Lebanese Lentil Salad
For anyone who’s a fan of lentils, this delicious Lebanese Lentil Salad has amazing flavors from garlic and fresh herbs!
Lentils are a great low-glycemic and high fiber food even though they aren’t super low in carbs. And when it’s summer and I have those fresh herbs growing right outside my front door, I love to make herb-loaded salads like this Lebanese Lentil Salad. Recently I made the salad again and used quite a bit more herbs and decided I had to update the blog with this new and improved version. Of course if you don’t have fresh herbs readily available and have to buy them, you can certainly make the salad with less herbs than I used and it will still be good!
The recipe was adapted from Garlicky Lebanese Lentil Salad in Saveur October 2010, but I changed the proportions a bit the first time I made it for a more lemony salad and then changed it again for one with more herbs. And through the years I’ve made this with several types of lentils and all were good. When I made this with Jake to take the new photos, we couldn’t stop remarking about how good it was, and all that night I caught myself taking little tastes from the fridge. If you like lentils, garlic, and herbs, I promise you’ll make this salad over and over!
What ingredients do you need for this recipe?
- extra-virgin olive oil
- fresh minced garlic or Minced Garlic (affiliate link) from a jar
- chopped fresh mint
- chopped fresh parsley
- fresh-squeezed lemon juice, I used my fresh-frozen lemon juice
- ground cumin (affiliate link)
- ground allspice (affiliate link)
- salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
How to make this salad:
(Scroll down for complete recipe including nutritional information.)
- Rinse lentils in a colander and pick out broken ones and any debris.
- Bring lentils to boil in 3 cups water (with a little salt if you like) and then lower heat and simmer until they’re tender 25-30 minutes. Cooking time is dependent on how fresh the lentils are. Older ones that have been on the shelf a while can take much longer to cook.
- While lentils cook finely mince the garlic. Then heat 2-3 T olive oil in a large frying pan, add garlic, and cook over very low heat until garlic is fragrant but barely starting to get some color, about 7-8 minutes. (Don’t let it brown!) Turn off the heat.
- Wash fresh herbs in a salad spinner (affiliate link) if needed, then coarsely chop.
- Whisk together lemon juice, 2 T olive oil, ground cumin and ground allspice.
- When lentils are tender, drain well and transfer to a bowl. Turn heat back on under the garlic and add the dressing mixture and heat about 1 minute.
- Then pour heated dressing over lentils and gently stir to combine.
- Let the lentils cool for a few minutes if they’re really hot, then stir in chopped herbs, season with salt and fresh-ground pepper, and serve.
- This can be served warm or at room temperature.
- Leftovers will stay good in the fridge for a day or two, although I like it best freshly made.
More Tasty Recipes with Lentils:
Sausage and Lentils with Fried Sage ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
French Green Lentil Salad ~ David Lebovitz
Lentil Salad with Green Olives ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Sweet Potato, Lentil, and Raisin Stew ~ The Perfect Pantry
Weekend Food Prep:
This recipe has been added to a new category called Weekend Food Prep to help you find recipes you can prep or cook on the weekend and eat during the week!
- 1 C green lentils
- 4 T extra-virgin olive oil
- 12 cloves garlic, very finely minced (use more or less to taste and depending on the size of the garlic cloves)
- 3/4 cup finely chopped fresh mint (see notes)
- 3/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley (see notes)
- 4 T fresh-squeezed lemon juice (see notes)
- 1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
- 1/4 tsp. ground allspice
- salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- Rinse lentils and pick out broken ones or any small stones.
- Put lentils in small pan with 3 cups water, bring to a boil, then simmer gently until lentils are tender, about 25-30 minutes. (Actual cooking time will depend on the freshness of the lentils. Older lentils will take longer to cook.)
- While lentils cook, very finely minced 10-12 fresh garlic cloves.
- Heat 2-3 T olive oil in small frying pan, add garlic, and cook over very low heat until garlic is very fragrant but barely starting to get some color, about 7-8 minutes. Turn off heat.
- While garlic cooks, finely chop desired amount of fresh mint and parsley.
- Whisk together lemon juice, other 2 T olive oil, ground cumin and ground allspice.
- When lentils are tender, drain well and transfer to a bowl.
- Turn heat back on under pan with the garlic, add lemon juice dressing mixture and heat about 1 minute. Pour heated dressing over the lentils, then gently stir to combine so all the lentils are well-coated with the dressing. (You can let it cool a little at this point if the lentils are pretty hot.)
- Stir in fresh herbs, then season the salad well with salt and fresh ground black pepper. Serve warm or at room temperature.
- This salad will keep in the fridge for a day or two, but leftovers will taste best if you let them come to room temperature. You may want to add some fresh squeezed lemon juice to brighten the flavor when you eat it.
You can use brown lentils for this salad if you prefer, which will cook a bit more quickly. Use more or less herbs to taste, depending on availability and how much you like fresh herbs. You can use less lemon juice if you're not a huge lemon fan like I am.
Recipe adapted from Garlicky Lebanese Lentil Salad in Saveur October 2010.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 136Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 105mgCarbohydrates: 11gFiber: 3gSugar: 1gProtein: 4g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.
Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Salads made with dried beans or lentils are a great low-glycemic choice for any phase of the original South Beach Diet. However, for phase one, portions should be limited to 1/3 to 1/2 cup dried beans. Since this Lebanese Lentil Salad is mostly lentils, keep that in mind and make serving sizes small. Lentils are not low in carbs, even though they do have quite a bit of fiber so this probably wouldn’t be suitable for extremely low-carb diet plans.
Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use Salad Recipes find more recipes like this one. Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.
Historical Notes for this Recipe:
This recipe was first posted in 2010, and I’ve made it many times since then! It was last updated in 2021.