How To Easily Cook Lentils + Eat 73 Grams Of Protein Per Dollar

Lentils have more than 110 grams of protein per dollar, and 100% of your daily fiber in 140 calories.

Everyone has their own super food, I hear things like grapefruit, quinoa, and whatever the latest hipster craze.

Lentils are a Super Efficient Food, here are 4 reasons:

  1. 70+ Grams Of Protein Per Dollar
  2. Cooked in 15 minutes
  3. They don’t need to be stirred when cooked, 0 effort!
  4. They go with every flavor

When I diet, I eat lentils daily. They are filling, have protein, and are great for portioning out.

They are more than 2x more cost effective than Chicken, and almost 20x more cost effective than Subway for protein.

Cooking Lentils

First, buy a bag of lentils. A 1 pound bag is good enough to get started. Its like a dollar and can be found near the dry beans or Rice.


1/2 Pound of lentils (About 1 Cup) in 4 cups of water

Begin to boil a pot of water.

Efficient Tips To Boil Water Fast:

  • Turn on your water faucet and run it hot(Less Energy Delta to Boil) EDIT: CMILLER from the comments points out if using lead pipes you risk lead poisoning using hot water.
  • Fill up the pot of water, Lentils don’t expand, but error on the side of too much water.
  • Put the pot of water on High heat.(More Heat)
  • Add a lid to the pot(Contains Energy In System)

That will get boiling FAST.

Once boiling, cook for 15 to 20 minutes. No stirring needed.



I usually don’t wait for the water to boil, I throw it in, set the timer for 18 minutes, and come back to cooked lentils.

Note: If the lid is on, and the water is on high heat – You may cause the water to boil over, turn down the heat and crack the lid once boiling

Get a strainer and dump the water and:

“You have obtained 1 Lentils!”


Flavoring Lentils Fast

I have 5 ways to enjoy the heck out of your first lentils experience. The first is the easiest:

French Fry Style

  1. Get Lentils
  2. Add a fast food amount of olive oil
  3. Add a fast food amount of salt

Make your first experience with lentils a good one. If you like it, next time don’t add as much oil and salt. However, they are so healthy and cost efficient, one splurge day using extra oil and extra salt is worth it.



Peppered Lentils



Similar to French Fry style, but adding fresh pepper. Grounded up pepper doesnt seem to do the trick.

  1. Lentils
  2. Olive Oil (or Sour Cream)
  3. Fresh Ground Black Pepper
  4. Salt
  5. (optional) Rice


Garlicky Lentils And Rice



I usually don’t like using premade stuff, but seasoning shakers are pretty close to the same price as regular spices and give decent flavor to anything. I’ll recommend them for a quick and easy way to flavor something. Make note, they have salt already, so there isnt a need to add your own. Add everything to taste.

  1. Lentils
  2. Olive Oil
  3. McCormick Grill Mate Montreal Chicken (Garlic, Salt, Onion, Black Pepper, Parsley, Red Pepper, Orange Peal, Paprika, Green Bell Pepper)
  4. (optional) Rice


Herb And Lentils




Sour cream adds a different dimension to these flavors, highly recommended when mixing spices and rice.

  1. Lentils
  2. Sour Cream
  3. McCormick Grill Mate Roasted Garlic & Herb (Salt, Onion, Black pepper, Coriander, Parsley, Garlic, Paprika)
  4. (optional) Rice


Fast Mujaddara



I often cheat when I make this, using Onion Powder and a little sugar, with salt. My advice is to taste as you go. When you brown onions they get sweet.

  1. Lentils
  2. Sour Cream
  3. Onion Powder(even better with an onion browned in olive oil for 10-20 minutes on medium low)onions2
  4. Salt
  5. (optional) Rice

What to do next?

Next time – mess around with the cook time. Like it softer? Cook longer. Like firmer? Cook less. We make lentil soup that cooks for an hour.

Try adding some lentils to a soup. I particularly like adding it to vegetable soup or chicken noodle soup. We make our own Lentil Soup. Its similar to Alton Browns Lentil Soup with a few time saving and cost saving methods.

My challenge to you:

This week when you go to the grocery store, buy a small bag of lentils. Give one of these a try. They are a top Protein Per Dollar. If you don’t like it, you are out a dollar. If you like it, you are going to be saving money for the rest of your life.

This was another way we used our Protein Per Dollar list to save money and get more time. Subscribe to our newsletter and learn easy ways to apply engineering principles to your life:

EDIT: Prices do change, 1lb Lentils are: 1.78
Giving them 73g of protein per dollar.

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