Go Back
+ servings
5 from 10 votes
Overhead View of Wooden Table Set with a Pot of French Lentil Stew, Bowl of French Lentil Stew, Two Spoons and Water Glass
French Lentil Stew (Lentils Provencal)
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
45 mins
Total Time
1 hr

This cozy French lentil stew is simmered with savory herbes de Provence, juicy tomatoes, olives, and topped with fresh basil. A healthy vegan comfort food meal that comes together in about an hour!

Course: Entree
Cuisine: American, French
Servings: 4
Calories: 354 kcal
Author: Alissa Saenz
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup dried French green lentils
  • 1 ½ teaspoons herbes de Provence
  • 8 ounces cremini mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 1 (14 ounce or 400 gram) can diced tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • ½ cup olives*
  • 2 tablespoons capers
  • Salt and pepper to taste (I used about 1 teaspoon of salt and about ½ teaspoon pepper)
  • Fresh basil, for serving
  1. Coat the bottom of a medium pot with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and place it over medium heat.

  2. When the oil is hot, add the onion. Sweat the onion for about 5 minutes, until soft and translucent.

  3. Add the garlic and cook it for 1 minute, until very fragrant.

  4. Add the water, lentils, and herbes de Provence, then raise the heat and bring the water to a boil.

  5. Lower the heat and allow the lentils to simmer until just a tad undercooked, about 30 minutes. Add a bit of hot water to the pot if it gets too dry while simmering.

  6. While the lentils cook, sauté the mushrooms. Coat the bottom of a large skillet with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and place it over medium heat.

  7. Add the mushrooms in an even layer, being careful to avoid crowding the skillet. Cook the mushrooms in batches if needed.

  8. Cook the mushrooms for about 5 minutes on each side, until browned and tender.

  9. Remove the mushrooms from the skillet and transfer them to a plate.

  10. When the lentils have finished simmering there should be just a bit of water left in the pot — not quite enough to cover the lentils. If there's more than that, drain the lentils and return them to the pot with about ½ cup of water, then return the pot to the burner.

  11. Add the wine to the pot. Raise the heat and bring it to a simmer. Allow it to cook until most of the liquid has cooked off, about 4 minutes.

  12. Stir the cooked mushrooms, tomatoes, tomato paste, olives, and capers into the pot. Bring it back up to a simmer.

  13. Simmer the stew for 5 to 10 minutes more, until the lentils are as tender as you like them and the stew is thick.

  14. Remove the pot from heat and season the stew with salt and pepper.

  15. Divide into bowls and top with fresh basil. Serve.

Recipe Notes

*You can really use whatever variety of olives you like! I used a mix of Kalamata and plain old green olives. If you want your stew to be more authentically French, use a French variety of olive.

Nutrition Facts
French Lentil Stew (Lentils Provencal)
Amount Per Serving (1.25 cups)
Calories 354 Calories from Fat 119
% Daily Value*
Fat 13.2g20%
Saturated Fat 1.9g10%
Sodium 885mg37%
Potassium 1089mg31%
Carbohydrates 40.9g14%
Fiber 17.5g70%
Sugar 6.5g7%
Protein 15.6g31%
Calcium 82mg8%
Iron 5mg28%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.