Vegan Masala Lentils

A tradition Indian dish

Inspired by: yupitsvegan


  • 1 cup brown lentils washed and drained

  • 3 cups water

  • 3 to 3 tsp safflower or other neutral oil

  • 1 cup finely chopped red or white onion

  • 7 cloves garlic chopped

  • 1 tsp ground cumin

  • 3 tsp ground coriander

  • 1 tsp ground cardamom

  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 1 tsp fenugreek leaves (or 1/8 teaspoon fenugreek seeds)

  • 2 tsp sweet or hot paprika

  • 1 tsp nutmeg

  • 1 tsp ground black pepper

  • 2 tbsp sriracha or other hot sauce to taste

  • 3 tbsp water

  • 2 cups chopped tomato

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 3 tbsp chopped cilantro for garnish

  • 2 tbsp vegan butter for garnish (optional)


  • Combine the lentils with 2 cups of water in a saucepan. Partially cover and cook over medium heat until the lentils are tender, 25 to 30 minutes.

  • While the lentils are cooking, make the tempering. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until golden brown, 5 to 6 minutes.

  • In a blender, combine the garlic, cumin, coriander, cardamom, cinnamon, fenugreek, paprika, nutmeg, black pepper, sriracha, and 2 tablespoons of water. Blend to combine well. Add this paste to the onions in the skillet. Cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and salt, and cook until the tomatoes are tender, about 8 minutes. Mash the larger tomato pieces.

  • Add the tempering to the lentils. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and simmer for another 5 minutes. Taste and adjust salt and spice. Garnish with cilantro and vegan butter, if using, and serve hot.

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