Lentil 'meatballs' with tomato & chilli
Waitrose and Partners

Lentil ‘meatballs’ with tomato & chilli

Bring some vibrancy to Veganuary with this tomatoey vegan supper featuring hearty puy lentils. If you prefer things less spicy, try swapping the chilli flakes for a pinch of mixed dried herbs.

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3 out of 5 stars(5) Rate this recipe
VeganVegetarianHealthySource of fibre2 of your 5 a day
  • Serves3
  • CourseMain meal
  • Prepare15 mins
  • Cook35 mins
  • Total time50 mins


  • 4 tbsp Essential Olive Oil
  • 1 large onion, finely diced
  • 4 clove/s garlic, crushed
  • 250g pack Merchant Gourmet Puy Lentils
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 x 25g pack flat leaf parsley, leaves finely chopped, extra to serve
  • 1 tsp Essential Tomato Purée
  • 400g can Essential Chopped Tomatoes
  • 1 pinch chilli flakes


  1. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large sauté pan or shallow casserole dish over a medium heat. Fry the onion and a pinch of salt for 5 minutes until starting to soften, then add the garlic and cook for 5 minutes more until lightly golden.

  2. Tip 1/2 the onion and garlic mixture into a small food processor along with the lentils, paprika, parsley and tomato purée. Season and pulse to a coarse consistency (it shouldn’t be too smooth). Meanwhile, put the canned tomatoes and chilli flakes in the pan with the remaining onion and garlic, and simmer gently for 10 minutes (add a splash of water if it starts to look dry).

  3. Heat the remaining 2 tbsp oil in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. Roll the lentil mixture into 12 balls and fry for 5-6 minutes until golden all over, then transfer to the pan with the tomato sauce and heat everything through together. Serve with couscous, if liked, with extra parsley leaves scattered over.

Cook’s tip

A pinch of smoked paprika is great for adding smoky flavour to tomato-based stews, soups, traybakes and pasta sauces. Or scatter over sweet potato wedges before baking.


Typical values per serving when made using specific products in recipe


1,480kJ/ 355kcals



Saturated Fat












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Overall rating (3/5)

3 out of 5 stars5 ratings