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Sunday, May 11, 2014

Vegan, Gluten Free Applesauce Sweet & Sour Lentils #MeatlessMonday

Free of gluten, dairy, eggs, nuts, and soy

Who doesn't love sweet and sour sauce? But unfortunately, it's usually made with a whole lot of sugar and ketchup.

But not this one. No ketchup here. The sweetness comes mostly from unsweetened applesauce, and just a tiny little bit of organic sugar. However, you could also use stevia or maple syrup instead (or, for a non-vegan dish, honey).

This dish is also almost obscenely cheap, healthy, tasty, and easy to make. And I love that it's naturally gluten free, doesn't require any expensive specialty items, and makes a great freezer meal. 

As I've said before, lentils are a super cheap source of protein (30% of their calories come from protein), as well as iron, dietary fibre, vitamin B1 and folate.

And also, as in my Schlapped lentils and vegetable dinner this dish was modified from a recipe in the More-with-Less Cookbook , which I grew up reading. While I'm not Mennonite (the cookbook is compiled by Mennonites around the world as a means to make cheap, healthy meals), this book was quite formative for me. While some of the recipes are outdated (most of us now know that margarine is not a better alternative to butter), the principles and tips for eating well on a budget are timeless, and I still flip through it to get ideas on how to use up leftover bits of kitchen scraps.

These lentils freeze well. I pack the leftovers in old yogurt containers. Then, for super easy dinners I defrost them along with a container of Frozen Brown Rice (or I defrost the rice while the lentils are cooking). I steam some veggies on the side and it makes for a great, filling meal.

These lentils could also be served as a side dish, or slathered on a nice thick slice of my Gluten Free Multi-seed, Multi-grain Bread for a hearty lunch.

Ingredients for Vegan, Gluten Free Applesauce Sweet and Sour Lentils (makes 4-6 servings)

1 cup dried green lentils, rinsed and drained
2 cups water or GF veggie broth
1 bay leaf
1 tsp salt

1/4 cup unsweetened plain applesauce
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp organic brown sugar (or maple syrup, or stevia equivalent, or other sweetener of choice)
1/8 tsp ground cloves


1. Bring lentils, water, bay leaf, and salt to a boil in a medium-sized pot. Reduce heat to simmer for 20 minutes, until liquid is absorbed and lentils are softened.

2. Add applesauce, apple cider vinegar, sweetener, and cloves. Heat until warmed through and serve.

What's your favorite freezer-friendly meal?

This post was shared on the following great link parties: Hearth and Soul Hop, Fat Tuesday, Gluten Free WednesdaysHealthy, Happy, Green & Natural Party, Whole Food Fridays, Fight Back Fridays, Gluten Free Fridays,


  1. I love how you've used applesauce in this recipe, Danielle. It sounds absolutely delicious and so wholesome too. The cloves are a lovely addition too. I've pinned your post and I'll be featuring your recipe in my Hearth and Soul post later today :-) Thank you for being a part of the Hearth and Soul Hop!

  2. Hi Danielle,
    From soup to burgers to stews--I love to make different kinds of lentil dishes so I am delighted that you shared this wonderful sweet and sour lentil recipe with us at the Healthy, Happy, Green and Natural Party Blog Hop! We appreciate it!


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