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Lentil Spaghetti

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You might think that lentils in spaghetti sounds a little weird, but just trust me on this! Lentils are filling, tasty, and so healthy. They’re full of fiber and plant-based protein, along with lots of vitamins and minerals. Lentil Spaghetti is an inexpensive and filling option for dinner when you’re on a budget. The lentils add extra volume and protein to the meal without adding much cost. You can grab a pound of lentils from the grocery store for just around a dollar.

lentil spaghetti

Ingredients for Lentil Spaghetti

This recipe is extremely budget-friendly. I can make this meal for around $5. If you’re running low on your grocery budget but need to feed your hungry family for cheap, this is a great meal to make. Here’s what you need to make Lentil Spaghetti:

  • dry lentils
  • bay leaf
  • water
  • minced garlic
  • salt
  • pepper
  • pasta sauce
  • water
  • spaghetti noodles (you can decrease the amount of spaghetti that you cook if you want it saucier)
lentil spaghetti

How to Make Lentil Spaghetti

If you’ve never cooked with lentils before, don’t be intimidated. It’s really not that different from cooking dried beans or even rice.

Step 1: Clean lentils (scroll down for a how-to)

Step 2: Cook the lentils with the seasonings in a big pot or Dutch Oven with some boiling water for about 25 minutes. You might need to test a lentil or two every few minutes to check for doneness.

Step 3: Pour out any extra water and add the pasta sauce. Let that all heat up together.

Step 4: Cook the spaghetti according to package instructions. If you like really saucy spaghetti, cook only 12 ounces instead of the full box.

Step 5: Combine the spaghetti and pasta sauce and serve!

lentil spaghetti

How to Clean Lentils

The most important thing to know about lentils is that you have to sort and clean them before cooking. To do this, place the lentils in a mesh strainer and rinse under cold water. There might be a little bit of dirt on them and that’s okay. Just rinse it off and they’ll be fine. While rinsing, look through the lentils and pick out any small rocks or weird-looking lentils you might find. There are often small rocks in pre-packaged lentils because of the way they are harvested. You definitely want to sort those out to save your teeth from an unwelcome crunch.

lentil spaghetti

Easy Budget Recipes

If you are looking for easy budget-friendly recipes, you’ve come to the right place!

Ramen Noodle Stir Fry with Vegetables

Spanish Rice Soup

French Bread Pizzas

Lentil Spaghetti

Recipe by Julia Pacheco Course: Dinner, MainCuisine: ItalianDifficulty: Easy
Servings

4-5

servings
Prep time

10

minutes
Cooking time

35

minutes

Lentil Spaghetti is an inexpensive and filling option for dinner when you’re on a budget. Plus, it’s yummy and kid-approved, too!

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup 1/2 dry lentils

  • 1 1 bay leaf

  • 2 cups 2 water

  • 1 tbsp 1 minced garlic

  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 salt

  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 pepper

  • 24 oz 24 pasta sauce

  • 10 oz 10 frozen zucchini blend (or any frozen vegetables)

  • 1/3 cup 1/3 water

  • 12-16 oz 12-16 spaghetti noodles (use less if you like it more saucy)

Directions

  • Prepare the lentils. Place the lentils in a mesh strainer and rinse under cold water to clean of any dirt. While rinsing, look through the lentils and pick out any small rocks or imperfect lentils.
  • Place the lentils into a medium-sized pot over medium heat along with the bay leaf, two cups of water, minced garlic, salt, and pepper. Stir well and bring up to a simmer, then turn heat to low and let simmer, covered, for about 25 minutes or until the lentils are tender. Stir occasionally and check the lentils for doneness while simmering.
  • Once tender, remove any excess water in the pot then add in the pasta sauce, zucchini, and 1/3 cup of water. Stir well and let simmer together for 5-10 minutes to warm the sauce through.
  • While the sauce simmers, cook the spaghetti noodles according to the package instructions. Strain and serve with the lentil sauce mixture over the top. Enjoy!

Recipe Video

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