After eating lunch at home for the 350th time in the past 12 months, I decided last week that it’s time for a refresh.
I immediately thought of lentils, chopped some veggies, and drizzled the whole thing with my favorite red wine vinegar and extra virgin olive oil dressing.
Once I took a bite, I realized this is the same lentil lunch that I always make. Apparently, old habits die hard! But really, why mess with an easy great dish?
I like to make a pretty large serving of this and enjoy it for lunch all week. It would also make a great breakfast, snack, or dinner, too.
Awesome Lentil Lunch
by Elizabeth Rider
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Makes 6 large servings
1 cup dried green lentils
1 cup grape tomatoes, cut in halves or quarters (about 1.5 cups total)
1/2 large English cucumber, chopped into 1/4-inch cubes [if using a regular cucumber, seed it before chopping] (about 2 cups total)
1/4 cup shaved or finely chopped red onion
1/4 cup pitted Kalamata olives, sliced into halves or thirds
2 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs (I prefer 1 tablespoon each mint and basil, but any combo or just one of mint, basil, or parsley would be great here)
Optional: 1/4 cup feta cheese crumbles (goat cheese crumbles are also nice here); leave the cheese out to make this vegan
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar (or champagne vinegar or white balsamic)
1 teaspoon honey
1/4 teaspoon sea salt, divided (more or less to taste if needed)
a few spins of freshly ground black pepper
Step 1: Prepare the lentils by rinsing them under cool water for 60 seconds in a fine mesh strainer. While you rinse them, pick through them to make sure there isn’t any debris (debris is less common now, but grains and legumes are stored in big containers and occasionally a little piece of something that’s not a lentil can make its way into the bag.)
Step 2: In a medium-sized pan, add the rinsed lentils and 3 cups of water. Add 1/2 teaspoon sea salt. Bring it to a boil then reduce to a simmer until tender, about 20-30 minutes. (Note: 1 cup dried green lentils will yield about 2.5 cups of cooked lentils.)
Step 3: While the lentils cook, prepare the rest of the ingredients. In a medium or large mixing bowl, whisk the dressing ingredient together until emulsified. Add the chopped veggies and herbs, then add the drained lentils once they’re ready (next step).
Step 4: If there is any water left in the lentils, drain it out. Add the hot drained lentils to the bowl with the rest of the ingredients. Gently fold it all together then sprinkle in the feta cheese if using. Taste and adjust salt if needed.
Cook With Me Live Next Week!
Let’s cook together.
Our next live community cooking class is Thursday, March 25th at 10am Pacific / 1pm Eastern. (75 minutes).
Topic: Chicken Parm Made Healthy with Roasted Veggie Ratatouille
You’ll Learn How to Make:
An incredible stovetop marinara (red sauce) that goes with everything from either fresh or canned tomatoes. After trying this 5-ingredient sauce, you’ll never buy a jar of red sauce again. We’ll use this sauce in both dishes, and it freezes well and pairs perfectly with any pasta, too.
Chicken Parmesan Made Healthy. We’ll use almond flour to make our skillet chicken parm gluten-free, and you can also substitute regular ap flour or gluten-free flour if nuts don’t work for you. We’ll use real Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, and I’ll show you how to make this dairy-free, too, if you prefer. This dish is a hit with both adults & kids.
Roasted Veggie Ratatouille, a luscious savory combo of eggplant, zucchini, squash, pepper, onion, and tomato sauce. This is a spin on the French classic, and pairs perfectly with chicken parm, or can be used as a vegan main dish. If you or anyone in your family wants to learn to love veggies more, this is it.
As always, I’ll give you substitutions and recommendations throughout the class to modify your dish to fit dietary needs and/or substitute ingredients based on preferences.
Thursday, March 25th (75 minutes)
Premium subscribers will get the shopping list the week before the class, and the link to join the Live Zoom session the day before the class. Premium Subscribers also have access to cooking class replays. Not a Premium Subscriber yet? You can do that here: