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vegan bobotie
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4.84 from 6 votes

Vegan Lentil Bobotie

Discover this local, Cape Malay delicacy made vegan! This lentil bobotie recipe features lentils and tofu instead of minced meat and egg. Try this proudly South African, freezer-friendly meal!
Course Main Course
Cuisine Cape Malay, South African
Keyword Bobotie, Meal prep, Vegan
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 55 minutes
Servings 4 meals
Calories 591kcal
Author Lien


Lentil mixture/base

  • 1 slice bread crust removed (whole wheat works just fine)
  • 1 TBSP olive oil
  • 2 cups dried brown lentils soaked overnight and rinsed
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 onions finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic pressed
  • 2 carrots grated
  • 1 TBSP garam masala
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 TBSP medium curry powder (or hot if you prefer a bite)
  • 160 ml chutney (I used the classic Mrs Balls)
  • juice of 1/2 lemon


  • 480 g silken or soft tofu
  • 1/3 cup chickpea flour
  • 1/3 cup plant milk (I used oat milk)
  • 2 TBSP nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp black Indian salt
  • 1/4 tsp salt (or more to taste)
  • 4 bay leaves
  • salt and milled black pepper to taste


Lentil bobotie base

  • Preheat the oven to 190ºC.
  • Soak the bread in water for 10 minutes, then squeeze dry.
  • In a saute or frying pan, heat the olive oil on medium-high heat. Fry the onion with a pinch of salt until translucent and slightly browned. Then, add the garlic, carrots,  herbs and spices and continue to fry while regularly stirring for a few more minutes.
  • Add the remaining ingredients, stir, and bring the mixture to a boil. Then, lower the heat and allow to simmer for 15 - 20 minutes or until the lentils are soft and all the water has been absorbed.
  • Transfer the lentil mixture to ovenproof meal prep containers and smooth over the top. Poke a few holes into the mixture with a fork, so that the topping can seep through.


  • Blend all the topping ingredients together, except for the bay leaves.
  • Pour the topping over lentil mixture, smooth over, and top with bay leaves. Bake for 40 - 45 minutes or until the topping is golden and set.


Calories: 591kcal | Carbohydrates: 84g | Protein: 37g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Sodium: 848mg | Potassium: 1521mg | Fiber: 35g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 6091IU | Vitamin C: 17mg | Calcium: 149mg | Iron: 10mg