Smokey Cauliflower & Lentil Stew

I’m so excited that Autumn is finally here. I’m such a sucker for the leaves changing colour, the feeling and sound of stepping on a fallen leaf, the crisp winters air making its way through the trees and our bodies craving big bowls of delicious goodness to warm us up after work.

Plus, with the change in season comes a new yield of delicious ingredients to gather and get my hands on. I always like to eat with the seasons, it gives you such a challenge in experimenting with certain ingredients during their short-lived time and some of my favourite recipes have been discovered that way.

There is something almost magical about indulging on a certain vegetable to then not eat it again for another year. It makes the taste so much more vibrant and allows you to fall in love with it all over again. And that’s exactly where the inspiration for this recipe came from.

I wanted to create something that was super delicious and warming and had those smokey undertone flavours I’ve come to love and utilise in probably about 80% of my recipes (if something isn’t broken, why try to fix it, or that’s what my Mum used to always say!) and pair it with some of these amazing Autumnal vegetables that are starting to pop up all over the place.

I’ve used cauliflower, which you know is one of my favourite ingredients and paired it with deliciously earthy red lentils and lots of spices, before topping it with a creamy tahnini dressing for an added layer of luxury. This recipe uses cumin, smoked paprika, ground coriander and chilli flakes to really build a base layer of flavour and then adds a smokey depth that works amazing against these two earthy rich ingredients.

But please don’t be scared about all the different spices that this recipe has, they perfectly balance each other out and means you’re able to easily adjust to your own heat and spice preference.

I absolutely love spicy food after travelling around the Middle East for many years, so I tend to always add in an extra pinch or two when I make this dish. Also, feel free to skip a few of the scarier and more intense spices if you are making this for a family of little ones. 

I also love to stir in a little coconut yogurt for an added hit of creaminess, this is entirely optional but I highly recommend. I also finish this dish with lots of fresh coriander for an almost peppery kick to the final dish and then serve it with some chunks of fresh sourdough bread or deliciously fluffy flatbreads (I have a quick step by step tutorial on how to make the best effortless flatbreads here) as they are the perfect vehicle for soaking up and scooping up all that gorgeously rich liquid.

This dish is perfect to batch cook and take to work for lunch, the lentils will keep you full to power through the afternoon, or even for a quick mid-week dinner. Lentils are actually one of my favourite ingredients as they are low in calories, rich in iron and an excellent source of protein, plus they can bulk out so many different types of dishes making them the ultimate store cupboard essential to stock up on (you can find out more about what store cupboard ingredients I think should be in your kitchen at all time, and what recipes you can create with them, on this blog post here)

The recipe is super simple to create and because it’s cooked all in one pan, makes the washing up a breeze! I always make sure to make extra portions when creating this recipe because the flavours are even better the next day once they have had a chance to develop and infuse all the wonderful components, plus it freezes and keeps really well making it the perfect meal-prepping dish. Just portion out and freeze in jars or individual portions and thaw overnight in the fridge – it can be kept in the freezer for a few weeks. 

If you like this recipe, why not give one of my other Smokey inspired recipes a try?

This Smokey Lentil and Walnut Bolognese with Crispy Roast Potatoes is the perfect combination of comfort and delight.

My Whole Roast Cauliflower with Smokey Tomato Sauce, Chickpeas and a Cucumber Mint Dressing is a show-stopping delight and my Roast Cauliflower and Aubergine with Smokey Red Pepper and Chickpea Stew combines all of my favourite vegetables, covers them in a delicious smokey sauce and them wraps them up in a fluffy flatbread – the most delicious vehicle of flavour and texture. 

I really hope you love this delicious soup as much as I do; make sure to post and tag with @rebelrecipes #rebelrecipes if you make this dish so I can see and repost your gorgeous creations!

I'd love to know if you made this recipe.

Use #RebelRecipes and tag @RebelRecipes



  2-4 servings
  15 minutes preparation time
  30 minutes cook time


  • 1 onion roughly chopped 
  • 2 tbsp olive oil 
  • 2 carrots chopped into small dice 
  • 4 cloves garlic sliced
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds 
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika 
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander 
  • 1/2 tsp chilli flakes 
  • 150g cherry tomatoes sliced 
  • 1/2 cauliflower cut into small florets 
  • 825ml veg stock 
  • 150g red lentils rinsed
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée 
  • 1 tsp vegan Worcester sauce 
  • 1 tsp tamari 
  • 1 tbsp coconut yogurt or cream – optional 
Tahini dressing; 
  • 2 tbsp tahini 
  • Juice 1 lemon
  • Pinch sea salt 
  • Splash water 
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil 


  1. In a large saucepan, fry the onion with the olive oil on a medium heat until soft and browning. 
  2. Now add the carrots and garlic and fry for a further 2-3 minutes. Add in the spices and fry for a minute or so.
  3. Now the cauliflower, cherry tomatoes and fry for a further 2 minutes.
  4. Add in the stock and lentils plus the tomato purée, tamari and Worcester sauce 
  5. Cover and simmer on a low to medium heat for 15 minutes or until the lentils and cauliflower are tender. 
  6. Stir in the coconut yogurt if desired. 
To make the dressing; 
  1. Add all the ingredients to a mini chopper and blitz until creamy. 
To serve; 
  1. Spoon the stew into bowls and drizzle with the tahini dressing. 

Thank you so much for following my blog and cooking my recipes!

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  1. Katie on October 16, 2021 at 6:55 am

    Honestly Nikki, my veganism would’ve foundered long ago, if it weren’t for you and your recipes! Thank you very much – this is utterly delicious! We added chickpeas and (my newly discovered) Henderson’s relish instead of Worcester sauce.

    • Niki on October 24, 2021 at 2:09 pm

      Aww so happy to hear!
      Much love, Niki xxx

  2. Daniela on September 13, 2021 at 5:38 pm

    Hi Nikki. Thanks for so many great ideas. About this one, i dont have this worcester sauce. Is it essential? I hope not! Best regards

    • Niki on September 14, 2021 at 9:05 pm

      Hi Daniela
      You can leave out – no problem!
      Niki x

  3. D on August 5, 2021 at 9:01 pm

    Delicious – did not use cocnut yoghurt but so yummy.

    • Niki on August 10, 2021 at 11:52 am

      Very happy to hear that!
      Niki xx

  4. A on February 23, 2021 at 2:32 pm

    Absolutely amazing! tip: the tahini dressing is the game changer. Make in abundance and don’t ommit!

    • Niki on August 18, 2021 at 3:57 pm

      Ah thank you so much – so glad you love it as much as I do! – Niki

  5. Maneesha on February 23, 2021 at 2:00 pm

    Absolutely delicious recipe! I added red lentils as well as chickpeas, because, well, why not? So yum!

    • Niki on March 14, 2021 at 8:41 pm

      Haha of course, why not!! Go crazy. – Niki xo

  6. clare on November 28, 2020 at 8:51 pm

    another ridiculously super tasty and easy to make recipe. Thanks Nikki. am so pleased to have discovered rebel recipes, its just fab 🙂

    • Niki on March 17, 2021 at 8:01 pm

      Thank you so much Clare, that’s made my day – Niki xo

  7. Tianna on November 14, 2020 at 1:21 am

    Just made this in the Instant Pot and it was so delicious! Set for 5 mins – the lentils were done and veggies still had nice texture. Added some Harissa to the tahini cream and a pinch of cinnamon to the soup. So tasty – Thanks for the recipe 🙂

    • Niki on March 17, 2021 at 8:10 pm

      Hi Tianna, that sounds like a great addition – so glad you enjoyed it – Niki xo

  8. Mairi on September 30, 2020 at 9:18 pm

    Just discovered the blog and made this for dinner tonight with your fast flatbreads. Delicious and so good to make something so tasty from store cupboard staples! We added a little flake of smoked salt on top to up the smokey flavour too.
    Can’t wait to make more of your recipes (and can’t wait to eat the second half of this for lunch tomorrow!)

    • Niki on October 9, 2020 at 4:31 pm

      That sounds super good!
      Thanks so much
      Niki xx

  9. […] homage to the wild garlic season and the lighter dishes we are now experiencing in spring. Plus, my Smokey Cauliflower and Lentil Stewis the ultimate dish in comfort food – especially when served with flatbreads to soak up all that […]

  10. Helen on April 2, 2020 at 12:36 pm

    Just wondering if there is an alternative to the Worcestershire sauce? Thanks!

    • Niki on April 2, 2020 at 3:47 pm

      Hi Helen
      You can use a little Tamari or just leave it out.
      Much love
      Niki xxx

  11. Jinka on March 29, 2020 at 1:44 pm

    Making tonight. Are the lentils tinned?

    • Niki on March 29, 2020 at 2:21 pm

      I used fresh but tinned is also good.. add a bit less liquid is your do.
      Much love
      Niki xxx

  12. Carol wilson on March 7, 2020 at 6:32 pm

    I made this over new year for my veggie friends – the carnivores loved it too. Firm favourite in our house now. Thank you.

    • Niki on March 8, 2020 at 7:50 pm

      So happy to hear that Carol!
      Niki xxx

  13. Candice on November 16, 2019 at 7:17 pm

    We loved this! Delicious the first day and as leftovers!

    • Niki on November 18, 2019 at 4:13 pm

      So happy to hear Candice!
      Niki xxx

  14. Sue Doshi on November 10, 2019 at 7:44 pm

    Just made this swapped parsnips for the carrots and didn’t have any tamari so that was omitted. Really tasty winter comfort food yummy

    • Niki on November 11, 2019 at 5:00 pm

      Nice additions!
      Glad you enjoyed.
      Niki xxx

  15. Gilda on November 4, 2019 at 1:58 am

    I made this and I cannot stop eating it!! I have to make more more more!

    • Niki on November 4, 2019 at 7:22 pm

      Hi Gilda
      Fantastic news!
      So happy xxx

  16. Debora on October 27, 2019 at 10:14 am

    Mmmmm, this is going to be tried this week! Any ideas how many calories? I can’t imagine there’s that many! Thank you.

    • Niki on November 2, 2019 at 11:46 am

      Hi Debora
      Im afraid I don’t calculate but I don’t believe its high. Plus packed with healthy ingredients.

      Niki xxx

  17. Debby Hitchmough on October 21, 2019 at 9:45 pm

    Hi Nikki made this tonight, was delicious and lovely comfort food.
    Made flatbreads with organic chickpea and Wholemeal organic wheat flour 2/3 to 1/3 proportions. Also had some mango chutney on the side too. Great midweek supper! Thanks for the recipe!!! Xxx

    • Niki on October 26, 2019 at 9:11 am

      That sounds absolutely perfect Debby.
      So happy you like
      Niki xxx

  18. Rhiannon on October 18, 2019 at 12:00 pm

    Can you also cook this using a slow cooker? If so, how long would you recommend cooking it for? 🙂

    Many thanks

    • Niki on October 21, 2019 at 4:56 am

      Hi Rhiannon
      I haven’t tried, but I would imagine with more water.
      Let me know!
      Niki xxx

  19. Becky on October 15, 2019 at 9:21 am

    Just made this! I used purple cauliflower instead of normal for extra colour. Very excited to try this for my lunch 🙂 smells delish.

    • Niki on October 21, 2019 at 4:56 am

      Fantastic! Hope you enjoy xxx

  20. Joy Kirk on October 13, 2019 at 6:37 pm

    Made this tonight! Absolutely fantastic! So much flavour and the tahini dressing was amazing!

    • Niki on October 21, 2019 at 4:56 am

      Brilliant, so happy you like Joy xxx

  21. Sara K P on October 7, 2019 at 7:07 pm

    A is making it for the second time now – and this time we have cauliflower!

    • Niki on October 21, 2019 at 4:57 am

      Amazing! Did you like?
      Niki xxx

  22. Hrelate on October 3, 2019 at 8:15 am

    Delicious it looks! I like to eat Smokey Cauliflower & Lentil Stew. I make this recipe every Sunday.

    • Niki on October 3, 2019 at 5:22 pm

      Amazing! So happy you like xx

  23. Dot on October 1, 2019 at 8:57 pm

    Really yummy despite my idiotic cockup of adding tahini instead tamari… 🙈🙈
    But definitely will be cooking it again ☺

    • Niki on October 3, 2019 at 5:22 pm

      Oh no!
      Sure it was still good though?
      Niki xx

  24. Elena on September 25, 2019 at 2:52 pm

    I want to eat this every day until spring, it looks delicious!

    • Niki on September 26, 2019 at 2:23 pm

      Brilliant! So happy you like Elena xx

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Recipe Tags: Cauliflower Lentils stew


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