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Large bowl of rice, hummus and lentils served with a drizzle of chili oil in a bowl.

Quick Sautéed Lentil Bowl with Hummus and Chili Oil

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 3 reviews
  • Author: Catherine Perez
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan


Lentils sautéed with onion, garlic and cumin for the perfect quick lentil bowl. Paired with hummus and chili oil for the ultimate experience.


  • 1 cup dry green lentils, rinsed well
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 vegetable bouillon cube or equivalent
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes, optional
  • 1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, sliced or crushed
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1 small zucchini, thinly sliced (or bell pepper)
  • 5 sprigs fresh thyme, de-stemmed
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For Serving

  • Cooked Rice
  • Hummus, store bought or homemade
  • Chili Oil


  1. Add lentils to a large sauce pan with your water and bouillon cube. Bring the water to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook until lentils are tender. For green lentils, cook for 15-17 minutes or until tender. If there is any remaining liquid, drain it off and then set the lentils aside until ready to use.
  2. As the lentils get closer to being done, warm a large skillet and then add in 1/2 a tablespoon of the oil to warm through. Add in the cumin seeds and red pepper flakes and sauté for about 1 minute to help toast the cumin.
  3. Add in the onions along with a sprinkle of salt and sauté until the onions have softened. Pour in a splash of water or vegetable broth as needed to deglaze the pan.
  4. To the pan, add in the garlic and coriander, stirring frequently for a minute until the garlic is fragrant. If using zucchini, add it in and sauté until the slices start to brown and soften.
  5. Add in the remaining oil, cooked lentils and thyme and continue to sauté for 3-4 minutes to properly coat the lentils. Once cooked, remove from heat and adjust salt and pepper to taste.
  6. To serve, add a generous smear of hummus to your plate then top with the cooked lentils and a drizzle of chili oil. Serve with a side of rice to make the meal complete and enjoy.


Don’t overcook your lentils. Make sure to pay attention to the lentils as they cook and follow package instructions for cooking. At the 15 minute mark of cooking, check and test to see if they are cooked through. If they are al dente, drain any excess liquid in the pan and set them aside until needed or continue cooking until just tender.

Lentil cook time will depend on the variety you are using. I do recommend sticking to small green, brown, black or French lentils as they tend to hold their shape, which makes them great for sautéing. Avoid using cooked red lentils for this dish as they are too mushy.