Lentil (no Meat) Loaf
Updated: Jul 22, 2018
This post is the first of a few of my favorites from either Instagram or my vast (and growing!) collection of healthy cookbooks. So hold on tight...this is gonna be fun!
The first is inspired by www.eatingbirdfood.com and I chose it because once I tried it, I craved it for months! Originally posted as a Thanksgiving entree, this recipe is too good not to be enjoyed year round. Since our summers are often foggy and grey, this makes a nice dish to warm you up on a cool day. My family devoured this and declared it "better than real meatloaf," and even "addictive!" So delicious and satisfying, you don't need a lot to fill you up. Leftovers can be enjoyed as is or turned into something fun like a "meat"loaf sandwich. Hmmm, think I may take some on our next flight (to Australia!) in a couple days because this would also make great plane food.
I've adapted Brittany's original recipe (which was done as part of a paid partnership with Pure Canada Maple) to make it a bit simpler and I've added a little anti-inflammatory turmeric (just sneakin' it in because, well, why not?). This version goes a bit faster and also boasts incredible flavor and nutrition profiles. I also swapped almonds for walnuts because of an allergy, otherwise, I prefer walnuts).
Lentils are a must in any plant-based diet because they are extremely high in fiber and protein while low in calories. Not only that, they are packed with vitamins and minerals - particularly iron, magnesium, and potassium - putting these little gems in the "superfood" category. Good for healthy digestion, heart health, anemia prevention, weight loss, cancer prevention, and (because of high folate content) especially good for pregnant women. So what do you say, want to "meat" the new you? I hope you'll give this old favorite a try and let me know how it goes.
(adapted from www.eatingbirdfood.com)
For the lentils:
½ cup dry French (green) lentils
1 1 /3 cup water
1 bay leaf
½ large onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 stalk celery, diced
1 carrot, scrubbed and diced
½ cup slivered almonds (or walnuts), toasted
1 cup rolled oats (organic if possible)
3 TB coconut aminos (or sub tamari)
3 TB tomato paste
2 TB ground flaxseed
2 TB nutritional yeast
1 TB pure maple syrup
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
2 tsp Braggs Organic Sprinkle – 24 herbs & spices (or 1/2 tsp dried thyme, 1/4 tsp dried tarragon, 1 tsp dried oregano, 1 tsp dried basil)
1 tsp turmeric powder
1/8 tsp cayenne
ground pepper and pink (Himalayan) salt to taste
For the glaze:
2 TB tomato paste
1 TB pure maple syrup
1 TB balsamic vinegar (good quality)
pinch of pink salt
1) Make lentils (can be done ahead, if not, prepare other ingredients while they cook). Start by rinsing them well and adding them to a pot with water and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer, cover and cook for 15-20 min or until they are soft but not mushy). There may be water leftover to drain. Remove the bay leaf and set aside to cool.
2) Preheat oven to 350 degrees
3) Add cooled lentils, onion, garlic, celery, carrot, almonds, oats, coconut aminos, tomato paste, flaxseed, nutritional yeast, maple syrup, apple cider vinegar, and seasonings to a food processor. Mix until you reach a “meatloafy” texture (you’ll want to still see some lentils and small pieces of veggies).
4) In a small bowl, stir together glaze mixture until smooth.
5) Add the mixture to a 9” x 5” x 2 ½ “ loaf pan lined with parchment paper, spread out evenly with a spatula and top with glaze.
6) Bake for 25-30 minutes. If loaf becomes too dark, cover with foil. Allow to rest for 10 minutes and serve.