Moong Dal
Moong Dal
5 from 9 votes
This moong dal recipe is a simple lentil curry made using split green gram lentils. Moong dal tastes delicious and only needs a few simple ingredients to prepare.
Moong Dal

Moong dal, also known as split green gram lentils, is a delightful dish that finds its roots in Indian cuisine. This recipe offers a comforting and flavorful experience, making it a popular choice for both everyday meals and special occasions.

Despite its rich flavors, moong dal is surprisingly easy to prepare, making it perfect for beginners in the kitchen.

Originating from the Indian subcontinent, moong dal has been a staple in households for centuries. It’s not only delicious but also nutritious, packed with protein and essential nutrients.

The lentils used in this recipe lend a creamy texture and mild flavor, making it suitable for diverse palates. While moong dal might seem complex at first glance, fear not, as it falls on the easier side of Indian cooking.

With simple ingredients like onions, tomatoes, and a blend of aromatic spices, this dish comes together effortlessly. The combination of garlic, green chilies, and cumin adds layers of flavor, creating a harmonious balance that tantalizes the taste buds.

Expert Tip: Experiment with additional spices such as coriander powder, garam masala, or fenugreek leaves to customize the flavor of your moong dal according to your taste preferences.


Lentils Split Green Gram: These lentils form the heart of the dish, providing a creamy texture and a nutty flavor. Rich in protein and fiber, they make this dish not only delicious but also nutritious.

Oil: Used for sautéing the onions, tomatoes, and spices, oil adds richness and helps to bring out the flavors of the ingredients.

Onions: Finely diced onions add sweetness and depth to the dish as they caramelize during cooking, enhancing its overall flavor profile.

Tomatoes: Tomatoes contribute acidity and freshness to the dish, balancing the richness of the lentils and spices. They also provide natural sweetness, complementing the savory elements.

Green Chillies: Green chillies bring a hint of heat and brightness to the dish, adding a subtle kick without overwhelming the other flavors.

Garlic Paste: Garlic paste infuses the dish with its aromatic flavor, enhancing the savory notes and adding complexity to the taste.

Salt: Salt not only seasons the dish but also helps to bring out the natural flavors of the ingredients, ensuring a well-balanced taste.

Chilli Powder: Chilli powder adds warmth and a gentle heat to the dish, enhancing its spiciness without overpowering the other flavors.

Turmeric Powder: Turmeric powder imparts a vibrant golden color to the dish and adds earthy undertones, while also offering anti-inflammatory properties.

Cumin Powder: Cumin powder adds a warm and slightly nutty flavor to the dish, complementing the other spices and enhancing their aromatic qualities.

Expert Tip: For a richer flavor, you can use ghee (clarified butter) instead of oil for sautéing the onions and spices.

Serving Suggestions

  • Sautéing Onions: Heat oil in a pot over medium heat until hot. Then, add the finely diced onions and cook for 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they become soft and translucent. This step helps to develop a sweet and savory base for the dish, enhancing its overall flavor profile.
  • Adding Garlic and Green Chilli Paste: Once the onions are softened, add the garlic paste and green chilli paste to the pot. Sauté for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly, until the raw aroma of the garlic diminishes and the spices become fragrant. This step infuses the dish with aromatic flavors and adds a subtle heat to the dish.
  • Cooking Tomatoes: Next, add the tomatoes to the pot and continue to cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they start to break down and release their juices. This helps to create a flavorful tomato base for the moong dal, adding brightness and acidity to the dish.
  • Adding Spices: Once the tomatoes are softened, add the salt, chilli powder, turmeric powder, and cumin powder to the pot. Stir well to combine, allowing the spices to toast slightly and release their flavors. This step is crucial for enhancing the overall taste and aroma of the dish.

Expert Tip: Rinse the lentils before cooking to remove any dirt or debris and to ensure they cook evenly.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is moong dal healthy?

Moong dal is highly nutritious as it is rich in protein, fiber, and essential vitamins and minerals. It’s a great source of plant-based protein and is considered beneficial for overall health when consumed as part of a balanced diet.

Can I use other lentils instead of split green gram lentils?

While split green gram lentils are traditional for this recipe, you can certainly experiment with other lentils such as red lentils or yellow lentils. Keep in mind that different lentils may have varying cooking times and textures, so adjust cooking times accordingly.

Can I make moong dal ahead of time?

Yes, you can make moong dal ahead of time and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Simply reheat it on the stovetop or in the microwave before serving. You may need to add a splash of water to loosen the consistency if it thickens upon cooling.

Is moong dal suitable for vegetarians and vegans?

Yes, moong dal is suitable for both vegetarians and vegans as it is made entirely from plant-based ingredients. It’s a popular choice in vegetarian and vegan diets due to its high protein content and versatility in cooking.

Can I adjust the spice level of moong dal to my preference?

Absolutely! Feel free to adjust the amount of green chillies, chilli powder, and other spices according to your taste preferences. If you prefer a milder dish, you can reduce the amount of chillies or omit them altogether. Conversely, if you like it spicier, you can increase the amount of chillies or add additional spice blends.

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Moong Dal

Moong Dal

by Nabeela Kauser
This moong dal recipe is a simple lentil curry made using split green gram lentils. Moong dal tastes delicious and only needs a few simple ingredients to prepare.
5 from 9 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Indian, Pakistani
Servings 4
Calories 404 kcal


  • 300 g Lentils Split Green Gram
  • 50 ml Oil
  • 1 Onions
  • 2 Tomatoes
  • 2 Green Chillies
  • 1 tsp Garlic Paste
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Chilli Powder
  • 1 tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 1 tsp Cumin Powder
  • 500 ml Water


  • In a pot heat up the oil on medium heat until hot then add the finely diced onions and cook for 4-5 minutes until softened (see note 1)
  • Add the garlic paste and green chilli paste and sauté for 1-2 minutes
  • Then add the tomatoes and cook for 3-4 minutes
  • Add the spices and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add 2 tbsp of water and cook for 2-3 mins
  • Once the oil has separated, you can add the split green gram lentils
  • Mix well and cook for 2-3 minutes,
  • Then add water, cover and cook on medium heat for 20-25 minutes
  • When the curry is cooked, garnish with coriander.



Note 1 – I like to use olive oil, but you can use any oil such as vegetable oil or sunflower oil.
Nutritional facts:
The provision of nutritional information is done so merely as a courtesy and should not be taken as a guarantee.


Calories: 404kcalCarbohydrates: 53gProtein: 20gFat: 13gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0.05gSodium: 681mgPotassium: 939mgFibre: 25gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 697IUVitamin C: 17mgCalcium: 68mgIron: 7mg
Keyword Cooking, Curry, Dal, Food, Healthy, Lentils, Protein, Recipe
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Cook with Nabeela

Hi, I'm Nabeela!

I love to cook! I want to share with you my favourite, delicious family-friendly recipes. I want to inspire you to create fantastic food for your family every day.

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