Everybody loves bolognaise and when I make it I always have to make a large pan as you can guarantee the boys will be asking for seconds and thirds.

This bolognaise has a great texture from the diced vegetables, sliced mushrooms and brown lentils and a lovely flavour and colour from the herbs, spices, vegetables and vegan red wine. Of course you can opt out of putting red wine in your bolognaise, but I really think the red wine makes a huge difference to the flavours.

We like to use Casillero del Diablo Merlot for bolognaise. It has a lovely flavour from the plum and red berries and adds a slighty smoky and fruity taste to the bolognaise, and there is plenty left over from a bottle to enjoy a glass with your meal.

If you are taking part in #nomeatmay and want to try a vegan bolognaise for a nice big family meal or a romantic meal by candlelight, you will not be disappointed by this recipe. Even my children prefer this to any meat bolognaise they have ever had. It was a perfect Sunday dinner, now to relax and finish off the wine!

Vegan Bolognaise

A tasty bolognaise made using vegetables, lentils in a rich tomato and red wine sauce.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 10 mins
Keyword: bolognaise, Gluten Free, vegan bolognaise, vegan food


  • 400 grams dried brown lentils
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • water to cook lentils
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 6 cloves garlic crushed
  • 1 medium red onion diced
  • 3 medium carrots diced
  • 2 stalks celery diced
  • 200 grams mushrooms sliced
  • 1 tbsp dried thyme
  • 1 tbsp dried parsley
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 200 ml red wine
  • 100 ml vegan stock
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • salt to taste
  • handful spinach (optional)


  • Place the lentils in a pan with cider vinegar and water to cover the lentils (about 1 litre).
  • Simmer the lentils for half an hour until starting to soften, rinse with boiling water and drain.
  • In another large pan, heat the oil and fry the garlic, onion, celery and carrots for 5 minutes.
  • Add the mushrooms, herbs, paprika and red wine and cook for a further 2 minutes.
  • Add the stock, tomatoes, puree and drained lentils.
  • Simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Check the consistency whilst simmering, adding more water if too dry.
  • If using spinach, stir in at the end.
  • Add salt to taste and top with your favourite grated vegan cheese.
  • I served this with gluten free pasta.

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