masoor dal recipe
Print Recipe
4.8 from 34 votes

Masoor Dal

this is a simple and easy lentil recipe made with pink lentils (dhuli masoor dal). it goes well with roti or rice.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: main course
Cuisine: north indian
Servings: 4
Author: Dassana Amit


for pressure cooking masoor dal

  • ½ cup masoor dal or pink lentils or dhuli masoor dal
  • 1.5 to 1.75 cups water for pressure cooking dal

for making masoor dal

  • 2 tablespoons oil or ghee (clarified butter)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 medium sized onion, chopped
  • 2 to 3 small to medium sized garlic, crushed or chopped
  • 1 inch ginger, chopped
  • 1 to 2 green chillies, chopped or slit
  • 1 to 2 whole dry red chilies,
  • 1 medium sized tomato, chopped
  • ¼ or ½ teaspoon red chili powder (organic or homemade chili powder can be just ¼ teaspoon as they are very strong)
  • 1 generous pinch asafoetida (hing)
  • ¼ or ½ teaspoon garam masala powder (homemade garam masala powder can be just ¼ teaspoon)
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 to 1.5 cups water or add as required
  • 1 teaspoon kasuri methi (dry fenugreek leaves) - crushed (optional)
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves (cilantro leaves)
  • ½ or 1 teaspoon lemon juice or as required
  • 1 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves for garnishing (optional)
  • salt as required



  • pick and rinse the dal well.
  • pressure cook the masoor dal in a 2-litre pressure cooker with 1.5 to 1.75 cups water, till they become soft and mushy. pressure cook for 5 to 6 whistles on medium flame. 
  • when the dal is cooked, beat with a wooden spoon or wired whisk lightly.
  • keep the cooked dal aside. if dal is not cooked, then add some more water and pressure cook for a few whistles more. 

making onion-tomato masala

  • in another pan or pot, heat oil or ghee. fry the cumin seeds till golden. 
  • then add onions and fry till they are light golden. 
  • add chopped ginger and garlic. stir and fry for 10 to 15 seconds or till the raw aroma of ginger and garlic goes away. 
  • add green chilies and red chilies. stir.
  • add all the dry spice powders one by one including asafoetida (hing) and stir.
  • add the tomatoes and fry till the oil separates and the tomatoes become soft.

making masoor dal

  • add the cooked dal. pour 1 to 1.5 cups water. you can adjust the quantity of water as required.
  • add salt and stir. simmer for 6 to 7 minutes more on a low or medium flame till you get the desired consistency.
  • this masoor dal is neither thick nor thin and has a medium consistency.
  • lastly add kasuri methi and simmer for 1 minute.
  • towards the end add lemon juice and 1 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves and stir. switch off the flame.
  • you can also garnish the dal with coriander leaves if you want while serving. serve masoor dal hot with steamed basmati rice or roti or chappati.


tips for making masoor dal
  • the dal also can be cooked in a pot or pan. just soak the dal for 30-40 minutes, so that they cook faster if cooking in a pot. adjust the quantity of water as required.
  • adjust the spices in masoor dal as per your taste.