Vegan lentil loaf

I have been making this at Xmas for well over 10 years, and every so often someone asks me for the recipe and I spend ages digging through my email for it. So here it is, for future reference. It is based on a Rose Elliot recipe, but hers had egg and cheese in, and fewer tasty things like garlic and Marmite.

Lentil loaf: serves 4-6 as part of big roast dinner

6oz split red lentils
8 fl oz water (may need to add more)
1 bay leaf
1 medium-sized onion, peeled & finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled & finely chopped
2oz mushrooms, washed & finely chopped
1.5 oz fresh wholemeal breadcrumbs
1 tbsp chopped parsley
1 tbsp lemon juice
salt & pepper
splash soy sauce (to taste)
herbs to taste – thyme, rosemary, sage, oregano are all nice, depends what you have on hand.
Marmite (to taste)
Nutritional yeast to taste (optional)
1 tbsp soy lecithin or egg replacer (optional)
Marg & dried crumbs (optional) for coating tin

Put the lentils, water, & bay leaf in a saucepan & simmer gently until lentils tender & liquid absorbed. Add more water if necessary, but only a little & as needed or the loaf will be sloppy. Remove bay leaf.

Meanwhile, fry onions, mushrooms & garlic gently until onions are transparent.

Preheat oven to 190C/375F/gas mark 5. Prepare 1lb loaf tin by putting long narrow strip of greaseproof paper on base & up narrow sides. Grease tin with marg, & sprinkle generously with dried crumbs if using.

Mix lentils, onions, mushrooms, garlic, & rest of ingredients. Spoon into tin & level top. Bake uncovered for 45-60min, until firm & golden-brown on top.


  1. Nutritional yeast has a nice cheesy taste, but is non-essential. Soya lecithin/egg replacer helps the stuff to bind together, but we don’t use it for anything else so don’t have it in the house, & I don’t bother. It just means it comes out a bit less sliceable.
  2. It’s a very forgiving recipe, generally.
  3. It keeps well in the fridge. You can also make it a day in advance & heat it in the microwave, or make it as far as ready-to-bake, leave it in the fridge overnight, & put it in the oven the next day (which is what we do at Xmas).

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