Caramelised Lentil Pilaf

The great thing about caramelised lentil pilaf is that it’s vegan, packed with protein, and easy to make, perfect for picnics.
10 minutes
50 minutes

About this recipe

The great thing about caramelised lentil pilaf is that it’s vegan, packed with protein, and easy to make. It’s the perfect dish for anyone looking to eat less meat. Enjoy it hot or cold, with a bowl of fresh super herb salad or a refreshing yogurt cucumber salad.

Caramelised lentil pilaf also makes the perfect picnic food — it’s cheap, delicious, high in fibre, and super filling. I really hope you give this a go and if you do and have leftovers, you must combine it with this mouth-watering lentil and herb baked cauliflower drizzled with a yogurt tahini sauce. Absolutely delicious!

caramelised lentil pilaf


  • 1 cup whole red lentils
  • 5 cups of water
  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • 4 onions finely chopped
  • ½ cup cracked wheat (coarse)
  • salt to season

Notes from Rouba

  • Whole red lentils are not red in colourWhat’s the difference?
  • The colour and flavour of the dish heavily rely on the caramelisation of the onions.
  • Overcooking the lentils will result in a mushy dish.
  • Visually inspect the lentils for any small stones. Also, it’s always best to give the lentils a rinse before cooking to eliminate any dirt.
  • You can also use a food processor to chop your onion. Pulse the onion until finely chopped but not wet.


Step 1.

Add lentils to 5 cups of salted boiling water. Cook over medium to low heat for approximately 20-25 minutes or until lentils are cooked but not soft. Drain and reserve the liquid.

Step 2.

While lentils are cooking, prepare the onion. Combine the oil and onion over medium heat and cook approximately 20-25 minutes, stirring every now and then until they turn very dark brown but not burnt. Remember, the success of this dish lies in this step.

Step 3.

Reduce heat to low, add 1 ½ cups of the reserved liquid to the onion and let it simmer for 2 minutes. Season with salt.

Add the cooked lentils and coarse cracked wheat and stir to combine. Cover the pot with a lid and continue to cook over very low heat for approximately 20 minutes or until cooked.

Sahtan - Enjoy in Good Health

What do you think?

5/5 (1 Review)

Share the love!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Creating magic and happy memories with food are my gift for you!
xx Rouba

Latest Recipes

Beef Slow Cooked

Warm up with our delish beef slow cooked — tender meat, veggies and spices make it a hit. Check out our other recipes too for more yumminess! Enjoy!