Lentil Balls With Tomato & Aubergine Ragu

45 min

Whether it's meat-free Monday or you're a full-time vegetarian, this comforting plant-based dish will make you forget traditional meatballs ever existed! Smashed lentils lend a hearty flavour, especially with our rich, deliciously flavoursome tomato and aubergine rag

Nutritional info




11.4 g


41.6 g


1.6 g


9.3 g

  • Can of Chopped Tomatoes


  • Red Onion

  • Aubergine

  • Garlic Clove

  • Basil


  • Breadcrumbs


  • Onion marmelade


  • Oregano


  • Lentils

  • Chicken Cube

  • Linguine


  • Tomato Paste


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400g Can of Chopped Tomatoes
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1 Red Onion
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1 Aubergine
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1 Garlic Clove
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10g Basil
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30g Breadcrumbs
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20g Onion marmelade
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5g Oregano
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1 Lentils
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1 Chicken Cube
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3/4 cup Linguine
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16g Tomato Paste
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Cooking instructions

Step 1

Preheat the oven to 200°C/ 180°C (fan)/ 400°F/ Gas 6 Trim the green stalks off the aubergine[s] and chop into bite-sized pieces Add the chopped aubergine to a baking tray with a generous drizzle of olive oil and a generous pinch of salt and pepper Put the tray in the oven for 25-30 min or until golden

Step 2

Meanwhile, peel the red onion[s] Grate 1/2 [1] red onion (save the rest for later!) Drain and rinse the lentils Mash the lentils in a flat-bottomed bowl (a pot is perfect!) to form a smooth paste Add the grated onion, panko breadcrumbs and a generous pinch of salt and pepper and mix thoroughly until everything's fully combined

Step 3

Divide the lentil mixture into 6 [12] and shape them into lentil balls Add the lentil balls to a baking tray (if you have room add them to the aubergine tray!) with a drizzle of olive oil Put the tray in the oven and cook for 18-20 min or until the lentil balls are golden and crisp

Step 4

While the lentil balls are cooking, boil a kettle Finely chop the remaining red onion Peel and finely slice (don't chop!) the garlic Heat a large, wide-based pan (preferably non-stick) with a drizzle of olive oil over a medium heat Once hot, add the chopped red onion and cook for 5-6 min or until starting to soften

Step 5

Meanwhile, dissolve the Knorr vegetable stock cube[s] in 100ml [150ml] boiled water Re-boil a kettle Once the red onion has softened, add the sliced garlic, tomato paste, dried oregano, onion marmalade, chopped tomatoes and vegetable stock to the pan Add a good grind of black pepper and cook for 8-10 min or until thickened

Step 6

While the sauce thickens, add the linguine to a pot of boiled water with a large pinch of salt and bring to the boil over a high heat Cook the linguine for 8-10 min or until cooked with a slight bite Once done, drain the linguine, reserving a cup of the starchy pasta water

Step 7

While the pasta is cooking, chop the basil finely, including the stalks (save some leaves for garnish!) Once the aubergine is golden, add it to the tomato sauce with the chopped basil and gently mix - this is your tomato & aubergine rag√π Tip: Add a splash of the starchy pasta water if your sauce is looking a little dry!

Step 8

Serve the tomato & aubergine rag√π over the drained linguine Top with the lentil balls and garnish with the reserved basil leaves Enjoy!
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