Red lentil Bolognaise

As a family we don't eat a lot of meat for many reasons. When we buy meat we buy it as close to farm as possible and from butchers and farms who share our ethos. It does mean we spend more but in doing so the product we buy is so tasty, there is a clear difference. 

This vegetarian Bolognaise mix is on high rotation at our house because it is so versatile! Use over pasta with fresh basil stirred though, top with mashed potatoes for a Sheperd's pie or mix in beans and spices to make an incredible con carne.

It also freezes well so make a big batch and freeze the base recipe for future use.


1 carrot

3 sticks celery

1/2 leek

1 zucchini

2 cloves garlic crushed

2 cups chopped tomatoes

1tbl tomato paste

1 cup red lentils

600ml vegetable stock

Salt, pepper, sweet paprika, dried herbs to taste



Chop vegetables. We like ours chunky but you can cut them as fine as you like or alternatively grate them.

Fry vegetables (not tomatoes) and garlic in 1 tablespoon of oil until soft. Add tomato paste and stir over the heat for 1 minute.

Add chopped tomatoes, stock and red lentils. Stir until mixture begins to bubble then turn down to a simmer. Simmer, stirring occasionally for 15-20 minutes until the liquid has all soaked up and lentils are cooked through. If required, more liquid can be added either as stock or water.

Finish with a generous amount of salt and pepper and any herbs or spices of choice. Mixture can be partly or wholly blended if you wish for it to be smooth however be very careful blending hot liquids.