lentil sloppy joes

Lentil Sloppy Joes

These lentil sloppy joes are just what you need when you are looking for a high protein plant based meal. Did you know there’s 18g of protein in a cup of lentils – wow!

You can make this recipe as a one pot meal and just add everything to a large pot and cook for about 40 minutes or you can use precooked or canned lentils and it comes together a little quicker. If using canned, look for low salt and BPA free cans.

These are great served over sweet potatoes or gluten free buns, if you have a favorite. I also just like the mixture served in a bowl with nutritional yeast and sliced avocado on top.

Lentil Sloppy Joes

Protein packed lentil dish that brings savory and umami flavors together for a satisfying and delicious meal.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: lentils, peppers, tomatoes
Servings: 6
Author: Chef Kim


  • 2 ¾ cups water or vegetable stock
  • 1 cup onion chopped
  • 1 celery stalk diced
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 ½ cups dried brown or green lentils
  • 1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 Tbsp tamari or coconut aminos
  • 2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 Tbsp coconut sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vegan Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and pepper
  • Nutritional yeast to sprinkle on top optional


  • Place ¾ cup water or stock in a pot.
  • Add onion, celery and bell pepper and a pinch of salt. Cook for about 5 minutes, until onion is slightly softened. Stir in the spices and mix well.
  • Add the remaining liquid and the rest of the ingredients. Mix well and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce heat, cover and cook over low heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste to see if the lentils are tender. Cook up to an additional 15-20 minutes to reach desired tenderness. You don’t want them to cook too long and turn mushy, you want them tender but holding their shape.
  • Remove a third to a blender and blend to make a thick sauce texture and return to pot. Or use an immersion hand blender to puree some of the mixture.
  • Serve over sweet potatoes or bread with sliced onions, avocado, sprouts, a sprinkle of nutritional yeast and a side salad.


This can be made using precooked or canned lentils. Omit the water and combine everything except cooked lentils to make a sauce, cooking for 15 minutes. Stir in the cooked lentils, mashing them a little to thicken the texture.


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