Ground Beef and Lentil Skillet with Vegetables is a complete high-protein meal with fiber and complex carbohydrates. This macro friendly recipe is easy to prepare for healthy weeknight meals!

Bowl and skillet full of ground beef, lentils, and veggies.

If you’ve been around the Roasted Root for a while, you know some of my favorite recipes are easy skillet meals.

Some of my all-time favorites are my Teriyaki Ground Turkey Skillet with Vegetables, Thai Zucchini and Chicken Skillet, One-Skillet Ground Turkey Thai Curry with Rice, and my 30-Minute Garlic Ginger Broccoli Beef Stir Fry.

I love the convenience of tossing fresh vegetables and animal protein into a skillet, sauteing everything up and being left with a clean and satisfying dinner.

What we’re getting into today with this ground beef and lentil skillet is an all-new rendition of a reader favorite here, my 30-Minute Ground Beef and Vegetable Skillet

I loved the idea of adding lentils to my ground beef and veggies for a boost of slow-burning carbohydrates.

In fact, I refer to this as my slow-burning carb skillet.

I mentioned in my Greek Lentil Salad recipe that lentils are a great source of dietary fiber, complex carbohydrates, and are low in fat and calories.

Plus, lentils are one of the most satiating foods out there!

Because we’re combining plenty of protein and plant-based fiber with satiating lentils, we’re left with an ultra filling meal.

Ground beef, lentils, and vegetables in a stainless steel skillet with a napkin to the side.

The way I see it, dinner recipes like this are ideal for folks like me who love the feeling of fullness after a meal but try to get in lots of quality nutrients.

Let’s discuss the simple ingredients for this easy 30-minute meal.

Ingredients for Ground Beef and Lentil Skillet:

Lentils: Cook up one cup of dry lentils to serve as complex carbs for this healthy dinner. You can use any type of lentils you enjoy. Green lentils, brown lentils, French lentils, red lentils all work.

I use sprouted lentils because the sprouting process makes lentils easier to digest and allows the nutrients to be more bioavailable. 

Ground Beef: The mean protein machine here, ground beef provides a boost of nutrients and makes this meal so filling and nourishing. Use any type of ground beef you like, depending on the fat content you’re looking for.

I use 80/20 grass-fed ground beef because it is a decent source of omega-3 fatty acids. You’ll need one pound ground beef or any other ground meat. 

Any ground meat including ground chicken, pork, sausage, or ground turkey also work here.

Avocado Oil: We need some cooking oil to sauté the vegetables and brown the meat. I use avocado oil because it has a neutral flavor and a high smoke point. Olive oil and coconut oil work too.

Vegetables: Onion, carrots, broccolini (or broccoli), red bell pepper, and anything else you want!

Pick your favorite vegetables and go wild. Zucchini, yellow squash, butternut squash, bok choy, tomatoes, spinach, and kale are always great options.

Sea Salt and Garlic Powder: The only seasonings we need here! Garlic powder brings a big boost of flavor and sea salt enhances all of the flavors too.

If you think the dish tastes bland, keep adding sea salt until the flavors begin to shine through.

You can add your favorite seasonings, fresh herbs or dried herbs too.

Bowl of ground beef, vegetables, and lentils.

Looking to change up the flavor profile of this easy dinner recipe? Here are some options.

Optional Additions:

  • 2 to 4 tablespoons of teriyaki sauce or any other sauce you enjoy, including soy sauce, liquid aminos, coconut aminos, or even BBQ sauce. 
  • ½ teaspoon of red pepper flakes or a dash of cayenne pepper for spice. You can also add a jalapeno if you’d like.
  • Serve this healthy dinner with slices of avocado for some additional healthy fats.
  • Stir in 1 to 2 tablespoons of chili powder for a taco vibe.
  • Grate some fresh parmesan cheese, mozzarella cheese, cheddar cheese, or cheese of choice over the meal if you’re a cheese lover.
  • If you have fresh herbs like parsley or oregano on hand, feel free to chop them up and toss them in.
  • Add 1/2 cup of tomato sauce or 2 tablespoons of tomato paste plus a little broth for some tomato flavor.
  • Stir in 1 (15-oz) can of full-fat coconut milk and 1 tablespoon of yellow curry powder or 2 to 3 tablespoons of red curry paste or green curry paste for a Thai curry experience. 
Bowl of ground beef, lentils and vegetables.

Now that we’ve covered the simple ingredients, let’s make this easy skillet meal!

How to Make Ground Beef and Lentil Skillet:

Cook the lentils according to the package instructions. Once the lentils are finished cooking, drain them into a colander and set them aside until ready to use.

The cooking time varies depending on the kind of lentil you use and your desired consistency of the lentils so be sure to read the package instructions for the best results.

The lentils will be cooked in a couple cups of water but you can also add a bouillon cube or use chicken broth or beef broth for more flavor.

Because lentils are easy to make ahead of time, you can easily cook them up to 5 days in advance and store them in an airtight container until you’re ready to prepare the rest of the recipe.

Heat the avocado oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet (use a minimum of a 12-inch skillet with a deep lip) or thick bottomed pot such as a Dutch oven or any large pot.

Add the chopped onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until it begins to soften, about 3 to 5 minutes.

Stir in the rest of the vegetables (carrots, broccolini, and bell pepper) and cover the skillet for 2 minutes to allow the vegetables to steam.

Remove the lid and scoot the vegetables off to the side of the skillet.

Place the ground beef on the open space of the skillet and use a spatula to break it into smaller pieces to brown the meat. Keep the meat on one side of the skillet to brown and cook before mixing it in with the vegetables.

Sprinkle in the garlic powder and sea salt. Continue cooking and stirring until the beef is cooked through and the vegetables have reached your desired level of doneness.

Stir in the cooked lentils until everything is well-incorporated. Taste the recipe for flavor and add more sea salt to your personal taste. You can also add in goodies like hot sauce, teriyaki sauce, etc.

Serve ground beef and lentils in big bowls with any other toppings or side dishes, and enjoy!

Big bowl of ground beef and veggies with a golden spoon.

This easy meal pairs beautifully with my Avocado Salad, Corn Salsa Recipe, and my Chickpea Broccoli Salad with Sunflower Seeds.

The easiest weeknight meal coming right up! Because this recipe is so fresh and filling, you’ll want to keep it on constant rotation for meal prep. 

Whip up this great recipe the next time you’re craving comfort food featuring fresh ingredients and plenty of protein.

Get creative with various add ins to customize the meal to your heart’s delight!

Close up of ground beef, lentils, and vegetables in a skillet. Ready to eat.

Enjoy lentils? Also try my Instant Pot Lentil Soup.  

If you love clean and easy dinner recipes like this, also check out these healthy recipes.

More Healthy Dinner Recipes:

Enjoy this fresh, seasonal meal!

Bowl of ground beef, lentils and vegetables.

Ground Beef and Lentil Skillet with Vegetables

5 from 1 vote
Ground Beef and Lentil Skillet with Vegetables is a complete high-protein meal with fiber and complex carbohydrates. Customize it to your heart's delight!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings: 4 to 6 Servings

Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked lentils
  • 1 Tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 red onion chopped
  • 2 carrots chopped
  • 1 bunch broccolini*
  • 1 small red bell pepper chopped
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp sea salt to taste

Instructions

  • Cook the lentils according to the package instructions. Once the lentils are finished cooking, drain them into a colander and set them aside until ready to use. The cooking time varies depending on the kind of lentil you use and your desired consistency of the lentils so be sure to read the package instructions for the best results. The lentils will be cooked in a couple cups of water but you can also add a bouillon cube or use chicken broth or beef broth for more flavor. Because lentils are easy to make ahead of time, you can easily cook them up to 5 days in advance and store them in an airtight container until you’re ready to prepare the rest of the recipe.
  • Heat the avocado oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet (use a minimum of a 12-inch skillet with a deep lip) or thick bottomed pot such as a Dutch oven or any large pot.
  • Add the chopped onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until it begins to soften, about 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Stir in the rest of the vegetables (carrots, broccolini, and bell pepper) and cover the skillet for 2 minutes to allow the vegetables to steam.
  • Remove the lid and scoot the vegetables off to the side of the skillet.
  • Place the ground beef on the open space of the skillet and use a spatula to break it into smaller pieces to brown the meat. Keep the meat on one side of the skillet to brown and cook before mixing it in with the vegetables. Sprinkle in the garlic powder and sea salt. Continue cooking and stirring until the beef is cooked through and the vegetables have reached your desired level of doneness.
  • Stir in the cooked lentils until everything is well-incorporated. Taste the recipe for flavor and add more sea salt to your personal taste. You can also add in goodies like hot sauce, teriyaki sauce, etc.
  • Serve ground beef and lentils in big bowls with any other toppings or side dishes, and enjoy!

Notes

*If you prefer broccoli over broccolini, use one large crown of broccoli.

Nutrition

Serving: 1Serving (of 4) · Calories: 363kcal · Carbohydrates: 32g · Protein: 33g · Fat: 16g · Saturated Fat: 5g · Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g · Cholesterol: 71mg · Sodium: 421mg · Fiber: 13g · Sugar: 6g
Author: Julia
Course: Main Dishes
Cuisine: American
Keyword: gluten free recipes, ground beef and lentil skillet with vegetables, ground beef recipes, healthy recipes, skillet meals
Did You Make This Recipe?I want to see it! Tag @the.roasted.root on social media!

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Julia Mueller
Meet the Author

Julia Mueller

Julia Mueller is a recipe developer, cookbook author, and founder of The Roasted Root. She has authored three bestselling cookbooks, – Paleo Power Powers, Delicious Probiotic Drinks, and The Quintessential Kale Cookbook. Her recipes have been featured in several national publications such as BuzzFeed, Self, Tasty, Country Living, Brit.co, etc.

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