As a teenager I remember a running joke on our house that Tuesdays were meatloaf days. My mom always used Mrs. Ernst’s recipe because of the thick, sweet and delicious glaze on the top. I don’t recall the recipe for the meatloaf, but I can guess it was made with medium ground beef or deer meat, onions, an egg, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper and probably little else. It was always served with mashed potatoes, and everyone loved it. This Vegan Lentil Loaf (aka vegan meatloaf) is packed with nutrients and flavour for a hearty and satisfying entree for a winter meal.
Mom was right about the need for a sauce or glaze for the meatloaf. That was my favourite part of the dish. I’m pretty sure she doubled the recipe so there would be lots of sauce on top. You may want to do the same for this Vegan Lentil Loaf, because the sauce adds sweetness and tang. It’s wonderful warmed and poured over your slice of lentil loaf.
This Vegan Lentil Loaf is meaty, wholesome, nutritious and delicious with or without extra sauce. Just like mom’s meatloaf, it hits the spot and will satisfy everyone, even the meat lovers in your family. If you eat eggs, you could use an egg instead of a flax egg, but flax egg works so well in this recipe, and this way we get to save our eggs for other recipes that need them…or just to enjoy on their own.
Health benefits of lentils
- rich in prebiotics to support the growth of beneficial gut bacteria
- An excellent source of folate. Low levels of folate are associated with cancers, cardiovascular disease and neurodegenerative disorders.
- Are higher in antioxidants than other legumes and several fruits and vegetables, providing neuroprotective and anticancer activity.
- Some studies show that lentils improve satiety and may reduce the risk for obesity.
- have been shown to help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease
- A higher consumption of lentils is associated with a lower risk of developing of type II diabetes.
- One cup of cooked lentils provides more than 1/3 daily recommended intake of iron.
Other delicious lentil recipes
Try some of these:
- ½ cups lentils (brown or green)
- 3 cups water
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 flax egg (1 tablespoon ground flax + 3 tablespoons water)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 onion chopped
- 1 carrot grated (about 1/2 cup)
- 1/2 cup walnuts
- ¼ cup almond flour
- 2 tbsp tamari soy
- 1 tsp dried rosemary
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp pepper
- 1/4 tsp hot pepper flakes optional
- 3 tbsp tomato paste
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tbsp coconut sugar
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- Make flax egg by combining ground flax and water. Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- Rinse lentils and place in medium saucepan with water and bay leaf. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes, or until lentils are soft and all the water is absorbed. Remove from heat and discard the bay leaf.
- While lentils are cooking, heat olive oil in small frying pan. Add onions, garlic and grated carrots and sauté until soft, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
- Make the glaze by combining tomato paste, maple syrup, coconut sugar and balsamic vinegar in a small bowl. Set aside.
- When the lentils are cooked, add ¾ of the lentils along with the flax egg, sauteed vegetables, almond flour, tamari soy, rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper (and optional hot pepper flakes) to a food processor and pulse only until mixture is combined. (This is the time to sample and see if you want more salt, pepper or pepper flakes).
- Stir in remaining lentils and press into a parchment lined loaf pan. Pour glaze over loaf. Bake for 35 minutes. Let sit for 15 minutes before serving.