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Andrea's Dal for Instant Pot®

Rated as 4.67 out of 5 Stars

"This variation of mixed dal was developed over a series of happy accidents and has become a household favorite. This version has more ginger and a smoother texture. It's made in the Instant Pot® and I've tried it with a variety of fats. When using coconut oil, it has sufficient flavor that I think the cilantro is unnecessary."
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1 h 10 m servings 210
Original recipe yields 6 servings


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  1. Combine water, chana dal, turmeric, and salt in a multi-functional pressure cooker (such as Instant Pot(R)). Close and lock the lid. Select high pressure according to manufacturer's instructions; set timer for 20 minutes. Allow 10 to 15 minutes for pressure to build.
  2. While chana dal is cooking, heat coconut oil in a skillet over medium heat until shimmering, about 2 minutes. Add onion and cook 30 seconds. Add ginger and garlic; cook 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, cumin, salt, and cayenne. Cook and stir for 30 to 60 seconds. Add water and stir to remove browned bits from the bottom of the skillet. Cook 2 minutes more.
  3. Release pressure using the natural-release method according to manufacturer's instructions, 10 to 40 minutes. Unlock and remove the lid. Chana dal should be soft enough to be easily crushed by a spoon.
  4. Transfer 1/3 to 1/2 of the cooked dal into the skillet with the onion mixture. Use an immersion blender to process until pureed. Mix in remaining dal and cook until heated through, 3 to 5 minutes more.
  5. Top individual servings with cilantro.


  • Cook's Notes:
  • Chana dal is a small variety of chickpea native to India that has been split and skinned to cook more quickly. If seeking an America/European legume to substitute for chana dal, look for something small; a standard chickpea would be too large.
  • You can substitute ghee or another high-heat oil for the coconut oil, if you prefer.

Nutrition Facts

Per Serving: 210 calories; 3.1 34.6 13 0 794 Full nutrition

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Read all reviews 3
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Will try this again, with all of the ginger and tomatoes (I was a bit shorthanded). It was a bit thinner than I expected. Definitely use all of the salt recommended. Family liked it when it w...

I loved this for a change. Next time I will personally season heavier, but that could be a personal taste. We loved having our own personal Indian night at home. I made this along with Serendipi...

I found chana dal in my produce store so I knew I had to make this. Tasty and easy. I added spinach and a dollop of yogurt to a few servings of this.. delicious both ways. Will be good cold...