Chana Dal Pulao
Chana dal pulao is a one pot lentil rice pilaf made in Indian Style with basmati rice, veggies, spices and herbs. This is packed with flavor, deliciousness and is protein-rich. Make this in a pot or in a pressure cooker for a healthy and satiating meal. Chana dal pulao can be served on its own with out any sides. But raita or plain yogurt make great sides.
Chana dal is skinned and split lentil made from desi variety of chickpeas known as Kala chana. These are a staple in the Indian cuisine and are used in various dishes, from curries to snacks and appetizers like this masala vada.
This lentil is also used to make chutneys, stir fry dishes and in tempering while making South Indian dishes.
You can also make this dish without veggies. But to perk up the nutrition I use carrots or beets. I have cooked the dish in water, the same way as we cook pulao dishes. To make it rich, you can also use thin coconut milk (not from can, coconut milk from carton goes well for this).
More Pulao recipes
Coconut milk pulao
How to Make Chana Dal Pulao
1. Wash and soak dal for about 4 to 6 hours. This helps not only to cook well but is also lighter for digestion. Wash and soak rice for about 20 to 30 minutes. Drain off and set aside.
2. Saute cumin, cloves, cardamom, bay leaf, star anise, cinnamon and mace until they begin to sizzle.
3. Fry sliced onions until lightly golden.
4. Next fry ginger garlic paste until the raw smell goes off.
5. Saute carrots and pudina /mint leaves for 2 minutes.
6. Transfer rice and chana dal. Mix and fry for 2 to 3 minutes.
7. Add salt.
8. Pour water.
9. Cook on a medium flame until water is almost evaporated.
10. Cover the pot with a lid and cook until done. If making in pressure cooker, cover the lid and lower the flame. Cook just for 5 minutes. Switch off before the cooker whistles. When the pressure goes off, add coriander leaves and little lemon juice. If using right away i suggest adding little ghee.
Serve chana dal pulao with raita or salad.
Chana Dal Pulao
For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card
Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )
- 1 cup rice uncooked
- ½ cup chana dal or bengal gram
- 2 ¼ cup water
- 1 large carrot (¾ cup)
- 1 medium onion sliced
- 1 green chili slit (skip for kids or deseedand use)
- 1 tsp ginger garlic paste
- 1 handful pudina or mint
- 1 bay leaf
- ½ tsp cumin or jeera
- ½ star anise
- 1 strand mace (optional)
- 2 green cardamoms or elaichi
- 1 inch cinnamon or dalchini
- 1.5 tbsp oil
- salt as needed
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- coriander leaves chopped, few
- Wash and soak chana dal for 4 to 6 hours and rice for 20 minutes. Drain and set aside.
- Heat oil in a pot and fry spices until they begin to crackle.
- Add onions and fry until lightly done. Next add ginger garlic paste and fry until the raw smell is gone.
- Transfer veggies and pudina, saute for 2 minutes.
- Add soaked and drained rice and dal. Fry for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Pour water salt and cook until the rice is done. Towards the end, when the water is almost absorbed, cover and simmer on a low flame. If using pressure cooker, cover and cook on a low heat for 5 minutes.
- When the pressure is down, sprinkle lemon juice and coriander leaves.
Alternative quantities provided in the recipe card are for 1x only, original recipe.
For best results follow my detailed step-by-step photo instructions and tips above the recipe card.
NUTRITION INFO (estimation only)
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I’m Swasthi Shreekanth, the recipe developer, food photographer & food writer behind Swasthi’s Recipes. My aim is to help you cook great Indian food with my time-tested recipes. After 2 decades of experience in practical Indian cooking I started this blog to help people cook better & more often at home. Whether you are a novice or an experienced cook I am sure Swasthi’s Recipes will assist you to enhance your cooking skills.
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I tried the pulao yesterday and it turned out very nice and it’s a quick one pot meal and healthy too !
I just added some turmeric powder for colour ?
Yes healthy one. Thanks for the comment.
Does this work with kabuli chana ?
Yes but you will need to cook the chana first.
I love all your recipes. It has just been a month that I have started following your recipes I started with toddler food.first. Your food chart for babies really helped me a lot. I would like to thank you for all the information. It is very simple and easy to remember recipes shown by you.
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Welcome. I am glad the food chart and recipes helped. Thanks for your time to write here. Have a good day
simple and healthy pulav
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Hello Girish Kantt,
Welcome. I am happy to know my recipes help you to cook tasty food.
Thanks a ton for all the good wishes. Have a wonderful week ahead.
Looks so tempting. .love this one pot meal.