Masoor Dal (Spiced Red Lentils)

Masoor dal (spiced red lentils) is a popular protein-rich dish in Indian cuisine that’s easy to prep and quick to cook. It’s a perfect meatless Monday option that’s bound to please everyone’s tastebuds (including meat lovers) and keep you full for hours. Serve it over basmati rice, naan, or roti. Enjoy!

Masoor Dal Ingredients

Serving size: 2

2 Tbsp. vegetable oil (or coconut oil)
1 cup onion, finely chopped
1 Tbsp. fresh ginger, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
½ Thai or bird’s-eye red chili, or 1/2 tsp. of cayenne pepper
2 tsp. ground coriander
2 tsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. turmeric
1 tsp. ground ginger
1 cup tomatoes, chopped, fresh (or canned)
2 cups cooked red lentils
Salt to taste
2 Tbsp. cilantro, chopped

Method of Preparation

1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-low heat and sauté onion until softened. Add minced ginger and garlic; stir, and reduce heat to low.

2. If using, finely dice chili, keeping seeds if you wish to add more heat. Add chili (or cayenne pepper), coriander, cumin, turmeric, and ground ginger to the pan. Stir until fragrant, about 90 seconds. Add tomatoes, lentils, and half a cup of water. Allow to simmer uncovered, occasionally stirring, about 5 minutes.

3. Season to taste with salt, and continue to simmer until mixture has thickened, about 10 minutes. Whisk dal to amalgamate lentils. If dal is too soupy, increase heat and cook for a little longer.

4. To serve, place dal in a serving bowl and sprinkle with chopped cilantro. If desired, serve with rice, flatbread, or cooked greens.


Calories: 440
Total fat: 15g
Protein: 21g
Total carbohydrate: 59g
Total sugars: 9g
Dietary fiber: 15g
Sodium: 30mg

This recipe is curated by our culinary medicine team and adapted from NYT CookingFind more healthy recipes herebrowse our Pinterest boards for inspiration, or join us on Tuesday evenings for our virtual Culinary Medicine Cooking Classes.

Anschutz Health and Wellness Center