Daal Makhni is a creamy, mildly spiced Indian lentil stew. This dish is so simple to make, yet such an incredible flavor combination — even my husband loves it!

 

This year, I intend to prepare a great deal more Indian cuisine and introduce you to a variety of foods that are not always available in Indian restaurants. Restaurants only provide a small number of their most popular dishes.

 

Recently, I learned about a tasty, creamy, and spicy Indian dish called Daal Makhni. I was quite drawn to it, as I had never heard of such a dish before. It immediately became an obsession in my head and so I was researching any and everything about it! The more research I did, the more intrigued I became with this ‘hypnotic’ dish (yes-I’m serious).

 

Traditionally, Daal Makhni, the well-known Punjabi dish, is made with Urad Daal, or Black Gram lentils. This is a popular lentil in Indian cuisine, particularly in South and North India. This adaptable lentil is packed with protein, fat, and carbs. Thus, healthy food for our bodies. This lentil is used to make traditional daal, curry daal, and snacks. Every kind of meal goes nicely with this lentil.

 

Black gram lentils, often known as urad daal, are a staple ingredient in most South Indian dishes. Dosa, idli, and daal bonda are just some of the dishes that fall under this category.

In reality, the list is endless. This is also a key component in a number of hearty North Indian daal recipes, including true kali daal (made with entire lentils still covered in their skin), daal makhni, dhuli urad daal (the recipe you’re reading), and langarwali daal.

Also see, Masoor Dal, Aloo Palak, and Coconut Chickpea Curry

What Is Urad Daal?

Split, black urad, also known as black lentils (Vigna mungo), is urad daal. These are distinct from any beluga lentils you may currently have in your kitchen. In this recipe, urad daal with or without skin can be used, however, split urad daal is what you want to use. The variety that lacks skin is white or beige; the other will have black skin on one side. Among the daals, urad daal has the lowest carb count. 

You can also use moong daal, which is made from split green mung beans, and tiny yellow lentils. Instead, use red lentils. Yellow lentils might be long or round, depending on the store, and the names can differ. Moong daal is the long one.

Nutrition & Health Benefits

Split black grams lentils, also known as urad daal, are rich in protein as well as numerous other vitamins and necessary elements. This is rich in calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, and folic acid. It is abundant in soluble and insoluble fibers, both of which serve to maintain the health of our digestive system and gut.

While it offers various health advantages, a few of them are as follows:

  • It relieves bloating, diarrhea, and constipation.
  • It also aids in the repair of piles.
  • It is a good liver stimulant.
  • The heart is kept in good condition by magnesium and potassium.
  • It keeps bones healthy.
  • It improves brain health and nervous system strength.
  • It maintains the intestines healthy and helps with digestion.

ingredients for daal makhni on wooden board

What Ingredients Do You Need For Making Daal Makhni?

  • Split Black lentils/ Urad Daal – Including urad daal regularly in your diet can support bone health and prevent osteoporosis and arthritis. It’s mushy, sticky and so good.
  • Red Kidney Beans – An excellent source of protein, tastes amazing with urad daal.
  • Vegan butter – The key ingredient of the dish, emulsifies in the daal making it rich and buttery.
  • Coconut Cream – You can use any plant-based cream, but coconut and cashew cream taste the best with it. It increases the richness and flavor of the daal.
  • Onion – I prefer using yellow onions for curries, you may use whatever is available 
  • Tomatoes – Red juicy tomatoes for the perfect daal
  • Garlic – No daal is complete without garlic.
  • Button Red chilies – Adds a nice heat and flavor to the daal.
  • Roasted cumin seeds – Staple Indian ingredient, aids digestion and adds a beautiful flavor 
  • Dry Fenugreek leaves – They add an amazing aroma, no daal makhni is complete without fenugreek leaves.
  • Coriander powder – A staple Indian spice, adds the perfect aroma and flavor
  • Salt – According to preference 
  • Red chili flakes – Ads the perfect heat to the daal.
  • Turmeric – Aromatic spice, has a warm flavor.
  • Garam Masala/allspice – Easily available at Indian grocery stores, a perfect blend of all dry spices.
  • Oil – I use olive oil, you may use any.

step by step photos, how to prepare daal makhni

How To Make Daal Makhni?

  1. Wash and soak lentils and kidney beans for about 4-5 hours or overnight.
  2. Rinse and boil the lentils and beans in a large pot or pressure cooker.
  3. Separately, heat the oil and fry the onion, garlic, cumin seeds, and button red chilies.
  4. After the onions and garlic have fried, add the tomato puree and spices and continue to fry for 6-8 minutes until the oil separates.
  5. After the masala is ready, add the boiled lentils and beans.
  6. Using a potato masher, mash some beans and lentils and simmer for 15-18 minutes until well blended.
  7. As soon as the daal and beans are well combined in the masala, add the butter and cream and let them emulsify.
  8. Cook for another 6 -8 minutes on low flame.
  9. Your Daal makhni is ready, served with boiled rice or garlic naans.

more step by step cooking of daal makhni

Serving Suggestions

If you’re a frequent reader of my blog, you know that I’m a big believer in side dishes. Side dishes change the entire palette of your meal, allowing for endless possibilities for flavor combinations. For example: Instead of just an Indian recipe, you can serve this daal makhni with some chapatis(better to give a try tandoori roti), or rice on the side, and have a different meal altogether!

Don’t forget to accomplish your meal with your favorite chutney and salad.

Here are a few of my favorite salads:

Recipe Notes

Here are some tips, substitutions, or additions to make this meal taste fantastic and one you’ll keep making whenever you’re craving curry or daal.

  • If you don’t have accessibility to Indian shops (where urad daal is readily available), consider another lentil that keeps its shape while cooking, such as beluga (black), brown, or French lentils (du puy). You might need to change your cooking time depending on the type of lentil you substitute.
  • If you want your daal to be thicker, use less water in the recipe. You can add more water later on if it becomes too thick, but you will need to keep a closer check on it.
  • The main ingredients in this recipe are onions and garlic, but it wouldn’t hurt to have some fresh ginger there as well.
  • Avoid overcooking it. When using a pressure cooker, two whistles are sufficient. However, using a slow cooker may result in a longer cooking time.
  • To help the spices release their flavor, be sure to first sauté them in oil. You don’t want the whole spices to burn, so add them first, followed by the ground ones.
  • If you don’t have any or can’t find any crushed fenugreek leaves (also known as kasuri or kasoori methi) that will greatly round out the flavor, you can omit them from the recipe. However, doing so will significantly impact the flavor. Anyhow daal makhni will still remain fantastic!
  • You can add a few drops of oil to the water when you first cook the lentils separately to help reduce the amount of foaming that occurs.
  • For 15 minutes at high pressure, a pressure cooker may cook the lentils. After the food is cooked, let the pressure cooker naturally release its pressure for around 10 minutes.

More Lentil And Beans Recipe to try

Frequently Asked Questions

Why You Should Include Lentils And Beans In Your Daily Diet?

Vegetarians need to consume dairy products and any sort of daal, beans, and lentils in order to meet their protein requirements. Preparing a variety of daals each day, whether for lunch or dinner, is the finest option. Daals are one of my go-to meals. However, if eaten in moderation and without excess fat, it’s a perfectly balanced dinner. If you’re hungry, there’s no better supper than daal, vegetables, and either roti or rice (or both).

Do You Need To Soak Split Urad?

If you intend to create something using the full urad daal, you must soak it overnight. Split urad daal, on the other hand, is tenderer than whole lentils. To cut down on cooking time, split lentils must still soak for at least one to two hours.

What Can I Substitute For Black Lentils?

If you do not have black lentils, you can replace equal amounts of the following:

  • Red lentils, cook up quickly as well.
  • Also, a wonderful choice would be French green lentils.

How Long Can You Keep Daal Makhni In The Fridge And Freezer?

Daal makhni can be refrigerated for up to two days. It can be frozen for a week or two. If the consistency appears extremely thick, add water while reheating the dish. While serving, drizzle some cream and butter.

Does Daal Makhni Taste Better The Next Day?

Daal Makhni tastes great when left overnight or enjoyed the next day after cooking. 

Daal Makhni

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Daal Makhni in silver pot

Daal Makhni

Daal Makhni is a creamy, mildly spiced Indian lentil stew. This dish is so simple to make, yet such an incredible flavor combination — even my husband loves it!
5 from 11 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Entrée, Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Daal Makhni
Prep Time: 7 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 352kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 cup split black lentils
  • 1/2 cup kidney beans
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 2 medium tomatoes pureed
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 chili or 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepepr
  • 2 tablespoons Vegan Butter
  • 3 tablespoons coconut cream
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground fenugreek
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil

Instructions

  • Wash and soak lentils and kidney beans for about 4-5 hours or overnight.
  • Rinse and boil the lentils and beans in about 4 1/2 cups of water in a large pot or pressure cooker until tender, about 1 hour in a large pot and 45 minutes in an Instant Pot.
  • Separately, heat the oil and fry the onion, garlic, cumin seeds, and button red chilies.
  • After the onions and garlic have fried, add the tomato puree and spices and continue to fry for 6-8 minutes until the oil separates.
  • After the masala is ready, add the boiled lentils and beans.
  • Using a potato masher, mash some beans and lentils and simmer for 15-18 minutes until well blended.
  • As soon as the daal and beans are well combined in the masala, add the butter and cream and let them emulsify.
  • Cook for another 6 -8 minutes on low flame.
  • Your Daal makhni is ready, served with boiled rice or flatbread

Nutrition

Calories: 352kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 0.03g | Sodium: 55mg | Potassium: 296mg | Fiber: 14g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 744IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 63mg | Iron: 6mg