Updated: Feb 16, 2020

Bolognese has always been one of my go to recipes but a while ago I substituted the meat with beans, lentils, and mushrooms and this is definitely my favorite – and my meat-loving friends seem to love this veggie-version as well. This recipe can be made very quickly (with a bit of simmer time) but the taste is still amazing. I have made this so many times in different varieties and it’s also a great base for my chili sin carne and lasagna recipes.


Serves: 6-8 people (or 2 people and a lot extra for the freezer)

  • 2 red onions

  • 2 tbsp. olive oil

  • 4 cloves of garlic

  • 1 red chili (leave it out or remove the seeds to make it less spicy)

  • 200 grams of mushrooms

  • 1 tbsp. oregano

  • 1 tsp. rosemary

  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper

  • 3 carrots

  • 1 zucchini

  • 3-4 celery stalks

  • 2 cans of tomatoes

  • 1 can of tomato puree (140 g)

  • 1 cup of green lentils

  • 1.5 cup of plant milk (can be replaced by water or vegetable stock)

  • 0.5 cup red wine (optional)

  • 1 can black beans

  • 1 can of kidney beans


  1. Chop the onions

  2. Sauté the onions in olive oil in a large pot over medium heat for a few minutes until the onions are soft and golden

  3. Chop the garlic, chili, and mushrooms and add to the pot. Sauté for a few minutes until the mushrooms are golden

  4. Grate the carrots and zuchinni and chop the celery

  5. Add the vegetables and spices and sauté for 5-10 minutes until it has reduced significantly in size

  6. Rinse the lentils and add them to the pot with the canned tomatoes, tomato puree, milk, and water

  7. Let the sauce simmer for 30 minutes

  8. Rinse the beans, add them to the pot, and let it simmer for 10 more minutes

  9. Blend the sauce very roughly with a hand blender (optional and depends on the desired texture)

  10. The bolognese freezes very well (I always make a big batch and freeze the left overs in portion sizes - perfect for busy (exam study) nights)

Tip: Eat with spaghetti or in a baked russet/sweet potato. Top with cheese (mozzarella or parmesan) or nutritional yeast for a vegan version