Updated: Sep 15
Ever wonder what to do with that bag of lentils that was purchased months ago but is still unopened and hanging out in the pantry? This oddly shaped legume is not only a great source of protein, fiber and B vitamins, but is also inexpensive and versatile. NO pre-soaking required! Check out the link below for amazing ways to turn lentils into a delicious meal or a side dish.
Pictured above is a simple lentil and fresh vegetable salad. This recipe makes good use of any veggies that may be hiding out in the fridge. The veggies used in this particular batch were green and red bell pepper, onion, celery, carrot, tomato and parsley.
Lentil Salad with Fresh Vegetables
¾-cup dry green or brown lentils (rinsed)
3 cups of chopped fresh vegetables (any combination: celery, radish, onion, bell pepper, zucchini, tomato, parsley, cucumber, etc.)
Juice of one medium fresh lemon OR 2 to 3 tablespoons of favorite vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon of sea salt
2 cloves fresh garlic, minced
Fresh ground pepper to taste
Add lentils to medium pot and cover with water. DO NOT ADD SALT WHILE COOKING (this toughens the lentils).
Bring to a boil.
Lower heat and gently simmer until fully cooked but not over-cooked / mushy. This takes 30 to 40 minutes for green lentils but only 20 minutes for brown lentils.
Drain well and allow to cool. Rinsing with cold water will speed the cooling process.
Place the chopped vegetables into a salad serving bowl.
Add drained lentils to the bowl and gently stir.
Add lemon juice or vinegar along with the olive oil
Add garlic, salt and pepper.
Taste and add additional seasonings if needed.
Chill overnight or for several hours to allow lentils to absorb the flavors.
Written by Jenny Favret, MS, RD, LDN
Nutritionist, Duke Pediatrics Healthy Lifestyles Program
Check out Jenny's bio here!