Saturday, October 16, 2021

Lazy Person's Lentil Dal

I try to make a lentil dinner (which is rich in protein, iron, and fiber) about once a week, and this lazy man's   person's lentil dal with rice and vegetable is simple, quick and easy. 
I served my lentil dal with (link) aromatic cardamom rice and some broccoli raab.

Lentil, Foodstuff, Beige, Brown, Green

I'm not sure this recipe would rank a "10" as an authentic dal in an Indian kitchen, but to me it tastes great, is high in vegan protein, and filling. 

Lentil, Leguminous Plant, Red, Foodstuff

I call it my lazy man's dal because I've taken some real short cuts. For example, instead of peeling and chopping fresh garlic, I just used garlic powder. I did the same for the onions as well. I did use fresh ginger because I had just gotten some that wasn't dried yet from the farmer's market. All I had to do was slice it. 

Galangal, Herb, Ginger, Family, Spice
Fresh ginger before it is dried. 

I use a cup of red lentils and a cup of brown lentils. I like the flavors and texture of the combination of the two. The brown lentils are somewhat firmer while the red are softer. I cook this lentil dal in my my Instant Pot for ease, but I could have made it on the stove top as well.

I added some vegetable broth, water, tomato paste and seasonings and closed the lid. 

The Instant Pot method needs 16 minutes to pressure cook. The Stove top method needs 25  minutes to cook.

Spices, Herbs, Herbs And Spices, Spoons

From start to finish- I need about 35 minutes total to produce a dal, vegetable, and rice.

While my dal is cooking, I usually make a pot of rice and a vegetable for what I consider a perfect weeknight healthy easy meal. 

Could this meal be served to company? Probably if they are used to healthy vegan food. My kids would eat it- not sure about Jackie? but maybe -

This recipe is gluten-free, plant-based vegan, oil-free and parve. 

Would you eat it?? Do you like Indian cuisine? 


1 cup of red lentils, washed well
1 cup of brown lentils, washed well
1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon of onion powder
1 teaspoon of cumin seed
cracked pepper to taste
optional: salt to taste
3 thin slices of ginger (or to taste)
1 1/2 cups of vegetable broth
1 1/2 cups of water
1 tablespoon of tomato paste
Optional: 1 cup of chopped tomatoes

Instant Pot Directions

Add red and brown lentils, seasoning, ginger, vegetable broth, water, and tomato paste to the insert of the Instant Pot. Set the Instant Pot to pressure cook for 16 minutes. When done, release the steam manually according to the manufacturer's directions. If desired add chopped tomatoes to the lentils before serving. 

If you like the idea of mixing brown and red lentils you might like to try my Golden Lentil Soup Recipe

Shared on Weekend Cooking at The Intrepid Reader and Baker


  1. I love the fresh ginger! The lentil stew looks filling and comforting.

  2. I'm always looking for new ways to make lentils. This sounds very satisfying.

  3. I need to fit more lentils into our menus, and this sounds perfect! Thanks

  4. I don't think I have ever seen ginger still with the ztems on like that?

  5. Many thanks for sharing this recipe.
    We often enjoy cauliflower rice with a curry ... very yummy :)

    All the best Jan

  6. I eat rice daily, and cook red lentil frequently. I've never mixed red and brown lentils. I'm going to try your recipe next time. Thanks Judee. :)
    How much ginger did you use?

  7. I love dal in all shapes and forms.....your dal looks healthy and tasty!.........Abrazotes, Marcela

  8. Ooh, cardamom again! And I love the pic of the ginger. The husband used to be really into it, and we'd joke that it looked like gnome feet. Also, great pic of the spice-laden spoons. The pink salt is especially pretty. :)


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