Easy Vegan Bolognese

Easy Vegan Bolognese is simple, healthy and really tasty! It is such an easy recipe to make and packed with nutrients it is definitely worth trying. 

If you are a regular to my blog, you’ll know that one of my aims this year was to eat less meat. So far I have made Vegan Lentil Chilli, Roasted Halloumi & Za’atar Tray Bake and Sweetcorn & Cavolo Nero Quesadillas. These have been popular which has lead me to come up with more veggie recipes.

Why not use Quorn?

Adapting a bolognese seemed like an obvious choice for me. As I have said previously, I’m not too keen on using meat replacements like Quorn. I know a lot of people use and love Quorn, but not using it lets me come up with more creative ways than swapping the mince for Quorn. Also I’m sure there are quite a few lovely recipes already out there using Quorn for bolognese. 

Using lentils instead of meat

As in my Vegan Lentil Chilli and Vegetarian Lentil Curry, I have used lentils in this Easy Vegan Bolognese. I am new to using lentils but have been really loving them! They help bulk out a dish and make it more filling. I think they also create a slightly meaty texture which helps if you are feeding non vegetarians!

In previous recipes I’ve used red split lentils which worked really well. This was my first recipe using green lentils. I wanted to use the green lentils for this Easy Vegan Bolognese because they hold their shape better than red lentils. 

Can I cook this in a slow cooker?

Yes this Easy Vegan Bolognese would work really well in a slow cooker. I haven’t tested it yet, but I would add all of the ingredients apart from the lentils. I’d cook it for 2 hours on high before adding the lentils and cooking for a further 2-3 hours. I would also reduce the amount of water to 200ml. 

Is this Easy Vegan Bolognese healthy?

The good news is yes! I didn’t set out to make this recipe, vegan or super healthy. But I am pleased that it ended up that way! Lentils contain lots of protein as well as fibre and other nutrients you can’t find in meat. On top of that, this Easy Vegan Bolognese is really low in calories too! 

4.88 from 8 votes

Easy Vegan Bolognese

Easy Vegan Bolognese is simple, healthy and really tasty! It is such an easy recipe to make and packed with nutrients it is definitely worth trying. 

Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian, Mediterranean
Keyword Vegetarian, Vegan, Bolognaise
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 126 kcal
Author Curly


  • ½ tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 onion diced
  • 3 carrots diced
  • 2 sticks of celery diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • tbsp tomato puree
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tsp mixed herbs
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • ½ tsp dried rosemary
  • ½ tsp mustard powder
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • tsp Bouillon powder
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 390g tin green lentils
  • 300 ml water


  1. Add the oil to a pan over medium heat. Add the diced onions, carrot, celery, garlic and tomato puree and allow to soften for 10 minutes 

  2. Add the tinned tomatoes, dried herbs, mustard powder, salt, pepper, Bouillon powder and bay leaves. Stir to mix through completely 

  3. Add 200ml of water and stir through. Leave to cook partially covered with a lid for 30 mins on a low heat, stirring occasionally 

  4. Drain and rinse the lentils in cold water before adding them to the pan

  5. Add another 100ml water before partially covering with a lid and leaving to cook on a low heat for another hour. Stir every so often and add a little more water if needed 

Recipe Notes

When using tinned tomatoes, I like to fill the empty tin with water to add to the recipe. It catches the last of the tomato juice. 

If at any point it starts looking too dry, add a splash more water.

If it looks too watery towards the end of the cooking time, remove the lid and turn up the heat slightly. 

Nutritional information is given as a guide only. 

Nutrition Facts
Easy Vegan Bolognese
Amount Per Serving
Calories 126 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Fat 3g5%
Sodium 770mg33%
Potassium 1332mg38%
Carbohydrates 71g24%
Fiber 32g133%
Sugar 8g9%
Protein 27g54%
Vitamin A 7830IU157%
Vitamin C 19.5mg24%
Calcium 110mg11%
Iron 8.7mg48%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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15 thoughts on “Easy Vegan Bolognese

  1. Choclette

    I’m so pleased you’re discovering the joy of lentils. I’ve been eating them al my life and would find it ver hard to live without them. I’m not a fan of quorn and avoid it if I can. Your bolognese sounds delicious.

    1. Curly Post author

      I still have a lot to learn about lentils but am definitely loving how versatile they are. Thanks 🙂

  2. Jane Saunders

    I can’t get along with quorn either, but i do adore lentils so this recipe is ideal for me. Thanks for sharing.

  3. jenny walters

    I have never cooked with lentils either but your bolognese looks delicious. I love how you have packed in the flavour. Bolognese is such a wonderful dish. Thank you for sharing with #CookBlogShare

  4. Jacqueline Meldrum

    Spaghetti bolognese is one of my favourite meals. I just love it. I usually make it with veggie mince, but I sometimes make it with lentils like you and that is yummy too. Your bolognese looks lush. Sharing!


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