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overhead shot of vegetarian lentil bolognese served in a white bowl with fresh parsley
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5 from 12 votes

Vegetarian Bolognese Sauce (Instant Pot)

This simple vegetarian bolognese sauce is the perfect addition to your weekly meal plan. Forget hours stirring sauces over the stove, simply add all of the ingredients to the instant pot, set, forget, and be on your way. Great for meatless Monday, or an easy but filling vegetarian meal. Pair with some freshly cooked spaghetti for a classic bolognese-type set-up, or add a big dollop onto a baked potato for something a little bit different.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time35 mins
natural release10 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Anytime
Keyword: instant pot bolognese, vegetarian bolgnese sauce
Servings: 8 serves
Calories: 130kcal


  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil or other cooking oil of choice
  • 1 yellow onion diced
  • 1 green bell pepper diced
  • ½ cup celery chopped
  • 1 cup green or brown lentils rinsed
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil (sub 1 tablespoon fresh basil if needed)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano (sub 1 tablespoon fresh oregano if needed)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • Select sauté on the instant pot, add the avocado oil, onion, bell pepper, and celery. Cook for 5 minutes until the veggies have softened. Press cancel.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients, stir well to combine, and pop on the lid. Turn the knob to seal.
  • Using the manual setting at high pressure, set the timer for 15 minutes (it will take about 20 minutes for the pressure to rise and start cooking.)
  • Once finished cooking, allow the pressure cooker to release the pressure naturally for about 15 minutes and then quickly release the rest of the pressure. Open the lid carefully.
  • Serve with pasta of your choice.


Storing Leftovers
Leftover lentil bolognese can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Leftover sauce can also be frozen, however, freeze it before adding to pasta, etc.


Calories: 130kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 135mg | Potassium: 491mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 282IU | Vitamin C: 24mg | Calcium: 59mg | Iron: 3mg