Korean BBQ Lentils

Lentils are a staple ingredient in my pantry. Since I rarely cook meat at home, I very often opt for these versatile legumes. You can very easily substitute ground meat for lentils in various recipes.

Some people think that they are bland, however it all depends on how you cook them. I generally prefer to use dried lentils rather than canned ones, which are already cooked. The dried ones can be cooked in vegetable stock rather than just water. In the process, they absorb another layer of flavour adding more complexity to the dish.

In the following recipe, I am using ingredients typically used for the sauce accompanying Korean BBQ beef. However, I am substituting the beef with lentils. In case you prefer the meat version, the recipe is basically the same. You just need to slightly sauté the meat before adding the sauce ingredients.

This recipe is ideal to prepare on a weeknight after a day at work. It is super easy to prepare and can be cooked in less than half an hour. It is suitable for vegetarians and vegans too!

You can also check out my other lentil recipes here.

Korean BBQ Lentils

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
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A quick and easy lentil dish


    For the sauce:
  • 450ml water
  • 4 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp soft dark brown sugar
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp gochugaru (Korean red pepper flakes), optional
  • For the lentils:
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 200g red lentils
  • For serving:
  • 2 spring onions, chopped
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • Cooked rice


  1. In a small mixing bowl, combine all the sauce ingredients together.
  2. In a large pan, heat the oil over medium high heat. Sauté the onion until it softens.
  3. Add the lentils and the sauce ingredients to the pan. Cover, lower the heat and gently simmer until lentils are just cooked. Liquid should be completely absorbed.
  4. Serve immediately over rice, topped with chopped spring onions and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Devin says:

    I just wanted to say that this was a wonderful find!
    Family really enjoyed it 🙂

    1. Marica says:

      Hi Devin, Glad to hear that! 🙂

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