Red Lentil and Veg Marinara

There are lots of decent illusions out there for upgrading your pasta- using a spiralizer (which is so fun!) to make “noodles” out of veggies, non-traditional grains/flours, or even substituting spaghetti squash- but there hasn’t been a lot of advancement on the sauce front! This spell came about because I kept wanting MORE out of my pasta sauce- more veggies, more protein, more flavor!! I use this sauce in everything- lasagnas, pastas, a topping for roasted veggies, or even as the base for lasagna soup! It even freezes well so that you can always have a back-up dinner handy!

Getting this spell ready to go wasn’t easy! I have tried on numerous occasions to make marinara sauce and never had any success. It would be too sweet, or too tart, or too herb-y… Finally I realized that I was getting too complex, and I had too many moving parts! Like a good transmutation spell that turns iron to silver, I needed to start with good to get good out.

With that in mind, the base of this sauce started simple: a jar and a couple of cans. It was the addition of lentils and veggies that really pumped up the mana/stamina combo! It’s all the familiarity of a dinnertime classic, but charged with lightning! For extra obfuscation, you could always take an immersion blender to the whole thing and make it simply “red sauce” that, while nutritionally complex, looks and tastes as simple as something served straight from a jar! (You can even serve it in a jar!)

Red Lentil & Veg Marinara

Red Lentil and Veg Marinara Sauce (+5 mana, +5 health, +5 stamina)


  • 2 carrots, finely diced
  • 2 stalks celery, finely diced (and/or ½ an onion, diced)
  • 1 red bell pepper, finely diced
  • 2 Tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil or 1-2 Tablespoons broth (for sauteing)
  • 1 14.5oz can TJ’s fire roasted tomatoes and chilis
  • 1 26oz jar TJ’s organic no salt added marinara sauce**
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 1.5-2 cups veggie broth (depending on desired consistency- one can should be enough!)
  • ½ Tablespoon dried basil
  • ½ Tablespoon dried oregano
  • ½ Tablespoon dried parsley
  • ¼-½ teaspoons salt
  • ground black pepper, red pepper flakes, white pepper to taste


  1. Saute carrots, celery/onion, bell pepper, and garlic in oil or broth over medium heat until soft (5-7 minutes).
  2. Add basil, oregano, parsley, salt and additional seasonings as desired, stir to combine. Cook an additional 1-2 minutes.
  3. Add tomatoes, sauce, lentils, and broth, stir and heat until it comes to a boil. Once boiling, cover, and reduce heat to low.
  4. Simmer covered, stirring occasionally for 25 minutes until lentils are tender.

**if you can’t find a plain, organic sauce, substitute an additional can of tomatoes and chilies, a small can of tomato paste, and an extra cup or two of broth!


About FoodArchMage

I'm enthusiastic about food, but wanted to share recipes and write without the seriousness that frequently accompanies heath food... so I decided to keep it lighthearted and write from a mage's perspective!
This entry was posted in comfort food, Magic Upgrade, powerful & potent and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Red Lentil and Veg Marinara

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