Jerk-style lentils bring all the flavor of the Caribbean but with a vegan twist. They pack all the punch of jerk-spiced chicken but with a nod to those of us who’d rather be meat-free. Puy lentils, Scotch bonnet peppers, maple syrup, jerk seasoning, and tomatoes make this vegan version exceptional.
Jerk spices are among my favorite flavors: whenever I smell a little jerk seasoning, it feels like a big warm hug. Jerk seasoning is not limited to use with meat–trust me, you can still enjoy the flavors in fun plant-based ways.--Rachel Ama
WHAT ARE PUY LENTILS?
Lentils can be confusing if you’re not a full-time legume eater. This recipe calls for Puy (or Le Puy) lentils which are also sold in the US as French green lentils. A small, gray-green legume, Le Puy lentils come from a specific place in France, where they’ve grown for over 2,000 years. They’re recognized for their peppery flavor and ability to retain their shape after cooking.
They have a high protein and fiber content, making them desirable for vegan diets. If you can’t find them, you can substitute most other lentils. Brown makes the best sub, while red makes an unappealing substitution in a recipe like this, as they get really soft, really fast. They’re best left for thickening soups and stews.
In this recipe, the dried lentils absorb the jerk spices and flavors for a seriously delicious dish. Full of Caribbean attitude and vegan sensibilities, you’re going to love the taste and aroma of my jerk-style lentils.
In a deep skillet over medium heat, warm the oil. Add the onion and sauté until softened and slightly browned, about 5 minutes.
Stir in ginger, jerk seasoning, maple syrup, tomato purée, and garlic. Sauté for 3 minutes, then add the tomatoes, lentils, vegetable stock, chile, and thyme. Season with salt and pepper.
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to maintain a simmer and cook until the lentils have softened, 35 to 45 minutes.
Sprinkle cilantro and scallions on top and serve. The lentils will keep in the fridge for 3 days or in the freezer for 3 months.
Serving: 1servingCalories: 348kcal (17%)Carbohydrates: 54g (18%)Protein: 21g (42%)Fat: 5g (8%)Saturated Fat: 1g (6%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gSodium: 767mg (33%)Potassium: 126mg (4%)Fiber: 25g (104%)Sugar: 7g (8%)Vitamin A: 1392IU (28%)Vitamin C: 9mg (11%)Calcium: 75mg (8%)Iron: 6mg (33%)
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
Originally published October 11, 2021