Looking for the best lentil recipes? Want to know how to cook lentils? Lentils are low in calories, high in iron and a great source of protein. Try using them in hearty soups to impressive dinner party show stoppers. Find more meat-free and vegan entertaining recipe ideas plus check out more chickpea recipes, quinoa recipes, couscous recipes and superfood recipes.


The benefits of lentils

Our nutritionist Kerry Torrens says… “Rich in iron and dietary fibre, lentils are a source of plant-based protein and supply folate, which is important during pregnancy, infancy and adolescence. They also contain phyto-oestrogens – plant compounds which mimic the effects of oestrogen. These help balance hormones, protect against heart disease and benefit bones.”

Red lentil recipes

Dhal with fried okra

Try this lentil-based recipe with fried okra for a punchy, comforting veggie dish.

A bowl of orange dhal topped with crisp fried okra

Vegetable slice

Red lentils offer an extra boost of protein and gentle bite in this veg-packed frittata served with a simple green leaf salad.

A slice of frittata with green leaves on a grey plate, set against a wooden board

Tarka dhal

Toor dal lentils are flavoured with garlic, ginger, cumin and Kashmiri chilli to make a warming, nourishing tarka dhal.

More like this
Two bowls of dhal next to a plate of rice and a wooden bowl with chilli and herbs

Vegan red lentil dahl soup with broccoli tarka

This easy recipe is the perfect midweek winter warmer to feed the whole family, plus it's low in calories. Garlic and ginger pastes are available from large supermarkets, and are a great cheat when preparing Asian recipes – they also give an extra warming kick to soups like this one.

Vegan Red Lentil Dahl Recipe with Broccoli Tarka

Lentil curry with spiced crispy eggs

Try our vegetarian curry. This easy recipe is low in calories and gluten free, perfect winter comfort food with an exciting new twist on the classic boiled egg.

Two bowls of red lentil curry with crispy eggs and a paratha

Coconut lentils

This protein-packed curry-style comfort dish is full of spice and ready in 30 minutes – perfect for satisfying last minute guests or throwing together after a long day at work.

Coconut Dhal Recipe

Lentil and bacon soup

Make this all-in-one soup for a midweek winter warmer. It's packed full of nutritious veg, lentils, pearl barley and salty lardons for a proper homely meal.


Aubergine dhansak

Cook aubergine pieces with fragrant spices and red lentils for a hearty yet healthy vegan curry. This lightly spiced dish will leave you feeling warm and satisfied for less that 300 calories.

Vegan Aubergine Curry in a Large Dish with Naan Bread

Spiced carrot and lentil soup

Check out our simple red lentil soup recipe with lightly spiced curried carrots. This veggie soup is easy to make and under 300 calories.

Three bowls of carrot and lentil soup

Chicken saag

Packed with red lentils, fresh red chillies, garlic, ginger, turmeric, cloves and spinach, all for less than 350 calories – this recipe shows you can eat your favourite takeaway dishes without compromising on flavour.

Healthy Curry Chicken Saag in a Casserole Dish

Puy lentil recipes

Spiced squash, spinach and lentil soup

A wholesome, nutritious soup packed with squash, puy lentils, bulgar wheat and plenty of cumin for kick.

Spiced squash and lentil soup

Spiced lentil, puffed rice and cucumber salad

A vibrant, nourishing salad made super colourful with pomegranate seeds, red onion, cucumber nuggets and coriander. There are lentils in there for added protein, too.

Spiced lentil, puffed rice and cucumber salad

Rice and vegetable aash with puy lentils

To say that aash is merely a soup would be underselling it – this hearty staple of Persian cuisine is always herb-based but there are many varieties: some with meat, some with barley, rice, tomato or pomegranate molasses. It’s the best comfort food on a cold day. This is Sabrina Ghayour's Western version, which is vegan and every bit as delicious.

Aash Persian Soup Recipe with Lentils

Sausage and braised lentils with kale

Make the most of kale or cavolo nero in our sausage one-pot recipe, served with a quick, punchy gremolata on the side. This protein-packed dish is the perfect winter warmer.

Pot of sausage and lentil casserole on a tea towel next to a spoon

Baked feta with lentils, chilli and herbs

Check out this super simple creamy feta recipe with sweet red onion and punchy chilli. This easy meal is low in calories and veggie friendly. Packed with fresh herbs and ready in 30 minutes, this dish will perk up your midweek blues.

Lentil Salad Recipe with Feta and crunchy bread. Served on a white plate with a blue napkin on a grey table.

Roast broccoli with lentils and preserved lemon

This recipe for roast broccoli with lentils makes for a really easy midweek meal for one. It's vegan, ready in under an hour and around 300 calories, but still delivers big, punchy flavours. It can be eaten hot or cold so is also a great healthy lunch box option. You're welcome.

Roast broccoli with lentils and preserved lemon

Confit fennel with Puy lentils

Puy lentils are cooked so that they’re tender but still have bite to contrast nicely with the slow cooked fennel wedges. Pair with creamy goat’s cheese and fresh dill.

Two bowls of lentil salad with cutlery and water glasses on the side

Tom Kerridge’s herb-crusted lamb with lentils

This recipe for herb-crusted lamb with lentils from Tom Kerridge is a great dish, full of flavour and perfect for a colder spring day. The cannon is the eye meat from a lamb loin. It’s a more expensive cut but very simple to cook and gives beautifully pink, tender lamb. Treat yourself to this delicious high protein alternative to the classic roast.

herb-crusted lamb with lentils

Butternut squash with spiced lentils and feta

Serving up half a squash is a great meal option for vegetarian friends or family. This one is baked then stuffed with lentils, spices and lemon juice and finished with creamy feta cheese and coriander. Serve hot or at room temperature.

squash with lentils and feta

Vegan puy lentil ragù with sweet potato linguine

Sweet potato linguine is more robust than courgetti, so can withstand a bit more cooking. Served with a warming vegan bolognese-style ragù, this gluten-free low calorie main is perfect for the start of the cooler months. Dust off your spiraliser and try something new but comfortingly familiar. Here's our pick of the best spiralisers to use.

Sweet potato linguine with puy lentil ragù

Balsamic lentils with pork fillet

Balsamic offers a tartness to our vibrant pork dish. A great carb-free midweek meal idea. This well-balanced meal is high in protein but low in calories and salt.

Pork Fillet Recipe with Lentils

Puy lentils with asparagus, and poached egg

Food doesn't have to be complicated to be delicious. This recipe for puy lentils with asparagus, and poached egg is quick, easy, and healthy, making it the perfect quick-fix midweek.

Aspragus, egg and lentils

Green lentils recipes

Green lentil harissa soup

Try our healthy way to use green lentils in your cooking. Nourishing and delicious, this soup comes stuffed with celery, parsnips, leek, kale and chickpeas.

Two black bowls filled with green lentils and chickpeas in a broth

Lentil shepherd's pie

This vegetarian recipe for spiced lentil shepherd's pie is a great vegan version of a classic. It's ready in 1 hour and is enough to feed the whole family. This homely comfort food is also a great way to hide veggies for fussy kids, secretly packed with carrots, celery and parsnips.

Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe With Spiced Lentils

Spicy lentil burgers

Check out this quick and easy vegan burger recipe with spicy lentils. Ready in just 30 minutes, these punchy patties make a super simple summer recipe for four. Packing lots of flavour and protein, these burgers will please meat-eaters and veggies alike.

Vegan Lentil Burgers Recipe

Sweet and sour lentil shakshuka

Jazz up your weekend brunch and make this veggie shakshuka with lentils and punchy spice. This simple egg recipe is not only easy to make it's low in calories, too. Top with lemon, coriander and yoghurt for a late morning pick me up.

Baked Eggs Shakshuka with Lentils

Lentil moussaka bowls

Check out this easy alternative to oven-baked moussaka. Ready in just 15 minutes, these speedy vegan bowls contain the flavours and textures of a slow-cooked moussaka, without the wait. Layer aubergine and tomato slices with spiced lentil mince and nutmeg soya yoghurt to make your perfect personal moussaka.

Vegan Moussaka Recipe

Black lentils recipes

Black dahl with paneer-stuffed naan

Lashings of butter and cream give this warming dal the X-factor. The beans need time to soak, but once it’s in the oven it looks after itself. This indulgent, slow cooked dal will revolutionise your view of the humble lentil.

Black Dal Recipe With Paneer-stuffed Naan

Spiced lentil and chickpea salad with halloumi

Check out our warm salad recipe with spicy black lentils, golden halloumi and chickpeas. This simple veggie salad is low in calories and on the table in 40 minutes.

Chickpea and Halloumi Salad Recipe with Lentils

Octopus black lentil dahl

Want an impressive side to go with your curry? Cook this low calorie octopus black lentil dahl from Neil Rankin's restaurant, Temper City. It may take a bit of time but it's definitely worth the effort.

Black Lentil Recipe with Octopus

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