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Cheap Vegan Lentils & Rice

Humbly Homemade
Whether you're on a budget or trying to increase your plant-based protein, try these delicious cheap vegan lentil and rice bowls with kale!
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 10 mins
Soaking Time 1 hr
Total Time 2 hrs 20 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4 people


  • 1 cup red lentils (or any lentil of your choice)
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp mustard seeds
  • 1 Tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • ¼ tsp red chili flakes
  • ½ cup onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 5 cups water
  • 1 bunch kale, chopped (of your favorite variety)


  • Soak the red lentils and brown rice fully submerged in water for at least one hour, or overnight.
  • In a skillet with a lid or a large pot on medium heat, heat the extra virgin olive oil.
    Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, turmeric and chili flakes to the hot oil. Stir frequently to release the spices' aromas and natural oils, until you hear the mustard seeds start popping.
  • Stir the diced onion into the skillet and cook (still on medium heat) until the onions are soft and golden, about 15 minutes.
    Stir in the minced garlic and cook for another minute.
  • Add the soaked lentils and rice into the skillet along with the salt. Stir for a minute to mix the lentils and rice with all the spices and onion.
    Pour in the water and cover the skillet or pot with its lid. Bring to a boil on high heat, then reduce the heat to medium-low or low and simmer for about 45 minutes, until the rice is fully cooked through.
  • Stir in the chopped kale and put the lid back on for a few minutes, for the kale to steam and soften.
    Spoon into bowls and enjoy! Optional: top with a dollop of dairy-free unsweetened yogurt
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