Lentil Loaf with Mashed Potatoes, Caramelized Onion and Mushroom Gravy

Oct 30, 2022

A beloved café favorite — comfort-food meets flavorful nutrition  

A few tips from our kitchen to yours: 

*As with all recipes, please read the directions through to the end before you begin.

*We’ve given the brand names of some of the ingredients in this recipe because We’ve found that their distinct flavor adds to this dish. 


  • 1 lb. dry lentils (green, brown or French, your choice)
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 1 cup diced White Onion
  • ½ cup diced Carrots
  • ½ cup diced Celery
  • 2 cloves Garlic smashed and diced
  • ¼ cup Olive Oil + 1 TBSP
  • 2 TBSP Cumin
  • 2 TBSP dried Thyme
  • 2 (14oz.) bottles of Heinz organic Ketchup
  • ¼ cup Vegetable Stock or Water
  • 2 TBSP Annie’s Worcestershire Sauce (other brands may not be vegan)
  • 3-4 Tablespoons Tamari
  • Salt and Pepper to taste 


Preheat the oven to 350F

  1. Rinse the lentils well and pick out any stones (yes, they commonly have stones). Add them to a large pot with a generous amount of water to cover the lentils and bring to a boil. Once they have reached a boil, lower the heat to very low, add in the bay leaves and simmer until tender, about 20 minutes. Continue to add water as it cooks out.
  2. Drain the lentils and set aside.
  3. In a large sauté pan, coat the bottom with the olive oil. Heat on medium and then add in the onion, carrots, celery and garlic.
  4. Cook the vegetables for about 5-6 minutes and then add in a pinch of salt and pepper, cumin and thyme. Stir together and cook for another 4-5 minutes until tender.
  5. Transfer the cooked onion, carrot, celery and spice mixture to a food processor and pulse until finely minced. Stop before it turns to mush.
  6. In a large mixing bowl, place the cooked lentils with the minced cooked vegetables.
  7. Add in 1 full bottle of ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, 2 TBSP tamari, a sprinkle of salt and pepper.
  8. Using a potato masher (or washed hands) begin to mash the lentils together with everything. You are looking for a slightly cohesive mixture with some of the lentils still remaining whole. 
  9. Taste it, add in more tamari, cumin and/or salt and pepper as needed.
  10. Prepare an 8” baking dish with oil and spoon the lentil mixture into it.
  11. With the back of a large spoon, press it down into the pan and smooth out the surface.
  12. Place ½ a bottle of ketchup into another mixing bowl and thin it down with a little vegetable stock or water and 1 TBSP of olive oil. 
  13. Spread the ketchup mixture evenly over the top of the lentil loaf. 
  14. Cover the pan with foil and bake for 25 minutes. Remove the foil and return to the oven for an additional 10 minutes to caramelize the edges. 
  15. Allow the loaf to cool for about 10 minutes before serving. Serve with mashed potatoes, gravy and a green vegetable such as kale or broccoli.


Caramelized Onion And Shiitake Gravy


  • 4-6 White or Spanish onions peeled, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
  • 1 TBSP olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 leaves fresh sage thinly sliced
  • 2 tsp. dried thyme
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 cup shiitake mushrooms caps and stems trimmed at the ends, thinly sliced
  • 3-4 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 tsp. arrowroot powder
  • ½ cup cold water


  1. Coat the bottom of a large sauté pan with olive oil and add in the sliced onions. 
  2. Place on a low flame and allow it to cook slowly, do not stir or mix.
  3. Let the onions cook about 15-20 minutes, until they start to turn golden brown on the bottom and the onions in the top of the pan are beginning to turn translucent. 
  4. Pile the shiitake mushrooms and the garlic on top of the onions, do not stir yet. Cook another 6-7 minutes. Now stir, scrape up from the bottom of the pan. Add in the sage, thyme, pepper and salt. 
  5. Slowly pour in the vegetable stock and let it simmer for another 10 minutes. 
  6. In a small mixing bowl place the arrowroot powder and pour the cold water into it. Mix it quickly with a fork or whisk and pour into the onions. Mix well. 
  7. Simmer an additional 5-6 minutes until it thickens. Add more vegetable stock if needed.

*If you like your gravy to be darker, add in a little Annie’s Worcestershire sauce or tamari instead of the salt.

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