How To Serve Homemade Vegan Pasta
Like for any pasta, you can add cheese on top of your pasta. There is plenty of vegan-friendly cheese available at the grocery store, like vegan parmesan or vegan mozzarella. If you dont fancy the vegan cheese, then add one or a few of the following vegan pasta topping ideas:
- Coconut milk or coconut cream, add a drizzle on top of your plate for extra creaminess.
- Fresh herbs chopped basil or parsley or sage.
- Olive oil a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil enhances the sauces flavor in this easy red lentil recipe.
- Chilli flakes for spicy pasta.
Why You Will Love This Recipe
This pasta salad is a fantastic way to get your daily intake of plant-based goodness. On top of being packed with colorful vegetables, the addition of red lentil pasta and canned chickpeas makes it super high in plant protein and fiber.
Here are more reasons to love it:
- Its a great way to enjoy lentils! Lentils are high in protein, fiber and iron.
- It has all the wonderful Mediterranean flavors, from the classic tomatoes, cucumbers and olives to my creamy homemade vegan Greek dressing!
- Its a perfect make ahead salad thats great for meal prep or your next potluck party.
Whats Red Lentil Pasta Made Of
Red lentils are one of many pasta alternatives are pastas that have been made without using regular wheat or semolina flour.
But how is this possible?
Red lentils are part of the legume family, along with beans, split peas and chickpeas.
Legumes can be dried and ground into flour, and that is what is used to make red lentil pasta.
The only two ingredients needed to make red lentil pasta are red lentil flour and water.
Its really that simple!
The water is added to the red lentil flour and kneaded to form a dough before being rolled out and shaped.
This can also be done with other flour alternatives, including chickpeas, quinoa, and rice flour.
Many pastas use eggs as a binder, but red lentil pasta simply uses water, which makes it suitable for vegans.
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Can I Use Different Greens
Yes! I mention some options in the recipe below.
Good swaps for the kale would be spinach, Swiss chard, collard greens or dandelion greens , even kohlrabi greens would work!
If youre wondering what kind of kale to use in this recipe, any of them will work.
Shown in the pictures is red kale but regular green curly kale or lacinto kale will also work.
I usually buy dinosaur kale as I find it most tender and easily digestible but I switched it up this time with a gorgeous bunch of red kale.
Perfect Easy Vegan Dinner Or Lunch Idea
Serve while still warm and fresh, and enjoy the left overs as a cold pasta salad .
Want to see more healthy vegan dinner recipes?
If you’re into spicy you’re going to love this Healthy Buffalo Cauliflower Casserole, or this Easy Vegan Smoky Red Lentil Stew with hearty quinoa on the side.. or if you’re in the mood for nachos you’re going to love this Best Vegan Loaded Nachos Ever recipe.
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This veggie Bolognese-style sauce is great served with pasta and crams in three of your five-a-day
Top Tips To Dealing With Gluten
While its true that gluten-free pasta doesnt necessarily behave the same way as traditional pasta when cooked, it doesnt mean that its not enjoyable. Its just about learning to deal with the pasta in a slightly different way than youre used to.
One of the common complaints about gluten-free pasta is that it can easily overcook and become mushy or even break apart, and its true. This is easily remedied, though, by learning the cooking times of the pasta youre dealing with. Its true that, without gluten, this red lentil pasta is more fragile and will break down if overcooked so make sure not to overcook it.
In fact, there are a few tips that I can provide for dealing with gluten-free pasta, like this lentil pasta, to get the best results you can!
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Creamy Sundried Tomato Garlic Sauce
and of course its free of refined oil, refined sugar, and it happens to be gluten free as well, so hooray for that!
I love using lentil pasta as my pasta of choice. Its gluten free, less processed than wheat pasta, and its alkaline compared to wheat which is acidic to the body.
Ive tried black bean pasta before and Im not really a fan. Not sure if its user-error but black bean pasta always turns out really mushy for me, and breaks down way too easily.
How Does Red Lentil Pasta Taste
This is the best red lentil recipe for creamy pasta lovers! Red lentils are the best to turn a sauce into the creamiest sauce without adding any dairy.
You dont even need to soak the lentils or use any fancy kitchen tool to make this sauce.
The red lentil act like all-purpose flour in a white sauce recipe. They thicken the sauce and create the most delicious creamy tomato pasta sauce.
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Expert Tips And Recipe Faq
- Veggies: The lentil sauce goes well with a bunch of different veggies. Add diced bell pepper, shredded carrot, diced broccoli, etc. along with the onions for an extra serving of veggies.
- Greens: Stir in your favorite green at the end for a pop of color and iron. Spinach and kale should wilt very quickly.
- Lentil texture: Red lentils get mushy pretty quickly but I prefer them to have a firmer texture in this pasta, like with these lentil patties. Think al dente pasta. Of course, you can cook it to be soft and mushy if you prefer!
Can I use green or brown lentils instead of red?
Yes, green or brown lentils will work but will take longer to cook. Red lentils should be ready after 10-15 minutes of simmering, whereas brown and green can take 20-25 minutes.
How do you store and reheat leftovers?
I store the pasta sauce separately from the pasta, but they can be stored together if you prefer. Toss pasta with a bit of olive oil if stored separately to keep it from sticking to itself.For best quality, keep both containers refrigerated for 3-4 days. Reheat individual bowls in the microwave or the entire red lentil sauce on the stovetop over medium-low heat until warmed through.
What do you serve with this?
Garnish the lentil pasta with Parmesan, basil, and red pepper flakes. Some kind of garlic bread is always a good option, as well as a small green salad.
How To Make This Red Lentil Pasta Recipe
Step 1: Heat a large pot over medium heat with the olive oil. Once hot, stir in the carrot, onion, pepper, and celery. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes, until veggies are soft.
Step 2: Stir in the garlic, Italian seasonings, salt, and pepper. Cook an additional 2 minutes.
Step 3: Stir in the tomato paste, then allow to cook down for 3 minutes. Pour in the chicken broth, scrape the bottom of the pan, and cook for 3-4 minutes.
Step 4: Stir in the tomatoes and their juices, slightly breaking up the tomatoes. Allow to simmer, uncovered for about 30 minutes.
Step 5: While sauce simmers, cook red lentil pasta according to package directions.
Step 6: Transfer sauce to blender you may need to do this in batches depending on the size of your blender. Remove the middle portion of the blender lid to allow steam to escape. Blend well. Or, use an immersion blender directly in the pot.
Step 7: Combine the cooked pasta with the sauce. Top with Parmesan cheese to serve, or vegan Parmesan alternative, if preferred.
Step 8: Enjoy!
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Kitchen Supplies Needed For This Easy Red Lentil Pasta Primavera:
- A large skillet- preferably non-stick however, any skillet will work. These Ballarini Parma Forged aluminum nonstick skillets are my favorite!!
- A wooden spoon- a set of wooden spoons are a must have in the kitchen!!
- Large pot- I use my Le Creuset 5.5 qt Dutch Ovens for just about everything, including boiling pasta! Its a must have in my opinion. They are pricey but last forever!! Here is a less expensive option that also looks great!!
Is Red Lentil Pasta Healthy
Yes, red lentil pasta is a healthy plant-based meal packed with vegan protein and nutrients.
Red lentils are excellent vegan protein, with about 25% protein and full of nutrients like B vitamins, magnesium, zinc, and potassium. They are also very low carb. 100g contains only 20g of carbs, including 8g of fiber, which means it has only 12g of net carbs per 100g!
As a comparison, chickpea, a good plant-based protein source, contains 44g net carbs/100 g. So if you are looking for a vegan, low-carb dinner, red lentils are a great choice.
For more on vegan protein sources, please read my article on where to find plant-based protein.
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How To Make This Recipe: Step
Heres a quick visual guide on how to make this Mediterranean Red Lentil Pasta Salad. The full recipe with exact amounts can be found below in the recipe card.
STEP 1:Roast the zucchini. Toss zucchini slices with olive oil, salt, pepper and oregano and roast on a baking tray until tender.
STEP 2:Cook the pasta according to instructions on the package.
STEP 3: Soak the onions. Dont skip this step! Soaking onions in cold water takes no effort and takes away the sharp taste of onion.
STEP 4: Make the dressing. Use this recipe for my Homemade Greek Dressing
STEP 5: Chop the veggies. Cut cherry tomatoes and olives in half, dice cucumbers and roasted peppers.
STEP 6:Assemble the salad. Add all the veggies to the pasta, pour in of the dressing and toss everything together. If you like lots of dressing, drizzle more and toss until coated.
Why I Love This Recipe
Red lentils are a nutrition powerhouse and they are so easy to incorporate into pasta dishes! Here I used store-bought red lentil pasta, but you could easily use regular pasta and add 1/2 cup to 1 cup cooked red lentils into the sauce instead. Its very versatile in that way!
And, Ive added vegetables of almost every color of the rainbow to maximize the veggie nutrition benefits. This is a great recipe for picky eaters who do like pasta sauce but are not crazy about eating whole pieces of cooked veggies.
My daughter isnt particularly picky but she still prefers a veggie packed red sauce like this to actually eating a serving of cooked veggies.
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Gluten Free Pasta Salad
If you avoid gluten in your diet, replicating the texture of traditional pasta can be hard. The gluten proteins give pasta the texture were familiar with. However, there are alternatives! More food brands are creating gluten-free options with lentils, beans and potatoes. Lentil noodles hold well together while cooking and the texture, while different than traditional pasta, isnt too noticeably different. Here are some ideas if youre in need of gluten-free pasta options!
Besides the obvious red lentil noodles, gluten-free products are being made from chickpeas, peas, other types of lentils, potatoes, rice, quinoa flour and more!
Keep in mind, if you dont need to avoid gluten for medical or dietary reasons, theres no benefit to adopting a gluten-free diet. Many people get the impression from the media that a gluten-free diet is healthy but thats just a bunch of marketing hype to get people to spend $$$
Eat gluten-free options because youre interested to try something different, truly enjoy the food or need to for medical or dietary reasons.
Red Lentil Pasta Salad
Red Lentil Pasta Salad is a lightened up version of the classic pasta salad with a Mediterranean twist. Its made with red lentil pasta, which is high in protein and fiber, canned chickpeas, tomatoes, cucumbers, roasted red peppers, zucchini and olives. Its mayo free, gluten-free, vegan and amazingly delicious!
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How To Make Red Lentil Pasta With Kale
This is a simple 20 minute or so dish with quick steps and a short ingredient list.
First, bring a pot of water to a boil. Once boiling, add the red lentil pasta and cook according to the directions on the package.
I usually drain the pasta a minute before the low end of the cooking time range the package says because I like my pasta al dente.
Drain and rinse with cold water and set aside while the garlicky lemon kale comes together.
In a large skillet, add the olive oil and garlic over medium heat.
Adding the garlic to the skillet before the oil gets hot is key to infuse the oil with the flavor and not overcook/burn the garlic. So make note of this as most recipes have you add garlic once the oil is hot.
Once sizzling, add the kale and vegetable broth. Stir to coat the kale in the oil and garlic mixture and continue cooking until the kale wilts, about 5 minutes.
Turn off the heat and add the lemon juice and zest. Add the cooked red lentil pasta to the skillet and toss everything together until well combined.
Serve the pasta with the prepared toasted walnut and nutritional yeast topping.
Hearty Red Lentil Pasta
by Cassidy Reeser · This post may contain affiliate links.
This hearty protein-packed red lentil pasta sauce is the perfect 30-minute weeknight meal for pasta lovers! It’s healthy, flavorful, and made with mostly pantry staples.
This is one of those vegetarian pasta recipes that you’ll want to add to regular rotation because it’s easy to throw together using pantry staples, but it is still flavorful and delicious!
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Mediterranean Inspired Red Lentil Pasta Recipe
Do the flavors from different parts of the world take you on a virtual journey? I find taste to be one of the strongest triggers for transporting me to another time and place. When asked by the Meatless Monday team to create a red lentil pasta recipe using lentil penne from Modern Table Meals, spring time and the Mediterranean came to mind.
The robust flavors of citrus, olives and fresh basil were combined for a Mediterranean Inspired Red Lentil Pasta Salad. This recipe will cure a case of wanderlust, and my gluten free friends will especially enjoy a trip to Italy right from their own kitchen.
Lentil Pasta With Vegan Butter & Garlic Sauce
posted onjump to recipe
After telling you all about why you should be eating lentils, I figured it was a great idea to post a recipe that you can make easily . Even the most skeptic of veggies will love this. This Lentil Pasta With Vegan Butter & Garlic Sauce is at the top of my weeknight menu. Its protein packed, super healthy, and so mouth watering delicious. Add some broccoli to it and youre all set.
I buy this pasta at Trader Joes. This is the first lentil pasta Ive tried and I absolutely love it. I was a bit hesitant at first but I said ah Ill just make something simple out of it and it has now become a favorite. I wasnt feeling too keen on using a tomato sauce with this although I guess a vegan cream sauce would be delish. If youve tried this pasta that way let me know! Id love to make it.
When eating a more plant rich diet its really important to make sure youre getting all the key quality nutrients daily that help our bodies function. We need protein, we need iron, we need fiber. This dish is a well balanced vegan meal and lentils play the top role. In just 3/4s cup you get 13g of protein from the lentil pasta itself! Its important to make sure your eating styles are balanced so you get everything you need daily. So each meal you eat should be proportioned in a way where you have protein, healthy fats, healthy carbs, iron, fiber, etc.
Lentils are one of the top leading sources of plant-based protein. See all the health benefits of eating lentils here.
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Red Lentil Pasta With Veggie Packed Tomato Sauce
This healthy red lentil pasta recipe uses pasta that is made from lentils, but you can also use traditional pasta, whole-grain pasta, or even gluten free like brown rice pasta and add lentils to the sauce instead. Ill show you both ways to make it, depending on what you prefer!
Note: this post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
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Healthy Lentil Pasta Mac And Cheese
Each serving has 218 calories and 8 grams of fat.
- 1 packageBarilla Red Lentil Rotini Pasta, see shopping tips
- 2 tablespoons reduced-fat butter or Smart Balance Light
- ½ teaspoon dry mustard powder
- teaspoon cayenne pepper or leave out if you dont want it a little spicy
- cup + 1 tablespoonreduced-fat milk
- 1¼ cups low fat cottage cheese or part skim ricotta cheese
- 1 cuplight cheese such as Mozzarella, cheddar or a blend of cheeses, shredded
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
- 1 cup frozen peas and carrots, defrosted, see prep tips
- ¼ cup light shredded cheese such as Mozzarella, cheddar or a blend of cheeses
- 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, grated
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