Some of my favorite meals from childhood are casseroles. They just feel like a warm hug on a plate. And don’t they always make the house smell amazing! In this Lentil & Rice Italian Casserole, I kept the hug on a plate part, and healthified the rest, so you can feel good about cozying up to it on a chilly day!
I called this a pantry casserole, because everything in it was already in my pantry (or fridge)! You probably have most of the ingredients already, but feel free to make substitutions if you don’t. I’m all about making things easy! Don’t have panko? Use regular bread crumbs or oatmeal. Don’t like rice? Use barley, quinoa, or any other whole grain. No matter what, you’ll love how easy and delicious of a meal this makes! Pair with any steamed or roasted vegetable and you’re done!
Don’t forget to keep homemade vegetable broth on hand. Make your own for free using scraps of vegetables with this recipe!
Lentil & Rice Italian Pantry Casserole
Easy, healthy dinner casserole that is easily customizable to what’s in your pantry, and pairs great with most any vegetable for a complete meal.
- 4 cups Vegetable Broth or Water
- 1 cup Quick Cooking Brown Rice (not instant)
- 1 cup Brown Lentils, dry
- 1 can Diced Tomatoes
- 1/4 cup Kalamata Olives, chopped
- 2 Tbsp Minced Garlic (about 6 cloves)
- 2 Tbsp Dry Oregano
- 1/2 cup Panko Bread Crumbs
- 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast, optional
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- Ground Pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
In a large pot, add all ingredients for the casserole and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, until lentils and rice are done or slightly al dente.
Meanwhile, combine the topping ingredients, and mix well.
When the lentil and rice mixture is ready, transfer to a lightly oiled 8X13 casserole dish. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the mixture.
Bake for 20-30 minutes, until bubbly and topping is slightly browned.