Dal dhansak

How to make dal dhansak?

Dal dhansak is a traditional parsi dish which is usually made with meat but this is a vegetarian version. It is an interesting combination of dals (dhan) and vegetables (saak) with loads of spices to make it a mouth-watering dish. Also, a flavorful masala called the dhansak masala makes this dish very special and unique.

Moreover, dals ought to be soupy but dhansak is thick but pourable. It is best accompanied with rice which makes not only wholesome but also nutritious. It can also be served with bread which makes it a very interesting combination.

If you love pulses, then this is the one you will not want to miss and it is also quite easy to make. In addition, it is vegan, gluten-free and soy-free.

Also, try Gujarati Dal Dhokli, Palak Wali Dal.

So, let’s quickly dig into the recipe!

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 25-30 minutes

Total time: 35-40 minutes

Serving: 2 to 3


  • Toor dal-1 cup
  • Brinjal, diced-1/2 cup
  • Pumpkin, diced-1/2 cup
  • Coriander leaves/kasuri methi-1/4 cup
  • Onion, diced-1/2 cup
  • Tomato puree-1 cup
  • Turmeric powder-1 tsp
  • Red chili powder-1 tsp
  • Garam masala-1 tsp
  • Coriander masala-1 tsp
  • Dhansak masala-2 tsp
  • Cumin powder-1 tsp
  • Salt, to taste

For the tadka:

  • Oil-1 tbsp
  • Ginger-garlic paste-1 tsp
  • Red chili powder-1 tsp

Dal Dhansak Masala

Check and clean all ingredients for debris and keep in sunlight for 1 day. Roast on Tava taking care to prevent scorching then let it cool down. Then grind into a powder in a Mixer Grinder or Masala chakki. Let the Masala cool. Sieve and fill in airtight containers. Or if you dont get time to make the masala at home then you can buy the Ready made masala available in the market.

Following are the ingredients you can use to make Dhansak masala.

250gm Coriander seeds (Dhanya seeds)

50gm Cumin (Jeera Seeds)

20gm Black Pepper (Kali Mirchi)

20gm Fenugreek seeds (Methi seeds) (Omit if you are allergic to fenugreek)

20gm Black Mustard seeds (Rai)

50gm Red Chilies

25gm Haldi (Turmeric powder)

10gm Tej Patta

3-4 Kaale phool (Black Flower shaped anise pods)

1 tsp Lavang (Cloves)

3-4 Dalchini (Cinnamon sticks)

1 tsp Dry Soonth (Ginger powder)

1 tsp Elaichi (Cardamom powder)

Method of preparation:

  • Firstly, take a pressure cooker and add toor dal, diced pumpkin, brinjal, onion, tomato puree, coriander/kasuri methi and all the spices mentioned in the ingredients along with 2 cups of water and give it a good mix. Next, cover the lid of the cooker and cook it for 3-4 whistles.
  • After 3-4 whistles, turn off the stove and mash the mixture properly.
  • Next, heat oil in a wok and then add ginger-garlic paste and cook it for 30-40 seconds. After it turns golden, then add red chili powder.
  • Lastly, add the mashed dal mixture in the wok and mix it well.
  • Finally, serve this dal dhansak with rice or chapati.

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