Indian Red Lentils

This lentil recipe is ready in a flash - in as little as 9 minutes! When you don't know what's for dinner, this lentil curry bean dish is a great healthy standby that is a great kid-friendly meal as well.

Our family loves curry. Anything curry.  In fact, though we like experimenting with cuisine from all cultures, I would say that Indian is one of our favorites.

Now, before I go on, let me say that this lentil recipe isn’t really curry – so don’t run away if you are not a curry fan.

And soon I hope to post a dish that DOES feature curry seasoning.  And it is for sure my most requested recipe EVER.

Most Indian food, however, can be quite time consuming.  So when I can get the taste of Indian spices in a fast, one pot meal, then I have the best of both worlds.  ‘Cause these days, who has a lot of time to spend in the kitchen on elaborate steps?  I have other things that need to be done.  Like photo albums (please don’t ask how many years behind I am.  I need to start a support group for moms with empty photo albums :-).)

This recipe is adapted from a dish simply called “Red Lentils” by Southern Living.

Blah name for a great dish.

It’s quick on its own, but really lickety-split in my pressure cooker.  If you don’t have one of these yet, put it on your Christmas list now.  I know, I should get better at planning meals, but it sure is nice to not have any idea what you are going to have for dinner at 5:30 and have dinner on the table at 6:15.

9 minutes in the pressure cooker.


Mom is happy and my family is happy too because they aren’t having popcorn and hard boiled eggs again because mom forgot to plan :-).  (Did I mention that we never eat out and we don’t buy processed foods :-)?)

Voila!  Wonderful, fast, savory Indian cuisine in no time!

A Few Tips:

This dish tastes great served over rice (which, by the way, I can cook in 20 minutes flat in my pressure cooker.  Woo-hoo!)  I always use brown rice due to its higher nutritive qualities.

My Chat Masala spice mix tastes great on this.  We have this on our table at all times and put it on everything. Except – ahem – desserts :-).

Next time I plan to add seasoned chicken pieces to this dish.  Specifically, I think that sauteing small chunks of chicken in coconut oil and my Homemade All-Purpose Seasoning would be a wonderful addition.


Like curry dishes?  See my recipe for Sweet Curry Powder – DIY – it is real winner and great money saver!

For some other great family favorite meal ideas, check out:

Easy Baked Chicken Nuggets
Pakistani Curry – my most requested recipe
Super Savory Hummus
Fast & Yummy Bean Dip
GF Chili Mac (and other super fast meals)

Do you have a favorite go-to dish when you forgot to plan dinner?

Please share for all of us sometimes-scattered moms!

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  1. Forgot to mention, I found you through the Not Your Ordinary Recipes link up.

  2. This is on my stove right now and the apartment smells so good! I wouldn’t blame the neighbors if they invited themselves over for dinner.

    • Thanks so much for stopping by to share! I am so glad you enjoyed it! Wish I were there to come by. We had a thrown together dinner on a busy evening :-).

  3. I too just made it and I am eating it. The red lentils probably turn yellow because of the Tumeric. Tumeric turns everything yellow (grin). I love it. I love it even more with Chat Masala – the Adrienne Wonder Spice.

    • Thanks for the new name for the Chat Masala – I’ll be sharing that with my family today! Actually, the red lentils turn yellow no matter what. Not sure why. I tried to find out but my internet search isn’t turning up anything. Take care!!

  4. This is DELICIOUS! And it makes so much. Problem is, it’s only me eating it. Have you ever tried freezing it? Don’t think I can eat it fast enough, unless I eat it for every meal! Never tried to freeze a lentil dish. Would be great if I could freeze little 1/2 pint jars for lunches at work (like I do with soup.)

  5. Mary Ellen says:

    Because of different schedules everyone eats at different times. Can this be done in crock-pot?

  6. MomOfFour says:

    I only have green lentils in the house and need something quick? Can I use the green ones or will it taste weird? Thank you!

  7. I have been on the search for a good lentil recipe. I have bags of them but never know what to do with them! I know this is a lot to ask-but could you suggest an alternative to the tomatoes? I try to avoid nightshades as much as possible.

    • You could leave them out or just add some carrots or zucchini. Really, whatever veggie you like could work – enjoy! I have another good recipe I hope to share as well!