South America Vegan Recipes

Vegan Uruguay: Recipe for Uruguayan Lentil Stew (Guiso de Lentejas)

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  Delicious and Flavorful Vegan Delights Inspired by South America

Uruguayan Lentil Stew (Guiso de Lentejas)

Introduction: Uruguayan Lentil Stew, known as “Guiso de Lentejas,” is a comforting and flavorful dish that is beloved in Uruguay and beyond. This hearty stew combines the nutritious goodness of lentils with a medley of vegetables, creating a satisfying and wholesome meal. The addition of cumin and paprika infuses the stew with warm and earthy flavors that complement the ingredients perfectly. Whether enjoyed on a chilly evening or as a nourishing lunch, this dish is sure to become a favorite in your culinary repertoire.


  • Rinse and sort the lentils before cooking to remove any debris or impurities.
  • Soaking lentils for a couple of hours or overnight can help reduce cooking time and improve their digestibility.
  • Use good-quality, flavorful paprika and cumin for the best results.
  • Customize the vegetables to your liking. You can add celery, tomatoes, or other vegetables of your choice.
  • If you prefer a smoother texture, you can partially blend the stew with an immersion blender before adding the vegetables.

Cooking Time: Approximately 1 hour (excluding soaking time if applicable)


  • 1 cup dried green or brown lentils, rinsed and soaked (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 cups vegetable broth or water
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Chopped fresh parsley for garnish


  1. Prepare the Lentils:
    • If you’re soaking the lentils, place them in a bowl, cover with water, and let them soak for 2 hours or overnight. Drain before using.
    • If you’re not soaking the lentils, simply rinse them under cold water and set aside.
  2. Sauté the Aromatics:
    • In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
    • Add the chopped onion and sauté for about 3-4 minutes, until translucent.
    • Stir in the minced garlic and sauté for an additional 1 minute until fragrant.
  3. Add Spices and Vegetables:
    • Add the diced carrots, potatoes, red bell pepper, and green bell pepper to the pot.
    • Sprinkle the ground cumin and paprika over the vegetables. Stir well to coat everything with the spices.
  4. Cook the Stew:
    • Pour in the vegetable broth or water, and add the bay leaf.
    • If using unsoaked lentils, add them to the pot at this point.
    • Season with salt and pepper to taste.
    • Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover the pot, and let the stew simmer for about 30-40 minutes, or until the lentils and vegetables are tender.
  5. Adjust Seasoning and Serve:
    • Once the stew is cooked, taste and adjust the seasoning as needed with additional salt and pepper.
    • Remove the bay leaf before serving.
  6. Serve:
    • Ladle the Uruguayan Lentil Stew into bowls.
    • Garnish with chopped fresh parsley for a burst of color and freshness.
    • Serve the stew with crusty bread or a side of cooked rice, if desired.

Enjoy the warmth and comfort of this delightful Uruguayan Lentil Stew, brimming with flavors and wholesome ingredients.

Cook’s Note: Cooking times may vary based on the type and age of lentils used. Adjust the cooking time accordingly, and feel free to add more liquid if the stew becomes too thick.

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