Spaghetti With Lentil And Vegetable Ragu

Spaghetti is without a doubt my favorite food! I could eat it several times a week and fix it differently every time. A rich, slightly spicy marinara sauce has always been my favorite, but move over marinara… here comes Spaghetti With Lentil And Vegetable Ragu!

If you’re new to plant-based or vegan eating, this is an easy, “meaty” sauce that will help you forget about the fat clogging hamburger and sausage you’ve been cooking with. This No Heartburn Ever recipe can be easily tweaked, and I’ve provided my own cook’s notes below.


Spaghetti With Lentil And Vegetable Ragu
Spaghetti With Lentil And Vegetable Ragu


  • 2 large carrots, peeled and diced small
  • 11/2 large celery stalks, diced small
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and diced small
  • 1 small Japanese eggplant, diced small
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled and minced 
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon minced rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dry or 1 tablespoon fresh minced thyme
  • 3/4 cup green lentils, rinsed
  • 2 lg tomatoes, diced small
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon or more to taste red pepper flakes
  • Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 1 pound regular or whole grain spaghetti, cooked to package directions
  • Chopped Italian parsley for garnish

My cooking notes:

I used a small food processor to chop each vegetable separately or you can do it by hand. Sometimes I have home made broth available, but I also use Better Than Bouillion’s Seasoned Vegetable Base mixed with water. In this case, 3 teaspoons. Vegetable Base with 3 cups water. Although the taste will vary, chopped green peppers can be substituted for the eggplant. This dish is also delicious without the crushed red pepper. I just like to kick it up a notch.

  1. Place carrots, celery, and onion, in a large pan and saute’ over medium heat for 10 minutes. Add water a few tablespoons at a time to keep vegetables from sticking, stirring often. Add chopped eggplant to the pan after 5 minutes. Add the garlic, thyme, and rosemary and cook for another minute.
  2. Add lentils, vegetable broth, and bay leaf. Increase heat to high and bring pan to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook for 35 minutes.
  3. Add tomatoes, crushed red pepper, salt, and pepper. Cook for 10 minutes uncovered or until lentils are tender.
  4. During the last 10 minutes, cook the spaghetti according to package directions and drain. Garnish with chopped parsley.


I’ve adapted and slightly changed the ingredients and proportions of this recipe from the Forks Over Knives cookbook to include the eggplant growing in my garden. I also like my sauce spicy. Featured from my year round garden are my Japanese eggplant, fresh rosemary and Italian parsley.

Eggplant, rosemary, and Italian Parsley
Eggplant, rosemary, and Italian Parsley go great in my Spaghetti with Lentil and Vegetable Ragu.

Hope you enjoy this tasty take on traditional spaghetti sauce. I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

~Haynes Meritt

(Disclosure: Purchases from Amazon affiliate links in this post yield a small commission for me at no extra cost to you.)


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