Spiced Indian Lentils packed with herbs, spices, and vegetables. Super creamy, aromatic, delicious lentils, made in under 40 minutes!
Enjoy as a side dish with juicy roasted chicken or eat it straight out of a bowl. You will absolutely love this quick and easy recipe.
If you’ve never tried Indian style dahl, you’ve been seriously missing out. Nothing beats a hot bowl of homemade Indian style red lentils. The best part about this recipe is that it’s gluten-free, vegan, and super easy to make. If you don’t have many dishes to impress your vegan and vegetarian friends, this is a great one.
How Do You Make Spiced Indian Lentils?
Start this recipe by rinsing the lentils. In a large pot, combine the rinsed lentils, garlic and ginger paste, turmeric, and water. Cook over high heat, until it comes to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 20 minutes or until the lentils, are tender. While the lentils simmer, add some oil to a small skillet. Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and chilies. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Stir in the curry powder and asafetida, cook for 20 seconds. Add the chopped onions and tomatoes and cook for about 7 minutes or until it softens completely. Add the remaining ginger-garlic paste and cook for a few seconds. Finally, add the tomato-onion mixture to the lentils, season with salt and pepper, and chili powder. Simmer the lentils for an additional 5 minutes and garnish with fresh cilantro.
Top Tips and Recipe Variations
- Use any type of dried lentils you have on hand.
- If you want to make it extra creamier, add some coconut milk or a splash of heavy cream.
- Want it spicier? Add more green chilies and chili powder.
- Place the leftover lentils in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days.
- If you’d like to incorporate more veggies, add some butternut squash, carrots, or eggplant.
- Want to incorporate additional flavor? Use vegetable stock instead of water.
Can You Freeze Lentils?
Yes, absolutely. Let the lentils come to room temperature and then place it in an airtight container and freeze for up to 3 months. They will taste even better the following day or the following month!
More Recipes to Try
Spiced Indian Lentils
- 1 cup red lentils
- 4 cups water
- 1/4 tsp turmeric
- 2 tsp curry powder
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
- 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
- 1/2 tsp chili powder
- Pinch of asafetida
- 2 red chilies
- 2 tbsp ginger garlic paste
- 1 small onion
- 1 large tomato
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Rinse and drain the lentils.
- Combine the lentils, turmeric, 1 tbsp ginger garlic paste, and 4 cups water.
- Cook over high heat until it comes up to a rapid boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 20 minutes.
- While the lentils cook, heat some oil in a large skillet.
- Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and chilies. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Stir in the curry powder and asafetida and cook for 20 seconds.
- Add the onions and tomatoes and cook for 7-10 minutes over medium-low heat.
- Stir in the remaining tbsp ginger garlic paste and cook for 30 seconds.
- Add the cooked lentils to the onion and tomato mixture and mix well.
- Season with salt and chili powder.
- Simmer over low heat for 5 minutes and then serve immediately.
- Garnish with fresh coriander if desired, and enjoy!