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Lentil Salad with Charred Green Onion Dressing

by Lorena

This Lentil Salad with charred green onion dressing is extremely tasty. It’s a great recipe for those who are looking for a delicious, nutritious and easy Lentil Salad to make at home. I’m a huge fan of lentils and eating them in a salad is one of the best ways of having them. It certainly can be a main dish or serve as a side dish for a protein.

Top view of a Lentil Salad, you can see the Charred Green Onions Dressing on the side. The salad contains kale, almonds, avocado, feta cheese, cherry tomatoes and cucumber.

The perfect lentils for this Lentil Salad

In my version of this Lentil Salad, I like to use brown lentils. However, you can certainly go for other types of lentils. A particularly delicious one that I love is French Green Lentils (Puy Lentils). If you can’t get French lentils you can also use black lentils. You can even switch to another legume like white beans or garbanzo beans. I cook the lentils myself but if you don’t feel like it you can also buy canned lentils which are usually readily available in a grocery store. Be aware that the only change with swapping lentils is that each type requires different times of cooking. Have that in mind if you switch them.

Cooking the lentils

Even though lentils don’t need soaking before cooking, it’s advised to soak them for at least 1 hour at room temperature. This makes them much more easy to digest. If you remember and have time, soak them overnight. This also reduces how much time they need to cook, so bear that in mind. After soaking, strain them and give them a good rinse with cold water. Then, place them in a medium saucepan with water and cook them over medium heat for 15-20 minutes or until you have tender lentils. They should have a bit of a bite though, like al dente pasts. That’s a great way to ensure that they won’t go all mushy as we mix the Lentil Salad. 

About the charred green onion dressing

A good recipe for Lentil Salad needs a delicious salad dressing. This one is a charred green onion and yoghurt dressing based on Teri Turner’s (No Crumbs Left) Charred Scallion Dressing. When I saw her make a charred green onion dressing I just had to take the inspiration and make my version. In mine, we first char the green onions/scallions in a hot grill or skillet. Once they’re very very charred, you blend them with the rest of the dressing ingredients: yoghurt, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and black pepper. You can also add a bit of lemon zest if you like! It’s really easy and the result is as creamy as using mayo with a better flavour in my opinion. It’s this dressing that makes this the best Lentil Salad ever. 

Top view of a Lentil Salad. The salad was already tossed with some of the Charred Green Onion and Yoghurt Dressing. The salad contains kale, almonds, avocado, feta cheese, cherry tomatoes and cucumber.

The Salad Ingredients

For this Lentil Salad to be a delicious salad and not just a bunch of lentils with a delicious dressing, you need more ingredients. I love to mix lentils with fresh veggies. Lentils are more on the heavy side so having a fresh and crispy counterpart helps to balance out the salad. Here are the ingredients you will need along with the cooked lentils:

  • Kale: I love kale for a lentil salad. Kale has a lot of structure in its leaves which makes munching on it a real treat. If you often feel like kale is too fibrous for you, don’t worry. To prevent that from happening we massage the leaves, making them softer and keeping their amazing taste. 
  • Cherry tomatoes: Cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes are fresh and delicious. They pair well with lentils. I actually serve a tomato salad every time I make my Super Tasty Brown Lentils Recipe.
  • Cucumber: Crisp cucumber is a great addition to any Lentil Salad. It gives a bite of freshness to the more heavy lentils. I especially love them if they’re very cold, so refreshing!
  • Feta Cheese: I love to add a bit of cheese to my salads. Feta cheese is great for this salad as it adds that creamy factor to the ingredient list.
  • Almonds: Make sure to toast your almonds beforehand to have that lovely toasty flavour in there. 
  • Avocado: I just love to add avocado to salads, it has that rich texture that goes amazing with the rest of the ingredients.
  • Alternatives: Other ingredients that I don’t use but you might like to consider adding would be red onion, red bell pepper, fresh herbs and sunflower seeds. 

Bringing this Lentil Salad together

Now that you have your dressing ready, your lentils cooked and the veggies cut up, it’s time to bring this Lentil Salad together. It’s important to toss all the ingredients in a large bowl along with the dressing. This makes the flavours distribute correctly and it also sticks the lentils to the rest of the ingredients so that they don’t fall to the bottom of the dish. Don’t use all the dressing though but around a third of it. The extra dressing can go on the side so that everyone adds more to their salad as they please. If you have leftovers, this salad keeps well refrigerated for up to 5 days in an airtight container. The cucumber and tomatoes release a bit of water while in there but it’s nothing excessive.

Lentil Salad with Charred Green Onion and Yogurt Dressing

This Lentil Salad with charred green onions dressing is extremely tasty. It's a great recipe for those who are looking for a delicious, nutritious and easy Lentil Salad to make at home.
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Course: Main Course, Salad
Keyword: brown lentils, green onion, lentils, salad, scallion, spring onion
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 4 people
Author: Lorena Salinas from Cravings Journal


For the lentils

  • 100 g lentils
  • 500 ml water

For the charred green onion and yoghurt dressing

  • 2 green onions cut in half horizontally
  • 6 tbsp olive oil
  • 150 g unsweetened Greek yoghurt
  • ½ lemon, juice only
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the salad

  • 100 g kale
  • ½ cucumber sliced and cut into half-moons
  • 200 g cherry tomatoes halved
  • ½ avocado peeled and cubed
  • 40 g toasted almonds roughly chopped
  • 150 g feta cheese cubed


For the lentils

  • Soak for at least 1 hour, ideally overnight.
  • Strain the lentils and rinse them.
  • Place the lentils in a saucepan with the water and let them cook for 10-15 minutes from when the water starts to boil over medium heat. They should feel al dente when you bite into them.
  • Strain them and reserve them until they have cooled down completely.

For the charred green onion and yoghurt dressing

  • Coat the green onions with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil amount. Place them on a preheated grill or pan over high heat. Char them really well and remove them. The green parts will be done before the white part.
  • Once they have cooled down, blend them with the rest of the ingredients for the dressing. Taste and adjust the level of salt.

For the salad

  • Fold the kale leaves in half, take the stalk at the base and pull all the way to the top to remove it. Repeat with all the leaves. Chop the leaves and massage them until they turn dark green and feel softer.
  • Mix the kale with all the other ingredients as well as with about a third of the dressing and serve along with the excess dressing.
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