Smoky and packed with umami flavor, this easy vegan Mushroom Lentil Pâté is the perfect appetizer or snack (it’s gluten-free too!).
- 1 cup cooked lentils (see note 1)
- 16 oz white or baby bella mushrooms, diced
- 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/3 cup raw sunflower seeds (see note 2)
- 1 tbsp dried thyme
- 1 tbsp reduced sodium gluten-free tamari (or use soy sauce or No-Soy sauce)
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
- 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.
- Note 1: 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).
- Note 2: 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.
- Note 3: 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.
- Category: Snack, Appetizer
- Method: Food Processor, Blender
- Cuisine: American, Jewish
Keywords: Vegan, Gluten-Free, Oil-Free, Sugar-Free, Can Be Soy-Free