Pasta + Lentils=heaven in my books.
Whenever possible I try to always find better ways to get protein. Lentils are the perfect source of protein and fiber. What could go wrong with pasta, lentils, cheese, sauce, and more cheese?!
This does take some time to make, but if you cook your lentils ahead of time this would come together super easy!
After the lentils and pasta were cooked this took me under 10 minutes to throw together. While it is baking you can be off doing something else.
Lentil Pasta Bake
- 1 cup lentils, dried
- 1 T. olive oil
- 1/2 red onion,chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 16 ounces rigatoni pasta
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella
- 6 slices fresh mozzarella
- 16 ounces ricotta cheese
- 36-48 ounces of a good red sauce(depends on how saucy you prefer pasta dishes)
- Saute onions and garlic with olive oil until tender. Add lentils and a 1 1/2 cups of water. Return to a boil and then back to a simmer. Stir occasionally and cook for 30-40 minutes.
- While the lentils are cooking boil the pasta until al dente (I did 2 minutes under the cooking time listed on the box). Drain and pour back into your pot.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix the pasta, lentils, and 1 cup shredded mozzarella together. Season with salt and pepper.
- Pour enough sauce on the bottom of a sprayed 13×9 pan to coat it. Pour half of the lentil mixture in and put dollops of the ricotta cheese and half the sauce that is left. Pour the remaining pasta/lentil mixture on top. Cut the fresh mozzarella into pieces and lay on top. Pour remaining sauce on the top. Finish with the remaining 1 cup of mozzarella.
- Spray aluminium foil and cover your pan.
- Bake for 40 minutes. Take the foil off and turn oven up to 450 degrees and bake for 5-10 minutes until the cheese gets golden brown. Take it out of the oven and cover back up with the foil. Let it sit for 15 minutes to let everything set.
- Enjoy with a salad and of course some No-Knead Bread!
Add this meal to your next meal plan and it will be a hit.
Hint: During your weekly meal prep cook up the 1 cup of lentils + 16 ounces of pasta. Store in containers and it will make a weeknight meal come together SO easy!