There is nothing I like better than getting several meals/snacks out of one bout of cooking which is the premise behind batch cooking. The problem is that I rarely get it together enough to batch cook for the whole week. I’m trying to give myself some grace as far as that is concerned but every now and then I stumble across a recipe that I use several ways with very little effort. For me that is like hitting the lottery because I only have to cook once and I have lots of weekday meals and snacks. I can’t take credit for the base recipes (thank you Nutmeg Notebook) but I can take credit for how I use them and a new creation that meat and non-meat eaters alike gobbled up recently at a family get-together. See if you can come up with another use for these recipes! I love to hear about it!
Chili Lentils for Tacos
1 pound brown lentils, rinsed (you can use green lentils you just have to increase the cooking time)
2 tbsp water or vegetable broth
1 onion finely chopped
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
¼ cup chili powder (start with 2 tbsp and add more to taste)
1-2 tbsp ground cumin
1 can (15 oz) tomatoes, diced (I might even add another can if you like tomatoes)
Salt and pepper to taste
- Bring 5 cups of water and lentils to a boil in a covered 12-inch skillet. Reduce heat to medium and cook until the water is almost absorbed and the lentils are just tender about 12 minutes (green lentils took 20-25 minutes) Turn off the heat.
- Meanwhile, heat the 2 tbsp water or broth in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the cooked lentils and canned tomatoes. Adjust the seasonings to taste.
Donna’s Vegan Cheeze Sauce
2 cups white potatoes, diced large
1 cup carrots, diced large
¾ cups water
1 teaspoon Benson’s Table Tasty Salt Substitute or another favorite salt substitute
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice (or more)
½ cup Nutritional Yeast
½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp onion powder
¾ tsp smoked paprika
Dash of cayenne pepper
- Boil the potatoes and carrots until soft and drain.
- Place the cooked carrots and potatoes and the rest of the ingredients in a high-powered blender until smooth. Add more water if it is too thick. If it’s too thin add a little more potato. Adjust the seasoning to taste. I often add more no salt seasoning and lemon to give it some tang.
How can I use these recipes?
- Lentil tacos- Using corn or flour tortillas treat them like you would any taco adding taco sauce, salsa, cilantro, pickled onions and of course the vegan cheeze sauce on top.
- Nachos- Create nachos using the lentils for the meat and the vegan cheeze sauce for the cheese.
- Rice and Beans- Use the Chili Lentil recipe over brown rice for a quick and easy lunch or week night meal.
- Baked potato bar- Bake potatoes and top them with lentils, broccoli, cheeze sauce or whatever you enjoy putting on your potatoes.
- Mexican Dip- My personal favorite
Riley’s Cheezy Lentil Mexican Dip
Donna’s Vegan Cheeze Sauce
Store bought or homemade salsa
- Combine 1 cup lentils, ½ cups cheeze sauce and ½ cup salsa together in a bowl.
- Heat for 1 minute or so in the microwave to heat through and thoroughly combine.
- Serve with tortilla chip or corn chips warm or room temperature.