Joe Wicks’ lentil Bolognese recipe

(1415 ratings)

Joe Wicks’ lentil Bolognese makes a great mid-week dinner - suitable for vegetarians, can be easily adapted for vegans and still goes down well with carnivores.

joe wicks lentil bolognese
(Image credit: Maja Smend)
  • Vegetarian
Preparation Time15 mins
Cooking Time30 mins
Total Time45 mins
Nutrition Per PortionRDA
Calories1124 Kcal56%
Sugar34.8 g39%
Fat37.9 g54%
Saturated Fat4.6 g23%
Salt0.51 gRow 4 - Cell 2
Protein45.9 g92%
Carbohydrates139.1 g54%
Salt0.51 gRow 7 - Cell 2

Joe Wicks’ lentil Bolognese is entirely meat-free, but it's so tasty, you won't miss it. Perfect for mixed veggie/non-veggie families. 

Not only is it a great choice for when you're trying to cut down on your meat consumption, it's great for saving money too - working out much cheaper than a classic Bolognese using mince beef and pork. If you're serving up to vegans, check that the wine is vegan friendly (not all are), and leave out the cheese. For vegetarians, ensure the cheese is not Parmesan, which contains animal rennet. Or replace it with a vegan alternative, of course. This is a really filling dish and it's ideal for making ahead and storing for nights when you don't want to do scratch cooking.


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped into cubes
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • 200g dried green lentils
  • Glass of red wine
  • 2 x 400g tins of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 60g walnuts
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • Cooked pasta of your choice
  • Grated cheese, to serve – optional




  1. Add the oil to a saucepan over a low heat. Tip in the chopped onion and carrots, along with a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook for 6 minutes until mostly softened. Stir in the garlic and rosemary sprigs. Cook for another minute until it smells fragrant, then tip in the lentils.
  2. Give everything a good stir, then pour in the red wine. When most of the wine has bubbled off, chuck in the chopped tomatoes, then re-fill one of the tins with water and pour it in. Stir in the tomato puree then leave to cook for 20 minutes, until the sauce has thickened and the lentils are soft.
  3. When the lentils are nearly cooked, toast the walnuts in a dry frying pan over a medium heat until lightly browned and smelling nutty. Allow to cool and roughly chop, then add them to the pan. Stir in the balsamic vinegar and season your Bolognese to taste, removing the rosemary sprigs.
  4. Serve with cooked pasta and, if you’re like me, loads of grated cheese on top!   This recipe was taken from Veggie Lean in 15 by Joe Wicks which is out now (Bluebird)

Top tip for making Joe Wicks’ lentil Bolognese

Make this lentil Bolognese ahead and keep in the fridge for 2-3 days.

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Joe Wicks

Joe Wicks aka ‘The Body Coach’ rose to fame after his Instagram videos started to go viral. With 15-minute recipes and HIIT (high-intensity interval training) workouts to do at home, Joe quickly became one of the most followed personal trainers in the country.