Easy Quinoa Lentil Vegan Gluten-Free “Meatloaf” Bites

When I had my token vegan friend over for dinner, I wanted to make something that wasn’t pizza – because I’ve done that over and over again. I had quinoa and I had lentils – but was there something I could do with both of them? I googled quinoa lentils and see what came up – typically meatballs and meatloaf although neither actually contained meat. I looked at a few recipes found here (SkinnyMS.com) here (Toni On! New York)  that used egg or breadcrumbs (neither of which I had good subs for that were vegan. So, like most recipes I do, I just flew with my eyes closed until something magical happened in the kitchen.

I cooked the heirloom (red) quinoa and red split lentils together in the rice cooker (because I am terrible at cooking). I combined these two with the instructed amounts of water and used 2-3 packets of Massel vegetable seasoning. These cubes are lifesavers! I cooked the two until both were done. It’s a little soupy, but don’t be worried, they will harden up in the oven.

Massel and Quinoa Lentils

Massel and Quinoa Lentils

Quinoa Lentil Muffins

Quinoa Lentil Muffins

In addition to this mix, I add salt and pepper to taste, some dried basil, oregano, and other italian seasonings (you can buy the Spicely blend at Whole Foods) and a few cloves of garlic either chopped or pressed, and 3-5 white spring onions chopped fine. After the quinoa and lentils are cooked, I add them into a bowl with the seasonings and veggies. Adding in the eggs and/or breadcrumbs will help keep the meatball “muffins” intact, but there is a way to keep them together and still maintain the vegan-ness of them.

I throw them into the oven in cupcake pans until they harden, but I also tend to roast veggies (ex. cauliflower, potatoes, etc. – see picture below) at the same time (at 425 degrees), so that’s typically how I firm these “muffins” up. SInce it’s already cooked, you just need to give the veggies a chance to cook a little and the muffins to firm up. About 20-25 minutes should be good. They should be fully formed without being too soft in the middle. I tend to like them a little overcooked so the quinoa is crunchy on the ends like mom’s meatloaf!

While I think the veggies, garlic, and vegetable seasoning from Massel season these enough, non-GFBF thought these would be good with BBQ sauce, ketchup, or sriracha ketchup!

Quinoa Lentil Muffins

Quinoa Lentil Muffins

Enjoy the vegan love on your next Meatless Monday or vegan hangout!

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Comments: 4

  1. Vik March 30, 2014 at 8:18 pm Reply

    Looks like a great recipe. Where or what brand, did you find safe lentils? Everything I have read says that they are often grown in rotation with and/or processed alongside wheat. So, though I love them, I haven’t had lentils for over a year, since I was diagnosed. I don’t get dramatic glutening symptoms, so I have been afraid to try them, and not know if they were ok or not.

    • Erica Dermer March 30, 2014 at 9:42 pm Reply

      Never had an issue with it. Celiac Disease Foundation or NFCA hasn’t really talked about lentils in the way that oats are mostly cross-contaminated. I’ve never had issues with lentils and this is the first I’ve heard of this. If you feel more safe, only get certified gluten-free lentils, but I’m not sure what brand offers this.

  2. Vik March 30, 2014 at 10:04 pm Reply

    That’s the thing…there aren’t any certified GF lentils. Or dried beans, that I’ve found, and have done a lot of looking. I am excited though about the Massel products. Had never heard of them and it looks like a great company, love that it is both vegan and GF, so thanks for the tip!

  3. Tami March 31, 2014 at 11:48 am Reply

    I cannot wait to make this :-)

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