Mayo Clinic Health Library

Recipe: Spicy red lentils

Updated: 08-30-2012

Dietitian's tip: This Moroccan-style dish is quick to assemble. Serve it as a side dish with roasted meats or fish. In larger portions, it also makes a satisfying main course.

Ingredients

Serves: 6

  • 1 1/4 cups dried red lentils, picked over, rinsed and drained
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 serrano chili, seeded and finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (fresh coriander)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

Directions

In a saucepan over high heat, combine the lentils, water, bay leaf and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover partially and simmer until the lentils are tender but still firm, 12 to 14 minutes. Drain and discard the bay leaf. Set aside.

In a small frying pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the chili and garlic and saute until softened, about 1 minute. Add the cumin, coriander and cinnamon and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Remove the pan from the heat.

In a large bowl, combine the lentils and the spice mixture. Toss gently to mix. Stir in the parsley, cilantro and mint and season with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and the pepper. Stir in the vinegar and serve immediately.

Nutritional Analysis per serving
  • Calories: 189
  • Total carbohydrate: 25 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg
  • Dietary fiber: 12 g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 3 g
  • Protein: 11 g
  • Saturated fat: 1 g
  • Sodium: 204 mg
  • Sugars: 0
  • Total fat: 5 g
  • Trans fat: 0 g
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Diabetes Meal Plan Exchanges
DASH Eating Plan Servings

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