We LOVE stews and casseroles. So flavourful and nutritious, even the biggest meat eaters will enjoy these vegetarian recipes. Stews are a bit like soups in that you can throw everything in a pot and let it work it's magic with minimal effort from your side. For busy people that believe in healthy, homemade foods they are the perfect, quick, easy dinner option, and they freeze so well! Stews are also often difficult to mess up, even if you think you are the worst cook. As long as you are using a good herb combination you can get creative with your other ingredients confidently. It's a great way to use up fresh ingredients that are nearing their end. Provided you like mushrooms, this vegetarian recipe is an absolute win from all angles and so yum!
Lentil And Mushroom Stew, Ultimate Vegetarian Dinner Recipe
This recipe serves 4 and takes approximately 25 minutes to cook (excluding prep), if you are using pre-soaked or canned lentils. Allow a longer cooking time if you are using dry lentils from scratch.
- 1 Tbs olive oil for frying
- 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 1 carrot, peeled and grated
- 1 red pepper, seeded and chopped
- 2 cups cooked split red lentils (equivalent to 1 cup dry lentils).
- 300g brown mushrooms, chopped
- 100g button mushrooms, chopped
- 30ml tomato paste
- 2 Tbs fresh basil, chopped, or 2 tsp dried basil
- 1/3 cup fresh parsley, chopped, or 1 tbs of dried parsley
- 2 Tbs fresh thyme, chopped, or 2 tsp dried thyme
- 2 Tbs fresh origanum, chopped, or 2 tsp dried origanum
- 1 tsp vegetable stock (we suggest your own homemade version, if possible)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- If you are using dry lentils, soak your lentils overnight or through the day: 1 cup lentils in 2 cups of water. Drain any excess liquid from the lentils before use. This pre-soaking step is optional. You can use dry lentils as is but the cooking time will be longer.
- Sauté your onions and garlic in a pan until soft
- Add the carrots, green pepper and lentils and fry lightly with the garlic and onion
- Add all other ingredients and top up with 2 cups of water
- Bring to the boil and allow to simmer until ingredients are tender
- Season to taste with salt and pepper. Canned lentils contain salt already so if you have used canned lentils there is no need for additional salt.
- Serve hot on a bed of mash sweet potato, potato or whole grains (rice, barley, quinoa or millet all work well) with a side salad.
- Garnish with strips of red pepper and fresh parsley sprigs.
Tips For An Even Better Meal
- Got extra mixed peppers and tomatoes in your fridge that you need to use? They go well in this recipe – add them to the pot.
- Want to add some potatoes directly into the stew? No problem, add them in along with some extra water.
- If you have access to a variety of mushrooms don’t be shy to include then.
- You can serve this recipe with any of the above starch options but we LOVE the sweet potato.
- This recipe is great to make in bulk and freeze so don’t be shy to increase the quantities.
- For added variety you can use a mixture of brown whole lentils and split red lentils or even split peas. Brown whole lentils do take longer to cook so pre-cooking or pre-soaking them is recommended.
- Cheeeese! If you are a cheese fan add some grated cheese (vegan or dairy) onto the top of your stew when you serve it – YUM!
Our Personal Experience
This recipe is dietitian approved, completely whole food based and totally delicious. A firm favourite in our house and I like to keep a supply in the freezer for those days when cooking time is a luxury! An all round thumbs up!
Check out our full website for more whole food recipes for meals and snacks