Roasted Vegetable Lentil Salad
This vegan roasted vegetable lentil salad is so warm and cozy, you’ll want to make it all Winter longer. It features roasted carrots, sweet potato, onions and zucchini, lentils and hemp seeds.
Best Lentils for Salads
I used green (similar to brown) lentils in this recipe and I would recommend sticking to green, black or French (du puy) lentils. These varieties of lentils hold their shape nicely when cooked whereas red lentils become mushy.
I like green/brown lentils for salads. They’re easy to find, inexpensive, cook quickly and hold their shape as long as they’re not overcooked. If overcooked, they’ll become mushy so keep an eye on them while cooking around the 20-minute mark. They should be perfect with 20-25 minutes cooking time.
Du puy lentils are smaller than green and brown lentils and hold their shape really well so they would also be great in this salad.
Red lentils are wonderful and I cook with them often but they’re more suited to stews and dahl. You can try red lentils in my coconut red lentil dahl, Slow Cooker Vegan Red Lentil Chili or Red Lentil Tomato Soup.
Tips for Roasted Vegetables
If you’re after perfectly cooked, slightly caramelized, delicious roasted veggies, use these tips for best results:
- Flip them. Flip the veggies/shake the pan halfway through for even cooking and browning.
- Go high heat! I like to roast vegetables at 425 degrees F but anywhere from 400 to 450 degrees works. The high temp results in a beautiful, deep brown caramelized exterior.
- Don’t overcrowd the pan. It can be tempting to pile the veggies high on one pan or use a roasting dish but it’s best to lay the veggies in a single-layer, allowing for a bit of space between the pieces to allow for both moisture to escape and even cooking. Piling them up will result in soggy veggies.
- What about oil? You’ll find recommendations online to use a lot of oil when roasting veggies. I don’t find this necessary. I used just 1 tsp for this whole recipe with good results.
- What about seasoning? I usually go with rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper and this is what I used for this recipe. Even just salt and pepper is delicious though if you want to keep it simple.
- Chop evenly. Chop the veggies in equal sizes for even cooking. Now, technically, you should start roasting harder veggies like squash, carrot and sweet potato first before adding softer veggies like zucchini. I don’t do this. Instead, I chop the harder veggies in slightly smaller pieces and go a bit larger with veggies like peppers, zucchini and onion.
A Cozy Winter Lentil Salad
This rustic, hearty, cozy winter salad is comforting, nourishing and delicious. It’s high in fiber and protein, vegan and gluten-free, very easy to make and can be made in advance so it’s great for meal prep.
I hope you enjoy this simple but satisfying salad.
More Healthy Vegan Salads
Loving this healthy vegan salad? You’ve gotta try these ones too:
…or check out my collection of 28 satisfying and healthy vegan salads.
- 1 white onion, sliced (approx. 2 cups chopped, 300 g)
- 4 carrots, chopped (approx. 3.5 cups chopped, 450 g)
- 2 zucchini, chopped in large chunks (approx. 4 cups chopped, 500 g)
- 1 medium sweet potato, cubed (approx. 3 heaping cups, 425 g)
- 1 tbsp each fresh rosemary and thyme or 1 tsp each dried rosemary and thyme
- 1 cup uncooked green or brown lentils
- 2 1/4 cups vegetable broth or water
- 4 tbsp hemp seeds (optional)
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 tbsp pure maple syrup or raw honey
- salt and pepper
- Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Chop all the veggies and spread on baking trays in a single layer. You may need 2 or 3 trays depending on the size. Drizzle them with the 1 tsp of olive oil (if it’s easier, add all the chopped veggies to a large bowl and toss with the oil and spices, then add to trays) and sprinkle over the rosemary and thyme. Add a pinch of salt and pepper as well. Use your hands to mix them all up until they’re well-coated.
- Roast the veggies in the oven for 35-40 minutes until tender and browned.
- While the veggies are roasting, add the dry lentils and vegetable broth to a pot. Bring to a boil on the stovetop then cover and reduce heat to a light simmer. Cook for 20-25 minutes until the lentils are tender. Check them around 15-20 minutes to see if you may need to add a little extra water.
- Once the veggies and lentils are cooked, either add everything to a large bowl and toss with the balsamic vinegar, maple syrup and hemp seeds, or divide the lentils, roasted vegetables and hemp seeds between 4 bowls or containers then mix the balsamic vinegar and maple syrup together in a small dish and drizzle over each serving (this is how I like to serve it). Season with salt and pepper and serve right away or store in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Keywords: vegetarian, fall, winter, warm, easy, healthy