Smoky and packed with umami flavor, this easy vegan Mushroom Lentil Pâté is the perfect appetizer or snack (it’s gluten-free too!). It keeps well in the fridge and is a great feels-fancy dish but is simple and quick to make.
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Hey Internet, ever need a really delicious snack that’s healthy but doesn’t taste like it? This delicious mushroom Pâté is packed with protein and veggies, but it’s so delicious.
Pâté is a fancy word that refers to a paste or loaf. Traditionally it contains liver or some other ground meat, but obviously this recipe does not.
My real obsession with Pâté began though when my mom started making a Pâté out of our leftover turkey from Thanksgiving. My mom was pretty inventive in the kitchen; a trait I'm pleased to have received.
Mushrooms are actually the perfect addition to lentils to make this Pâté taste meaty and flavorful.
If you’ve ever had chopped liver, it does taste like it, but if you haven’t and that idea grosses you out, don’t worry. It doesn’t taste weird or anything. It’s kind of like a smoky hummus.
Anyway this vegan Pâté (or vegan chopped liver, if you will) is delicious and easy and it’s also one of the recipes in my new e-book: Plant Based Jewish Recipes. This e-book is packed full of 36 Jewish comfort food recipes (over 20 of them exclusive) including appetizers, entrees, and desserts--even a few condiments.
This recipe is just a “taste” of what’s in the book, and it’s a great way to sample the recipes since this one is quick and tasty.
I’ll be explaining in the next few sections what you need, tips for success, and a few other recipes you might like.
What You’ll Need
So, we know we need mushrooms. Any mushrooms will work. I like white button mushrooms or baby Bella (crimini) mushrooms for this recipe, but I think portobello would also be delicious.
If you’re not a fan of the texture of mushrooms, they’re getting cooked and blended up so I wouldn’t worry too much about it.
I’ve used canned lentils as a shortcut, but you could definitely cook some green or brown lentils up from scratch for this. Red lentils may work but they tend to get mushy really quickly and might not hold together as well.
If you're cooking your lentils from scratch, try cooking them in vegetable broth instead of water (2:1 ratio — 2 cups broth to 1 cup lentils) for extra flavor. I like to make extra lentils to have on hand for salads and such (you can freeze cooked lentils if you won’t use them within 5 days).
For flavor, I’ve added garlic (which gets cooked with the mushrooms), reduced sodium soy sauce (use gluten-free tamari if gluten-free or No Soy if soy-free), fresh parsley, apple cider vinegar, and spices like dried thyme, smoked paprika, black pepper, and sea salt.
Any vinegar (or lemon) can be used in place of the apple cider vinegar, but I find that the slight sweetness from this really makes it taste like vegan chopped liver. Want to make it taste more like mock chopped liver? Try adding a splash of agave, maple syrup, or a pinch of sugar to the food processor / blender.
Finally, for richness, I’ve used raw sunflower seeds which are delicious in this. I’ve seen vegan mushroom Pâté recipes all over the place with walnuts or cashews, but I thought that sunflower seeds were a more neutral flavor and were good for people who can’t eat nuts.
The sunflower seeds are for texture, not necessarily flavor. You could replace them with another seed or nut like walnuts.
If you’re looking for a lower fat option, you could either omit the seeds or use something like tofu in its place.
Tips for Making Vegan Mushroom Lentil Pâté
- Heat a large nonstick skillet (I use this one) over medium high heat. When hot, add mushrooms, garlic, and dried thyme. Let cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes, stirring every 2-3 minutes.
- It shouldn’t stick too much since mushrooms release their own liquid, but use the reduced sodium soy sauce / tamari and water mixture to deglaze the pan once while cooking. (Deglaze just means when you pour a little liquid on the pan and stir it around so that all the flavor that’s sticking to the bottom of the pan just goes back onto the food.)
- When cooked, drain off any remaining liquid and add to a food processor or blender with remaining ingredients.
- Process or blend until smooth.
- Pack into whatever container you'd like your Pâté to take the shape of. Really pack it in there, pushing it down and smoothing it with a spatula. I’ve had best results with ceramic and silicone containers as the mould, but glass has worked for me too (just a little bit more finessing to get it out). I have not tried this with a plastic container but it would probably be fine, maybe just requiring that extra bit of effort to release.
- Cover and refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours or overnight.
- To release the mushroom Pâté, run a butter knife around the edges, place a plate upside down on top of the open container and flip like a cake onto a cooling rack. You may have to wiggle it a little or hit the bottom of the container a few times. You should hear it slide out.
- Clean up the edges if you need to and decorate the top with extra herbs and spices if you wish.
- Serve chilled with crackers or toasted slices of a baguette. Enjoy!
- Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Can freeze if needed, thaw overnight in the fridge.
What to Serve with Vegan Chopped Liver / Mushroom Pâté
I love to serve this vegan mushroom Pâté with crackers, especially water crackers or pita chips even. It’s also great spread on a toasted slice of a French baguette, or even on bagels (recipe coming soon!).
It’s great as a spread for a holiday party or New Year’s Eve. My family always did hors d’Oeuvres for NYE and it was really fun.
Similarly, this dip would be perfect as one of the main elements for a vegan charcuterie board or snack board.
It also keeps really well, so it’s great for work or school lunches, picnics, meal prep, and road trip fuel.
Spread the mushroom Pâté on a sandwich layered with veggies and vegan deli meat for a fun substitute for mayo and a lot more protein.
You could even just spread it on toast and eat it for breakfast. It could be the new avocado toast.
Oh I’m sorry, I mean, it could be almost as good as avocado toast.
Want More Jewish Recipes?
I grew up eating a ton of awesome Jewish foods. However, I haven't had many of them since going vegan 3 years ago. So I've set out to veganize my favorites!
My Plant-Based Jewish Recipes e-book is now available for purchase and has 36 vegan Jewish recipes perfect for Chanukah, Passover, Rosh Hashanah and more.
Purchase and immediately receive your e-book that you can read digitally or print out and make tons of delicious Jewish comfort food recipes such as latkes, kugel, knishes, lox (!), black and white cookies, babka, and more! This book contains over 20 exclusive recipes that will never be released on the blog.
If that wasn’t enough to convince you I’ve got one more thing to tell you about this book. Over the next year or so, I’ll be releasing new versions of the book with new recipes for each major Jewish holiday (think Hamantaschen for Purim and flourless cake for Passover) and if you’ve already purchased my Plant-Based Jewish Recipes e-book, you’ll automatically get an updated version free of charge. Yup.
Click here to purchase or read more about the book.
Other Great Vegan Appetizers
Want more delicious vegan appetizers or snacks? Try a few of my other recipes, below:
- Vegan Brie
- Vegan Cheddar
- Spinach Artichoke Latkes
- Vegan Garlic Bread
- Teriyaki Cauliflower Wings
- Creamy Oil-Free Hummus
- Kale Artichoke Dip
- Nacho Fries / Loaded Potato Nachos
As always, I hope you love this recipe--I know I do, and Mr. Zardyplants does too.
This Vegan Mushroom Pâté is:
- Easy to make
- And PACKED with umami flavor!
Let me know in the comments below if you make this recipe or tag me @Zardyplants on Instagram so I can see your beautiful recreations! If you tag me on IG, I will share your post in my stories :)
Also, one quick request: if you love how this recipe looks or tastes, please leave me a 5-star rating and a nice comment–ratings help more people find my recipes which helps me keep providing them! Thank you!