10 Lazy Weeknight Dinners You Can Make with Lentils or Beans

10 Lazy Weeknight Dinners You Can Make with Lentils or Beans

Kelli Foster
Aug 3, 2017
(Image credit: Maria Siriano)

When lentils or beans are the star of your dinner plate, you can be sure that you're getting a wholesome, meat-free dinner that will fill you up and won't kill your food budget for the week. These inexpensive pantry staples can easily be transformed into salads, tacos, braises, and more. Here are 10 weeknight-friendly recipes to add to your meal plan.

(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

1. Roasted Cauliflower & Lentil Bowl with Sweet Potato Hummus

There is no more delicious way to eat hummus for dinner than these bowls. Get a head start on dinner by cooking the lentils and sweet potatoes and roasting the cauliflower in advance.

(Image credit: Kimberley Hasselbrink)

2. Tomato-Braised Lentils with Broccoli Rabe

Finished with a pat of butter and splash of cream, this hearty dinner feels slightly indulgent. My husband describes this meal as "healthy French comfort food," and I think he might be on to something. Regular broccoli or dark leafy greens also make a nice stand-in for broccoli rabe.

(Image credit: Coco Morante)

3. Red Lentil Soup

No matter the temperature outside, this weeknight soup is pure comfort. Quick-cooking red lentils mean this soup will hit the table in about 30 minutes, and it's a nice make-ahead option since it lasts several days in the fridge.

(Image credit: Michelle Peters-Jones)

4. Lentil Dal with Hearty Greens

This dish comes together with minimum fuss and results in maximum comfort. While the lentils simmer on the stovetop, the greens — any type you have on hand — get sautéed with a medley of onion, tomato, ginger, and turmeric.

(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

5. Chopped Chickpea Salad

Unlike your standard chopped green salad with a big base of lettuce, this one uses leafy greens as a supporting ingredient and leans on protein-rich chickpeas as the base. It's a dinner salad sure to fill you up. Save extras for tomorrow's lunch.

(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

6. 10-Minute Black Bean Tacos

Yes, making tacos in 10 minutes is absolutely possible, and it's all thanks to that humble can of black beans sitting in your pantry. Heat them in a saucepan with some diced onion and warm spices for extra flavor.

(Image credit: Maria Siriano)

7. Crispy White Beans with Greens and Poached Egg

Give yourself 20 minutes (maybe less!) and you'll be tucking into creamy, blistered beans tossed in a tangle of wilted lemony greens. Top it with a runny-yolked poached egg and prepare to feel like a real dinner superhero.

(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

8. Feta and Tomato Braised Chickpeas

Partner a humble can of chickpeas with garlic-spiked tomato sauce and plenty of melty feta and you've got weeknight comfort food that hits the table in under 30 minutes.

9. Chickpea Nuggets

Inspired by falafel, these chickpea nuggets look like chicken nuggets, but are vegan and require only six pantry staples.

(Image credit: Kimberley Hasselbrink)

10. Baked Black Bean and Avocado Burritos

Canned beans keep this burrito-enchilada hybrid weeknight-friendly. They come together with a handful of basic ingredients and get big points for easy assembly.

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