One Pot Tomato Lentil Pasta

This easy one pot tomato lentil pasta makes weeknight cooking a breeze!
One Pot Lentil Tomato Pasta- Emma's Little Kitchen

Although the basic premise of Emma’s Little Kitchen is to provide you with simple, approachable vegetarian fare, I will be the first to admit that I sometimes get a little carried away. I aim to keep things simple, but sometimes I stumble on a recipe that is SO TASTY, I assume you will forgive me for the extra dishes, or long cook time (exhibit A).Β A few weeks ago,Β I had a particularly “creative” weekΒ in the kitchen, that left my poor husband -the orderly scientist- tearing his hair out. I vowed that the following week I would stick to One Pot Wonders only, and I’m so very happy I did! Not only did I have more time on my hands, I discovered this beautifully nourishing, earthy, one pot tomato lentil pasta. The very epitome of simple, this dish has just a teeny list of ingredients, requires only one pot, and comes together in less than 30 minutes. Hurrah!!

One Pot Lentil Tomato Pasta- Emma's Little KitchenOne Pot Lentil Tomato Pasta- Emma's Little Kitchen

How about you? I would love to hear about your favourite one pot creations!

More One Pot Wonders on Emma’s Little Kitchen:

Black Bean Quinoa Chili

Lentil Spinach Coconut Curry

Spring Vegetable Barley Risotto

Sweet Potato Pineapple Curry

Vegetable & Barley Irish Stew

Favourite One Pot Wonders Elsewhere:

Curried Butternut Squash & Rice Skillet– Naturally Ella

Kale Quinoa & White Bean Soup– Simple Veganista

One Pot Pasta Primavera- Oh My Veggies

Skillet Tomato Casserole– Well Plated by Erin (husbands new favourite!!)

Summer Vegetable Skillet Lasagna– Oh My Veggies

One Pot Tomato Lentil Pasta


One Pot Tomato Lentil Pasta
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This easy one pot tomato lentil pasta makes weeknight cooking a breeze!
Serves: 4
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ medium onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 large tomatoes, diced
  • 2 tsp dried thyme
  • pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
  • ½ cup red lentils
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 cup water (have more handy, just in case)
  • 2½ cups whole wheat rotini/fusilli (or pasta of choice)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Freshly grated parmesan or parsley to serve
  1. In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium heat, and add onions
  2. Saute for a few minutes until softened and add the garlic, cook for a minute more
  3. Add tomatoes and thyme to the pan, and mix, cook for barely a minute, and add the lentils. Give everything a good mix so the lentils are coated in the onion-tomato mixture. Add the vegetable stock and water, and bring to a steady simmer
  4. Add the pasta to the pan, and cook with the lid on for about 12 minutes until the lentils and pasta are tender. Stir occasionally to make sure that your lentils aren't sticking to the bottom of your pan, if the lentils and pasta drink up all your liquid before the dish is cooked, add a splash more water
  5. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and serve with fresh parsley or parmesan


Red lentils work best in this dish as they break down into a creamy sauce-like constituency- delicious!

If I’m feeling a little indulgent I will mix extra parmesan (a few heaped tablespoons) into the tomato lentil mix at the end of cooking, this provides some extra creamy, nutty slightly salty goodness

Fresh thyme can be substituted for dry if you have it to hand, but you will only need about a tsp.


  1. themuffinmyth says:

    This looks great, Emma! I’ve been feeling particularly run down this week and was just thinking yesterday I need to get some lentils into my diet, so this is perfect timing. And the fact that it’s one-pot and quick and easy just makes it all that much better!

  2. Julia | Orchard Street Kitchen says:

    What a great idea, Emma! I love lentils, love pasta, and love easy one-pot meals. I know what you mean about getting too experimental in the kitchen sometimes – that’s so funny your husband was overwhelmed! It’s all about balance, I guess. If we didn’t experiment, we’d run out of ideas for our blogs!

  3. Evi @ greenevi says:

    This looks delicious, Emma! I love every ingredient here, but especially that it is a one-pot recipe! Experimenting is always great, I can also overdo it sometimes….but at the end always these super simple recipes are the winners πŸ˜‰

  4. Susan says:

    YUM! I was looking for something easy to make with the random/ few ingredients left in the house before grocery day. This was great! Used brown lentils, so they took a little longer to cook but still creamy. So glad I found your blog. Simple, veggie meals…Where have you been all my life?

    • Emma says:

      Right here Susan, so happy we found each other!! Thanks for reporting back on the green lentils, I’ll have to give that a whirl πŸ™‚

  5. Tom says:

    This turned out very good. I made half a recipe since there are only 3 of us in the family. I added some pork neckbones to the sauce while it was simmering. That is supposed to add alot of flavor to a spaghetti sauce. I was a little unsure of the 2 cups of water so I added about 1 3/4 cups. Next time I think I will only add 1 cup or possibly leave it out altogether. ο»Ώ

    • Emma says:

      You know, I’ve never tried it. I would be concerned about the texture of the pasta after reheating… but who knows! Let me know if you try it!

  6. Lindsay C. says:

    Thank you! I had just finished playing a soccer game and I got home and was too tired to do anything complicated and all the shops were closed so I couldn’t take the easy way out with pizza or something, and our kitchen was fairly empty.

    But I looked, I had lentils and I had pasta. Googled that, found this site and made it up.
    I used a can of cherry tomatoes, mixed brown and red lentils cause I didn’t have enough. And because I’m that type of person I added curry and garam masala along with the ‘optional’ chilli flakes.

    mmmmmm! So Good! A great spiciness with my additions too. Only problem was the brown lentils weren’t done yet, but I didn’t want the pasta to be mushy so I just had some chewy lentil bits in the end. Maybe they’ll soften more in the fridge.

    So nice to have an easy, healthy vegetarian meal to fill up with after a long soccer match! I’ll keep this one on hand for the future!

  7. artfulactivist says:

    Thanks for this delicious recipe. The lentils really work well with the noodles. I added shredded mozzarella at the end and it was amazing. My 2-year-old had a second helping. That is real praise! I will definitely make this again.

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