Yesterday, I made a beautiful French lentil salad because summer arrived early in Arizona this year. Usually, 100 plus temperatures hold off until July, but not this year. I love lentils, so this quick and easy French lentil salad tastes fabulous on a hot summer night. And, this lentil salad recipe is easy to make with simple ingredients.
Although I chose to serve French lentil salad cold, so people prefer it warm, even though most French lentil salads don't contain greens and a variety of vegetables, my unique recipe adds a few ingredients for an extra special tasty summer salad.
Now and then, I create a combination of flavors that wow my family! So, today's French lentil salad recipe disappeared without and leftovers for tomorrow.
What lentils should be used in a French Lentil Salad?
To ensure the lentils stay firm and maintain their shape, choose green or brown lentils. Cooking lentils, however, sometimes presents a challenge for some people. Mushy lentils, for instance, ruin a salad. As a result, knowing how to cook lentils properly is vital.
When cooking lentils on the stove, I always choose green lentils, Lentils de Puy, brown lentils, or black lentils. Red lentils, though wonderful for stews, soups, Indian Dals, and curry recipes, don't work well for salads or other meals with lentils. Unfortunately, red lentils are more delicate and become mushy.
- Rinse the lentils in a mesh sieve or colander under the cool water, removing any debris, stones; or While rinsing, make sure to pick out any bad lentils, debris, or small stones often found in a bag of lentils.
- Add four cups of water per one cup of lentils to a pot.
- Bring the pot to a boil. Then reduce the heat to simmer, cover, and cook the lentils on simmer for the designated time (based on the type of lentils chosen).
- Green Lentils: 18-20 minutes
- Lentils de Puy: 25-30 minutes
- Brown Lentils: 20-25 minutes
- Black Lentils: 25-30 minutes
- Drain the water from the lentils.
- Serve warm or cold depending on the recipe (for this recipe, serve warm or cold; I served cold)
Or, one of my personal favorites is Trader Joe's prepared. steamed brown lentils, w
- Brown Lentils: Semi-firm and savory, brown lentils are one of the most oft-used lentil varieties. They're probably what you make lentil soup with—but their slight meatiness also makes them a natural contender in meatless bolognese, The Best Plant-Based Meatloaf With Lentils, Vegan Lentil Meatballs, or a hearty lentil salad.
- Green Lentils: Somewhere on the lentil spectrum between brown lentils and French green lentils (see below for more on those), green lentils are usually sold whole and are super versatile: They're firm enough that they'll hold their shape in salads but are just as at home in a soup. They're slightly pea-tasting and can be used anywhere you'd use a split-pea.
- French Green (Aka Le Puy) Lentils: Firm, speckly, and peppery, French lentils—also called Le Puy lentils after the region in France where they are grown—are one of our favorite choices for tossing into salads, since they retain their shape so well. Only lentils grown in the Le Puy region of France can be labeled Le Puy lentils. (But if a recipe calls for French or French green lentils, it's asking for Le Puy lentils.)
- Red Lentils Red lentils are typically sold split and hulled—that is, in tiny halves that cook very quickly and become creamy once cooked. They're just slightly sweet and are often used for dal or to thicken other soups.
- Black (Aka Beluga) Lentils: Tiny and shiny-black, these little guys are aptly named for their resemblance to Beluga caviar. They're earthy in taste and can be used anywhere Le Puy lentils are used—salads, braises, you name it.
What ingredients are in French Lentil Salad?
- Brown or green cooked lentils
- Red onion
- Thyme (fresh is best)
- Parsley (fresh is best)
- Tomato slices
- Cucumber slices
- Tofu Feta Cheese
To make this lentil salad an entree, I added the optional ingredients for more flavor.
Additionally, I prepared a small dressing to toss into the lentil salad mixture to enhance the flavors of the vegetables, lentils, and herbs.
French Lentil Salad Dressing
Once the lentils cook (if serving cold), place all the ingredients in a bowl and toss gently.
Now add the simple dressing, and stir again. Because I planned to serve the lentil salad cold, I covered it and placed it in the refrigerator for the flavors to enhance while chilling.
If serving the salad warm, serve after tossing in the dressing.
- Lemon juice
- Dijon Mustard
- Red Wine Vinegar
- Maple syrup (or date syrup)
How to turn a quick and easy lentil salad into an entree
Begin by placing arugula in the center of a plate or bowl. Then, form a well in the center, and place a generous portion of French lentil salad.
As a result, the peppery flavors in the arugula work perfectly with the hearty lentil salad dressed in the tangy dressing.
In fact, you don't need any additional dressing because the flavors alone taste fabulous together.
Now, top with Tofu Feta Cheese, a few tomato, and cucumber slices.
Despite its simplicity, this French lentil salad explodes with flavor. Hearty and filling, this lentil salad recipe checks all the boxes for a hot summer night meal.
How long does the lentil salad keep in the refrigerator?
4-5 days, but keep it separated from the arugula in a separate bowl to avoid making the greens soggy.
If making the lentil salad in advance, should it be dressed?
By all means, yes! The longer the lentil salad marinates in the dressing, the more enhanced the flavors become.
Can I make it so the lentils don't cause as much gas?
Yes! Cook lentils with a piece of Kombu, which helps reduce stomach sensitivity when eating legumes.
If you love fresh summer salads on hot nights, check out these recipes
- How to Make Meatless Taco Salad Bowl With Lentils - Quick Recipes!
- How to Make A Southwestern Salad With Healthy Toppings & Dressing
- Summer Salads
- Brussel Sprout Caesar Salad
- Apple Salad with Walnuts
- Grape Salad
- Mexican Quinoa Salad
- Spinach Pasta Salad
- Chickpea Quinoa Salad - Southwest Style!
- Green Bean Salad
- How To Make Mango Kale Salad With Cilantro Lime Dressing
- Vegan Caesar Salad
Hi! My name is Kathy, I am a retired high school English teacher & vegan enthusiast and blogger. My entire blog is fully plant-based vegan. I truly believe what we eat & how we live determines our health & the preservation of our planet! 🙂