Simple and comforting whole masoor dal (brown lentils/sabut masoor dal) cooked in the Instant Pot.
This dal is vegan and gluten-free and pairs well with rice, quinoa, roti. You can also enjoy it as a soup.
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We can never have enough of dals, can we?
I grew up eating toor/arhar dal everyday, that’s like the staple in eastern Uttar Pradesh (part of India where my family belong from).
So every morning would start with toor dal being cooked in the pressure cooker. Out of 365 days, that yellow dal would be made for 350 days, I am not kidding.
Basically, I was so bored of it that now when I cook myself, I keep changing dals all the time.
I mix and match dals and make them differently each time. One of my favorite dals these days is Whole Masoor Dal or Sabut Masoor Dal as we would call in hindi.
These are whole brown lentils and they have such a distinct taste. You don’t really need a ton of spices to make this dal flavorful.
A good tadka of onion and tomatoes is all it needs and it goes perfectly with roti or rice.
This Whole Masoor Dal
✓ is one-pot dal which is easy to make
✓ vegan and gluten-free
✓ perfectly spiced and flavorful
✓ goes well with rice or quinoa
✓ you can even enjoy it as a soup with a side of bread
I usually refrain from using a lot of spices in my dal until and unless I am making a restaurant style Dal Tadka.
Because I grew up eating such a basic dal which had nothing in it really except turmeric and salt and a tadka of cumin seeds, garlic (at times), I like to keep my everyday dal simple too.
This sabut masoor dal is slightly on the thicker side and it gets even thicker and creamier as it cools down. That’s why it goes well with roti or paratha too.
Usually when my mom made it, she pressure cooked the dal first and then added the tadka to the dal. I just dump it altogether in the instant pot, saves me time and also less dishes.
Like I said, I keep this dal simple but you can add ghee to it to enhance flavors. You can also add crushed kasuri methi or a tablespoon of cream in the end to make it more flavorful and creamier.
Making Whole Masoor Dal On Stove-Top Pressure Cooker: you can make the same dal on stove-top pressure cooker, you would follow the same steps and cook for 5 to 6 whistles on high heat.
Then let the pressure release naturally.
Serving Suggestions for Whole Masoor Dal
You can serve this whole masoor dal with roti, paratha, rice, quinoa or any other grain of choice.
Typically, I would serve this with roti and a sabzi (stir-fry) on the side like this bhindi masala.
1- Press the saute button on the Instant Pot. Once it’s hot, add the cumin seeds and let them sizzle for few seconds.
2- Then add the chopped ginger, onion, green chili and mix.
3- Cook for 4 to 5 minutes until onions are light golden brown in color. Stir often.
4- Add in the tomatoes and de-glaze the pot by scrapping the bottom with a spatula. There shouldn’t be anything stuck at the bottom.
Add the spices- coriander powder, turmeric and garam masala. Also add the salt and mix. Cook for 1 minute.
5- Add the rinsed whole masoor dal to the pot and toss with the masala.
6- Then add in the water and stir.
7- Close the pot with the lid. Press the manual or pressure cook button and cook on high pressure for 13 to 14 minutes, with the pressure valve in sealing position.
Let the pressure release naturally.
8- Open the pot and add chopped cilantro and mix. At this point, you can also add a teaspoon of ghee for extra flavor.
You can also add crushed kasuri methi.
Serve whole masoor dal with a side of lemon wedge. It goes well with roti or rice!
Other Instant Pot Dals
Whole Masoor Dal
- 1 tablespoon oil 15 ml, I used avocado oil
- 3/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 inch ginger chopped
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 1 green chili chopped
- 2 medium tomatoes chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1/4 teaspoon garam masala
- 3/4 teaspoon salt or to taste
- 1 cup whole masoor dal brown lentils
- 2.5 cups water
- 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
- lemon wedges to serve
- Press the saute button on the Instant Pot. Once it's hot, add the cumin seeds and let them sizzle for few seconds.
- Then add the chopped ginger, onion, green chili and mix. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes until onions are light golden brown in color. Stir often.
- Add in the tomatoes and de-glaze the pot by scrapping the bottom with a spatula. There shouldn't be anything stuck at the bottom.
- Add the spices- coriander powder, turmeric and garam masala. Also add the salt and mix. Cook for 1 minute.
- Add the rinsed whole masoor dal to the pot and toss with the masala.
- Then add in the water and stir. Close the pot with the lid.
- Press the manual or pressure cook button and cook on high pressure for 13 to 14 minutes, with the pressure valve in sealing position. Let the pressure release naturally.
- Open the pot and add chopped cilantro and mix. At this point, you can also add a teaspoon of ghee for extra flavor. You can also add crushed kasuri methi or squeeze in some lemon juice.
- Serve whole masoor dal with rice or roti or paratha.
Stove-Top Pressure Cooker Instructions
- Follow all the steps as it is and then pressure cook for 5 to 6 whistles on high heat. Let the pressure release naturally. Alternatively, you can also pressure cook the dal only with salt and turmeric and water and then make a tempering/tadka in a separate pan and add to the dal.
Stove-Top Pan Instructions
- If you don't have a pressure cooker and want to make this dal, follow all the steps as it is until add the lentils. Add the lentils, water and then cook for around 30-35 minutes uncovered on medium heat until lentils are soft and done. You may need to adjust the amount of water here as water will evaporate when cooking in an open pot compared to a pressure cooker.