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What to eat with lentils?

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Mild and earthy, lentils are widely known for their delicious taste that is similar to ground meat texture. Due to subtle and bland taste with complex texture, seasoning with the right spices makes the dish more enjoyable.

Lentils are a great replacement for meat, therefore it can be found in most plant-based recipes. Red, gold, green, black or orange, the flavor of lentils requires a slight modification and spice pairing to make or break the deal.

What to eat with lentils? Lentils are typically seasoned before pairing with other dishes. It can be served with green vegetables with mushrooms, roasted cauliflower with raisins, or red cabbage with beets and blue cheese. 

With these classic combination, lentils can be eaten in a soup, used as a filling, served in salad, baked casserole, and sweet desserts. 

Even though it is good source of plant based protein, the legume goes well with meats such as ham, bacon, sausage, chicken, ground beef, and pork.

To make a complete meal, consider accompanying lentils with grains including rice, oats, rye, and corn. 

This type of legume has earthy tones with mild beany flavors that make it perfect to use as vegan fillings, soup, stews, salad for many dishes. They are affordable, cook up quickly, and are highly satisfying. 

In this article, we answer frequently asked questions about incredible pairings with lentils including what type of meat tastes good with lentils to make a complete meal.

What goes well with lentils?

Other than meat, lentils goes well with fruits, vegetables, nuts, and many more. From rice dishes to creamy tomato sauce, there are fulfilling meals that are delicious and tasteful.

Whether using lentils as a meat replacement or cooking in hearty soups for the cold season, play around with these ingredients to make the combination extra special.

  • Fruits: apples, coconut, lemon juice, lime juice, pineapple, tomatoes
  • Nuts: walnuts
  • Herbs: bay leaf, chervil, chives, cilantro, cloves, dill, mint, oregano, parsley, thyme
  • Spices: cardamom, cayenne, chili peppers, cinnamon, cumin, curry powder, garlic, ginger, black and white peppers, turmeric
  • Vegetables: red bell peppers, carrots, celery, cornichons, eggplant, leeks, onions, scallions, shallots, spinach, butternut squash, turnips, zucchini
  • Dairy: unsalted butter, cream
  • Cheese: goat
  • Condiments: honey, Dijon mustard, Kosher salt, soy sauce
  • Oil: olive, hazelnut, peanut, vegetale, walnut
  • Stocks: chicken, vegetable 
  • Vinegar: balsamic, red wine, sherry

What can I add to cooked lentils?

Plain lentils does not have much flavor and taste extremely bland to serve alone. Therefore, it is best to mix with seasoning to create unforgettable taste and also helps to complement with other foods.

As a result, cooking lentils is a careful process. 

Cooked lentils can be mixed with bay leaves for an extra burst of flavor, plus a clove of fresh garlic. But people also include fresh herbs that pair well with veggies, chicken, and other recipe favorites. 

To add a dash of sweetness, rosemary, carrots, or sage also works pretty well.

A personal favorite to serve with lentils is pasta sauce and roasted mushrooms over the top of roasted or mashed potatoes.

What meat goes well with lentils?

In general, lentils are known for being a good source of protein that has a similar quality as meat. As a result, a ½ cup serving of lentils offers about 12 grams of protein. 

However, due to subtle and mild flavor, not only spices and herbs, it pairs wonderfully with meats to complete a dish.

  • bacon
  • quail
  • ham
  • lamb
  • pork
  • prosciutto
  • salmon
  • smoked sausage

What goes well with lentils for a complete protein?

Lentils can never stand on their own as a complete protein. But if paired with the right dish, the legume can make a wholesome dish that will thoroughly fulfill the needs of your body. 

Include ingredients such as garlic paste, ginger and peanuts to give the dish a hearty flavor.

What flavor goes well with lentils?

Lentils are not robust. While they have a slight starchy taste, they tend to go well with many other foods when cooked together. 

Cooked lentils pair well with freshly chopped herbs such as garlic, parsley, cilantro, or ginger, for a delicious taste. Paprika, turmeric, and salt are other combinations that add depth and complexity to the recipe. 

For those seeking to prepare spicy lentils, use a pinch of cayenne pepper or chili powder.

Here are classic flavor combination that go well with lentils:

  • lentil + bacon + bell pepper + cumin + garlic
  • lentil + bacon + garlic + sherry vinegar 
  • lentil + bay leaf + onions + thyme
  • lentil + cumin + turmeric
  • lentil + olive oil + parsley + sorrel
What to eat with lentils

Eat with Lentils: Conclusion

Lentils are sweet alone and their flavors are just like the smell of earth when it rains. But lentils taste even sweeter when combined with the right foods.

Start the pairing with greens and mushrooms, roasted cauliflower with raisins, or red cabbage salad with beets and blue cheese.

From soups to salads, fillings, casseroles and sweets, there are plenty of things to do with lentils. They pair well with a wide selection of meats, veggies, and other flavors, but they also make a perfect pairing in salads and sides, thanks to their shape and firm texture.

Even though they are an amazing source of protein, it complement well with meats such as ham, bacon, sausage, chicken, beef, and pork. In addition, side of grains like rice, oats, rye, corn, and wheat helps to make a filling and nutritious meal.

Because they are small and easy to cook, lentils bulk up just about any type of dish and turn it into a complete meal. Due to its bland taste, add herbs, stocks, spices, and seasonings to make the lentils delicious before serving with other items.

Thanks to their hearty texture and nutritional value, lentils have found a place in the diets of many people. Whether French green lentils, beluga, red, or yellow, lentils make a meal that will fulfill and warm your belly.

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