: I used a can of diced San Marzano tomatoes for added texture, but you can substitute in crushed tomatoes or  tomato sauce (or a spaghetti sauce like marinara sauce).
  • Aged balsamic vinegar – you only need a small amount for a great depth of flavor.
  • Bay Leaf – I love adding a few bay leaves in this sauce for extra flavor
  • Italian Seasoning Blend: usually has thyme, basil, rosemary, parsley, etc. I love this bright and flavorful Italian season mix which brings this amazing dish to life.
  • Vegetable Stock
  • Sea salt & black pepper
  • Red Pepper Flakes – if you like a little spice
  • Herbs – fresh parsley or fresh basil to top
lentil bolognese pasta with lentils carrots parsley no salt added tomatoes and low sodium vegetable stock sauce

How To Make a Lentil Bolognese Without Salt

  1. Cook Pasta al dente according to package instructions. Drain and set aside.
  2. Cook the lentils: in a pot, combine the brown lentils with the water, and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes until the lentils are tender, and prep the rest of the sauce.  Alternatively, you can cook the lentils in the rice cooker (my favorite method!) while you prep the rest of the sauce.
  3. In a large pot or large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic, and sauté for 6-7 minutes until the vegetables have begun to soften. Toss in the carrots, tomato paste, diced tomatoes with the juice, Italian seasonings, chili flakes and stir well to combine.
  4. Add the vegetable stock and black tellicherry pepper, stir well, and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce the sauce to a simmer, and cook over low heat for about 20 minutes until carrots are cooked through.
  5. Taste, and adjust seasoning as desired. Toss sauce with your favorite pasta, sprinkle with fresh parsley. Store leftover sauce in an airtight container, refrigerate, and enjoy within 3 days.

More Easy Pasta Recipes You’ll Love!

Get the Same Ingredients for this Lentil Vegan Bolognese Recipe

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vegan bolognese recipe with lentil pasta sauce recipe vegan gluten free no salt added lentil bolognese without salt

Vegan Bolognese

This vegan bolognese recipe is a hearty 30 minutes dinner- easy weeknight pasta that is simple, meatless, and so delicious. Simmer brown lentils with canned tomatoes, fresh herbs, spices, and olive oil for a hearty and easy sauce.
5 from 3 votes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Dinner, Sauce
Cuisine American, Italian
Servings 10
Calories 379 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 16 ounce package Pasta gluten free if desired
  • 2 cups brown lentils
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 2 large carrots chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce use vegan/low sodium version
  • 1 14-ounce can/box Diced Tomatoes with juice
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 cups Vegetable Stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon each sea salt and black pepper
  • 1 cup fresh parsley

Instructions
 

  • Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain, and set aside for later.
  • Cook the lentils: in a pot, combine the brown lentils with the water, and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 30-35 minutes until the lentils are tender, and prep the rest of the sauce.  Alternatively, you can cook the lentils in the rice cooker (**recipe below in Notes) while you prep the rest of the sauce.
  • In a large pot or large saucepan, heat the olive oil over low heat. Add the onions and garlic, and sauté for 6-7 minutes until the vegetables have begun to soften. Toss in the carrots, Worcestershire sauce, diced tomatoes with the juice, Italian seasonings, balsamic vinegar, chili flakes and stir well to combine.
  • Add the vegetable stock, bay leaves, black tellicherry pepper, stir well, and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce the sauce to a simmer, and cook over low heat for about 20 minutes until carrots are cooked through.
  • Taste, and adjust seasoning as desired. Discard bay leaves. Toss sauce with cooked pasta, sprinkle with fresh parsley, and mangia!

Notes

**Read my easy Rice Cooker Lentils Recipe here!

Nutrition

Calories: 379kcalCarbohydrates: 27gProtein: 11gFat: 3gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gSodium: 23mgPotassium: 481mgFiber: 13gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 2960IUVitamin C: 12mgCalcium: 48mgIron: 3mg
Did You Make This Recipe?Please leave a rating and comment below, let us know what you loved about it!

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5 from 3 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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