This healthy fennel lentil salad is bursting with flavor from cooked fennel, chopped parsley, green lentils, feta cheese, and a simple lemon honey dressing. With only 30 minutes of prep, you need to add it to your routine ASAP!
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Even though it’s not even March yet, I’m already in the mood for some lighter, spring-like flavors. You feel me?
The good news is that citrus is abundant in the winter, and fresh lemon paired with a cold weather vegetable like fennel is just perfect for satisfying my craving. Believe me, this fennel lentil salad is the definition of FRESH.
It has simple ingredients, loads of parsley, and a 4-ingredient dressing. Tart lemon and salty feta pair nicely with the anise flavor of fennel, which is slightly subdued by cooking it for a few minutes in a skillet. YUM.
I honestly couldn’t get enough of this one! And Will, who’s not the biggest fan of fennel, really enjoyed it too. In other words, I’ll definitely be making Lemony Fennel Lentil Salad with Parsley on repeat for the next few months!
How to Make Fennel Lentil Salad
- Cook the lentils. For this recipe, I recommend 1 cup of cooked lentils. To make this amount, combine ½ cup dry lentils with 1 ½ cups liquid (water or vegetable broth) in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes. Drain any excess liquid.
- While the lentils are cooking, slice the fennel into half-moon pieces. Cook the fennel in a little bit of olive oil in a skillet until tender, about 5-7 minutes.
- Assemble the salad. Combine the lentils, fennel, chopped parsley, and feta cheese in a mixing bowl. Whisk together the ingredients for the dress and pour on top!
A super fresh, super delish fennel lentil salad in 30 minutes?! I’ll take it!
- Cook the lentils in broth for some added flavor. If you don’t have broth on hand, toss the cooked lentils in some lemon juice and salt to boost the flavor.
- You can sub other types of lentils in this recipe, or even buy pre-cooked lentils from Trader Joe’s.
- To prep fennel, slice the bulb into quarters then use your knife to slice off the core on the bottom of each quarter. Cut the quarters into half-moons. If you purchased fennel with its stalks and fronds, save the fronds to add to the salad along with the parsley or for garnish!
- You can use raw fennel in this salad, but taking the extra step and cooking it for a few minutes helps bring out its delicious flavor!
- This fennel lentil salad makes enough for 2 servings, so feel free to double or triple the recipe if you want to make more. You can serve it as a vegetarian main dish with a side of roasted veggies, or on the side of baked fish.
I’d love to hear how you serve this dish, so be sure to report back and let me know in the comments!
More Fennel Recipes
If you enjoy this delicious salad, check out some of my other favorite ways to use fennel. I think you’ll like the Beet and Fennel Salad with Citrus Dressing, Warm Fennel Salad with Grapes and Feta, Coconut Cod with Fennel and Spinach, and Shaved Carrot and Fennel Salad. You may also enjoy the Greek Lentil Salad and Black Lentil Salad with Kale and Pomegranate.
I’d love to hear how you like this recipe! Rate/review using the stars on the recipe card or in the comments, and follow the Veg World on YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest. Looking for something totally different? Browse the recipe library.
Lemony Fennel Lentil Salad with Parsley
- 0.5 cup green lentils - dry
- 1.5 cups water - sub vegetable broth for more flavor
- 1 bulb fennel - sliced into half-moon pieces with the core removed
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ bunch fresh parsley - chopped, ~¼ cup
- ⅓ cup feta cheese - crumbled
For the dressing:
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 lemon - juiced
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoon honey
- Combine the lentils and water or broth in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, cover, then reduce heat to a simmer. Cook for 20-25 minutes, or until the lentils are tender. Drain any excess water.
- While the lentils cook, add the sliced fennel and a little olive oil to a skillet. Cook for 5-7 minutes, or until the fennel is tender and slightly browned. In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, dijon, and honey, and set aside.
- Combine the cooked lentils, fennel, parsley, and feta cheese in mixing bowl. Pour the dressing on top and mix until combined. Enjoy!
- This salad makes a great vegetarian main dish, and can be served with roasted or steamed veggies. You can also serve it as a side dish to baked fish.
- Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
- If you purchase fennel with its stalks and fronds, feel free to use the fronds as garnish or add them to the salad in addition to parsley.
- You can sub other types of lentils (i.e. brown, French, or le puy). Adjust cooking time as necessary, according to package instructions. To save prep time, you can also purchase pre-cooked lentils at Trader Joe’s.
Happy weekend! – Lizzie
Good, easy to make, and hearty option as a main or side dish for our mixed vegetarian and non-vegetarian family members 👍
Lizzie Streit, MS, RDN
Hi Leslie! I’m glad you enjoyed the recipe and found it to be a good option for vegetarian and non-vegetarians. Thanks for commenting!