Lentils with Tomatoes and Spinach
Lentils are a great go-to meal. They hang out in the pantry until you are ready to use them with no presoaking required. And they are full of protein and lots of other good-for-you-things. And they come in a variety of colors.
Feel free to use whatever lentils you have on hand – black, green, or brown. Red lentils will work as well, but they do tend to break down as they cook. No matter which lentil you decide to use, this dish will be delicious. I pulled out the black lentils to use for this meal, aren’t they pretty?
The lentils are joined with a can of chopped tomatoes and frozen spinach to make this an easy, one-pot, pantry-inspired meal.
Rinse 1 cup of lentils and pick through to remove any stones. Set aside. Thaw, drain, and squeeze as much water as possible out of a 10-ounce package of frozen chopped spinach. Set aside.
Finely chop one medium onion (or half of a large onion) and saute in a medium pot in a tablespoon or two of olive oil over medium heat. Cook until soft and starting to turn golden brown, about 7 minutes or so. Add in 4 minced garlic cloves and cook for another minute. Add in the lentils and 4 cups of veggie broth or water (if using water, add a good pinch of salt).
Bring to a boil then cover and reduce heat to allow the lentils to gently simmer. The black lentils I used cook in about 25 and 35 minutes. Green lentils usually cook in just under 20 minutes and brown lentils in just over 20 minutes. Cook until just done.
When the lentils are tender, stir in a 14-ounce can of chopped tomatoes (use fire-roasted for extra flavor) and the spinach. Cover and let simmer another minute or two to let the tomatoes and spinach warm. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired. For an extra kick, add a could dashes of hot sauce or a big pinch of cayenne.
Scoop into bowls and then spoon into your mouth. Enjoy!