If you love curry and lentil type of dishes, then you are going to absolutely fall in love with this quick version of Easy Masoor Dal.
If you are like us, then you love Indian dishes. Maybe that is why you are hear checking out easy masoor dal.
In Indian, dal literally refers to pulses, in this case, lentils. Whereas, masoor refers to the color. In this case, the red to orange color that some lentils have. Traditional masoor dal takes hours to cook and that is why we are calling this an easy version.
I would like to point out that saying red lentil dal literally translates into red lentil lentil which is so silly, but it is what it most searched on the internet and why it is in parentheses above. Really this is a spiced red lentils dish that is bursting with flavor.
We do also want to point out that this is not a traditional version of masoor dal, because we are making a simpler, easier process that still yields a lot of flavor and texture. We do hope that you still love this version.
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Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Flavorful – This recipe packs so much flavor in with ingredients that you most likely have a lot of already!
- Nutritionally Dense – There are a lot of vitamins, minerals, and goodness packed into this dish which is perfect for the colder weather season
- Easy – While traditional masoor dal is incredible, we wanted to provide an easier version to inspire others to make this dish and learn more
Gather your ingredients!
- Red Lentils – masoor literally tells us what color to use, so in this case you are going to want to use a red or orange lentil.
- Vegetable Stock – we prefer to use a low sodium or homemade stock so that we can adjust the seasoning and salt levels are desired
- Onions, Garlic, and Ginger – our aromatics are going to start the flavor immediately building this dish up
- Full Fat Coconut Milk – this is in a can and creates the perfect creamy texture that we are going for in this recipe
See my recipe card below for a complete list of the ingredients with measurements.
Substitutions and Variations:
- Red Lentils – you can also use brown lentils but realize that it not technically named the same dish. Red lentils also break down more, so brown lentils will hold up more. You may also need more liquid.
- Full Fat Coconut Milk – can be replaced with a thick non-dairy milk like cashew, soy, or creamy oat milk. Other non-dairy milks can be used; however, they are going to take longer to thicken.
- Protein – If you’d like to add some more protein into your dish, things like tofu or vegan chicken or soy curls would be good options
Yes! Only coconut milk is in the recipe and that can be replaced with another thick milk like soy if you can have it or a creamy oat milk. If you use another non-dairy milk you may just need to let it thicken longer.
Yes. You can let it cool completely and then store it in a freezer safe container for up to 3 months.
Yes, this recipe can be made 4-5 days in advance.
Other Vegan Asian-Inspired Recipes to Consider:
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Easy Masoor Dal
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 6-8 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and grated
- 1 tablespoon garam masala
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon coriander
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 ½ cups dried red lentils, rinsed and soaked* (can sub with orange)
- 14 oz canned diced tomatoes
- 8 oz full fat coconut milk
- 3 cups vegetable broth
- ½ teaspoon salt, more or less to taste
- 1 half a lemon, juiced
- 1 green chili, thinly sliced, optional
- 1 tablespoon kasuri methi, optional
- homemade vegan naan, as a side, optional
- In a large heavy bottomed pot, add oil over medium heat. Once hot, add in onions and let cooked for 8-20 minutes*. Add in garlic and ginger and stir together. Let cook until fragrant (another 1-2 minutes).
- Add in all the seasonings (garam masala – cinnamon) and stir together again. Allow to cook for 1 minute, stirring often, careful not to burn.
- Add in lentils and stir. Then, add the tomatoes, coconut milk and vegetable stock. Scrap the bottom of the pot to remove any of the fond. Turn heat down to medium and let cook until thickened and lentils are soft (about 15-20 minutes).
- Taste your dal and then add in salt, kasuri methi, and lemon juice as desired. Stir together and remove from heat. Top with sliced green chilis at the end if desired. Serve with naan.