Easy Green Lentil Dahl is comforting, warming and flavourful. Make more than you need because you’ll want more for lunch tomorrow! 

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Green Lentil Dahl topped with crisp onions and toamtoes.

Whether you eat it on its own with rice or as part of a selection of curries, this gently spiced dahl is a star dish. 

How To Cook Green Lentils

Green lentils are a fabulous standby in the kitchen. They are ready when you are, requiring no pre soaking or special attention. Simply give them a rinse, checking for any small stones, and you’re good to go!

Bring a pan of water to a boil, add your lentils, simmer for about 25 minutes and they are done. 

Unlike their red cousins, green lentils cook quickly without going mushy, retaining a good texture which is perfect for this dahl.

They are also a fabulous addition to bakes, soups, stews and salads or use them to make tender vegan burgers

As well as tasting great and having a fabulous texture, green lentils are little powerhouses. They are packed with protein and iron as well as being rich in essential B vitamins. We love them!

Green lentil dahl topped with onions and tomatoes.

Easy Green Lentil Dahl

You can make dahl as simple or as complicated as you want and this recipe is very flexible. 

Turmeric, cardamom, cinnamon and ginger all work together to produce a warm, comforting, gentle flavour. It’s a big cuddle really! 

I’ve topped this particular bowl of the lovely stuff with fresh tomatoes and slow cooked fried onions. Tempered in the pan with the onions are cumin, chilli, garlic and more ginger.

I usually stir the onions and tempered spices through the dahl before serving but it looked so pretty perched on top for these photos that I couldn’t resist! I stirred it through before we ate it. 

Extras and Alternatives

  • Keep it simple, leave out the extra spices and just add some turmeric as the lentils cook and a little salt when they are done.
  • Jazz it up with extra veg. Roasted carrots, beetroot or squash work well.
  • Make it rich and sumptuous. Add coconut cream to the cooking water for a silky, luxurious dahl fit for a feast. 

What To Serve With A Green Lentil Dahl

This dahl is delicious served up on its own with plain rice or flat breads but it is also good as part of a spread of curry dishes. Try it with:

Or with the beetroot curry you can see in the back of my photographs, recipe coming very soon! Sign up to my newsletter below so you don’t miss it! 

Green lentil dahl with basmati rice and beetroot curry.

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Green Lentil Dahl topped with crisp onions and toamtoes.

Green Lentil Dahl

Easy Green Lentil Dahl is comforting, warming and flavourful. Make more than you need because you’ll want more for lunch tomorrow! 
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Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 191kcal


For The Dahl

  • 200 g green lentils
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 cinnamon stick
  • 4 green cardamom
  • 2 cm piece of fresh ginger
  • 400 ml water (plus extra if needed)
  • 1 tsp salt (plus more to taste)

For The Extras

  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 red chilli
  • 1 clove garlic
  • slice of fresh ginger
  • 3 tomatoes


The Dahl

  • Rinse the lentils in fresh water and check for any debris.
  • Lightly crush the cardamom pods so they split open.
  • Bruise the ginger a bit by bashing it with the flat of a knife (carefully)
  • Add the lentils, cardamom, turmeric, cinnamon stick, bashed ginger and water to a large pan.
  • Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and simmer for about 25 minutes or until the lentils are tender and all the water is absorbed. You may need to add more water.
  • Add salt, stir through thoroughly and taste. Add extra seasoning to taste.

The Extras

  • Peel the onion, halve and slice thinly.
  • Finely chop the chilli, garlic and ginger. Remove chilli seeds if you want a milder dahl.
  • Heat the oil gently in a large frying pan.
  • Add the sliced onions and cook very slowly, stirring regularly for about 20 minutes or until browned.
  • Add the chopped chilli, garlic and ginger along with the cumin seeds and cook for a further minute.
  • Stir through the cooked dahl.
  • Chop the tomatoes and add to the dahl.


Nutritional information is only an approximate guideline. Calculations will vary according to the ingredients you use and your cooking methods.


Calories: 191kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 399mg | Potassium: 554mg | Fiber: 12g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 597IU | Vitamin C: 23mg | Calcium: 44mg | Iron: 3mg
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