I’ve been counting down the days to share this curry with you all! It’s incredibly hearty, versatile, and is ready in just 30 minutes. Shall we?
This recipe came together on a whim one night when using up odds and ends from the week. I was hungry and needed something fast for dinner (hence the 30 minutes).
The first step is rinsing and cooking your red lentils, which I recommend doing in a separate pan. Red lentils cook really quickly (less than 10 minutes in my experience), and benefit from cooking separately versus in the pot with the rest of the curry.
While that’s happening, you’ll warm some whole spices like cumin, coriander, and mustard seed in a little coconut or avocado oil before adding shallot, ginger, garlic, and serrano pepper! For vegetables I went with cauliflower, potato, and bell pepper because that’s what I had on hand. But you can certainly sub similar vegetables according to what’s in season!
To make a saucy curry, I recommend blitzing a can of diced tomatoes (or grating a few whole tomatoes) into a loose sauce. This adds depth of flavor to the dish and makes it a little lighter than a curry that gets all its moisture from coconut milk.
Next comes a little vegetable broth for richness, coconut aminos for depth of flavor and umami, maple syrup for a touch of sweetness, and a little coconut milk to ensure a creamy texture.
Friends, I’ve been digging this curry so hard ever since we created it. We hope you love it, too! It’s:
This would make the perfect meal when you need something hearty and delicious on the table fast! The vegetables can be swapped out for whatever you have on hand. And you can play around with the tomato:coconut ratio for varied texture. Add more tomatoes or broth for a lighter curry or more coconut milk for a creamier, richer curry!
More Curry Recipes
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30-Minute Potato Cauliflower Red Lentil Curry
- 1 ½ cups water
- 2/3 cup red lentils (if subbing another kind of lentil, adjust cook time accordingly)
- 2 Tbsp avocado or coconut oil (or sub double amount in water)
- 1 tsp whole mustard seed
- 1 tsp whole cumin seed
- 1 tsp whole coriander seed
- 3 whole cardamom pods
- 1/2 cup sliced shallot
- 1 ½ Tbsp minced ginger
- 1 serrano pepper (seeds removed, diced)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 cup chopped cauliflower
- 1 cup chopped red bell pepper
- 1 ½ cups peeled and chopped golden potato or sweet potato (large bite-size pieces)
- 1 tsp curry powder
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes (or sub three large ripe tomatoes)
- 1 ½ cups vegetable broth
- 2 Tbsp coconut aminos
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup
- 1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk (or sub light coconut milk or other dairy-free milk, such as almond, cashew, or rice)
- Bring water to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, add lentils, bring back to a gentle boil, then reduce heat to a simmer and cook uncovered for 7-10 minutes or until just tender. You want them to be cooked through but not mushy. Drain well and set aside.
- In the meantime, heat a large rimmed skillet or pot over medium heat. Once hot, add oil (or water), mustard seed, cumin seed, coriander seed, and cardamom pods. Cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until fragrant and popping (stirring occasionally).
- Add shallot, ginger, and serrano pepper and stir. Sauté for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. The shallot should be soft and translucent. Then add garlic and stir once more.
- Add cauliflower, red bell pepper, potato, curry powder, and salt and stir. Cook for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- If grating your tomatoes, do so and add to the pan now. If using diced canned tomatoes, I recommend giving them a quick blend in a food processor or small blender to create more of a purée. Once tomatoes have been added to the pan, also add vegetable broth and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cover and cook for 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
- Add cooked drained lentils, coconut aminos, maple syrup, and coconut milk and stir. Bring back to a simmer and cook for a few minutes to let the flavors meld. You can simmer this for up to 15 minutes, but it’s not necessary.
- Taste and adjust flavors as needed, adding more maple syrup for sweetness, curry powder to intensify the curry flavor, salt to taste, or coconut aminos for saltiness / depth of flavor. We added a bit more of each.
- To serve, divide between serving bowls and enjoy as is or with a side of naan, rice, steamed greens, or quinoa (optional). Fresh lime juice and cilantro make lovely additions as well (optional). NOTE: Be careful not to eat the cardamom seeds as they can have quite a kick!
- Store cooled leftovers in the refrigerator up to 5 days or in the freezer up to 1 month. Reheat in the microwave or in a saucepan. Add more vegetable broth or coconut milk as needed to rehydrate.