23 November 2011

Lentil Loaf Heaven

I have been obsessed with using lentils these last few days. I made the lentil tacos, lentil nachos and the lentil shepherd's pie. I'm digging the lentils hardcore, dudes. They taste rad, especially when cooked with vegetable broth with some spices. Well, I've been looking for a lentil loaf recipe for about a week because when I re-organized my cupboards, I found 2 bags of lentils I had forgotten all about. Why lentil loaf? Why the hell not? I always hated meatloaf as a kid, so I have no idea why I became obsessed with making a vegan version.

Whatever, though. This stuff was fucking perfect. I will admit, though, that I was completely skeptical as I don't really love tofu. There, I said it. I don't love tofu. I like it in scrambles, and that's about it. But, I'm certain that I will never make lentil loaf again without it. It keeps it moist and helps it hold it's loafy shape.

Here's the original inspiration recipe. I did make kind of a lot of changes. But, without this recipe, I would have ended up with a dry, crumbly mess. So, I do recommend it. I just needed more spices and sauce.

So, here are the changes I made to the recipe.
  • Instead of making that tomato sauce, I used ketchup and bbq sauce topped with some salt and pepper.
  • I used just green bell pepper, not red.
  • Instead of the 1 TB tomato mixture, I added about 2 TB ketchup and 2 TB bbq sauce into the loaf.
  • I left out the balsamic vinegar, sugar, thyme (I don't like thyme) and corn meal.
  • Used 1 TB coconut oil to cook the veggies in, then 2 tsp olive oil in the loaf.
  • Cooked my lentils in veggie broth with some cumin and all-purpose seasoning.
  • Used Braggs aminos instead of soy sauce.
  • Upped the spices to:
    • 1/2-3/4 tsp cumin
    • 1 1/2 tsp chili powder
    • 1/2 tsp dried mustard
    • 1 TB dried parsley
    • 1/4-1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • Added these spices:
    • 1/2 tsp onion powder
    • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
    • 1/3 tsp Simply Organic all-purpose seasoning
    • Kosher salt
    • 1/4 tsp coriander
    • 1/4 tsp rubbed sage
    • pepper
  • I followed the directions as-is, except that I ran my drained tofu through my processor instead of mashing it by hand. 
  • I didn't measure the bbq sauce and ketchup that I brushed on the outside. I'm guessing 2 TB bbq, and 3-4 TB ketchup.
Here are the photos of the progress:

Freshly formed loaf. About 2 inches high and 4 wide.

Loafy McLoaf smothered in bbq and ketchup before being baked.

Fresh from the oven. Much loafy love.

So perfect with some butter mashed Yukons and a little ketchup for dipping. 

You should totally make this! Don't let my alterations dissuade you. It's soooo easy and the baking time is only 30 minutes. Just do it!!


  1. I love lentils and I'm so making this...maybe even tonight for supper if I have everything I need. I enjoyed meatloaf before and haven't been able to find one that holds up but this one looks perfect. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Thanks for sharing! I've always wanted to make a lentil loaf but most recipes have nuts and my husband is allergic. I wasn't sure how to replace them. I love that this is nut-free!

  3. I am so super excited about this! I have a tofurkey for thanksgiving (my first one, I'm a little scared!) but I'm definitely making this for Christmas, and honestly probably a couple times before Christmas :)

  4. Looks great! Think I'll make this for dinner tomorrow night. I totally dig being vegan and discovering all these great recipes. Great blog!

  5. I made this for dinner last night and it was AWESOME! I made all the changes you suggested and my husband and I loooooved it! I'm eating the leftovers right now. Thank you for this awesome recipe!

  6. KellyC, I hope if you make it that you love it as much as we did! A few others who've made it have been in love. So, good luck!!

    Carrie, I hope it works as well for you as it did for me. I was seriously skeptical of the recipe, but my fella is a huge fan of meatloaf, so I decided to give it a shot. I highly recommend it!!

  7. Nikki! I'm so excited that you made it!! Happy Dance *wiggle, wiggle* We are in love with this recipe. I'm thinking about making it for Christmas dinner here.

    I haven't tried Tofurky yet. How did it turn out? I bought some of the roasted Tofurky lunch meat to make sandwiches, but haven't tried it yet.

  8. Windy, I'm with you all the way. Being veg has opened my eyes to a whole new world of foods and recipes. There are so many imitation meals and products that I like better than I ever liked the originals. Rock on and keep on cookin!

  9. I made it the next day and fricken loved it! Just talking about it now makes me want to make it again!