Brown rice and lentils with green veggies

Equal quantities of brown rice and lentils cooked together makes a complete protein – great as a vegetarian option.

Ready in

1 hour

Serving size

Serves 4 as a meal or 6 – 8 as a side dish


  • ½ cup (125 ml) uncooked brown lentils
  • ½ cup (125 ml) uncooked brown rice
  • ½ tsp (2,5 ml) dried origanum
  • 2 strips lemon rind, made with a vegetable peeler
  • ½ tsp (2,5 ml) salt
  • 100-150 g broccoli, cut into florets
  • 1 cup (250 ml) frozen peas, rinsed
  • 1 large spinach leaf, shredded
  • 3 tbsp (45 ml) olive or canola oil
  • lemon juice and black pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) chopped fresh mint or origanum
  • ⅓ cup (80 ml) sunflower seeds or raw, chopped almonds


  1. Place lentils, rice, origanum, lemon rind and salt in a pot with 2½ cups (625 ml) cold water. Bring to the boil over a medium heat.
  2. Reduce the heat and simmer with a lid for 25-30 minutes or until cooked, but not too soft. Drain well (see tips).
  3. Place broccoli in a shallow dish and cover with boiling water. Allow to stand for about 10-15 minutes or until just cooked, and drain well. Or simmer gently in a small amount of water until bright green, still crunchy and not overcooked.
  4. Stir broccoli, peas, spinach and oil into the rice and lentils. Season with lemon juice and pepper. Stir herbs and sunflower seeds or nuts into rice mixture.
  5. Serve warm or at room temperature as a vegetarian meal or starchy side.


  1. To serve at room temperature, rinse cooked lentils and rice with cold water to keep it loose and fluffy, before adding the other ingredients.
  2. Any leftover brown rice and lentils can be enjoyed as a light meal the next day. Or make it a non-vegetarian meal, by adding leftover cooked chicken or braaied meat.
  3. Serve with 1 slice feta, crumbled or dollops of plain low-fat cottage cheese.

Brown rice and lentils with green veggies

How to cook green veggies

This recipe is from Cooking from the heart, 4th edition: Braai

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