Simple masoor (red lentil) daal
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
An authentic flavorful and satisfying Indian daal in less than 30 minutes and NO chopping required!
Cuisine: Indian
Serves: 4
  • 1 cup masoor daal (red lentils) rinsed
  • 1 inch knob ginger, finely grated
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp cardamom seeds, slightly crushed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 cinnamon stick (~ 2 inches)
  • 1 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 4 cups water
  1. Put a medium pot over medium high heat and add oil
  2. Once hot, add in cumin, cardamom, cinnamon stick and bay leaves. Stir and cook until cumin browns a little
  3. Add in grated ginger, and stir continuously for about 10-15 seconds
  4. Add in lentils, 4 cups water, turmeric and salt
  5. Bring to a boil, an then cover and cook on medium/low heat, stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes
  6. Once lentils are tender (easily squished or easily mashed in the mouth) the daal is ready! If they aren't getting tender, add more water and continue cooking.
  7. Remove bay leaves and cinnamon sticks and blend to a smooth puree if desired.An immersion blender would be excellent for this.
  8. Serve alone, or over rice or quinoa garnished with cilantro and lime juice, if desired. I usually don't add cilantro or lime, but this is a common way to eat daal.
For electric pressure cooker, do the first 4 steps on sauté setting with an extra cup of water, then close the lid and pressure cook for 10 min. Release pressure naturally, and add more water to thin, or continue boiling to thicken, as desired.
Recipe by Plant Bellies at