Easy Dal Makhani Recipe, One Pot Dal Makhani in Pressure Cooker

Dal Makhani is one of the most popular punjabi lentil recipe.
5 from 8 votes

Easy Dal Makhani Recipe with step by step photos – Dal Makhani is one of the most popular Punjabi recipe. This one pot recipe made in a pressure cooker gives you a homely Punjabi Dal Makhani. Its one of those recipes i make on weekends.

dal makhani, punjabi dal makhani recipe

You can see Dal Makhani being served in marriages, engagements and almost any parties in India. It is not only popular in North India, but also South India.

Its called as Dal Makhani as it is made with Dal (Lentils) – Whole Black Lentils + Red Kidney Beans along with Makhan (White Butter) and full fat cream. This dish is rich in calories. Due to the use of all these ingredients Dal Makhani becomes creamy and rich. If you are working on your diet, you could avoid the cream completely. I have not used cream in this recipe though.

For some unknown reason, Dal Makhani tastes even better on the second day. There are some punjabi recipes like sarson da saag, amritsari dal and dal makhani which tastes better on the second day. But don’t eat too much dal makhani as it is heavy on the stomach. Usually in Punjab, they serve dal makhani topped with lots of butter and white cream. It goes well with rotis, rice or naan or aloo paratha or aloo kulcha or paneer kulcha or naan or rumali roti.

Dal Makhani is made from Red Kidney Beans and Whole Black Lentils as I have mentioned before. Kidney Beans are called as Rajma in India. Whole Black Lentils are also known as black gram and sabut urad dal or kaali dal. Below is a pic of both, after they have been soaked and drained.

dal for dal makhani recipe

Generally this lentil and legume combination are cooked first individually and then simmered in a base of onion, tomato puree, ginger, garlic, white butter and spice powders.

This Dal Makhani recipe is the simplest & easiest version and is my mother-in-law’s recipe. This is a one pot method where all the ingredients are thrown in and then cooked together. We usually use pressure cooker for cooking the beans and lentils. However, a pot can also be used. Though cooking in a pot will take a lot of time. You can also check these other variations of making dal makhani:

  1. dhaba style dal makhani
  2. dal makhani recipe restaurant style

There are many methods of making Dal Makhani recipe. In the traditional method, the pot of Dal Makhani is simmered on a slow charcoal fire overnight. Due to this the cooking method the charcoal flavor infuses in the Dal Makhani giving it a nice rustic flavor and taste.

Serve dal makhani hot with rotis or plain paratha or butter naan or tandoori rotis or aloo paratha or jeera rice.

if you are looking for more punjabi recipes then do check:

Easy One Pot Dal Makhani

5 from 8 votes
Prep Time:15 mins
Cook Time:45 mins
Total Time:1 hr
Dal Makhani is one of the most popular punjabi lentil recipe.
Dal Makhani Recipe, Punjabi Dal Makhani Recipe
Course:main course
Cuisine:north indian,punjabi
Servings:4

INGREDIENTS FOR Easy One Pot Dal Makhani

(1 CUP = 250 ML)
  • 1 cup whole black gram (whole urad dal)
  • ½ cup kidney beans (rajma)
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon cumin or ½ teaspoon cumin powder
  • ½ teaspoon red chili powder (lal mirch powder)
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder (haldi)
  • 1 medium sized onion, finely chopped
  • 2 medium sized tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1 inch ginger (adrak), finely chopped
  • 4 to 5 medium garlic cloves (lahsun), finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon punjabi garam masala or garam masala powder
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons butter or ghee or oil
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons low fat cream, optional
  • salt as required
  • few coriander leaves for garnishing, optional

HOW TO MAKE Easy One Pot Dal Makhani

Soaking Beans for Dal Makhani

  • Soak the both the rajma and urad dal overnight if you are making this in the morning.
  • If you are making dal makhani in the evening, then soak the dals in the morning.
  • Drain the lentils well and rinse them in fresh water. keep aside. 

Making One Pot Dal Makhani

  • In a pressure cooker, add all the ingredients including the dals/lentils and white butter.
  • Add water. Pressure cook for some 12-15 whistles.
  • Open and check if the lentils are cooked.
  • You should be able to mash the both the urad dal and rajma with spoon if they are cooked completely.
  • If they are not cooked thoroughly, then pressure cook for 2 to 3 whistles more.
  • Add water if required.
  • Now again open the cooker and let the dal makhani simmer in the cooker itself without the lid for 10-15 minutes or more till you get a smooth and creamy consistency and texture.
  • If you wish to add cream, you can add cream now and let the dal makhani simmer for 1 to 2 minutes more.
  • If you like then you can Garnish Dal Makhani with coriander-cilantro leaves (optional).
  • Serve dal makhani hot with hot rotis, naan, or jeera rice.
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Step by Step Easy One Pot Dal Makhani

1: Soak the both the lentils and bean overnight if you are making this in the morning. If you are making dal makhani in the evening, then soak them in the morning. Drain the soaked water and rinse the lentils and kidney beans with fresh water. Then add them in a pressure cooker. Also add all the other ingredients – onions, tomatoes, ginger-garlic, spice powders, salt and white butter or oil.

dal makhani recipe ingredients

3. Pour water and stir well.

making dal makhani recipe

4. Pressure cook for some 10 to 11 whistles. Open and check if the lentils are cooked. You should be able to mash both the kidney bean and the black gram with a spoon or with your fingers, if they are cooked. If they are not cooked thoroughly, then pressure cook for 2 to 3 whistles more. Add water if required.

As you see in the below pic, the beans and lentils are cooked, but the consistency is watery. Its like cooked beans in a broth and Dal Makhani is smooth and creamy. So the whole mixture has to be simmered on slow fire till the consistency thickens a bit and becomes creamy. Mash a few rajma and urad dal with a spoon. This will help in making the gravy smooth and giving a creamy texture.

making dal makhani recipe

5: Let the Dal Makhani simmer in the cooker itself without the lid for 10-15 minutes or more on a low or medium flame. In the pic below, the consistency has changed considerably.  If you wish to add cream, you can add cream when you get the smooth consistency and simmer for 1 to 2 minutes more.

Remember the consistency should be neither thick nor thin. If the Dal Makhani become thick and then add some water. Also, as the Dal Makhani cools down, it will thicken more.

dal makhani consistency

6: When done, then you can garnish Dal Makhani with coriander-cilantro leaves. This step is optional though. Serve dal makhani hot with rotis, naan, tandoori roti or lachha paratha or aloo paratha or jeera rice or biryani rice. if you like then while serving add some butter on top.

dal makhani recipe


namaste, i am dassana

dassana amit

Founder, Chef, Recipe Developer, Food Photographer >> MORE ABOUT US

i started vegrecipesofindia.com in feb 2009. it is a pure vegetarian blog and shares recipes with step by step photos that will help you to make delicious and tasty vegetarian food easily.

i am passionate about cooking from childhood and learnt cooking from my elders. having a home science degree greatly enhanced my cooking & baking skills and took it to a different level which i now share as foolproof recipes. i was trained both in mainstream indian as well as international cuisines.

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77 comments/reviews

  1. Could you give me measurements of the tomatoes and Onions in cups like you do innother recipes? Hard to tell for me. Your site is amazing thank you!

  2. Hi Dassana,
    Is it ok to cook dal makhani with white urad dal, i.e. Without chilka?
    If not, are there any other recipe suggestions for using white urad dal, in the form of a ‘dal’?
    Thanks

    • Sweta, the taste will be different. You can just make plain dal fry or dal tadka with white urad dal. You can add your choice of seasonings and herbs in it. for reference you can check dal fry recipe posted on blog.

      • Hi,
        Thanks for the reply. I have tried making it ‘dal fry’ style, the only problem is that urad dal is sticky/viscous so it doesn’t taste that good. However, I’ll give it a try using your dal fry recipe, And next time I’ll buy the one with chilka ?

      • welcome sweta. urad dal is viscous. the trick is not cook it too much. it becomes lumpy and viscous. it tastes good if made well. even the chilka one tastes good. next time you can try adding some chana dal to the chilka urad dal. their combo is good and we call it as kaali peeli dal or maah chole di dal in punjabi. i have posted the recipe. here is the link – https://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/maa-chole-di-dal/

      • Thanks for the tips. I’ll give it a try. So once the dal becomes soft, we should stop cooking it?

  3. Gorgeous, and so simple… Throw it in a pan and boil! My pressure cooker also doesn’t whistle… I translate whistles to about the same number of minutes, plus may be a little more to be certain.

    • thanks. whistles depend on the quantity of the ingredients in the pressure cooker and the size of the pressure cooker. for cooking lentils like black gram, it takes around 15 to 20 minutes depending on the quality of the black gram.

  4. This seems like a good recipe, but I’m confused by the “pressure cook for 12-15 whistles” comment. Most modern pressure cookers do not whistle! Could you translate the whistles into minutes for a modern non-whistling pressure cooker?

    • praveen, cook the dal for 20 minutes or till its cooked well. while making dal makhani, make sure that the dal is cooked properly so that it is easier to digest and it also gives the best taste. the cooking time can vary depending upon dal quality, size of the pan/cooker and intensity of the gas flame.

  5. You have the best recipes . I am not Indian but my husband is and he and his family say my food comes out better than theirs! Restaurant quality food! I’m not kidding and I agree!

    • yes lisa the recipe can be made in a dutch oven or a crock pot on the stove top. just that the cooking time will be longer. it may take an hour for the lentils and beans to cook and a further cooking to thicken the gravy slightly.

  6. I followed this recipe almost to the letter, and it turned out just perfect. Given that my previous cooking experience is almost nil, I was blown away by the result. Everyone at home loved it. Thanks a ton!

    Quick tip for those who want to skip the 8-hour soaking – Wash the beans well. Then pressure cook plain for one whistle. After that let it sit for an hour. Later discard the water. Once this is done, then cook normally the soft soaked-overnight beans.

  7. It’s the best dal makhani recipe. Ever. Thank you for this and all your other recipes. I started cooking a few months back. And now i do a big bunch of your recipes all the time. And collect accolades from everyone like a boss. All thanks to you.

  8. dhal makhani my newly found comfort food. Cooked without cream but served with basmati rice and natural yoghurt. yum…..thank you for posting one pot recipe.

  9. I ordered this dish on a whim at an Indian restaurant and I loved it so much that I looked up recipes on my way home. I made your recipe tonight and it was wonderful! Instead of butter+cream I used reduced fat cream cheese, which worked very well. Thank you for such a delicious recipe! I will look through your recipes to find more to make.

  10. Thank you for this recipe, I have my urad dal and kidney beans soaking right now and will be trying the recipe tomorrow. I really like that this recipe seems easy to make, yet I’m sure it will be full of rich flavour. I fell in love with this dish after my employer let me try some of his from home, he himself is originally from Lahore, but here in Sheffield I have trouble finding this dish in restaurants or ready made, so it will be a joy to eat this wonderful food once again!

  11. Hi Dassana,

    I am a big fan of all your recipes and love the way you put it across. I’m planning to make dal makhni tomorrow, wanted to know if it can be made with the split black gram variety? If yes, is there a change in the pressure cooking and soaking time?
    Thanks a lot, for all your wonderful recipes, looking forward to many more!!

    • thanks aditi. the consistency of dal made with split black gram is different then the consistency of dal made with whole black gram. we make another dal with split black gram and chana dal and its called as mah chole di dal in punjabi. so for an authentic dal makhani recipe, i would suggest to use whole urad dal. but you can have a look at the maa chole di dal recipe here – https://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/maa-chole-di-dal/

      p.s – you can add a bit of rajma to this dal too.

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