Are you missing the Mongolian beef & broccoli from your favorite Chinese restaurant? Time to get reacquainted with your long-lost lover, because you’re going to want to make this recipe over and over. It’s half the calories, twice as filling and just as delicious! Instead of beef, I use lentils, which are as flavorful as they are healthy. And, when the broccoli, rice and lentils soak up that sweet and savory Mongolian sauce—you’re going to feel like you’ve entered a vegan paradise!   Reprinted with permission from Easy Low-Cal Vegan Eats by Jillian Glenn, Page Street Publishing Co. 2021. Photo credit: Maureen Onda

Mongolian Lentils & Broccoli [Vegan]

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  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup (80 g) diced yellow onion
  • 1 tablespoon (8 g) minced garlic
  • 3 cups (273 g) broccoli florets
  • 1 tablespoon (8 g) cornstarch
  • 1 cup (198 g) canned lentils, drained and rinsed
  • 4 cups (680 g) cooked jasmine rice
  • 2 tablespoons (6 g) chopped scallions
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Prepare the Mongolian sauce: In a small bowl, mix together the soy sauce, maple syrup, onion powder and 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of the olive oil. Set aside.
  2. In a large skillet, heat the remaining tablespoon (15 ml) of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes, or until the onion is golden.
  3. Meanwhile, in a medium-sized bowl, toss together the broccoli florets and cornstarch. Once the onion is golden, add the broccoli and cook, stirring frequently, for another 5 minutes.
  4. Add your lentils and Mongolian sauce and stir. Cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the sauce bubbles and thickens. Remove it from the heat. Serve immediately over a cup (170 g) of rice per serving, topped with scallions and sesame seeds. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

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