Rice and Lentil Loaf is a favorite of mine, and it’s a recipe that stands the test of time. I put a delicious and nutritious twist on classic meatloaf with this vegetarian option, and you won’t miss the meat at all.
I’ve gotta tell you, rice and lentil loaf is one of the very first recipes I posted back in 2011. And like I said, it definitely stands the test of time!
I’ve found that most everyone has an opinion on meatloaf. Some love their mom’s recipe and the homey comfort it delivers. Others think of it as a heavy-duty, boring blast from the past. Then there are others still that would never eat it. Enter rice and lentil loaf with mass appeal.
Whether you’re a meat eater, vegetarian, or just trying to cut meat from your meals more often (think Meatless Monday), this loaf is a great option for you to try.
This is a hearty meatless dish that everyone will love. It’s moist on the inside, with a touch of golden crispiness on the tops and edges. The combination of rice and lentils give this loaf a texture similar to ground beef that you’d typically use in this dish.
If you love lentils, you should give my Lentil Salad with Roasted Red Pepper Dressing a try. It’s a cold salad that is a wonderful dish with big flavor.
This recipe is somewhat traditional: you’ll find pretty much everything you’d typically find in meatloaf, including mushrooms, carrots, onions, garlic, eggs, breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, and seasonings.
I love to make this for dinner, mostly because I love the leftovers even more! I love cold, leftover meatloaf — errr…rice and lentil loaf — better than the first serving of it.
Whatever your opinion of the classic dish, this recipe is meatloaf-like enough for fans, but different enough for meatloaf foes.
The addition of rice, lentils, and vegetables make it a healthy dish, and although it has almost the same texture as meatloaf, it gives you the chance to try something a little out-of-the ordinary.
Best of all, the leftovers are amazing, cold and straight from the fridge!
If you’re looking for a flavorful twist on a classic meatloaf recipe, rice and lentil loaf is for you. I hope you’ll give it a try soon.
Serves Serves 6
- 3 cups of water
- 3/4 cup o uncooked lentils, sorted & rinsed
- 1 cup of uncooked white rice
- 1/2 cup of finely chopped onion
- 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs
- 6 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 cup of shredded carrot
- 1/4 cup mushrooms, diced
- 2 teaspoons fresh parsley, minced
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 3 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce, divided
- 1, 14-ounce jar of marinara sauce, divided
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- Nonstick cooking spray
- In a medium saucepan, combine the water and lentils and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for about 5 minutes.
- Add the rice and onion to the pan with lentils and stir to combine. Cover the pan and simmer for about 18-20 minutes until the liquid is absorbed and the lentils and rice are tender.
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
- Remove the pan from the heat and allow it cool for about 10 minutes.
- In a medium bowl, add the breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, salt, black pepper, and red pepper flakes. Mix to combine.
- In a separate bowl add the eggs, 2 teaspoons of the Worcestershire sauce, and half the marinara sauce. Stir to combine.
- Add the rice and lentil mixture to the egg mixture. Add the garlic, carrots, mushrooms and parsley. Stir to combine. Add the breadcrumb mixture and mix until all ingredients are combined.
- Lightly spray an 8x4-inch loaf pan or casserole dish with the nonstick cooking spray.
- Transfer the mixture to the loaf pan and press it firmly into the pan.
- Bake for 40-45 minutes or until the top of the loaf is golden. Remove from the oven and cool for 10 minutes.
- As the loaf cools, add the remaining marinara sauce and Worcestershire sauce to a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the cornstarch to a small cup along with 2 tablespoons water. Mix until smooth. A little at a time, add the cornstarch mixture to the marinara sauce. Stir until warmed through and the sauce thickens (just a minute or so). Remove from the heat.
- Spoon the marinara sauce over the top of the loaf before serving.