Vegan lentil loaf

Are you sick of cookies yet? All I seem to be seeing on people’s blogs lately are cookies. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy seeing the recipes, but I just don’t have a sweet enough tooth to be particularly excited by them. I was offered a cupcake at a party last night, and when I declined the girl looked horrified and told me I was absolutely mad for turning down free cake. Aside from the fact that I don’t generally accept cake from strangers, I just don’t get that excited by sugar (apart from chocolate, but that really deserves a food group all of its own). However, she later went on to say that she often says ‘hashtag lol’ in actual, face-to-face conversation, so I think that pretty much discredits anything she has ever said.

Aaaanyway, I thought I’d share another vegetarian Christmas dish today, just in case you’re a bit fed up of sugar. If my veggie en croute wasn’t your thing, perhaps you’ll prefer this lentil loaf.

This loaf is entirely vegan, but it’s so firm and substantial that you won’t miss the meat for a second. This is another recipe where I, as a vegetarian, would describe the texture as quite meaty, but my meat-eating boyfriend said that wasn’t quite accurate, so I’ll leave it up to you to decide. It was really filling, and one or two slices are plenty, so this loaf would be great to feed a crowd.

I love the way you get little dots of colour through the loaf – cubes of orange carrot, flecks of fresh green parsley, and just a touch of purple from the red onion. If you want to mix this up a bit with different herbs or some additional vegetables, go ahead! Make it your own.

Obviously, any meal of this type isn’t complete without a smothering of gravy – vegan, of course. It helps to keep the loaf moist, gives the vegetables a bit of extra flavour, and really ties the meal together.

I’ve just realised that I served my veggie en croute with skin-on mashed potato and broccoli as well. I swear I do sometimes eat other vegetables too; I just like these because they’re so easy to whip up. If you want, you can go the whole hog (the whole tofu?) and have this loaf with roast potatoes, broccoli, carrots, green beans, sprouts, and everything else that a Christmas dinner wouldn’t be complete without.

Vegan lentil loaf

Serves 6

1tbsp oil
1 red onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium carrot, finely diced
1/4tsp ground cumin
1/4tsp medium curry powder
1/4tsp cayenne chilli pepper
1/2tsp paprika
150g red lentils
900ml vegetable stock
Black pepper
1/2tsp dried oregano
1/2tsp dried thyme
~100g rolled oats
3tbsp fresh parsley, roughly chopped

Heat the oil in a saucepan, and cook the red onion, garlic and carrot over a medium heat for 5-10 minutes, until the onion is soft. Add the next 4 ingredients (the 4 spices), and cook, stirring constantly, for a further 1-2 minutes.

Add the lentils and stock, and season well with black pepper and the dried herbs. Simmer for around 20 minutes, until the lentils are soft. Stir regularly. Add the fresh parsley, and stir in as many oats as you need to bring the mixture to the correct consistency (you may need slightly more or less than the 100g suggested). It should be moist, but sturdy enough to hold its shape solidly rather than filling the container. Mix well.

Lightly grease a baking dish or loaf tin, and spoon in the lentil mixture. Spread out until smooth.

Bake at 200°C (Gas Mark 6 / 400°F) for 30-40 minutes, and then gently turn out onto a baking tray. If needed, grill (broil) for a few minutes to crisp up the top. Leave to cool for 5-10 minutes, before carefully slicing.


  1. Elizabeth says

    Hello Becca,
    You have saved my 11 year old daughter’s Christmas dinner! She is an animal-loving vegetarian and had little to choose from last year. I made these (in muffin tins for easier transport) to bring along and they are delicious! I added 2 eggs to hold the mix together as it seemed a bit loose. So many vegetarian burgers/loaves seem underseasoned–this is fantastic. Thanks so much for the recipe.

  2. says

    This was good…I used too many oats because it seemed runny on the pot so next time i’ll chance a fall apart loaf over too many oats because it ended up too dry :( Maybe i’ll add a flax egg…

    Other than that, yummy :)

  3. Anonymous says

    We had one vegan and one vegetarian among our party of 11 at Easter brunch, so I made this loaf to go along with all the other breakfast dishes. It was a huge hit! EVERYONE got into it. Not a crumb of it was left over. Thank you for this really wonderful recipe.

  4. Timaree says

    This sounds good. I tried one vegan lentil loaf that had so much herb in it I literally could not eat it. Everyone on the blog I found it on said how good it was so I overrode my objection to a tablespoon of dried thyme. Yuck. It had expensive quinoa in it too but I just couldn’t eat it. I’ll be trying this one!

  5. Erin Barrett says

    Becca, can I use quick oats? Also, what other (non peppers) veggie combo would be good in this! Do I need egg to hold it together? We are lacto-ovo veg …. Sorry for the twenty questions!

    • says

      I’ve not used quick oats for this recipe, but I say give it a go! You could try adding a few mushrooms (make sure you cook them well before adding them to the lentils so that they release all their moisture) and perhaps some grated courgette? Again, cook it really well first, or your mixture will end up too wet!

      I didn’t find I needed an egg at all :)
      Becca @ Amuse Your Bouche recently posted…Pizza roasted chickpeasMy Profile

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge