lentil bolognese

Recently, I partnered up with Healthy Foods Online again to share some of the vast array of delicious and healthy foods that they sell on their website. They very kindly allowed me to choose some ingredients that I wanted to feature on my blog, and share them in some of my recipe posts.

As the weather suddenly transformed into the fully blown Autumnal darkness that we experience where I live, I decided to choose some really nice and comforting, staple ingredients to feature in our collaboration. As soon as the weather gets colder here, all I can ever think about is eating big, hot meals and wearing thick jumpers. I really badly feel the cold – and I’m definitely not a fan of it.

When it came to deciding which ingredients I wanted, I based them around some of my favourite, warming meals. For me, there’s nothing better than food like stews, big bowls of pasta, hot puddings and curries to warm me up. Inspired by these dishes, I decided to choose things like chickpeas, lentils, pasta, and flax seeds from their store, as they are the staples I use in these kinds of recipes at home.

When my ingredients arrived, the weather was still dark and rainy outside – which was the perfect setting for me to start planning some big, comforting recipes. The first of my creations was this Lentil Bolognese. I absolutely love Spaghetti Bolognese, especially when its cold outside. So I just knew I had to make this dish.

For the bulk of the sauce, I blitzed lots of different vegetables like carrot, onion, celery and mushrooms, and combined them with lentils, chopped tomatoes and passata. Then, for flavouring I added lots of seasoning from ingredients like thyme, basil and vegetable stock – and for an added twist I also threw in two of my favourite cooking ingredients; red wine and yeast extract (marmite). The dish contains a great mixture and depth of flavours, and it makes a great way to sneak more vegetables into your diet. It’s also fairly quick to make, and it’s perfect for a good, warming dinner!

After the sauce is made, you can just serve it with whatever pasta you like. I love fettuccine, so I served this with some Rizopia Brown Rice Fettuccine – as their pastas are my favourite. If you have leftovers, you could even use the sauce to make a lasagne, like my Tricolore Lasagne! I hope you enjoy the recipe.

lentil bolognese

serves 6-8


1 onion

1 courgette/zucchini

3 mushrooms (95g)

1 carrot

2 large sticks celery (200g)

3 large cloves garlic

1 tbsp olive oil 

2 400g tins chopped tomatoes (3 cups worth)

1 1/4 cup (310g) passata

4 tbsp tomato purée

1 tbsp dried basil

1 tbsp dried thyme

2 tbsp Italian seasoning

2 tbsp paprika

1 tbsp smoked paprika

1 tsp chilli powder

1 tbsp yeast extract (marmite)

1 tbsp vegetable stock powder – I used bouillon

1 tsp salt

black pepper to taste

2 400g tins lentils 

1/4 cup (60ml) red wine


  1. Firstly, add the onion, courgette, carrot, celery, mushrooms and garlic cloves into a food processor, and blitz until finely chopped. Then, place a large wok/frying pan on a medium heat and add in the olive oil. Pour in the chopped vegetables, and fry them in the pan for 5 minutes, stirring.
  2. Next, add in the chopped tomatoes, passata, tomato puree, basil, thyme, italian seasoning, paprika, smoked paprika, chilli powder, yeast extract, vegetable stock powder, salt and pepper. Stir everything together, and lower the heat slightly. Leave to cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes.
  3. When 10 minutes has passed, add in the lentils and red wine. Stir everything together, and cook for a final 10-15 minutes until the flavours have developed. Then, when the sauce is ready, remove it from the heat and serve.

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52 thoughts on “lentil bolognese

  1. OMG, I happen to REALLY REALLY love lentils! And I totally feel like they don’t get the love that they deserve. Thank you for fixing that problem and posting this AMAZING lentil bolognese! Giiirrrrlll, this looks SO delicious! The Autumnal darkness has totally taken over my town as well and I can not think of anything more perfect than my jammies and a BIG ole bowl of this lentil bolognese! LOVE LOVE LOVE! Pinned! Cheers, Harriet! <3

    1. Thank you!!! Me too! They’re so tasty! Thank you for pinning <3

  2. I want to try it, now 😛

    The Cutielicious

  3. Since going veggie, we are BIG in to lentil bolognese. To be honest, I can’t taste much of a difference, as it is all about the tomato sauce for me anyway.

    1. Me too! Same here 🙂 thank you!

  4. That bolognese sauce is simply making my mouth water. And I absolutely love how the lentils seems to complete everything that is going on in this plate. Delicious.

  5. Mmm this bolognese looks delicious! I love how hearty it is . What a perfect fall meal!

  6. I keep meaning to make a lentil/veggie bolognese. Especially since the cooler temps are starting to set it. So I’m glad you did all the guess work for me 😉

    1. Thank you Meg! I hope you like it!

  7. Yum! I think I’m craving for italian today. Hope you have a wonderful week ahead.

    ~xo Sheree
    IG: @poshclassymom

  8. Love lentils! This is such a great idea! Pinning!

  9. this looks great 😉 I always love new thing to top my pasta with besides red tomato sauce! this looks tasty and the ingredients sounds de-lish! 😉

    1. Thank you! I hope you enjoy it!

  10. I love this meatless bolognese! Such a great idea to use lentils! It looks so flavorful, hearty and delicious!

  11. Your lentil bolognaise sounds as though it’s not missing the meat at all! I love making hearty vegetarian comfort food like this. Such beautiful flavours going on here… and I’m jealous that it’s Autumn over there 🙁

    1. Thank you so much!!! You will have to visit the UK! 😀

  12. My mouth is watering Harriet! Looks absolutely delicious!

  13. anything with lentil in it has my heart! looks lovely Harriet!

  14. Wow – bookmarked for when I’m back from Tokyo! There’s only so much sashimi a girl can eat, right? 😉 xx

    1. Thank you! Hope you have a great time in Tokyo!!! Xx

  15. oh your bolognese looks divine! so rich and full of flavour, and a whole lot healthier than many of those hearty, heavy meals we associate with the darkening of autumn. hope you can stay warm and the cold doesn’t get to you too badly over the next few months! X

    1. Thank you so much Claudia! Me too! X

  16. I am a huge fan of lentils, Harriet. This vegetarian bolognese looks utterly delicious and comforting.

  17. This is such a genius idea, Harriet! It’s a fabulous way of creating a vegetarian bolognese – and it looks incredibly yummy! You never cease to amaze me with your impressive skills at making food healthy and yummy!

  18. this looks simply fabulous, and is a fave of mine in any form.

  19. Love meatless bolognese. And lentils are always awesome! And this lentil bolognese is so yummy and full of amazing flavors. Fantastic share! 🙂

  20. Bolognese with lentils?!?!?! How freaking fabulous is this! I adore lentils – and have had it in curries and vadas and pancakes and cakes – but never in a Bolognese! This is fantastic, Harriet!

    1. Thank you so much Shashi!!

  21. I love lentil bolognese, we make this at least twice a month. Yours looks absolutely delicious, Harriet! 🙂

  22. Oooo I love this idea! I really enjoy lentils but run out of ideas fast with them! haha I’ve never tried anything like this for whatever reason! It looks fantastic!!

  23. Wow, these looks absolutely delicious! I never thought about adding mushrooms to pasta sauce, I need to try this next time 🙂


  24. Looks so good Harriet! Lots of spices and flavors going on here for a wonderful plate of comfort food. I bet it smelled fantastic and I love to use wine in my cooking as well, so I’m excited you used red wine here, gives that wonderful depth of flavor. It looks just fantastic over pasta too!

    1. Thank you so much Brandi! I love cooking with wine!

  25. I have a whole crap ton of lentils that I need to use up, so this will be perfect! <3! Pinning for when I unearth them from my moving boxes!

    1. Thank you! I hope you like it!

  26. Wow, this looks amazing, Harriet! Just like meat-filled bolognese too, so my carnivorous family wouldn’t even know the difference! I love the versatility of lentils and use them a lot in cooking.. Can’t wait to try this!

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