One-Pot Lentil Dhal Recipe

One-Pot Lentil Dhal Recipe

Autumn is officially here and even though it hasn’t cooled down outside, we’re very ready for cups of masala chai, crunchy leaves under our feet, and spicy dishes to warm us up. But for a lot of us, autumn is also an incredibly busy season. The children are back in school, everything in the UK has opened back up, and many of us are heading to the office. While it’s wonderful to be out and about, the busy schedules can make it difficult to whip up delicious, hot meals for lunch and dinner.

As a busy woman, I firmly believe in having easy, flavour-packed recipes in my back pocket – meals I can cook quickly, with minimal energy but high reward. They need to taste great and be nutritious, but they need to be relatively painless to make. And the less washing up, the better!

In the hopes that you, too, will benefit from an easy recipe this autumn, I’m sharing my favourite one-pot lentil dhal! After a long (and wonderful) day at Tea India HQ, I can come home to my London flat and whip this quick recipe together in no time. And since it’s not too nippy yet, I can enjoy a hot bowl of dhal on my balcony and watch as the leaves begin to turn gold and fly from their branches.


Lentil Dhal

Serving size: one bowl of dhal (double recipe for two people)


  • 200g split red lentils
  • 800 ml water
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 chilli or 1/4 tsp chilli flakes
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 small piece of ginger, diced
  • 1 tomato diced
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1-2 tsp ground cumin
  • salt


  1. Rinse lentils in a bowl. Repeat until water is no longer cloudy.
  2. Heat vegetable oil on medium heat in a saucepan. Add ground cumin, chilli or chilli flakes, garlic, and ginger.
  3. Add onion, tomatoes, and salt. Keep stirring.
  4. Add water and wait until it begins to boil, then add turmeric.
  5. Lower the heat level and let the saucepan sit for approximately 12-14 minutes.
  6. With a fork, sift through the lentils to make sure they are the right consistency – soft, but not liquid.
  7. Add more spice or salt if needed. Enjoy with a dollop of yoghurt, gently baked naan, or a serving of rice.

The blend of cumin and turmeric in the dhal are naturally warming spices, but afterwards I like to complement the flavours with something sweet. A cup of Coconut Chai or Cardamom Chai, brewed and mixed with oat milk and honey, is the perfect treat.


Split Red Lentils

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