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Recipes A to Z....."L" is for Lentils

Updated on September 9, 2009

Types of Lentils

A lentil is in the legume family. In the U.S., there are three types of lentils available: brown, red and yellow. The one most familiarly used is the brown lentil. It is actually brownish-green and is in the shape of a lens. You can get other varieties in the health food store: green, white or black. Always check your package directions before cooking, because some lentils cook faster than others.

Lentil Soup

This is probably the most common use of lentils. Its a nice, hearty, healthy soup using dried lentils. Lentils do not have to be soaked, like other dried beans. They cook in about 30 minutes. Serve with a pan of rolls, a plate of cheese, cucumber slices or salad.

1 1/2 cups dried brown lentils

6 cups cold water

1 cup chopped onions

1/2 garlic clove

2 cups chopped celery

1 cup diced carrots

2 whole cloves

2 bay leaves

4 cups vegetable stock

2 teaspoons salt

Dash of pepper

3-4 Tablespoons cider vinegar

Saute onions and garlic until onions are transparent. Combine with lentils, water, celery, carrots, cloves, bay leaves, vegetable stock, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then cook 30 minutes, or until tender, but not mushy. Add vinegar. Makes about 9 cups or 8-12 servings.

Lentil Burgers

These burgers contain only about 10 grams of fat, no cholesterol and 17 grams of protein, a healthy substitute for hamburgers.

1-14 oz. can vegetable broth

3/4 cup water

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup brown rice

3 cloves garlic

In a medium saucepan, combine broth, water, onion, rice and garlic. Bring to a boil and reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 20 minutes.

Stir in:

1 cup lentils

Cook about 25 more minutes until rice and lentils are tender. Remove from heat. Mash the mixture with a potato masher.


1 cup old-fashioned oatmeal (not quick oats) Let stand for 5 minutes.

Add 2 teaspoons soy sauce or tamari and 1 egg, beaten. Stir in 1/3 cup chopped nuts.

Shape into patties and chill in refrigerator for about 30 minutes. After chilled, saute on both sides in skillet or on a griddle until crisp. Serve with lettuce and tomato.

Lentil and Veggie Wraps

2 cups cooked lentils

1/4 cup chopped onion

1 Tablespoon fresh cilantro

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

1/2 teaspoon cumin

Mash lentils and combine with other ingredients. Spread mixture on tortilla wraps. Top with assorted chopped vegetables, such as broccoli, tomato, zucchini or summer squash and shredded Monterey Jack cheese. Roll up and enjoy!


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    • judydianne profile image

      judydianne 7 years ago from Palm Harbor, FL

      Thank you Dolores. Maybe your son will share some of his recipes, too.

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 7 years ago from East Coast, United States

      Judy - my son makes the most awesome vegetarian meals with lentils. I love that they don't take all day to cook like other beans. Thanks for the recipes!

    • judydianne profile image

      judydianne 8 years ago from Palm Harbor, FL

      Leop, thank you for the nice comment. I hope you enjoy the recipes!

    • Leop profile image

      Leop 8 years ago

      Judydianne, I love your lentil soup recipe, sounds really delicious, especially the mix of the variety. I am used to cooking with the common one, brown. Thank you for writing a great hub about it.

    • judydianne profile image

      judydianne 8 years ago from Palm Harbor, FL

      Thank you so much! I'll have to try the lemon. Feel free to link my hubs with yours and I'll do the same...

    • rmcrayne profile image

      rmcrayne 8 years ago from San Antonio Texas

      Lentil soup was one of many favorite foods when I lived in Turkey. They strained it and squeezed lemon into the final product. I think your lentil burger may be my first ever attempt at a non-meat burger.

      This hub might be a nice compliment for my Veg Soup hub. I'm off to check out your chili.