coconut red lentil dhal with rice and chapati

Coconut Red Lentil Dhal (gluten-free | oil-free)

A deliciously healthy super creamy dish that is perfect for an everyday comfort meal or a cozy rainy day. This Coconut Red Lentil Dhal is not only gluten-free and oil-free, but it is also vegan, super easy and all made in one pan. Recipe for 5 servings.

 red lentil dhal with rice and coriander


When I made my first Lentil Dhal a few years ago, I discovered a delicious naturally creamy dish, that I ended up making regularly, encouraged by the positive returns on this vegan dish. I have improved this recipe every time I have made it, and I hope you will enjoy it as much as I do. 

I would love to know how this recipe went for you so please leave a comment at the end of the page if you try it.

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coconut red lentil dhal with white rice and chapati

IS RED LENTIL DHAL HEALTHY?

Most Lentil Dhal recipes are relatively healthy considering it is a meal made of whole foods that are high in nutrients and low in fat. 

This Red Lentil Dhal is free from dairy (what’s wrong with dairy?) AND free from oil (click on this link to get insight into the reasons why you should avoid consuming too much oil). It is, therefore, one of the healthiest recipes you can find online.

Check out this Spicy Potato Chips (oil-free | easy) recipe for another delicious oil-free savoury meal idea.

COCONUT RED LENTIL DHAL CALORIES

This Coconut Red Lentil Dhal is low in calorie and makes a great satisfying meal for weight loss if you are trying to lose weight. Each generous serving of Lentil Dhal contains only 421 calories. See nutrition facts at the end of the page for more info.

orange lentils with white rice and coriander

RED LENTIL DHAL WITH RICE

I recommend about 90 g of white rice (uncooked weight) per serving, which I find goes perfectly with one serving of Coconut Red Lentil Dhal.

I love to have my dhal with white rice as it is an easy side dish to make. However, if you want to try the traditional way, I would recommend you having your Coconut Red Lentil Dhal with naan bread or chapatis (also called roti, chapatis are Indian flatbreads). Here is a chapati recipe I like.

coconut red lentil dhal with white rice and chapati

Otherwise, your options on what to serve with this Red Lentil Dhal are endless. You can serve it by itself, with basmati or cauliflower rice, with quinoa, with couscous, with bread… or really with anything you fancy!

HOW TO MAKE COCONUT RED LENTIL DHAL?

All you need to make this recipe is a sample of a few basic ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen:

-onions

-garlic clove

-fresh ginger

-spices (turmeric, cumin seeds, rosemary, chilli powder, cinnamon, salt, and pepper)

saucepan with onions and spices

-potatoes

red lentils

-water

coconut milk

-and some fresh coriander and lime to make it perfect!

EASY RED LENTIL DHAL RECIPE

You are on the right page because this recipe is a one-pan recipe. This means that to make this Coconut Red Lentil Dhal you only need one large saucepan and one wooden spoon to stir occasionally. All you have to do is add ingredients while the Dhal is cooking!

To make this recipe even simpler, I use a manual food chopper to chop onions, garlic, ginger and coriander and it makes life SO MUCH EASIER. I would recommend you giving it a try if you don’t already have one. It is affordable and super handy and easy to clean.

dhal cooking in large saucepan

VEGAN COCONUT LENTIL DHAL

Some Lentil Dhal recipes might contain butter, cow milk or other animal-based ingredients. But this Coconut Red Lentil Dhal recipe is 100% vegan, yet 100% delicious!

CREAMY RED LENTIL DHAL WITH COCONUT MILK

The coconut milk in this recipe contributes to making this Coconut Red Lentil Dhal:

-naturally thick and creamy

tasty and satisfying

-delicious and filling

-and super healthy!

plates with lentil dhal rice and coriander

HOW TO STORE COCONUT RED LENTIL DHAL?

Once completely cool, store in the fridge for up to 3 days in close airtight containers.

CAN YOU FREEZE RED LENTIL DHAL? 

Yes, it can, as much as you want and for up to 3 months! I would recommend freezing your dhal in meal-sized amounts in separate containers to make it easier when you want to use it. 

Then all you will have to do is to pop one container out of the freezer, heat it in the microwave and your meal is served! 

red lentil dhal with chapati

Check out this Easy Chickpea Curry (in only 30 minutes) recipe for another awesome Indian recipe that can be frozen!

SUBSTITUTIONS

Want your Red Lentil Dhal with sweet potato? I used normal potatoes in this recipe but you can substitute them with sweet potato.

Also, feel free to add your favorite vegetables besides or instead of the potatoes! (I love this recipe with mushrooms, courgettes, spinach or aubergines.)

lentils rice coriander lime chapati

If you are looking for a Lentil Dhal with chickpeas, this Easy Chickpea Curry (in only 30 minutes) is your go-to recipe! Otherwise, you can simply add 400 g of cooked chickpeas to this recipe and you are all set!

You can substitute coconut milk with soy milk or water. Keep in mind it will affect the final flavour.

To make your Red Lentil Dhal without onion, I recommend using 3 garlic cloves instead of 1. Keep in mind it will affect the final flavour. 

PRINT, PIN, OR BOOKMARK THIS RECIPE!

Make sure you bookmark (or pin) this recipe, so whenever you need inspiration for dinner or a gathering event, you can find this recipe and make everyone happy!

coconut red lentil dhal oil-free vegan gluten-free

You can also tag me on Instagram @thedorkyfrench for a chance to be featured!

RECIPE IN VIDEO (1 MIN)

coconut red lentil dhal with white rice and chapati
Print Recipe
5 from 3 votes

Coconut Red Lentil Dhal (oil-free | gluten-free)

A deliciously healthy super creamy dish that is perfect for an everyday comfort meal or a cozy rainy day. This Coconut Red Lentil Dhal is not only gluten-free and oil-free, but it is also vegan, super easy and all made in one pan.
Prep Time12 mins
Cook Time27 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: coconut red lentil dhal, gluten-free, oil-free, vegan
Servings: 5 people
Calories: 421kcal
Author: TheDorkyFrench

Equipment

  • large saucepan
  • wooden spoon
  • knife or food chopper

Ingredients

  • 2 small onions (or 1 big) peeled and finely chopped*
  • 1 garlic clove peeled and finely chopped*
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ginger finely chopped*
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder or cinnamon stick
  • 400 g red lentils (raw weight) rinsed and drained
  • 150 g potatoes (about 2 potatoes) washed and cut in pieces
  • 900 ml water
  • 300 ml coconut milk
  • 1 handful fresh coriander finely chopped*
  • 1/4 lime

Instructions

  • Watch the one minute recipe video to see all instruction steps.
  • Pro tip: prepare all ingredients in advance as listed in the ingredients list.
  • Heat up a large saucepan with a splash of water.
  • Add the onions, garlic and ginger, and cook on high heat for 5 minutes. Stir with wooden spoon.
    onions cooking in saucepan with wooden spoon
  • Add water while cooking if ingredients stick to the pan.
  • Add the spices (turmeric, cumin seeds, rosemary, chilli powder, cinnamon, salt, pepper). Cook for an additional 2 minutes on medium heat.
    saucepan with onions and spices
  • Add the red lentils and potatoes to the saucepan. Stir with wooden spoon.
    orange lentils and potatoes in saucepan
  • Add the water and coconut milk. Cover with lid and bring to a boil. Simmer for 20 minutes. Stir occasionally.
    saucepan with lid
  • Add coriander and lime juice** to the saucepan. Stir with wooden spoon.
    dhal cooking in large saucepan
  • Serve warm, and enjoy!
  • Store in the fridge for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 3 months.

Video

Notes

*I use a manual food chopper to chop onions, garlic, ginger and coriander and it makes life SO MUCH EASIER. I would recommend you giving it a try if you don't already have one.
**Press the juice of the 1/4 lime and throw the lime in the saucepan for extra flavour. Remove lime when serving.


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3 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    fresh coriander – you mean cilantro? 😀 I was confused for a minute where I’d get coriander and then I realize that’s probably ol’ good cilantro

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