Instant Pot Spinach Dal + Video

Vegan Spinach Dal made in the instant pot. Enjoy with comforting dal with boiled rice!
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Instant Pot Spinach Dal – comforting spinach dal made in the instant pot. Enjoy it with boiled rice! Vegan & gluten-free.

If you love all the Instant Pot vegetarian/vegan recipes that I share on the blog, please join me on this Facebook Group – Instant Pot Vegetarian Recipes. The group would feature vegetarian instant pot recipes from all around the web!

It finally feels like spring here. No it’s not been warm or super sunny but it’s been raining a little less and the sun has been shining a little more so I will take that as spring! At least it’s so much better than constant rain and grey skies. I have been working so much lately, actually the work load is the same it’s just that I am mentally exhausted these days (because of mom’s health) and you combine that with all the blog and house work? yep I am not even in a position to make dinner. So thank god for the instant pot, seriously it has made my life so easy and I am able to cook something for dinner even on days when I literally have no energy.

So the next recipe in the instant pot series is the Instant Pot Spinach Dal. I already have a spinach dal recipe on the blog and it’s actually quite a popular recipe so I thought I should share an instant pot version of it. And because you guys requested, I have also included a short video for this recipe. This spinach dal almost has a soup like consistency, that’s how we eat at our home. But if you don’t like it this cooked, simply reduce the cooking time by few minutes. I like this consistency best with plain rice, it’s so good!

This instant pot spinach dal is a simple recipe which comes together rather quickly. I have not used many ingredients or spices here and kept it simple. I really like simple dals without too much seasoning. Usually I always do a tadka (Indian word for adding tempering to food at the end) for most of my dal recipes before serving but since I was making this in the instant pot, I thought of skipping the tadka and actually make the entire thing in the instant pot. You may still do the tadka in the end, it will obviously make it more delicious but it’s completely optional.

For this spinach dal recipe, I used 2 kinds of lentils

– toor/arhar dal, also known as yellow pigeon peas lentils. These lentils are smaller in size than chana dal and are one of the most commonly used lentils in India. It’s made in my house 365 days a year, I kid you not!

– masoor dal, also know as red lentils.

You may also use a mix of toor and chana or use toor dal only. I personally feel using a mix of lentils results in a better taste. The dal is garnished with cilantro, garam masala and little lemon juice. Yes don’t forget the lemon juice, it really pops up the flavor. Here’s a quick video to show it’s all done in the instant pot. Hope you guys like it.

 

Method

Wash and rinse the dals. Set aside. Press saute mode on Instant Pot. Add oil and once it’s hot add cumin seeds and mustard seeds. Let them crackle.

Add chopped garlic, green chili and saute till the garlic starts turning golden brown in color.

Add chopped tomato and mix. Cook for a minute.

Then add chopped spinach and mix.

Add salt, turmeric powder and cook the spinach-tomato mixture for 1-2 minutes.

Now add the rinsed dal and give a stir.

Add water, mix and close the lid of the Instant Pot.

Cancel saute mode. Select manual and cook on high pressure for 10 minutes. Once 10 minutes are up, wait few minutes (6-7 minutes) and then release the pressure.

Adjust salt and add garam masala, cilantro and lemon juice. Also adjust consistency of the dal at this point.

Serve spinach dal hot with boiled rice!

* Adjust spice levels to taste. You may add more green chilies or red chili powder (cayenne) to spice it up.

Instant Pot Spinach Dal

instant pot spinach dal
Manali
Vegan Spinach Dal made in the instant pot. Enjoy with comforting dal with boiled rice!
4.79 from 33 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Course Entree, Vegetarian
Cuisine Indian
Servings 3
Calories 183 kcal

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup toor dal also known split pigeon peas lentil
  • 1/4 cup masoor dal also known as red lentil
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 3 garlic cloves chopped
  • 1 green chili chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 large tomato chopped
  • 5 oz spinach chopped [ around 1.5 cups finely chopped spinach]
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1.5 cups water
  • 1/4 teaspoon garam masala
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • salt to taste
  • cilantro to garnish

Instructions
 

  • Wash and rinse the dals. Set aside. Press saute mode on Instant Pot. Add oil and once it's hot add cumin seeds and mustard seeds. Let them crackle.
  • Add chopped garlic, green chili and saute till the garlic starts turning golden brown in color.
  • Add chopped tomato and mix. Cook for a minute.
  • Then add chopped spinach and mix.
  • Add salt, turmeric powder and cook the spinach-tomato mixture for 1-2 minutes.
  • Now add the rinsed dal and give a stir.
  • Add water, mix and close the lid of the Instant Pot.
  • Cancel saute mode. Select manual and cook on high pressure for 10 minutes. Once 10 minutes are up, wait few minutes (6-7 minutes) and then release the pressure.
  • Adjust salt and add garam masala, cilantro and lemon juice. Also adjust consistency of the dal at this point.
  • Serve spinach dal hot with boiled rice!

Nutrition

Calories: 183kcalCarbohydrates: 24gProtein: 10gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 3gSodium: 98mgPotassium: 678mgFiber: 11gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 4770IUVitamin C: 23mgCalcium: 78mgIron: 4.1mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @cookwithmanali or tag #cookwithmanali!

Instant Pot Spinach Dal

96 thoughts on “Instant Pot Spinach Dal + Video

  1. Hi Manali. I cooked this recipe – it was delicious! Just one problem – the dal stuck to the bottom of the instant pot, like the temperature was too high? I’m new to the instant pot, perhaps you can tell me what I’m doing wrong?! Thank you!

    1. maybe there’s some sensor issue with your Instant Pot. This dal has a lot of liquid and even if the bottom burnt with this recipe, then I am afraid all pasta, rice recipes will burn too. I make dal every week in IP and have never had anything stuck. I don’t think you did anything wrong if you followed the recipe, perhaps it’s just your IP.

  2. 5 stars
    Just made this and it was perfect!! I have tried to make multiple Indian dishes in the past and they never live up to the food I eat at Indian restaurants. This is an exception!! ??

  3. 5 stars
    Absolutely amazing recipe!! I doubled the cumin seed and mustard seed since hubby likes the extra flavor. It was amazing with some rice! I’ll make it again for sure!

  4. Hello! Found you on Pinterest. This looks yummy but I’d love to cook the dal on the stovetop. Can you give a timeline for that? Thanks and looking forward to making it this weekend!

    1. I would follow the same recipe, except add spinach at the end. After adding the dal cook for 30-35 minutes on stove-top until the dal is cooked and soft. Then add the spinach and simmer 5 more minutes and then add the final garam masala, salt and cilantro.

  5. 5 stars
    What is the reason for adding garam masala after cooking the dal? Usually the spices are added during cooking.
    Thank you.

    1. there’s no rule in cooking 🙂 and spices like garam masala, kasuri methi, cardamom powder etc. are often added at the end..so that they can infuse maximum flavor before serving the dish. If you want, do add it while cooking the dal.

  6. 5 stars
    Hi! I just stumbled across your blog and I am thankful I did. I made this recipe and it was so phenomenal, I ate the whole thing!! I was just missing the naan to go with it. It is a perfect recipe and I will be doubling it next time…tomorrow!!! Thank you!
    I also bought your cookbook….I cannot wait!

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