Red Lentil Dal

Red Lentil Dal


Red Lentil Dal, also known as Masoor Dal. This hearty and flavourful dish is a staple in Indian households and is loved by people of all ages. It is packed with protein, fibre, and complex carbohydrates, making it a nutritious and wholesome meal.

In this comprehensive guide, you will learn how to prepare Red Lentil Dal in a simple and straightforward manner. Whether you are a seasoned cook or a novice in the kitchen, this recipe is designed to be easily followed and enjoyed by all.

Essential Ingredients:

To create the perfect Red Lentil Dal, you will need the following ingredients:

  • 1 cup (200g) dried red lentils, rinsed thoroughly
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 inch piece ginger, grated
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 4 cups (960ml) water
  • Salt to taste
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped for garnish


  1. Tempering:

Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the cumin seeds and coriander seeds and allow them to sizzle for a few seconds until fragrant.

  1. Sautéing Aromatics:

Add the chopped onion to the pan and sauté until translucent and softened, about 5 minutes.

  1. Adding Spices:

To the sautéed onion, add the minced garlic, grated ginger, turmeric powder, red chili powder, and garam masala powder. Stir well to combine and cook for a minute until fragrant.

  1. Adding Red Lentils:

Add the rinsed red lentils to the pan along with the water. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 25-30 minutes, or until the lentils are tender and the dal has thickened to your desired consistency.

  1. Seasoning:

Season the dal with salt to taste. If you prefer a thicker consistency, add a little more water, but be careful not to over-thin the dal.

  1. Garnishing and Serving:

Just before serving, garnish the dal with chopped cilantro leaves. Serve hot with rice, roti, or naan.

Tips and Variations:

  • For a richer flavour, you can add a dollop of ghee or butter to the dal before serving.
  • If you prefer a spicier dal, add more red chili powder to taste.
  • You can also add other vegetables to the dal, such as chopped carrots, tomatoes, or spinach.
  • For a more authentic taste, use a mortar and pestle to grind the spices instead of using pre-ground spices.

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