Autumn pasta with lentils
Waitrose and Partners

Autumn pasta with lentils

Diana Henry's family dish is beefy and intense. Use up those annoying bits of pasta that end up in the bottom of various bags and serve it with green beans or a plain green salad dressed with a mustardy vinaigrette.

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High fibre2 of your 5 a day
  • Serves4
  • CourseMain meal
  • Prepare15 mins
  • Cook45 mins
  • Total time1 hr

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  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus a little extra for drizzling
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 clove/s garlic, grated to a purée
  • ¼ tsp chilli flakes
  • 1 carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 stick celery, finely chopped
  • 225g green lentils, washed well in a sieve
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 sprig/s thyme, plus extra leaves to garnish
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 8 cherry tomatoes
  • 250g macaroni, or another pasta shape of similar size
  • 15g Parmigiano Reggiano, grated, plus extra for serving


  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan and sauté the onion for 5-8 minutes over a medium heat, until quite soft. It shouldn’t get too much colour. Add the garlic and chilli flakes and cook for a couple of minutes more, then add the carrot, celery, lentils, tomato purée, herbs, seasoning and 1.2L water. Simmer the lentils, with the lid half off, for about 30 minutes. The lentils should keep their shape.

  2. Tip the can of tomatoes and the cherry tomatoes into the pan (leave the tomatoes whole to give a bit of texture and structure). Add the pasta, season again and add more water if you think the dish needs it.

  3. Simmer for 10-15 minutes, uncovered, until the pasta is tender, stirring often so the pasta releases its starch – you want to end up with a dish that is quite thick, not like a soup. Add a little more water if you think the dish needs it.

  4. Add the cheese and check the seasoning once more. Stir in some more extra virgin olive oil or drizzle it over individual servings. Serve with more grated cheese and the thyme leaves to garnish. This can be reheated the next day and still tastes great.


Typical values per serving when made using specific products in recipe


1,982kJ/ 472kcals



Saturated Fat












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