Red Lentil Dal - 3 Guiding Stars
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Three Guiding Stars icon Three Guiding Stars indicate the best nutritional value.

Dal is a quick one-pot meal that comes together easily and flexible from a wide variety of flavoring options. Choose something acidic (tomato, as in this recipe, but lemon would also work) and a spice mix to pair.


  • 1 cup split red lentils
  • 3⅓ cups water, divided
  • 1 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 2 large garlic cloves, grated
  • 2 tsp. grated fresh ginger
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 large tomato, seeded and chopped
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp. ground turmeric


  1. In medium saucepan, cover lentils generously with water and swoosh them with your fingers. Drain and repeat until water runs clear, 3-4 times. Pour in 3 cups cold water and set over medium-high heat. When water boils, reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, skimming off any foam that forms in the first minutes. Cook until lentils are tender, stirring occasionally (12-15 minutes).
  2. Meanwhile, heat oil in medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic and ginger, cook, stirring constantly, until seasonings are fragrant (1 minute).
  3. Add onion and cook, stirring, until golden (4 minutes). Some season paste will be sticking to bottom of pan.
  4. Add tomato, cilantro, cumin, and turmeric. Cook until tomato pieces are moist and start to break down (2-3 minutes).
  5. Add seasonings to cooked lentils. Off heat, pour 1/3 cup water into skillet and use wooden spatula to scrape up the deep brown layer sticking to pan, then add to lentils, stirring vigorously.
  6. Cover lentils and simmer over medium heat to meld flavors (5 minutes). Stir well and serve in deep bowls.
Nutritional analysis per serving: Calories 230; Total Fat 5g (6% Daily Value); Saturated Fat 0.5g (0% DV); Trans Fat 0g; Cholesterol 0mg (0% DV); Sodium 15mg (1% DV); Total Carbohydrate 36g (13% DV); Dietary Fiber 6.5g (21% DV); Total Sugars 2g; Includes 0g Added Sugars (0% DV); Protein 13g; Vitamin D 0% DV; Calcium 4% DV; Iron 20% DV; Potassium 10% DV; Copper 80% DV; Manganese 45% DV; Folate 30% DV.
Recipe by Guiding Stars at
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