Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Vegan Lentil Loaf

As I was casually looking through some of my favorite blogs, I came across Fat-Free Vegan Kitchen's post for Dreena Burton's lentil loaf and on a whim decided that's what I wanted for dinner. I read through the recipe, checking off in my mind whether I had the ingredients and concluded the only thing I didn't have was the bulgar. Before canceling my dinner plans altogether, I did a quick Google search and found that quinoa would probably be a reasonable substitute. So I got to cooking and was halfway through, when I discovered I only had 3 tablespoons of ketchup, not the required 7-8. Yes that's right folks, I had quinoa, nutritional yeast, even flax meal, but not ketchup. Since it was already 9 o'clock at night, going to the store was really not a desirable option. After a slight panic, I remembered my stash of fast food ketchup packets I had been holding on to for far longer than I care to admit. I unfortunately barely made a dent in my ketchup packet supply, but fortunately, I had enough to finish making my dinner!

All in all, I would say this is probably in the top 10 of lentil loaves I've had. I think the best is still the one I ate a St. Dames, a vegan restaurant in Seattle. But who knows, if I had used bulgar, this might have given St. Dames a run for their money.

Vegan Lentil Loaf 
Slightly modified from Dreena's No-fu Love Loaf


1/2 cup brown (green) lentils
1 cup vegetable stock
1/3 cup water
2 dried bay leaves
3/4 quinoa (or steel cut oats, or bulgar)
1 cup water, boiled
1/4 cup ketchup
1 cup rolled or quick oats
3 tablespoons tamari
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
2 tablespoons flax meal (or ground white chia)
2 tablespoons vegan Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons tahini or sunflower seed butter
2 teaspoons blackstrap molasses
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/8 teaspoon ground fennel (optional)
Freshly ground black peper to taste

3-4 tablespoons ketchup
1 teaspoon vegan Worcestershire sauce (optional) or 2 teaspoons vegan bbq sauce (optional)


Combine the lentils, vegetable stock, 1/3 cup of water, and bay leaves in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to medium-low, cover, and cook for 25 to 30 minutes, until the lentils are almost tender. Add the quinoa and boiling water, cover, and cook on medium-low heat for another 8 to 9 minutes.

While the lentils and quinoa are cooking, preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly oil an oven-proof glass loaf pan (I actually used a metal one) and line the bottom of the pan with a strip of parchment paper. Combine the topping ingredients in a small bowl.

Once the quinoa is cooked, remove the bay leaves and add all the remaning ingredients (except topping). Stir very well. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and pack it in. Spread the topping mixture over the top.

Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake for 25 to 28 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 7 to 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and let stand for 10 to 15 minutes or so, before cutting to slice and serve.

Makes 5-6 servings.


  1. I made this on Monday and it was soo good! I actually found your blog through the comments on the recipe.

    1. Oh awesome! So I'm curious, did you use bulgar or quinoa?

  2. I used the steel cut oats as I had to make the gluten free version..loved the texture but the quinoa would be a great substitute too!