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Delicious sweet potato lentil stew is perfect for a weeknight dinner. Ready in 30 minutes. Ideal for meal prepping.

Sweet Potato Lentil Stew [Oil-Free]

  • Author: Nele Liivlaid
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x


This sweet potato lentil stew is a delicious plant-based weeknight dinner that is ready in 30 minutes. It’s one of those delicious recipes that are perfect for meal prepping.

*Soaking time: 6-8 hours


  • 200g (7oz, about a cup) dry green lentils, soak
  • 250g (8.8oz, about 1¼ cup) dry unhulled red lentils, soak
  • 1 large red onion (165g, 5.8oz), chop
  • 1 large carrot (100g, 3.5oz), chop
  • 1120g (39.5oz) water (about)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 large sweet potato (370g, 13oz), cube
  • ½ cup (140g, 5oz) tomato paste
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • ¼ cup (60g, 2.1oz) coconut milk
  • ½ tbsp. turmeric
  • 1 tbsp. Indian spice mix


  1. Start by soaking lentils for 6-8 hours. Rinse, drain and set aside. The lentils soak in about 520g (18.3oz) of water.
  2. Next, prepare the Indian Spice Mix or use 1.5 tablespoons of ready-made curry powder instead of the spice mix and turmeric.
  3. Then, crush garlic cloves, finely dice onion and chop up carrots, and sweet potato.
  4. Heat up a few tablespoons of water in a skillet or large pan. After that, throw in onions and sauté them for 2-3 minutes stirring every now and then. Add water 1-2 tablespoons at a time whenever it evaporates.
  5. Next go in the carrots. Give everything a good stir and sauté for another few minutes. Again, add extra water if necessary. 
  6. Then, throw in a few bay leaves and pour in soaked lentils. Next, add enough water to almost cover the ingredients. Bring to boil, then reduce the heat and simmer covered for 5 minutes. At this point, add cubed sweet potato and press them into the water with a spoon or spatula. Cover and simmer until the potatoes and lentils are tender, about 10 minutes. Mix everything well and add the spices – turmeric and Indian spice mix. 
  7. Next, stir in tomato paste and coconut milk and finally crushed garlic. 
  8. Finally, let cool a bit before you add salt and black pepper to let the tastes settle. I don’t add any salt to my stew.


As far as lentils go, they are interchangeable, i.e. red lentils can be substituted for green lentils and vice versa. Furthermore, other unhulled lentils such as brown lentils and even Beluga lentils (black lentils) can be used.

If you don’t want to make the Indian spice mix yourself, you may replace turmeric and the spice mix with store bought curry powder. Use 1½ tablespoons in total.

Should you not have tomato paste, use 1 cup of diced tomatoes instead adding them 5 minutes before the stew is done.

For extra flavour you can use vegetable broth instead of water or substitute some of the water.

For extra nutritional value you may also let your lentils sprout before cooking them. Simply leave soaked, rinsed and drained lentils into a bigger sieve over a big bowl and cover with clean kitchen cloth. Rinse them about 3 times a day. Lentils will have small sprouts emerging already in a day.

Nutritional info per serving: 278 kcal, 34g carbohydrates (49% of kcal), 2.5g fats (8% of kcal), 15.9g protein (22.9% of kcal), 16.6g fibre, and 49.7mg sodium.

  • Category: Stew
  • Method: Stovetop


  • Serving Size: 1/8 of recipe
  • Calories: 278kcal
  • Sodium: 49.7mg
  • Fat: 2.5g
  • Carbohydrates: 34g
  • Fiber: 16.6g
  • Protein: 15.9g

Keywords: stew, lentils, comfort food

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