Garlicky French lentils

Keep the clove peel on for this tasty dish.

“Packed with fiber and micronutrients, lentils are a great vegetarian source of protein,” says Denver-based recipe developer Julia Heffelfinger. “The key to this recipe is keeping the garlic cloves once the lentils are cooked and mashing them back in to get extra savory flavor.” And be mindful of only stirring occasionally—too much yields a mushy texture adds Heffelfinger.

This recipe is part of our meal prep series. Click hereto see the full guide.

Yields 3 cups

photo by: Christine Han
food styling by: Olivia Anderson


1½ cups French green lentils, rinsed
3 whole garlic cloves, peel-on
2 thyme sprigs
1 3-inch strip of lemon zest
Kosher salt
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar



In a large saucepan, combine the lentils, garlic, thyme, lemon zest, and one quart of water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 35 to 40 minutes, until the lentils are tender. If the lentils are looking dry, add a little more water. If your lentils are cooked through, but there is still water in the pan, strain them.

Remove the lentils from the heat and discard the thyme and lemon zest. Remove the garlic and squeeze it from its peels into a small bowl. Mash with a fork and mix back into the lentils. Add the olive oil and vinegar and season with salt and pepper. Place in an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to one week.