These lentil marinara bowls are vegan, gluten-free, high in plant-based protein and easy to make with healthy, everyday ingredients.

A bowl with steamed broccoli, vegan parmesan, lentils and marinara sauce.

Lentil Marinara Bowls Ingredients

  1. Marinara sauce – I used homemade marinara sauce but for an even easier recipe, go with store-bought.
  2. Vegan parmesan – Vegan parm is easy to make with almonds or cashews and nutritional yeast, find out how here. If you have a favourite store-bought parmesan, that works too!
  3. Green lentils – Hearty, filling and packed with protein and fiber.
  4. Broccoli – Because we can all use more broccoli in our lives. Steam it to your liking before adding to the bowl.

So, that’s it! A 4-ingredient recipe if you use store-bought marinara and vegan parmesan. If you’re going homemade for these two ingredients, prep them in advance to make assembling this bowl a breeze.

A bowl with steamed broccoli, vegan parmesan, lentils and marinara sauce.

How to Make These Bowls

There’s not much to making these. It’s more about assembling whole foods than it is a real recipe but let’s take a look.

Before you Start: If you plan to use homemade sauce, review that recipe here, otherwise use any store-bought pasta sauce. Find the vegan parmesan recipe here, you’ll need almonds or cashews and nutritional yeast to make it.

Step 1. Cook the Lentils

First, you’ll want to cook some green lentils. They can be cooked stovetop or in an Instant Pot.

To cook green lentils stovetop, use a 2:1 ratio of lentils to water. Bring the water to a boil, add the lentils and reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for 20-25 minutes until tender.

Cooked green lentils in a pot.

Step 2. Steam the Broccoli

If you’re steaming stove top – use a 13 minute timer once you set the broccoli on the stove with cold water and turn the element on.

I often use my Instant Pot for steamed veggies, which I did for this broccoli since the stovetop was already going with lentils and the marinara sauce.

To cook broccoli in the Instant Pot, use a steaming basket, add some water to the Instant Pot and set the timer to 0. Once the Instant Pot reaches pressure, quick release and the broccoli will be ready.

Steamed broccoli in a bowl with lentils and marinara sauce.

A hearty plant-based dish that’s easy to assemble and makes a healthy weeknight meal sure to please a crowd.

A bowl with steamed broccoli, vegan parmesan, lentils and marinara sauce.

Lentil Marinara Bowl Recipe

These bowls are so quick and easy you’ll love keeping this recipe in your back pocket for lazy, weeknight dinners. If you prep the vegan parmesan, marinara sauce and lentils ahead of time, this recipe takes just minutes to put together.

More Healthy Bowls

Here are some more healthy bowls you’ll love:

Print
A bowl with steamed broccoli, vegan parmesan, lentils and marinara sauce.

Lentil Marinara Bowls

  • Author: Deryn Macey
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 25 mins
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Cuisine: Vegan

Wonderful plant-based bowls packed with nutrition! Enjoy this pasta-inspired meal for a simple weeknight dinner.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 1.5 cups uncooked green lentils or 3/4 cup cooked per bowl (use more or less to your preference, chickpeas also work well here)
  • 6 cups chopped broccoli
  • 2 cups marinara sauce, homemade or store-bought (or more if desired)
  • plenty of vegan parmesan, for topping
  • fresh lemon, for topping

Instructions

  1. I used homemade marinara sauce for this recipe. If you’d like to do the same, you’ll need to start that first as it takes 30 minutes from start to finish. If you’re not using homemade marinara, any store-bought marinara works, just heat it up before adding to the bowls.
  2. Bring 3 cups of water to a boil stovetop in a medium-sized saucepan. Once boiling, add the lentils and reduce the heat to low. Cover and keep at a light simmer for 20-25 minutes until the lentils are cooked. If there is any excess water left, drain that off.
  3. Steam the broccoli by using a steamer basked on the stovetop. If you set it up over cold water and turn the heat to high, it should take 13 minutes total.
  4. Divide the cooked lentils and steamed broccoli between 4 bowls or containers. Give the broccoli a little spritz of fresh lemon juice then top each bowl with about 1/2 cup of marinara sauce and a generous amount of vegan parmesan.

Notes

If you’re making these for meal prep, I’d suggest storing the marinara and lentils separately until needed. I wouldn’t make the steamed broccoli more than 1 day ahead of time but you can wash and chop it and store in the fridge until you’re ready to steam. If you’re taking leftovers for lunch the next day, it will be fine all together overnight.

Nutrition facts do not include vegan parmesan. Find the nutrition info for that here.

Keywords: healthy, plant-based dinner, idea, buddha bowl