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Lentil Köfte Serving
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4 from 1 vote

Lentil Köfte Recipe (Turkish Mercimek Köftesi)

These healthy lentil köfte are light yet filling and taste great when drizzled with fresh lemon juice and served on a bed of lettuce.
Course Meze
Cuisine Turkish
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 30
Calories 35kcal
Author Turkey's For Life


For The Lentil Köfte

  • 1 glass red lentils
  • 1 glass fine bulgur wheat
  • 1 medium onion finely chopped
  • 1 bunch spring onions around 5 or 6, chopped
  • ½ bunch parsley finely chopped
  • ½ bunch dill finely chopped
  • 1 dessert spoonful tomato puree or red pepper paste
  • 1 dessert spoonful olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chilli flakes
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried mint
  • salt & pepper to season

To Serve

  • 1 romaine lettuce
  • lemon wedges or slices


  • In a large saucepan, gently heat your olive oil.
  • Now add your medium-sized chopped onion and your glass of lentils.
  • Stir for a couple of minutes before adding 4 glasses of water.
  • Turn the heat to high and bring to the boil.
  • Add your tomato paste and stir until dissolved.
  • Reduce the heat to medium and simmer until the water is reduced by half and the lentils are almost soft.
  • Whilst your lentils are simmering, add your cumin, paprika and chilli.
  • When your water has reduced add your glass of fine bulgur wheat, stir to mix everything and remove the pan from the heat.
  • Seal with a lid and leave to stand for 15 minutes.
  • Now remove the lid and give your mixture a stir.
  • Add your spring onion, mint, parsley and dill and mix in.
  • Do a taste test and add more seasoning or spice if required.
  • Pull the leaves whole from your lettuce.
  • Wash and arrange on a large serving platter.
  • Now take small handfuls of your lentil köfte mix and form into rough torpedo shapes.
  • Place each one on your plate and arrange the lemon around them.


  • As with all of our recipes, the calorie count is a rough guide, only.
    This lentil köfte recipe makes around 30 köfte, depending on the size you make them.
  • Spice measurements and seasoning can be increased according to taste.
  • If you wish, you can also add a drizzle of nar ekşisi (pomegranate molasses) to your lentil köfte mix.
  • Serve your lentil köfte on a lettuce leaf with a drizzle of lemon juice.