This vegan moussaka is packed full of goodness it is basically a Greek lasagne. Layers of silky eggplant and soft potato are filled with a rich tomato lentil ragu with loads of fragrant herbs. The whole thing is then topped with a thick layer of creamy white sauce.
This Red Lentil Moussaka is definitely suited to a chilled weekend dinner with friends. It does take a little bit of time to come together but it is definitely worth it to get this comforting dish. If you are cooking this for friends, you can make and layer the moussaka then keep it in the fridge for up to 2 days before cooking to save time on the day.
I swapped the traditional lamb mince for red lentils in this recipe. Red lentils are such a great pulse to have in your cupboard. They require no soaking and are quick to cook. I added mushrooms for a delicious savory flavor and chewy texture, they give a really wholesome feel to the dish. Greek moussaka does use red wine to deglaze the sauce. I don't drink so have just used vegetable stock, but if you do have a bottle to hand, then use half stock and half wine. This is also a great way to use up the last bit of wine lurking in a bottle that has been open a little too long!
Vegan Red Lentil Moussaka
- 2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil
- 1 Eggplant, thinly sliced
- 1 Baking Potato, thinly sliced
- 3 cloves Garlic, finely chopped
- 8 Mushrooms, finely chopped
- 1 Red Onion, diced
- 2 teaspoons Sea Salt
- 1/2 teaspoons Black Pepper
- 2 teaspoons Dried Mixed Herbs
- 150 grams Red Lentils
- 1 can Chopped Tomatoes
- 350 millilitres Vegetable Stock
- 25 grams Vegan Butter
- 50 grams Plain Flour
- Pinch Ground Nutmeg
- 250 millilitres Plant Milk
1. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.
2. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a saucepan over a medium heat.
3. Add the sliced eggplant to the frying pan in a single layer.
4. Fry for 2 minutes on each side or until the eggplant is soft, this will need to be done in batches or the eggplant won’t cook evenly.
5. Bring a pan of salted water to the boil and add the potatoes, boil for 5 minutes then drain and rinse under cold water.
6. Put the cooked eggplant to the side.
7. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil to the saucepan.
8. Add the onion, garlic, mushrooms, 1 teaspoon of salt, 0.25 teaspoons of black pepper and the dried herbs to the pan.
9. Fry until the onion has softened then add in the lentils.
10. Cook for a few minutes then add the tomatoes and stock.
11. Bring to the boil then simmer for 10 minutes or until most of the liquid has been absorbed.
12. While the lentils are cooking, make the white sauce.
13. In a small saucepan, melt the butter over a low heat.
14. Add in the flour then whisk until you have a thick paste.
15. Whisk the milk in a little at a time so you have a creamy sauce.
16. Add in the remaining salt, pepper and a pinch of nutmeg.
17. Simmer until the sauce has thickened.
18. Now it’s time to build the moussaka.
19. Put a layer of potatoes at the bottom of an ovenproof dish.
20. Add a layer of aubergine followed by half the lentils.
21. Repeat this pattern.
22. Add another layer of potatoes and aubergine on top of the lentil sauce.
23. Top with the creamy white sauce.
24. Bake for 45 minutes or until the potato is cooked through. Test this by pushing a knife into the moussaka, if the potato is still hard bake for a further 10 minutes.
Also by Katharine: Vegan Raspberry Lemon Muffins
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Photo: Katharine Hopkins