Vegan Spaghetti Bolognese


This vegan spin on spaghetti Bolognese is a tasty, lighter take on the Italian classic, subbing walnuts, mushrooms and lentils for the traditional beef and pork. Unexpected dashes of balsamic vinegar and soy sauce add more zip, and you can serve with shaved pecorino cheese if taking it a step down to vegetarian is OK.

  • 2 tbs Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 Yellow onion, diced (about 1 cup)
  • 1 Medium carrot, diced
  • 4 cups Chopped cremini mushrooms
  • 1 tbs Chopped rosemary
  • 1/2 cup Walnuts, crushed
  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 tbs Balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbs Tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 14-oz can Fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups Cooked brown or green lentils*
  • 1 tbs Tomato paste
  • 1 tsp Dried sage
  • 1 cup Cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 8 oz Spaghetti
  • 1 cup Fresh basil, sliced (optional)
  • 1/2 cup Toasted pine nuts
  • Red pepper flakes, to taste
  • Sea salt, freshly ground black pepper to taste

  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and carrot and pinches of salt and pepper and cook until they begin to soften, usually 3 minutes. Add mushrooms, another pinch of salt, and cook while stirring occasionally until soft, about 8 more minutes.
  2. Stir in the rosemary. Push mixture to one side of the pan to make room for the walnuts. Add crushed walnuts and toast for about 30 seconds, then stir everything together. Add garlic, then balsamic vinegar and tamari and stir to incorporate. Add the tomatoes, lentils, tomato paste, sage and fresh cherry tomatoes. Stir.
  3. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes until sauce thickens. Season to taste.
  4. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Prepare the pasta according to the instructions on the package, cooking until al dente. Drain and add the pasta to the pan with the sauce.
  5. Serve with fresh basil, pine nuts and pinch of red pepper flakes.

Serves 3-4 | Prep Time 30-40 min