Dreena’s No-fu Love Loaf

by on April 26, 2012
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Dreena's No-fu Love Loaf

I’ve been looking for a great lentil loaf recipe, and finally I’ve found one! Unfortunately, I can’t claim credit for this delicious dish. That goes to Dreena Burton and her new book, Let Them Eat Vegan!: 200 Deliciously Satisfying Plant-Powered Recipes for the Whole Family. Fortunately, Dreena and her publishers have given me permission to share the recipe for this hearty, savory (dare I say “meaty”) loaf with you.

What I love about Let Them Eat Vegan! (which is also available in a Kindle version) is the emphasis on whole foods. Dreena’s recipes contain no processed vegan “meats,” cheeses, sour creams, and the like and use no white flour; the recipes, even the desserts, are built around whole grains, beans, nuts, and seeds. If you’re following an allergen-free diet, you’ll find plenty of gluten-free and soy-free recipes that fit your diet, as well as suggestions for adapting many of the other recipes.

Though most of the recipes do contain oil, it’s usually such a small amount that those of us who are used to adapting recipes can easily leave it out, and Dreena actually marks it as optional in some of her recipes. Many of the dishes do rely on nuts, so bear that in mind if you’re following a completely fat-free diet. And I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that two big chapters are devoted to cookies and other desserts, and though they’re healthier than most dessert recipes, even the raw recipes look wildly decadent and most are rich with nuts, unrefined sugar, and sometimes coconut oil. If you’re trying to lay off the sweets, skip those chapters because reading them in bed had me planning a raid on the refrigerator and wondering where I could get my hands on some vegan chocolate in the middle of the night.

Let Them Eat Vegan by Dreena Burton

I have about 10 bookmarks in my copy of Let Them Eat Vegan

Let Them Eat Vegan! is a very attractive book, with a clean layout and ample space around the recipes, each of which fits on one page or on two facing pages so there’s no flipping back and forth as you cook. Dreena provides a wealth of information about ingredients and cooking techniques, plenty of kid-friendly ideas, and lots of variations and menu suggestions. An insert includes 27 photos taken by the talented Hannah Kaminsky, each depicting several dishes, so you get a good look at many of the 200 recipes.

I’m not exaggerating when I say that I’ve been obsessed with this No-fu Love Loaf ever since I made it. I’ve served it for dinner once and made “meatloaf” sandwiches out of it twice (using my Tofu-Cashew Mayonnaise, of course). I made it exactly as written, with the small exception of the blackstrap molasses, which I omitted because I didn’t have any. I didn’t miss it because my loaf came out full of flavor, dense with grains and lentils, and very satisfying. Served with a side of mashed potatoes and some mushroom gravy, it was the ultimate comfort food.

Dreena's Lentil-Grain Loaf

Disclosures: Da Capo Lifelong provided me with a review copy of the book. This post contains Amazon affiliate links; when you buy something through them, a few pennies on each dollar goes to me to support my work on this site.

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{ 153 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kaz April 26, 2012 at 8:55 am

This looks fabulous…i can’t wait to try it!


2 Audrey April 26, 2012 at 9:06 am

I’ve made this (and quite a few other recipes from *Let Them Eat Vegan!*) and I just loved it. The bulgur adds such a nice texture. I added finely chopped onion and celery to mine. I would definitely make this again. It was so flavorful!


3 Lucy April 26, 2012 at 4:14 pm

Great idea! How much onion and celery did you use?


4 Sheelah Katz April 26, 2012 at 9:32 am

This recipe looks delish and I am thinking about fixing it soon. But one big problem for me is the inclusion of tahini or sunflower seed butter. Not too fat free. What would work as a substitution? Thanks for your suggestions.


5 Susan Voisin April 26, 2012 at 9:45 am

I’m sure you could leave the tahini out with no problem. Just use the same amount of water.


6 Adam April 26, 2012 at 9:33 am

We try to eat completely fat free, which makes tahini and no-no. Anything you can do to leave it out and still get the right texture? I have yet to find a good lentil loaf that I really like, and this one sounds so promising! Nay help appreciated!


7 Susan Voisin April 26, 2012 at 9:46 am

The tahini doesn’t affect the texture so you can leave it out. I would use a little water instead to keep the moisture level the same.


8 Mary April 26, 2012 at 9:36 am

Looks good. I bet you could substitute quinoa for the bulgur for those wishing to avoid wheat, like my husband. I’ve been looking at meatless loaves recently as I am doing a cooking class in September that will be featuring one. Thanks!


9 Somer April 26, 2012 at 9:42 am

I saw a review on that book on the ohsheglows.com site! I cannot wait to buy it! I make a ‘neat’ loaf for when I am having meaty cravings. Dreena’s version looks divine! Thanks for sharing!


10 Kale Crusaders April 26, 2012 at 10:00 am

Meatloaf, vegan or not, has never much appealed to me. That is, until now. :)

The GF substitution notes are super helpful if you don’t have certain ingredients, such as bulgur or vegan Worcestershire, in your pantry. Thanks to you and Dreena for sharing this tempting recipe with us!


11 Anne April 26, 2012 at 10:19 am

OMG, meatloaf and mashed potatoes. I’ve been FF vegan for six months now, and it’s one of the only two meals that I ever really miss (mac ‘n cheese is the other.) I’m very excited to try this. Do you think it would work to use black chia?…can’t seem to find the white ones near where I live.

I have to say again how much I appreciate this blog. I’m learning to love so many new foods.


12 Susan Voisin April 26, 2012 at 10:23 am

Thanks, Anne! About the chia, I actually used black chia because that’s what I had open, and it worked fine. And I confess that I didn’t grind it all that well, either!


13 Jeannie April 26, 2012 at 10:21 am

Totally awesome! I’ll be trying this tonight and getting the book on my Kindle. Thanks so much for the links.


14 Sandi April 26, 2012 at 10:45 am

Susan, I have everything but molasses. What can I substitute, if anything? Thanks.


15 Susan Voisin April 26, 2012 at 11:00 am

Sandi, I skipped the molasses, just left it completely out with no ill effects. It’s such a small amount that I don’t think the recipe suffers without it.


16 Anne April 26, 2012 at 4:21 pm

you are my kind of cook (0:


17 Carrie @Shrinkingcarrie April 26, 2012 at 11:13 am

I have been seeing this cookbook pop up a few places and I can’t wait to buy it! I also can’t wait to try out this loaf! New reader, and I have been loving your site!


18 Marcia April 26, 2012 at 12:24 pm

This looks and sounds wonderful, thanks to both you and Dreena for sharing! The only thing I would add is to the topping. We enjoy a little kick to our meatless loaf so I also put a tablespoon or so of Sriracha hot chili sauce in the mix!


19 John April 26, 2012 at 12:44 pm

This takes a bit too long to make after work. How was it the next day? Do you think I could make it all the way through and then reheat it somehow to serve it for dinner the night after? Or should I save this for Saturday/Sunday fare?


20 Susan Voisin April 26, 2012 at 12:53 pm

I enjoyed the leftovers for three days, so it does reheat well. Just keep it tightly wrapped. I found the best way to reheat it was in the microwave, but if you reheat it in the oven, do it gently and maybe add a little liquid to keep it from drying out.


21 John April 26, 2012 at 12:55 pm

Thank you so much. I think we’re going to try this for our vegan Shabbat dinner tomorrow night (cooked tonight of course) Lentils are always a hit.


22 Andrea August 28, 2012 at 2:47 am

Just found this recipe last week and we actually did have it for our vegan Shabbat dinner! It was a big hit. I made some vegan gravy from The Happy Herbivore and I think we were all in heaven!


23 Val @ Tips on Healthy Living April 26, 2012 at 1:40 pm

This looks nutty and delicious! Any tips or recipes for making natural ketchup?


24 wendy (healthy girl's kitchen) April 26, 2012 at 2:20 pm

I love it when I have all of the ingredients for a recipe already in my kitchen! Thanks Susan. I’ll be trying this out this weekend!


25 wendy@healthygirlskitchen April 28, 2012 at 6:35 am

Just took my first one out of the oven. I’m making two. It’s Saturday morning at 7:30. Looks fantastic and smells even better.


26 Learner April 26, 2012 at 3:53 pm

Thanks for your wonderful website, Susan – I have some Quinoa Flakes but have never used them – Would they work in this recipe – I need gluten free and have trouble with oats even the ones marked gluten free.


27 Susan Voisin April 26, 2012 at 3:55 pm

I often use quinoa flakes instead of quick oats, so I think they will be fine in this recipe. You may need to add a little more if the “dough” seems at all wet, but I think it should substitute well.


28 Ninufar May 10, 2012 at 9:00 pm

Yep, you’ll probably need to add more than the bulghur amount, or at least when I used quinoa flakes instead, it was quite wet. (even w/me adding almost 1/4 C of dried onion flakes and leaving out molasses, tamari, & Worcest. sauce)

Reheated well, though!

When I try this again, I think I’ll up the lentils and decrease the quinoa/GF oats etc to make it more like meatloaf, but hey, I will definitely try this again.


29 Michele April 26, 2012 at 7:53 pm

Wow! I have two young ones who love veggies, and while we are not vegan (we eat fish and eggs), I like to incorporate vegan recipes into our healthy eating plan. I followed this recipe to a “T” since I am not totally comfortable with all of the ingredients yet, and this was such a hit! I will be ordering the cookbook this came from, and I must say, thank you for your website, I reference it on a regular basis!


30 Gena April 26, 2012 at 10:04 pm

I adore Dreena, and I adore the new book! So glad you’re featuring it. This loaf looks outstanding.


31 Britt April 27, 2012 at 8:25 am

This looks killer! I’m definitely going to have to make it.

Also, if you wanted/needed to make it totally soy-free (my SIL is allergic, so I’m always aware of it), you could probably replace the tamari and Worcestershire with coconut aminos and a teeny pinch of ground clove. You may want to add a some salt, though, since coconut aminos aren’t quite as salty as tamari.


32 Justine April 27, 2012 at 9:38 am

Mmm… I’m going to try this version tonight!
I often make meatless meatloafs with just an onion powder mix + 1 can of lentils + bread crumbs + ketchup. Super easy and it always comes out pretty tasty. But this one sounds much more flavorful & delicious.
Got any of your own vegan gravy recipes to go with it?


33 Mary Ellis April 27, 2012 at 10:42 am

This was indeed, SINFULLY delicious. Even better than real meatloaf, I think. One thing I would do to improve it, though, is mix some grated onion and garlic into the mix (just like real meatloaf). I served it with mashed cauliflower (rather than potatoes) and stir-fired zucchini. What a great dinner!


34 Lisa April 27, 2012 at 11:22 am

I made this last night and it was a hit with the whole family! I topped it with your mushroom gravy. So good! I have 2 of Dreena’s cookbooks already, but I think I will soon have 3.


35 tiffany April 27, 2012 at 11:59 am

I CANNOT wait to try this! It looks so good :)


36 Ellen (Gluten Free Diva) April 27, 2012 at 6:45 pm

I bet this would be great cold and served as part of a sandwich. This looks delish!!!!


37 Tiffany April 27, 2012 at 7:18 pm

Made this for dinner tonight and my picky kids gobbled this up and asked for more. So excited they have not been happy with mommy since I started to eat a plant base diet. Thanks for the recipe and sharing this wonderful book I must find a copy.


38 ifinoe April 28, 2012 at 2:15 am

Fabulous pictures!

Actually, I have been making a very similar lentil loaf, but instead of bulgur I often use millet or buckwheat.

We like with horseradish/ dill sauce.


39 Kathleen @ KatsHealthCorner April 28, 2012 at 3:55 pm

What an incredible recipe! Thank you SO much for sharing it! <3


40 Dana April 28, 2012 at 10:54 pm

This was the most amazing meatless loaf I’ve ever made or tasted. I used the steel cut oats, not out of any gluten free concern, but because that’s what I had. My kids liked it. I liked it. I can’t wait to make sandwiches out of the leftovers, not that there is much left over. I served it with roasted cauliflower and brussels sprouts and it was an entirely successful meal. Thanks for sharing this.


41 Kum April 29, 2012 at 3:28 am

Loaf looks so yum!

Thanks for sharing so many delicious vegan recipes…


42 Mark April 29, 2012 at 6:34 am

I made this last night. I’ve been trying out different meatless meatloaf recipes for a while now and I have to say that this is the best that I’ve found. It’s a bit more time consuming but worth it. Great recipe!


43 Kristina April 29, 2012 at 1:13 pm

I tried making this today, but something went wrong and it came out so dry. In any event, the flavors were delicious and it really wasn’t very difficult to make. I will definitely try this out again.


44 Connie Fletcher April 29, 2012 at 2:23 pm

I am so very excited!! This is in the oven, even as I peck this message out!! Even unbaked it has wonderful flavor. I wish I would have read the comment about adding the siracha…..drool….and onion. I added finely diced carrots and celery, and would have loved to add onion….next time. Thank you so very much, Susan. I love this blog!!!


45 Alicia April 29, 2012 at 2:42 pm

This sounds delicious! I plan on making it for this week. Do you think it would stand up to being frozen? I’d like to be able to make two and have some frozen on hand for quick access later on


46 AVBear April 30, 2012 at 2:42 am

I made this last night, and it was really yummy! Both my husband and daughter loved it (served with gravy, new potatoes and peas).

I just wanted to let you know that it works really well, even with some of the substitutions:

I don’t have Worcestershire sauce, so I used the substitution and since I can’t get molasses here either (I live in Denmark) I used dark agave syrup. Also, I added 1/4 cup chopped carrots (while lentils were cooking), a very small onion (minced) and a dash of smoked paprika, omitting the ground fennel (because I had the former but not the latter). I had some extra ground flax from a different recipe, so I went with that option instead of the chia. I made the ‘dough’ in the morning, put it in a silicone pan covered with foil and into the fridge. Then I baked it just before dinner, giving it maybe an extra 5 minutes.

This was a really delicious, easy and healthy dinner! Thank you for sharing! :)


47 Marie April 30, 2012 at 11:12 am

Thanks so much, Susan!

For those of you who served this with gravy, did you leave off the ketchup-topping? I think I would prefer this with gravy, but can’t imagine mixing ketchup with gravy and don’t know what it would do to the loaf if I didn’t include the ketchup-topping.


48 Susan Voisin April 30, 2012 at 11:16 am

Marie, I had the same thought you did about the gravy mixed with ketchup, so I actually served it with ketchup (and my daughter ate hers with barbecue sauce). If I were going to serve it with gravy, I would make the gravy in advance and use a little of it instead of the ketchup topping. I think having some topping helps moisten the loaf, so I would want to have something there.


49 Christine September 7, 2012 at 9:58 am

I did exactly this (used the rosemary gravy from the book) – made it while the lentils and whatnot were boiling away, then just spread some of it on top of the loaf before baking. DELICIOUS! I can’t say if it was more or less moist than the ketchup topping, but it tasted absolutely devine and certainly didn’t seem dry to me!

disclaimer – we’re not vegan, but trying to incorporate vegan dishes into our lineup. husband, the epitome of meatloaf fanatics, gives full and enthusiastic approval of this loaf! (as do I!)


50 Jacky April 30, 2012 at 5:33 pm

I made this yesterday and was very impressed, so good! I left out the molasses as I didn’t have them, and I used steel cut oats instead of bulgur as that’s what was on hand. I also included finely chopped red pepper & celery. I will definitely make again!


51 Lyz April 30, 2012 at 7:31 pm

I made this tonight and the flavor and texture were very good, but I could not get a slice out of the pan without it breaking apart, even after letting it cool for 20 minutes. I’ll definitely be making it again, so can you give me any idea of what I could do differently to get it to hang together? I used steel cut oats instead of bulgar and the chia seed was whole instead of ground, but otherwise I followed the recipe as written. Thanks, Susan! Your blog and website have helped this newbie vegan cook so much!


52 Susan Voisin April 30, 2012 at 10:04 pm

Lyz, did you use the parchment paper? I used it to lift the entire loaf out of the pan as directed, and the whole loaf held together. I was also careful to pack it down really well when filling the pan. I also think that bulgar might hold together bett than steel cut oats.


53 eva @VegucatingMyKids April 30, 2012 at 9:49 pm

i made this tonight! it was delicious–my kids (10 & 8) really liked it….for me, it’s been the best of the vegan loafs i’ve ever made….i do have a confession to make–i did add just one egg–and why?…i am pretty much vegan except for eggs–and not that i gobble them up on a regular basis, it’s just that i don’t have too much luck with vegan loafs….and i was wanting this one to work out…all my other vegan loafs have fallen apart or too watery or just not tasty….so i could not take the risk…i needed this meal to be a ’2 night dinner’…and i am glad i added the egg….it stayed together so nicely….but i do want to ask others who have made this if it will stay together just ask the recipe says?…..truly a delicious loaf–no need to try anymore as far as i am concerned–i have found my ‘go to’ dinner loaf!…thanks for the reminder to make it!


54 Dana May 4, 2012 at 10:40 pm

Hi, I’ve made it a couple of times with steel cut oats instead of bulgur, and I’ve not had any problems with it falling apart or being dry. Try it without the egg next time and see how you do… if you use flax seed and you grind it, add a bit of water to it before you add it to the mix and it will act a little eggy.


55 eva @VegucatingMyKids May 5, 2012 at 12:07 am

thanks dana—i like your idea of using the mix to make burgers! i probably could even freeze a few patties


56 heidi April 30, 2012 at 10:37 pm

Like others, we too really enjoyed this recipe. I made it Sunday evening and then baked it tonight for dinner. Ours wasn’t dry at all (in fact it was a little underdone, but I was worried about drying it out!). One kid ate it with lots of ketchup while the other ate it with lots of Dreena’s “Thick n Rich Gravy” from the Eat, Drink, and Be Vegan cookbook.

For a “loaf” kind of recipe, this was relatively easy–it’s only one large pot and then straight into the loaf pan. I made two (one to share); we gobbled one up with 4 adults and 2 kids. Also: next time I’ll try making 2, but then freezing one before baking. It’d be great to have one handy in the freezer.

(Added bonus: no blender action needed! Seems like every vegan recipe I make involves having to clean out the blender :-) )

Thanks to Dreena for sharing and to you for this great blog.


57 Lyz May 1, 2012 at 8:05 am

Susan, I did use the parchment paper, but I let the loaf cool in the baking pan. Maybe that was part of the problem. Also I think the chia seed probably works better as a binding agent when it’s ground instead of whole (I forgot to grind!). Next time I will try letting it cool outside the pan and make sure my chia is ground, and also I will definitely add some diced onions too. But it’s still delicious!


58 marianne mcdougal May 1, 2012 at 8:39 am

I love visiting your site and trying new recipes. The No-Fu loaf was so easy to prepare and delicious. My cupboard is now filled with nutritional yeast, chia seeds, flax, etc. Thank you so much!


59 Mare May 1, 2012 at 5:39 pm

I never had lentil loaf before. I made this today. It was better than I expected. I enjoyed it.


60 Lyz May 1, 2012 at 5:58 pm

Susan, I am still eating and still loving the Love Loaf! A question – next time I really want to add diced onions, but do you think they should go in raw before baking, or do you think it would be better to saute them first? I don’t want them to make the loaf too watery, so I’m thinking saute first but wanted to find out your thoughts. I am practially camped out on your web site and my recipe box is loading up by leaps and bounds!


61 Susan Voisin May 1, 2012 at 6:02 pm

Lyz, I’m so glad you liked it! I think it would probably be fine either way, but I might sauté them first because I like the flavor of browned onions.


62 briguyrn May 1, 2012 at 6:35 pm

I notice on some recipes with nutritional information that there are points listed. What are the points?


63 Susan Voisin May 1, 2012 at 6:41 pm

On the newer recipes, the points are approximate to Weight Watchers’ Points Plus. On the older recipes, they were reflective of WW’s old Points system, which has been discontinued.


64 Abra May 1, 2012 at 11:07 pm

Made this tonight and it was wonderful! I made the loaf early in the day and baked it for dinner. I will make again for sure use the suggestion of replacing the tahini with water.


65 Becca May 2, 2012 at 8:49 am

This is DELICIOUS! We’ve been looking for a meatloaf replacement for a while now, and this is exactly perfect. I think I’ll start tinkering next time (some onion/bell pepper/celery?) just for fun, and I have to confess I added a sprinkle of cayenne for kick, but only cause we like things a bit spicy. Thank you Susan, as always!!


66 Tom Halsaver May 2, 2012 at 6:05 pm

I made this today and I have to say this is the best vegan “meat” loaf I’ve ever had. I left out the tahini butter but substituted vegetable paste. I didn’t have any ground chia, so I used millet which I added to the lentils along with a little more water. I also added some chopped up onions, garlic, and green peppers.

Next time I’ll give it about 5-10 more minute in the oven.


67 Wei May 2, 2012 at 10:39 pm

Thank you for this recipe :-) I tried it last week and added a half cut of whole soy beans, substituted bulgur for barley, added onion, garlic, parsley and used fresh herbs. It’s so delicous with a mushroom, onion and pepper sauce!!! Freezes really well and different grains such as freekeh and quinoa could be used as well as tofu. SOOOOO DELICIOUS!


68 MariaL May 3, 2012 at 1:51 pm

I had all the ingredients for this except the two main ones, lentils and bulghar. So I used chickpeas and quinoa instead. The flavor was fabulous but not surprisingly it came out a bit mushy. My family loved it anyway, and I will be trying it again soon with the “right” ingredients. A nice break from soup soup soup!


69 Casey B May 3, 2012 at 9:05 pm

I’ve tried this twice this week – both myself and the boyfriend are hooked!!! I can’t thank you enough for sharing this with your readers! First I tried substituting the Bulger for Quinoa and it worked out nicely and enjoyable.. But I tracked down some Bulger – and it came out ten times better! Also, read carefully (like i didnt!) and Don’t forget the tin foil – I did first time around which may have been why the quinoa version didn’t taste as great, but second time around it was perfect. Cannot wait for my lunch!! =)


70 ayholtin March 22, 2013 at 12:01 pm

If you are avoiding all aluminum in cooking, then cover first with parchment paper and then put the aluminum foil over the dish.


71 Reggie May 3, 2012 at 10:50 pm

Thanks for the recipe and recommendation. I went to Amazon but couldn’t tell if the author included the nutrition breakdowns with the recipes. Are they included?
I only buy books now with it already included. It’s too much work otherwise.

Best wishes to you and yours!


72 Susan Voisin May 3, 2012 at 11:15 pm

No, sorry, the book doesn’t contain nutritional info.


73 Reggie May 4, 2012 at 1:02 pm

Thanks Susan!


74 Reggie May 4, 2012 at 1:10 pm

I was just musing over this lack of nutrition info issue. I can sympathize with authors not wanting to include it in the published books (costs, looks). But most authors have living cookbook or other software that estimates the info, why can’t they have a pdf on their blog available? That way only people interested would have to see it and I wouldn’t think it would jeopardize copywrite.

Oh well, it is their choice as the author and I wish them the best.


75 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica May 4, 2012 at 1:09 am

This looks VERY similar to my Herbed Lentil Loaf recipe I’m putting in my next cookbook. Your photo makes it look similar, but I use brown rice instead of bulgar and no oats. :)


76 elizabeth May 4, 2012 at 12:26 pm

Ingredients list brown lentils, with (green), does this mean use either brown or green french lentils? I know green hold their shape more than brown so the outcome would be different.


77 Susan Voisin May 4, 2012 at 12:28 pm

It means regular brown or green lentils, not French (puy) lentils.


78 elizabeth May 4, 2012 at 12:33 pm

Thank you. I didn’t know there were both regular brown and green lentils, I guess I probably have green ,but they look kind of brown. Thanks for posting the recipe.


79 Susan Voisin May 4, 2012 at 12:37 pm

I think it depends on the batch. I’ve have some that look green, others that look brown, and others that look hazel! :-)


80 Lyz Spring May 4, 2012 at 12:35 pm

A week later and this love loaf is still getting comments! As well it should – we are in love with the love loaf. Susan, what’s the highest number of comments you’ve ever gotten on a recipe? Whatever that is, I want to make it!


81 Dana May 4, 2012 at 10:32 pm

Hi! Tonight was my second round with this stuff. I made a double match – again with steel cut oats and added some Montreal seasoning and some liquid smoke. Half of it made a meatloaf, which we’ll use for sandwiches over the weekend and half of it into patties for burgers, which we ate tonight. Amazing. So much better than Boca burgers. Thanks again, I am definitely going to have to get that cookbook!


82 Stefania May 5, 2012 at 5:44 pm

I love that recipe, especially since my Peach came up with the name. :-) Love Dreena’s new cookbook.


83 Monique May 6, 2012 at 7:31 am

Hi Susan, I made this yesterday and it was OK. I suspect it is because I used puy lentils rather than regular lentils that made the loaf so dry. Nevertheless, taste-wise, it was quite yummy.


84 Sherry May 6, 2012 at 3:18 pm

This was a hit with my ‘flex-atarian’ husband, though I liked it a bit less. Very moist and easy to lift out of the pan with the parchment paper. Made it as is but for the chia seeds and fennel (none in the house), served with mushroom gravy. I appreciate suggestions found here and will make again, probably with the addition of an egg and chopped cooked carrots. Will be adding to my meal rotation!


85 Karla May 7, 2012 at 12:19 pm

This just came out of the oven at my house and I must confess, I couldn’t wait until lunch to try it! And then I couldn’t stop at one slice! This stuff is GOOD! I didn’t have chia seeds, so I used ground flax and wheat germ. I also added 1/2 c minced green pepper, as suggested at the end of the recipe, and really liked the flavor it gave. Next time I will prep the lentils and cracked wheat in my rice cooker; they stuck to the pan pretty badly! 8~( I omitted the topping and didn’t miss it. I’ll try it next time. The recipe doubled nicely. I know, I know; it’s risky with a new recipe! But this time, I’m glad I did! I don’t think it will last long around here… And that’s not counting what the rest of the family will do with it! 8~) Thanks so much for posting this! I LOVE your website, Susan! Your lovely pictures always make me want to try whatever you post! I’m eagerly awaiting the Vitamix I ordered through your link! All blessings!


86 Kali Mason May 7, 2012 at 12:29 pm

Wonderful recipe! I did have the problem of it falling apart though. I packed it down in. I did substitute flax meal for chia seeds. It wasn’t dry at all. I will still make it again. I really like the topping of ketcup and vegan worsh sauce. I make the mushroom gravy also. I think it goes great with either, but not both.


87 Esther J May 8, 2012 at 7:38 am

This was very good. I didn’t have the tahini so it was omitted (replaced by water), and I added diced onion, green pepper, and carrots. It, along with your mushroom gravy, some mashed cauliflower & potatoes, and steamed brussel sprouts, was well received.

I also added something to my surprise was not listed among the ingredients – garlic.

Very tasty and hits that comfort-food spot. Even better the second or third day.


88 Elicia May 9, 2012 at 11:11 pm

I just made this, except I used quinoa because I didn’t have any bulgar or steel cut oats. It was a bit dryer than your loaf looks in your photos, but it still tastes delicious!!


89 nrslinda May 10, 2012 at 8:12 am

Made this with finely chopped celery and onion, also. We loved it, and it makes for great leftovers. Can’t wait to get my hands on that cookbook!


90 Sandi May 10, 2012 at 6:24 pm

This was fantastic!! I used bottled carrot juice for the broth, coconut aminos for the tamari, and maple syrup for the molasses. I also added shiitake mushrooms. Thank you so much for this recipe!


91 Sara May 16, 2012 at 11:18 am

Just had to chime in with my 2 cents: add me to the chorus of people saying “I love this”!! My husband and I aren’t even vegan (we’re lacto-ovo-pesco), but this sounded so intriguing, I had to make it! It was delicious, and I can’t wait to try the leftovers in a sandwich! Thanks for sharing it, Susan.


92 Susanne May 21, 2012 at 12:14 pm

This looks delicicous, I am going to make this today


93 Tiffany May 22, 2012 at 7:48 am

I finally made this last night and it was Amazing! I made the gluten free version using the steel cut oats and the substitutions you listed for Worcestershire sauce. I’m not sure how the steel cut oats were supposed to be texture wise in this dish so I did cook that part a little longer than called for. I also added some chopped garlic and green pepper to the seasonings and for my ketchup topping, I added some liquid smoke and brown sugar. My guy LOVED it! The overall flavor of this recipe was terrific but the best part- we kept saying was how amazing the texture was. Any meatloaf lover would love this recipe. Now I have to go buy the book :) Thanks for posting this recipe!


94 KC May 28, 2012 at 4:40 pm

I had found another lentil loaf that I was about to make… My mind has been so changed as I will be making this one. Do u think the loaf will suffer if the nutritional yeast is omitted? If so, do u have any recommendations as to what to add instead… I look forward to making this.. Thanks for sharing this recipe!!


95 Brenda May 28, 2012 at 9:40 pm

Wow, this one’s a winner! I made this tonight with your mushroom gravy for topping (I hate ketchup), and two big thumbs up. It smelled and tasted amazing. Aside from swapping out the topping, I followed the recipe pretty closely, and had no problem with the loaf falling apart. I packed it all down really well with the bottom of a measuring cup. The mushroom gravy really made the dish for me–I used a bunch of big meaty portobello caps and yum.


96 Katie May 29, 2012 at 7:15 am

Wow! I made these as directed except I divided the loaf into “muffins,” left off the topping, and reduced the baking time. I’m eating them crumbled up in Susan’s spicy apple salad in place of the chickpeas and they’re delicious.


97 Sharon Herbitter June 1, 2012 at 12:55 am

Since I last made this it’s been haunting my dreams. Today I followed the recipe exactly, but instead of making a loaf I turned it into 24 good-sized no-meatballs to serve with my red-spicy-vegetable-y sauce and spaghetti. Faboo. I cooked my no-meatballs for twenty minutes; coulda gone with fifteen.


98 stephanie June 3, 2012 at 2:33 pm

i’ve made this twice mushroom gravy, no worchestershire and no molasses. it was excellent


99 Nanci June 12, 2012 at 6:04 pm

This is now my favorite veggie loaf! I have several, including one I invented, but this is the only one I’ll make from now on. It has a lot of ingredients (they all do!) but does not required me to lug out blender, food processor or mixer, and can be made with one pot and the baking pan. And it’s DELICIOUS! The bay leaf adds amazing flavor and aroma, don’t leave that out!


100 Elana June 22, 2012 at 10:28 am

Yummy recipe with a very rich flavor. It was very satisfying and healthy!


101 nicole June 22, 2012 at 8:22 pm

Hi Susan, Is the tahini/nut butter essential to this loaf, or can I omit it? Thanks :)


102 Susan Voisin June 22, 2012 at 8:30 pm

I think you can safely leave it out.


103 Tonya July 6, 2012 at 9:33 am

I am going to try this today but I will use Brown Rice (hot) Cereal instead of the oats. Hope it works.


104 Troy July 9, 2012 at 11:01 pm

Hey there fellow foodies!
Does anyone have any thoughts on bring up the flavor with out adding all of the sodium? We add no salt to our food so the Worcestershire and Tamari are off limits. This always proves a challenge especially with these two in particular. Someone could make a fortune off of me if they came up with a salt free tamari(yes, I know, it’s an oxymoron!) LOL
Thanks Susan for all your work, dedication and knowledge. I am truly grateful that you take the time to share it with us. You rock!


105 stephanie August 19, 2012 at 3:50 pm

try adding a teaspoon or so of horseradish sauce plus a few tbsp of cider vinegar and double the fennel. I don’t know if there’s a no sodium ketchup available, but if you use homemade cocktail sauce and tomato paste, it’s a good sub. A fried onion and some crushed celery seed will add some oomph, but nothing will bring out the flavors like salt unless you’d like to take your chances with a naturally sourced MSG


106 Diane September 25, 2013 at 12:30 am

To replace soy sauce, I generally use a mixture of balsamic vinegar, garlic powder, onion powder, ground ginger, and a dash of molasses or brown sugar. Depending on what I’m using it for, I may add low-sodium veggie broth powder, red pepper flakes, and lemon or lime juice, too.

To replace Worcestershire sauce, I use something similar to the soy sauce replacement but increase the molasses and add a little tomato paste, pepper (red or black), mustard powder, cinnamon, and ground cloves or allspice or some combination of those. I’ve been using these subs so long, I don’t measure any more and exactly what I put in depends on what I’m making, so I can’t give you exact recipes. You might try googling something like “recipes low sodium soy sauce substitute” or “recipes vegan Worcestershire sauce substitute” and see if anything useful comes up. I think that’s what I did originally.


107 Jayne D. July 21, 2012 at 5:52 pm

Wow, I made this recipe and ate the entire loaf myself… not in one sitting of course. The texture is great and the taste is even better. Super easy too. Thank you so much for sharing this.


108 Diane August 5, 2012 at 3:55 pm

This is the first recipe I made on your website, and it is a winner. I have made it for 4 consecutive weeks now. I make the recipe as is, without the molasses. It’s great to have this in the fridge for a quick dinner with roasted veggies, or between bread for a “meatloaf” sandwich. Thank you!


109 stephanie August 19, 2012 at 3:40 pm

This recipe is delish, and has a nice substantial texture too! The first time i used tahini and completely omitted the worcestershire sauce. The last time i omited the tahini and found it made no noticeable difference in taste or texture, so for you FF gripers…just leave it out. However, I followed Dreena’s sugo and DID add the cider vinegar and extra tbsp of tamari ( her sub. for the w-shire), which made a huge diff in the flavor and really upped the ante on this dish. Next time I will add celery and onion like Audrey.


110 nancy September 6, 2012 at 9:36 am

I made this a few days ago and it is now my favorite loaf, I changed nothing from the recipe. I must say that it does taste better the next day.

I absolutely must buy the book.


111 Ivan October 22, 2012 at 9:59 pm

What is the size of the glass pan used for this recipe? I found that I needed 3 times as much topping to cover the whole plan.. my pan was 9X13 inches


112 Susan Voisin October 22, 2012 at 10:21 pm

I used a standard loaf pan, 4×8 inches.


113 KBeane November 16, 2012 at 11:21 am

This looks great! What is the reasoning behind using a glass loaf pan versus a metal one? Just curious if I could use the one that I own.


114 Brenda November 25, 2012 at 7:03 am

I’ve made this in both glass and metal pans and didn’t notice a difference.


115 Caity @ Moi Contre La Vie November 19, 2012 at 8:12 am

I included this great dish in my Thanksgiving Recipe Round-Up, can’t wait to give it a try!



116 Andrea R November 19, 2012 at 11:16 am

Hi Susan, I was wondering if you had given any walnut lentil loafs a shot and a comparision in texture. I really want a loaf with a gravy and anot so much a “meatloaf” does the ketcup in the actual loaf not work well with a gravy? Thanks so much for your help!


117 Susan Voisin November 19, 2012 at 11:50 am

I haven’t done any walnut loaves, though I did a cashew loaf a while back, and the texture was a little smoother than this. For Thanksgiving, this is what I would do: Make the loaf, with the ketchup, but omitting the fennel and adding some sage. I might also swap out all the herbs but the thyme for some sage and rosemary and increase the thyme to 1 teaspoon. Skip the topping. Top it with either a gravy or cook it without the topping and serve with gravy.


118 Andrea R November 19, 2012 at 11:58 am

Thanks so much! This is what I will do! with all the rich foods on thankgiving, I didn’t want all the added fat the walnuts bring (especially becasue I can;t stop thinking about yor Sweet potatoe casserole! I have also been thinking of a wild rice stuffed acorn squash. OK, so last question: I have fresh sage and rosemary in my garden. how much do you think I should add in the loaf? also, I was thinking of adding bell peppers/onion/garlic/celery like some reviewers suggested. Bad idea with the change in seasonings? also…keep the molasses? Thanks again!


119 Susan Voisin November 19, 2012 at 12:07 pm

Since everything’s really already cooked, I think you could add herbs to taste, tasting as you go. I think the bell pepper, etc. would be fantastic with the change of seasonings. And the molasses–well, I didn’t use it and didn’t miss it, so I think it’s safe to skip. Good luck! Let me know how it comes out.


120 Andrea R November 19, 2012 at 12:12 pm

will do! thanks so much! My husband is more of a seitan loaf guy but I really wanted to try a lentil loaf (just had a difficult time deciding between the lentil/walnut loafs out there and this one) He said he was up for trying it, but reminds me everytime that he “thought meatloaf was gross when he was a kid” so…no pressure! ha! thanks for yoru direction. I realized I have fresh thyme in my garden too, so it will be fun to use all fresh herbs!

121 Rebecca November 23, 2012 at 7:00 pm

I made this yesterday as the main course for our Thanksgiving dinner and it was by far the best dish on the table! In both taste and flavor, it reminds me so much of meatloaf–but better:-). I can’t wait to make the leftovers into a sandwich. I will definitely make this again and plan to get the entire cookbook now. I should add that I made this recipe following all of the provided GF substitutions (GF steel-cut oats, apple cider vinegar, etc.) and also added the suggested 1/4 cup minced celery. Great recipe!


122 Sarah December 3, 2012 at 12:22 am

Could this be prepared the night before and baked the day of? (Im thinking of christmas!


123 Susan Voisin December 3, 2012 at 12:39 am

Yes, I’m sure that would work. Hope you enjoy it!


124 Jean D. February 19, 2013 at 6:55 pm

I made this for dinner tonight, and I love it! I omitted the tahini, and ran out of ketchup, so I substituted a couple of tablespoons of tomato paste. This one’s a keeper. Thank you!


125 Robyn February 26, 2013 at 11:58 pm

So delicious it was hard to stop eating :) Even my meat eating dh thought it was good.

Thank you for the recipe.


126 Pam February 28, 2013 at 7:36 pm

I have made this many times now. It’s great! I’ve made it with and without onions, and like it both ways. Last time I made the recipe, I scooped the mix with a cookie dough scooper onto a cookie sheet and baked them to make “meatballs”. It worked! After they baked for 10 min I took them out and put a spoonful of tomato sauce on each of them, then put them back in the oven for another 5-10. We had so many we ate them on spaghetti with tomato sauce and the next day we had “meatball” subs. Thank you again Susan


127 Filio April 2, 2013 at 9:45 am

I made this for the first time this past Sunday. It was wonderful! Now I’m eating it for sandwiches at work and it’s even better. Thank you so much for sharing!


128 Sue April 8, 2013 at 2:06 pm

I had this loaf with roasted sweet potatoes and fresh broccoli. It was delicious!!!!! I highly recommend it. Most “loaf” recipes take a lot of time and ingredients. This was easy! Made great sandwiches the next day too!


129 Den April 30, 2013 at 9:45 am

This sounds great! Do you know if it will be okay with old-fashioned oats instead of quick-oats? Also…kind of working on a budget here…can I omit the chia seeds?


130 leslie April 7, 2014 at 8:53 pm

A year later – but in case someone is reading through the comments for advice; chia or flax seeds act as the binder, so I’d say they are needed. I’ve used old-fashioned oats a number of time with no trouble.


131 Melanie May 31, 2013 at 7:10 pm

Love this recipe! We make it all the time, it is my husbands favorite! We add one onion, some mushrooms, and some carrot or celery. We leave out the tahini and flax seeds (usually cause I don’t have those ingredients on hand). It works perfectly!! A very flexible recipe!


132 Julie June 10, 2013 at 10:51 am

Looks delicious! Can I ask clarification on the ‘nutritional yeast’…is this the yeast in a packet? self raising? I’m just not sure what you mean. Thanks – can’t wait to try it!


133 Susan Voisin June 10, 2013 at 10:57 am

Julie, nutritional yeast is totally different from baking yeast. Some grocery stores have it with the natural foods, but most people find it at natural food stores. Here’s a link that explains what it is and shows what it looks like: http://blog.fatfreevegan.com/2011/10/what-the-heck-is-nutritional-yeast.html


134 Rebecca June 10, 2013 at 12:32 pm

@Julie: If you have a Whole Foods market near you, they carry nutritional yeast in their bulk foods section so you can just scoop out the amount you need.


135 Sandra Witkoe June 10, 2013 at 4:14 pm

Love the No-Fu Loaf ! This is also my favorite web site for new food ideas.The first time I made the No-Fu Loaf it was so wonderful. Then the next couple of times something went wrong. :( I realized that the lentils were over cooked or too soft.They should be ala dente. Now its great again every time! :) Yum

Here’s a fat cutting tip for everyone. If a recipe calls for tahini or a nut butter make the butter(s) without the oil. It works perfectly well and less fat too.In my kitchen Dreena’s Loaf is now about 3 grams per serving instead of the original 5.

I’m following Dr. Neal Bernards books, so his call to action is to keep your fat calories at 3 grams per serving or less. To date I have lost 25 pounds since February of 2013


136 Susan Voisin June 10, 2013 at 4:34 pm

Congrats on your success, Sandra! I’m not sure what you mean about making the nut butter without oil, though. Nut butter shouldn’t contain any oil, just nuts. I would never buy or make any that had any ingredient other than nuts.


137 Nancy July 4, 2013 at 8:51 pm

At first glance, the recipe seemed intimidating; however, it was really very easy. I actually doubled it because I don’t like to spend everyday cooking. I cannot believe how wonderful it is! At first the texture was something to get used to but it didn’t take long. Even after a few days, it was still as good, if not better, than when it came out of the oven. It’s equally as good cold. My favorite way to eat it is with extra catsup mixed with sirachi (sp?) chili sauce. So much better than Louisiana or other hot sauces. Loads of flavor without as much heat. Try it! You will be hooked like I am. Thanks again for sharing this amazing favorable dish. Oh! Did I mention, my carnivore husband actually choose this dish over a real meat dish! THAT IS HUGE!


138 Rachel August 20, 2013 at 6:26 pm

I just made this…. And I think I really goofed up. It’s sour! What did I do wrong?!


139 Anne October 29, 2013 at 2:42 pm

I absolutely love this loaf! I’ve made it many times and each time it seems to come out better than the last…. I have tried a lot of the recipes from Dreena’s book and they all have been very good!


140 Amanda January 7, 2014 at 7:37 pm

Just wanted to let you know I’m trying out this recipe and blogging about it. If there is any problem with this, please let me know. http://tastebudimpaired.blogspot.com/


141 ericka January 17, 2014 at 9:53 am

For some reason my nofu meat loaf did not stick together and when I served the portions it was a casserole slop instead of meatloaf slices.
What is the ingredients that should have held it together? Also it was a bit crunchy I think because I didn’t ground the Chia seeds and also I think the rolled oats needed to cook longer like in the same stage as the bulgur wheat.
Any inside advice?


142 leslie April 7, 2014 at 8:49 pm

The chia or flax seeds are the binder. Chia seeds shouldn’t need grinding, but maybe grind them if you try it again.


143 Dazzle March 3, 2014 at 1:34 pm

I have made quite a few vegan loaf recipes in my day, and this one is one of my favorites. I added 1/2 c. minced veggies (onion, celery, bell pepper and garlic) and doubled the topping (my favorite part). The next day, we used the chilled leftovers to make “love loaf sandwiches” on lightly toasted sourdough bread, with Vegenaise, Dijon mustard, extra ketchup and pickle slices. Sooo good!


144 Ben Rene March 15, 2014 at 8:53 pm

I make this all the time – it’s amazingly delicious. Thank you so much for posting such great recipes. :)


145 leslie April 7, 2014 at 8:47 pm

I’ve made this following the recipe exactly a number of times and love it. Tonight I didn’t have bulgur or rolled oats. I substituted quinoa for the bulgur and quick-cooking steel oats for the rolled oats. Loved it! The texture was a little softer- maybe not quite as “meaty” as the regular version, but good in its own right. I’d love a vegan version of kibbe and think this could probably be a great base for that Lebanese dish.


146 leslie April 7, 2014 at 8:50 pm

Forgot to add- I always add chopped onion as that is an ingredient I used to add to meatloaf. This time, I added chopped mushrooms as well. Great addition.


147 Tammy May 1, 2014 at 11:52 am

Looks great – can’t wait to try this. I was wondering, though, where it says specifically to cover with foil – in your experience, if I’m using a casserole dish that has a glass lid, will having it covered with the thicker glass be any different than using foil? Thanks for any advice!


148 Susan Voisin May 1, 2014 at 12:11 pm

I think the glass lid should be fine. It may keep in a little more moisture than the foil, so if you find the loaf too damp, try leaving the lid ajar for a few minutes at the end of baking.


149 Laura June 29, 2014 at 12:24 pm

All I could find at the store was “quick-cooking” bulgur. Should I add less water with it or reduce the cooking time once added to the lentils?


150 Susan Voisin June 29, 2014 at 1:08 pm

I don’t think you need to make any changes. All bulgur is fairly quick-cooking.


151 Sharon July 13, 2014 at 4:46 pm

I had to come back and leave a comment. I’ve been eating vegan about a year for health reasons. I have always LOVED meatloaf, cold in a sandwich. LOVED!!! I made this loaf in the morning and came back to the kitchen later and made a cold Love Loaf sandwich with a little ketchup and two slices of Killer Dave’s bread and it was DELICIOUS!! This met and exceeded my expectations. I will return to this recipe a lot. I recommend anyone who is a meat eater or not to try this!!
Thank you Dreena


152 Lynda September 30, 2014 at 11:47 am

I didn’t see a reply to whether the nutritional yeast can be left out. I don’t like it.


153 Susan Voisin September 30, 2014 at 12:59 pm

Sure, it’s just a flavor enhancer, so you could leave it out. The flavor may be a little blander, but otherwise it won’t make a difference.


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