Sunday, June 7, 2015

Easy Lentil Taco/Burrito Filling

With the help of store-bought cooked lentils, this meaty filling comes together quickly.  There are tons of awesome of lentil "meat" recipes out there, but this is what I do when I'm feeling lazy (which is often) and want an easy filling for tacos, burritos, quesadillas, flautas, chimichangas, etc.  The fennel seeds add great flavor here.  I love them.  But as always, remember to adjust the ingredient amounts and spices to your liking. :)

Lentil burrito with chipotle sauce

Makes about 2 servings

1 tablespoon cooking oil of choice
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1 large shallot, finely chopped (about 1/4 cup)
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 cup cooked brown lentils (I use Trader Joe's pre-cooked steamed lentils)
2 teaspoons nutritional yeast
A handful of cherry tomatoes, sliced in half (or into quarters if they're big)
A handful of baby spinach, finely chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste

  1. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add the minced garlic, chopped shallot, oregano, fennel seeds, and chili powder.  Sauté until fragrant.
  3. Add the cooked lentils and nutritional yeast.  Sauté for 1-2 minutes.
  4. Add the chopped tomatoes and spinach.  Sauté for 1-2 minutes until the spinach has wilted.
  5. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

You can mash the lentils too.  I like leaving them whole.  Other possible add-ins:  cumin, fresh cilantro, diced jalapeño, potatoes, leeks, hot sauce...I could go on.  :)

The chipotle sauce pictured above is store-bought from Whole Foods.  For a homemade version, you can try this vegan Creamy Chipotle Dressing from Vegetarian Times.

I've never used this filling on nachos, but now I'm thinking it's long overdue.