This Lentil Taco Salad is an easy vegetarian dinner that’s perfect for your next Taco Tuesday! Lentils make a great substitute for ground meat if you’re looking to transition to more plant-based meals.
I’m back! I didn’t really mean to drop off the face of the earth, but life happens. Here’s a quick recap: On Jan 11, I left on a weeklong trip. I went a small, invite-only conference for Registered Dietitians in Lisbon, Portugal. Then, last Wednesday, on my way to the airport to fly home, I came down with the flu. And I mean full-on fever, body aches, chills, cough. To say the 8-hour plane ride home was miserable would be putting it mildly. Thursday my fever climbed up to 102.5 and I could barely get out of bed. Luckily, my parents, who were in town to help my husband with the kids while I was gone, were able to stay an extra day and then Friday my in-laws took the kids in the morning. I did my best to stay as far away from the kids as possible so I’m hoping they’ll stay healthy. Sunday was the first day I was fever-free, although I’m still pretty run down and coughing. With the exception of going to urgent care, I literally haven’t even left my house since I got home Wednesday night.
SO…i think I’m on the mend and I’ll be spending this week trying to play catch-up on everything I’ve fallen behind on over the past couple of weeks.
Lucky for you guys, I had this recipe made and photographed before I left to go on my trip so I can share it with you today.
This is another super easy vegetarian recipe that’s perfect if you’re looking to transition to more plant-based meals. When people ask me for ways to ease into meatless meals, one of the first swaps I recommend is lentils for ground meat. Lentils are quick and easy to cook and don’t have much flavor so they easily take on the flavors of whatever you’re cooking. They’re also similar in size and texture to ground meat. You’ve seen me use them before in these Lentil Sloppy Joes, this Vegetarian Instant Pot Lasagna Soup and this Lentil Mac and Cheese. If you’re just not quite ready to make the full switch, you can even do half and half and do half ground meat/half lentils as you adjust.
This Lentil Taco Salad recipe is just another way to enjoy your favorite tacos flavors sans meat. The lentils taco on the flavor of the seasonings and you can add all your favorite toppings to your salad to customize it! I use farro instead of something more traditional like rice because I love its chewy texture and I find that it cooks pretty quickly in 20 min or so. You could easily use your favorite grain – rice, quinoa, etc.
Here’s how you make it:Print
Lentil Taco Salad
This Lentil Taco Salad is an easy vegan dinner that’s perfect for your next Taco Tuesday! Lentils make a great substitute for ground meat if you’re looking to transition to more plant-based meals.
- Prep Time: 5 min
- Cook Time: 20 min
- Total Time: 25 minutes
- Yield: serves 4
- 2/3 cup brown lentils, uncooked
- 3/4 cup farro, uncooked
- 1 cup mushrooms, diced
- 1 c red or orange bell pepper, diced
- 1/2 cup diced onion
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes (i use no salt added)
- 3–4 tsp taco seasoning
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 head lettuce, chopped
- optional toppings: avocado, cheese, salsa
Cook lentils according to package directions, drain and set aside.
Cook farro according to package directions.
In a large pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add mushrooms, peppers, onions and garlic and saute 5-10 minutes until soft. Add cooked lentils, tomatoes (including liquid) and taco seasoning.
Cook 5 more minutes until heated through.
Divide lettuce into bowls, add a scoop of farro to each one and top with lentil mixture.
Add optional toppings if desired.
You could easily sub rice for farro if you want (or any other grain of your choosing).
Pretty easy, right? And so easy to customize so the whole family can have their favorite toppings. If you have a favorite homemade taco seasoning recipe, definitely use it! If I buy store-bought I always buy low-sodium and usually use less than i need and then ramp it up with some extra cumin and paprika or chili powder depending on my mood.
This recipe is perfect for component food prep. You could cook the lentils and farro ahead of time and chop all the veggies. Then all you’d have to do is saute the veggies for a little while and heat the lentils and farro and then assemble!
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