Coconut Curried Golden Lentils (20 Minutes!)

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A large pan of Coconut Curried Golden Lentils topped with fresh lemon slices

Sometimes you want to make a recipe so badly that you dream about it. This is one of those recipes.

It may be their vibrant golden color, but I just couldn’t wait to cook up these lentils and put them on every bowl and salad from here to eternity.

And oh my did they deliver. Let’s do this!

Wood serving platter with ingredients for making vegan Coconut Curried Golden Lentils

What is Curry Powder?

Curry powder is not a common ingredient used in traditional Indian cooking, but rather an invention of the British to evoke the flavors of Indian cuisine. The term “curry” in Indian cooking refers to a sauce or gravy served with vegetables or meat. (source)

How to Make Coconut Curried Golden Lentils

This dish comes together in about 20 minutes from start to finish, thanks to the quick cooking time of yellow lentils (which I’ve found to be very similar in texture and cooking time to red lentils).

While you give your lentils a quick boil, prepare a coconut curry sauce with spices, ginger, garlic, and a healthy dose of coconut milk (check out my DIY Coconut Milk recipe).

Pouring coconut milk into a pan of spices for Coconut Curried Golden Lentils

Once the sauce is seasoned, add your lentils and stir. Finish with a bit more seasonings and some fresh lemon juice and “POW” – you have beautiful curried golden lentils!

Since creating this recipe, we’ve learned that this dish is similar to a staple Sri Lankan dish called Parippu made with red lentils, coconut milk, and spices. How fun!

Pouring strained lentils into a large pan for Coconut Curried Golden Lentils

Friends, I hope you LOVE these lentils. They’re:

Savory
Saucy
Perfectly spiced
Aromatic
Coconutty
Hearty + Satisfying
& Seriously delicious

These curried lentils would be delicious atop rice, cauliflower rice, salads, bowls, and more. I could also see them being a delicious part of a wrap or sandwich.

And while delicious on their own, I think these would pair incredibly well with my Sweet Potato Cauliflower Curry, Avocado Sweet Potato Green Salad, Curried Butternut Squash Soup, Curried Beet Soup with Chickpeas, and our Vegan Naan.

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!

Large pan of vegan gluten-free Coconut Curried Golden Lentils with fresh lemon slices

Coconut Curried Golden Lentils (20 Minutes!)

Simple, flavorful curried yellow lentils seasoned with fresh spices, garlic, and ginger and swimming in a curried coconut sauce. The perfect plant-based side!
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Pan of Curried Golden Lentils with two spoons, lemon slices, and cilantro
4.84 from 179 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 6 (~1/2-cup servings)
Course Side
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Indian-Inspired, Sri Lankan-Inspired, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 3-4 Days

Ingredients

LENTILS

  • 4 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups golden (yellow) lentils* (rinsed and drained // or sub red with similar cook time or green with longer cooking time)

COCONUT CURRY SAUCE

  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil (or water)
  • 1 small shallot (diced // optional)
  • 4 cloves garlic (minced // ~2 Tbsp as original recipe is written)
  • 2-3 Tbsp fresh minced ginger
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 heaping Tbsp curry powder (DIY or store-bought)
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (for heat – omit if you don’t like spice)
  • 1 1/4 – 1 1/2 cups light coconut milk (DIY or store-bought canned)
  • 1-2 Tbsp coconut sugar or maple syrup (plus more to taste // or sub stevia)
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

Instructions

  • Note: Soaking lentils is optional but can improve digestibility and speed cook time. See notes for tips.
    Bring water to a boil in a large pot or saucepan. Add lentils and bring back to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to a simmer and cook lentils uncovered for 4-5 minutes or until just tender. Then drain and set aside. Be careful not to overcook or they can become mushy (cooking time will vary by variety of lentil – check package for instructions).
  • In the meantime, heat a large rimmed skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add oil or water, shallot (optional), garlic, and ginger (start with lesser quantity, and add more to taste as desired). Sauté for 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently. Then add salt, curry powder, turmeric, and cayenne and cook for 1 minute more. Lower heat to low.
  • Add coconut milk and coconut sugar (or maple syrup) and stir to combine. Cook over low heat for 3-4 minutes to combine the flavors (see photo).
  • Add the (well) drained, cooked lentils (see photo) to the coconut sauce and stir. They will likely need more seasoning at this point. I added a bit more salt, curry powder, turmeric, cayenne, and coconut sugar because I like big flavor. But season to taste.
  • Turn off heat, add lemon juice, and stir. Then serve and enjoy! These are delicious on their own, but they would also be tasty with rice, cauliflower rice, steamed or roasted vegetables, and more.

Video

Notes

*To improve digestibility and slightly speed cooking time, you can soak lentils by covering with cool water and soaking overnight or for 6-8 hours. Then rinse, drain, and proceed with recipe as instructed.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with the lesser amounts of coconut milk and coconut sugar.
*Method adapted from the talented Sprouted Kitchen.

Nutrition (1 of 6 servings)

Serving: 1 half-cup servings Calories: 235 Carbohydrates: 33.6 g Protein: 12.6 g Fat: 5.9 g Saturated Fat: 4.5 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.09 g Monounsaturated Fat: 0.24 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 295 mg Potassium: 91 mg Fiber: 13.6 g Sugar: 3.1 g Vitamin A: 38.52 IU Vitamin C: 3.84 mg Calcium: 54.25 mg Iron: 3.67 mg

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My Rating:




  1. Bertha says

    Delicious served with rice! I used yellow split peas and added carrots. I wanted to add cayenne, but didn’t have any & I was glad I omitted it, as my curry powder was much more spicy than I had anticipated.

  2. Marisa says

    1st time making this and my family absolutely loved it!! Only changes I made was used a regular yellow onion, the full fat coconut milk that’s all I had on hand and added chopped broccoli and string beans to the liquid before adding the cooked lentils. Definitely making it again…and again… thank you!!

  3. Carri says

    Perfectly spiced, so so cozy. I added some raw cashews for a bit of a texture difference, but they’re not necessary. Will definitely make this recipe again and again.

  4. Noplanetb says

    I love this recipe – freezes well, so warming now autumn is here ! I used powdered ginger but kept everything else as its written…just gorgeous! Pairs so well with the flatbread recipe here too! 10/10 AGAIN these recipes always turn put so perfectly for me !

  5. Alison says

    I make a big batch of this every week to eat as leftovers when life gets too busy to cook. I always sub water for oil with no issues. Sometimes I’ll add red pepper in as the onions, ginger, and garlic cook for some extra veggies.

    Served with rice, steamed kale, and baked sweet potato for a complete meal.

  6. Mel says

    The best curry ever and so easy! unbelievably tasty, rich, and comforting. I put only tbsp of ginger, though after reading some reviews and for my taste it was perfect. thank you Dana! xo

  7. Jenny says

    I used full fat coconut milk, 2 tbsp coconut oil, 1.5 tbsp ginger, and 2 tbsp curry powder. Everything else was per the recipe. We had it over rice and it was DELICIOUS! This was my first time cooking yellow lentils and I found them at an Indian market. They were good and held their shape well. I soaked them for 8 hours changing the water and rinsing them twice in that time. Skimming the foam off the top while they cook helps with digestibility too.

  8. Lucy says

    This recipe was pretty good! I think it would have been perfect with slightly less ginger- 3 tablespoons overwhelms the other flavors in my opinion. That said, it has a great texture and is really quick to whip together :)

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks for sharing your experience, Lucy! We do like ginger =) But feel free to scale it back, if preferred.

  9. Laura says

    Simple, filling, and delicious. I like mine spooned over rice with extra cayenne sprinkled on top. The hotter, the better. Thanks for the recipe!

  10. Rebecca says

    What a delicious dinner! I was all out of a few of the add-ins the recipe called for (garlic, ginger & turmeric) but it still tasted wonderful without them. I subbed red lentils, mixed in some kale, and served over rice. My husband said we should add this to our regular rotation. Thanks, Minimalist Baker! Love finding easy, plant-based recipes.

  11. Becky says

    Sooo tasty! Made it with full fat coconut milk and tomatoes. Served with naan bread and green beans. Will be making this again :)

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review, Becky. We are so glad you enjoyed it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  12. Espe says

    This recipe is truly phenomenal – simple, easy to prepare with any variety or mix of lentils, and what great, authentic flavor! Perfect for small or large batch recipes, indiviuals or large families, easy to freeze and reheat. Great for breakfast, lunch, or dinner as main dish or a side! Thank you for sharing!

    • Grace says

      This turned out so, so yummy. I added extra cayenne since we enjoy some kick, and a bit of coriander to play up the sweetness of the coconut. I served the dish paired with naan and roasted vegetables. Lovely recipe!

  13. Laura says

    this was quick, easy, and absolutely delicious! the taste is a perfect combination of sweet, spicy, nutty, and earthy, and vibrant. this will be my new go-to curry; thanks so much for posting this!

  14. allison rice says

    Hi ^^

    You mention this recipe would pair well with your curried beet soup. I’m wondering do you mean beside it, or the soup served on top of it? A really wierd question I know Haha

    Thank you!

  15. Deirdre says

    I love everything from MB and this is no exception! I added broccoli, chopped cashews and cherry tomatoes to the sauce, and made coconut brown rice on the side. DELICIOUS!

  16. Jennifer says

    This is a simple, quick and flavorful recipe. I used red lentils and experimented with cooking them in my instant pot. I halved the recipe so I used 3/4 cup red lentils + 1 cup water, 2 minutes high pressure, quick release and they came out great – meaning they still retained some structure and weren’t complete mush. I recommend this recipe! Thank you!

  17. Alex says

    Tasty, easy, and perfect rainy day easy dinner. I would cut the ginger way back, though. Perhaps half as much and then add more to suit your preference.

  18. Amanda Pieringer says

    So good! Made this tonight and had it with naan. Everyone in my family absolutely loved it- especially that sauce! Next time might make a little more sauce so you can dip the naan in it. Will definitely make again!

  19. Madi says

    I made this with brown lentils, added cilantro instead of shallots, it came out very delicious. My husband who is a huge meat eater wants to eat this every day for dinner now and it’s so easy to make. I’m so happy to have found a vegetarian dish that we both enjoy

  20. Krisha says

    This recipe is amazing! It reminds me of Mussaman Thai Curry, which is one of my favorite things ever. I had standard brown lentils (which I definitely overcooked) but the sauce is so good it didn’t matter! I folded in some fresh, massaged kale towards the end to give it a little something extra and it was delish. I agree with other reviews that the lemon really seals the deal. Will definitely be making this again!

    • Dana says

      I converted this for use in an instant pot, for anyone interested.

      I sauteed the onion, garlic, ginger, and spices in coconut oil. Added the coconut milk, dry lentils, and 2 cups of water. Cooked on “soup” setting on high pressure for 50 minutes (I only have green lentils, which take longer to cook). It came out perfectly! I’d personally add more spice and salt next time, but I like heavy spices.

  21. Hannah Shadrick says

    Delicious! Made this tonight with red lentils. Cooked them for 6-7 min. Added about 1/2 TBS extra curry powder with spices. Added 1/2 bag of frozen peas at the end. So tasty!

  22. Amber says

    Absolutely delicious, thank you so much! The sauce itself is perfect–you can add almost anything in your fridge or pantry. Chicken, potatoes, chick peas, greens, sweet potatoes whatever–I only had an old bag of green lentils that probably would never have been eaten and they were fantastic!
    I added peeled/cubed Yukon potatoes (to make it more appealing to my family who frowns at straight-up lentils)–added the potatoes after sautéing the spices, put in a bit of water in the pan and covered til the potatoes were soft then added everything else as directed. I keep frozen chunked ginger and turmeric in my freezer so I just grated that up. Thanks so much for this recipe, its going into my regular rotation!

  23. Heather says

    Delightful! We’ve used the sauce on brown lentils, red lentils, and rice, and I’m pretty sure this is my favorite curry sauce. I sub green curry paste in for the curry powder, and I never remember to buy shallots. Cooking chicken in the sauce is lovely as well. I’m considering trying it with with yellow curry paste.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review, Bibi. We are so glad you enjoyed it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  24. Charlene says

    I made this with brown lentils – because that was what in my pantry- and delish! I made some fresh bread to go with it. Whole family loved it and asked for it again. Thanks!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review and for sharing your modification, Charlene. We are so glad you enjoyed it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  25. Cleo says

    This is my favorite way to eat lentils! I often sauté vegetables in my pan before adding the garlic and ginger. Favorites include cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, and/or green beans.

    Yesterday I was craving this dish, but I couldn’t find any coconut milk in my cupboards. I substituted a can of Campbell’s Cream of Potato soup, and although it didn’t have the same sweetness of the coconut milk, it was really rich and creamy (not vegan!). The onion and celery flavors of the soup really added to the curry, plus there were little potato cubes in addition to the red bell pepper and green beans I’d already added.

    Thanks for a great recipe!

  26. MarlMar says

    Just made this! It’s wonderful and even made the brown rice we had with it taste good.. The lemon juice to finish definitely set it off. Thanks so much for the recipe.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review. We are so glad you enjoyed it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  27. Alexandra says

    Incredibly easy and delicious. Really love your recipes. Especially the Chana masala. I made it twice last week!

  28. Sarah says

    I love these! Very flavourful and comforting and so fast to prepare. They are great for meal prepping on Sunday. I really like taking them to work with some rice and veggies. Thanks for your great recipes, everything I’ve made so far has been delicious.

    Greetings from Germany :)

    • Erika says

      Your recipes are wonderfully accessible and cost efficient. They’re great all the time, but especially during a time when most folks don’t have the economic or social means to eat expensive meals. Your recipes are so tasty and the cost per serving makes them accessible to most!

      • Aiyana says

        I found this recipe while surfing the web for meatless recipe ideas for my mom. These lentils are delish and so quick and easy to make for a weeknight dinner. I served these lentils with some coconut brown basmati rice and loved all of the flavors. This is a keeper!! Thanks for sharing!

  29. Ron says

    I have an oversupply of canned green lentils. Would I be able to use these. Recipe looks excellent. Can’t wait to try…
    Thanks

    Ron

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hmm, maybe! The color won’t be quite as pretty, but we think it would still taste good. Let us know if you try it!

  30. Diana says

    This was so delicious! I used brown lentils so I soaked ahead of time and increased the cooking time. I realized that I forgot the lemon at the end because we were too excited to sit down and eat! Served with basmati rice and roasted veggies. Thank you for another awesome recipe – I’ll definitely be adding this one into the regular rotation!

  31. Anna says

    I have never eaten lentils more delicious! I followed recipe exactly, just skipped cayenne pepper, cut amount of ingredients in half and now regret cos ate it almost all at once. Next time will prepare at least for 2 days. Flavour was quite spicy, so I didn’t add anything extra at the end. Its important to add lemon juice cos without it its still good but lemon makes it much better. Will use this sauce for rice next time.

  32. Malika says

    Deelish x1000! I subbed the lentils with moong dal (because of an allergy) and it was oh so yummy. Just make sure to cook the moog dal for 10 minutes beforehand. I turned this into a side dish using 1 can of full fat coconut milk to reduce the liquid and up the creaminess. Serve it with steamed broccoli or your fave greens and you’re all set! Sending virtual hugs to the MB Team for making all my food dreams come true. xo <3

  33. Dina says

    This is so delicious, Dana! I’ve made it for my family twice now while on lockdown since I had all the ingredients (although my lentils were brown). It was sooooo good. It’s become a favourite. Everyone loved it. Thank you for posting this!

  34. Michal says

    Would there be a way to make coconut cream into light coconut milk? I have half a can in the fridge and don’t want it to go to waste.

  35. Allison says

    Excellent recipe. I’ve never cooked dried lentils or made a coconut curry before but love Indian flavors. Thank you, once again, for an incredible (better than restaurant) quality meal. Your recipes are keeping me going right now!

  36. Crystal says

    This was amazing. I made it and at first I was unsure- but then my husband and grew addicted. People at work would comment on how tasty it smelled. Comforting and nutritious meal.

    This is a staple in my meal rotation. Do not skip the lemon juice!

    Thank you for your hard work!

  37. Aviv says

    First time I comment on a recipe – that’s a lovely lentil dish. I added some cardamon which complement the coconut flavour, and it was da bomb. Will definitely make it again.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review, Aviv. We are so glad you enjoyed this recipe! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  38. Erin says

    This is a staple in our house. My husband (who isn’t a fan of any coconut flavour) and my 2 and 4 year olds all gobble this up like it’s going out of style. Whenever anyone is looking for a quick, delicious recipe this is where I direct them.

  39. Beth says

    Super yummy! I doubled it for my family of 6 (three teens) and even though everyone had seconds, we had a little bit leftover. I used 1 can regular coconut milk and a cup of water (instead of light coconut milk). Also, I used a few tsps of white sugar instead of maple syrup. We served it with lemon wedges and everyone said to make it again. Thanks, Dana!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review, Beth. We are so glad everyone enjoyed it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  40. Kirk says

    Cook lentils for 4-5 minutes? Well, they’ve been cooking for 15 minutes and aren’t even close to being done. Please stop sharing false information. Very frustrating.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hmm, what kind of lentils are you using? Brown and green take anywhere from 15-30 minutes to cook. But we’ve found red and yellow varieties only take 5, sometimes 10!

    • Daphne Kabeberi says

      I had a similar experience, unfortunately. I hadn’t soaked my lentils, so even after cooking for over 20 minutes, they were undercooked and gave digestive trouble. I determined to soak them in the future after that :)

      I’m trying this recipe again today, with an instant pot. I do hope that since the lentils have been soaked and will be cooked under pressure, I’ll have better results.

      • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

        Sorry to hear that, Daphne! Soaking or using the Instant Pot will help with digestibility. Thanks for the feedback!

  41. Kate says

    Wonderful flavor! Did this in the instant pot, sautéed everything first then added in lentils (I only had green in the pantry so we upped the cook time a bit) and veggie broth. Cooked on high for 8 min and then did slow release for about 15 min. Then added in coconut milk, sweetener and some extra salt. Excited to eat our leftovers today!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review, Amanda. We are so glad you enjoyed them! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  42. Michelle says

    I made this and loved it, I substituted lemon for lime juice, and added more curry powder, Garam masarla. Delicious!
    I tasted before and after lime juice, the acidity made it even better, don’t be sure to add some.

  43. Wendrika says

    These turned out to be the best homemade lentils I have ever made! I will definitely put these in the rotation. I made them with the sweet potato bowl and the whole meal was amazing.

  44. Louise Michelle says

    I’m never disappointed. I can always come to your page and find an amazing dish to make for dinner. I totally appreciate you!! xoxo

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      So kind! Thanks, Louise! Next time would you mind adding a rating to your review? It’s super helpful to us and other readers! xo

  45. Claire says

    Even though I messed up and made my lentils a little mushy, they still taste amazing! Though to be fair, I’m a sucker for anything with curry powder. To avoid having leftovers of the canned coconut milk, I adjusted the serving sizes and used 2 cups of red lentils. I also substituted brown sugar. The fresh ginger makes it pleasantly spicy. I garnished with cilantro and plan to eat it with quinoa, over mixed greens, and with spiralized squash “noodles.” Yummy!

  46. Ra says

    I tried this for the first time tonight, served with brown basmati, & it was lovely :) DEFINITELY DON’T MISS THE LEMON!!

    I use 100% maple syrup as a sweetener in most things, however I decided to try cooking with coconut sugar for the first time this time, as well.

    Next time I’ll start with half (1/2) TBSP Coconut sugar or syrup & ease into the sweetening process – rookie error!!

    Will be making this again :)

  47. Caroline says

    Hi! I made this for dinner tonight exactly (sub honey for maple syrup, which is hard to find in Italy) the way you wrote it and it was AMAZING. We are converting to vegetarian 4 days a week and have been searching for new lentil recipes. This knocked our socks off and we both licked the bowls clean. Thank you!

  48. Charlene says

    Delicious. This will be a regular at our house. Used red lentils, red onion, ground ginger, stevia instead of maple syrup, and tossed in approximately 1-1/2 cups of baby spinach that had no particular event planned for the week.
    YUM!

  49. Mel says

    This is so delicious, I’ve made it countless times! It comes out best when I follow the recipe as closely as possible in terms of cooking time!! However, I have never included the maple syrup, and it is always perfect to me!

  50. Pam says

    This was really delicious. I used green lentils until they were almost a soft mash, around 90 minutes, cuz that’s how I like them. I more than doubled the cayenne and used sweet onion since I don’t normally have shallots on hand. I had about 3/4 cup whole coconut milk and added water to make 1 1/3 cup. They don’t sell light coconut milk in Spain and, at any rate, it’s just watered down. I used the tiniest bit of stevia, certainly not enough to make it sweet and cut down on the lemon juice a little. I had to make myself stop eating but it’s all for me because my husband can’t stand curry. I already know what’s for lunch tomorrow!

  51. Laurel Collie says

    I made this using tinned yellow lentils, some red skinned potatoes, spinach and kumara (precooked). Absolutely delicious – thank you.

  52. Alison says

    My lord this is gooooood. I adapted it for the instant pot so used the whole can of lite coconut milk and added 2-3 cups of veggie broth. I sautéed all the aromatics before dumping the lentils and liquids in then cooked on high pressure for 3 minutes and natural release for close to 15 minutes. I couldn’t find yellow lentils so used red. They turned a wee bit mushy but it’s seriously delicious mush. Topped it with cilantro and served with brown rice and naan. This recipe is a keeper.

  53. Jessica Dowding says

    This is so easy and delicious!! I love the color and flavor. I didn’t have curry powder so I added some similar spices and a dash of cinnamon and nutmeg. I’m making this again today to take to work this week for lunch!

  54. Ashley Franklin says

    I love this recipe! I add a good scoop of tomato paste right before the coconut milk & cook in some cauliflower florets. Also the second time I made it I cooked in the lemon slices (added them when I added the lentils to the curry) and they got so sweet and caramelized! Mm! This is such a good, easy base recipe— I’ll be adding in some peas for more sweetness next time!

  55. Sandra says

    Excellent flavors. I LOVE the idea of making my own curry…I never even realized this was a mixture like Garam Masala. I thought there was a Curry Plant! D’OH!
    The only problem is that I overcooked my lentils so it came a bit soupy. I wonder why we need to add lemon at the end…to preserve it?

    • J says

      Late reply, nevertheless: there is indeed a curry tree (though it hasn’t anything to do with curry powders). Murraya koenigii! When a recipe calls for curry leaves, it’s M. koenigii’s leaves it’s referencing. Curry leaves show up frequently in southern Indian recipes. You can find them at Indian grocers.

  56. Eliz says

    Delish! Served it with spinach and basmati and used lime instead of lemon. I think it would be fabulous with a raita. Thank you!

  57. Imani says

    I really enjoyed this recipe both because it was really quick to make and really delicious. I didn’t have all the same ingredients. Instead of shallots, I sauteed onion, carrots and bell peppers and instead of coconut sugar I used honey. And I topped it with yogurt and cilantro. I’ll definitely be making this again soon!

  58. BethC says

    So so good! Thank you for this recipe.
    I pre-soaked the lentils for just about 30 minutes, but it seemed to help. I stuck to the recommendations for spices but used more shallots and less garlic, mostly based on what I had on hand. Topped with cilantro and yogurt.

  59. Misa says

    This recipe is insanely good. I don’t have premixed curry powder so I just sort of wing it with my spice rack– ginger, garlic power, cayenne, cumin, turmeric… I will say that this recipe needs VERY little added salt as the spices have a saltiness to them already. The flavor is super rich and I feel like FINALLY I’ve found a way to enjoy lentils.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review, Misa. We are so glad you enjoy it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  60. Joy S says

    Flavor is amazing!! Used split chickpeas the first time without soaking or cooking long enough because well, I thought they were yellow lentils. Definitely too crunchy but tasty enough to try again which is when I realized I had the wrong ingredient. Second time with Red lentils and added some diced yellow squash and peppers. This is an easy recipe, I will make again! Thanks!!

  61. Cindy M says

    I ordered some organic moong dal (yellow) lentils and couldn’t wait to cook them when I found this recipe. I made this last night for dinner and it was good however the lentils do not cook in 4-5 minutes and the recipe said nothing about soaking them. This to me is a vital part of the recipe. While the (you’ll need to add more seasonings) part is frustrating because in a recipe your looking for “specific measurements” I do understand that we Americans as a whole tend to prefer less spicy dishes although I like mine with a big kick.

    Overall I like the flavor and will make this again but I’ll definitely soak the lentils first.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks for sharing, Cindy! Glad you enjoyed the flavor. We’ll look for ways to improve the clarity of the instructions!

  62. Claire says

    I made this and it smelled amazing, but it tasted really bitter. I had to throw it out :-( any ideas where I went wrong?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Claire, Sorry to hear that! We haven’t had that issue and aren’t quite sure, but another reader mentioned the following: “Regarding bitterness issue, I have read that overcooking the spices can make them taste bitter. I kept a timer and stuck to Dana’s suggested times and saw no bitterness. Hope this helps!”. Another potential idea would be if any of the spices were old or not high quality? Better luck next time!

  63. Jennifer says

    Made this for dinner tonight, I did not have any coconut milk on hand, but had half & half which worked very well too.
    Thanks for sharing, this is definitely a do over.

  64. Gwen says

    I made this recipe so that I could have lunch ready for the week and I’m so glad I did – quick, easy and hearty! I served this over rice and added some sauteed sweet potato and mushrooms, then the day I was going to eat it I would chop in some cherry tomatoes, cilantro and arugula on top. Will be making again for sure! Also to note, I used green lentils as I already had them.

  65. Ellen says

    Hi! Do you think this would work if I made the sauce first then subbed in tinned lentils?? We don’t have any dry ones at the moment!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      That should work! Though it won’t have the same vibrant color. Let us know if you give it a try!

  66. Laura says

    We added zucchini, carrots, snap peas, peppers, and spinach to the lentils and curry and served over quinoa. It was absolutely delicious and felt so cozy and nourishing to eat. Definitely will be making again soon.

    Didn’t have fresh ginger so used ground ginger instead, apple cider vinegar and tangelo juice for the lemon, and full fat coconut milk. It turned out beautifully.

    Thanks for another delicious recipe, Dana!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review, Laura. We are so glad you enjoyed it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! xo

  67. Stephanie H. says

    I was trying to figure out what to do for dinner: go to the store or be creative? I looked in my pantry and saw lentils and remembered this recipe. I had everything I needed to make it, and it turned out so yummy!! My adjustments were: used green lentils (cooked for 15-20 mins), didn’t have a shallot and opted out of the cayenne, used only 1/4 tsp of ground ginger since I don’t like it very much, and used canned unsweetened regular coconut milk and real sugar. I ate it over rice. I will definitely make this again!

  68. Carinne says

    Wasn’t a fan of the sweetener, may omit or use a very small amount next time. Otherwise it was good!!

    • Ann says

      I made this tonight for a group of four and it was a huge hit! Truly delicious – I made it exactly as described except I used full coconut milk as I did not have the lite version – just used slightly less than the recipe called for. I served it over rice and I can’t wait to eat the leftovers.

  69. Amanda says

    Crowd pleaser! Should have doubled the recipe, great taste and easy to make. Thanks for the DIY curry powder, saved me as I live far away from a grocery store. I used green lentils and turned out great. ??

  70. MissDirection says

    I made this, except I completed the recipe in a different order. I also didn’t have ginger, so I left it out. I basically cooked the shallot and the spices first and then added the water, coconut milk, and lentils. Came out great. My boyfriend loved it. It tasted like Thai curry to me (I used garam masala for the “curry”…so I’m not sure why that is). A little Thai basil on top took it to another level. My boyfriend wants me to make it again soon.

  71. Anna says

    Hi,

    Because of an operation I can’t chew right now and I am only allowed to eat soup and similar stuff. Do you think I could blend the curry in the end? I know that this sounds weird, but I won’t last eating only soup for too long…

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Anna, we think this recipe would blend well. However, we aren’t sure if it will be blended enough for post-operation eating- might want to double check with your doc on that part!

  72. Jessica Parham says

    Could you make and freeze this? Im looking for freezer meals for when baby 3 comes!! And this is a favorite of ours!!

  73. Denise says

    SUCH an AMAZING recipe! As a student on a budget with not a lot of time on my hands, this meal is perfect. Love meal prepping it with rice and enjoying all week. The lemon and ginger add amazing flavor. Thanks so much!

  74. Kelly says

    I made this tonight and it turned out fantastic. Forgot fresh ginger so subbed some ground ginger. Paired it with cauliflower rice and slow roasted sweet potatoes and broccoli. Delicious!

  75. Liv says

    This was ridiculously delicious!! It really tastes like a dish that took waaaay more time to prepare. I went with 1 Tbs of ginger and skipped the cayenne because my toddler can’t handle spice. I added half a Tbs of curry powder and 1 Tbs of lemon juice at the end to suit my taste.

    Regarding bitterness issue, I have read that overcooking the spices can make them taste bitter. I kept a timer and stuck to Dana’s suggested times and saw no bitterness. Hope this helps!

    Thanks for another easy-peasy and super delicious recipe! Since discovering it last year, your website has been my cookbook. Thanks!

  76. Naydu says

    Do you think this would work in an instant pot? I’m afraid it will turn out mushy – I’m going to use red lentils because it’s what I have…

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Not sure! We don’t use an instant pot and can’t say for sure. If you experiment with this recipe, report back on how it goes!

  77. Adrienne Solomon says

    I made this yesterday and it was tooo delicious, I can’t wait for the leftovers tonight. The only change I made was substituting gochujang for cayenne. It was served it over cauliflower rice and steamed brussel sprouts. This will be a regular in my food repertoire.

  78. Jenn says

    I made this (w/ red lentils) for my weekly lunch prep and it turned out delicious. Spicy and comforting, and so easy to make. I definitely anticipate making this regularly throughout the winter. Thanks for instructions for lentil cooking time. I’ve struggled with mushy red lentils in the past by using the package directions, which tell you to boil about 12 min. 4-5 min. resulted in a perfect al dente texture.

  79. Megan says

    I made this for dinner tonight, and both my husband and I loved it. I added some steamed green beans and roasted cauliflower and served it over basmati rice. Since I didn’t have a shallot, I used a leek that needed to go and subbed red lentils. This recipe is a keeper!

  80. Denise Conejo says

    I just made this as a meal prep for lunch this week! I wanted something a bit more hearty, so I added a diced potato, diced butternut squash, and diced carrots, as well as lots of finely chopped sweet peppers! It tastes great and ended up coming out more like a thick stew, perfect for this fall weather <3 Thanks so much for this incredible recipe!

  81. Seneka says

    Hey! I love this blog and I am a vegan. This recipe is actually very similar to a Sri Lankan staple dish called parippu! Most Indian versions of lentil curry usually use more ghee and other non-vegan ingredients! Sri Lankan cuisine is relatively more vegan friendly, as we use more coconut oil and coconut milk in place of butter, ghee, and milk!

  82. Makayla says

    I just made this to have throughout the week as a quick and nourishing meal while i’m at college! I made the recipe with 1/2 diced small sweet onion instead of a shallot and added chopped carrots from the farmer’s market. Was going to add in some butternut squash cubes too but totally forgot. It turned out amazingly delicious and came together SO quickly. Having a bowl right now. Thank you for this lovely recipe!!

  83. Julie Ann @ Salt Sugar Sea says

    O H MY these are the most delicious lentils I have ever made! I’ve had a bag of green lentil in my cupboard that I bought in a whim, with no idea what to do with them. So when I saw this recipe, I could not wait to try it. The flavor is all the warm and spicy sweet I was hoping to find! I swapped for the green lentils (cooked about 15 min, drained, and then covered in the pot while making the rest) then served over sautéed spinach and chopped sweet potato, with you’re cilantro chutney on top. I’m craving more of them just writing this post :) Sooo good!

  84. Makena says

    I have cooked this three times now and it is a favorite in my house! I substituted the coconut sugar for brown sugar and added sesame and chia seeds on top for extra fiber. So amazing! Love this recipe.

  85. Roxanne says

    This curry was so good, I could not believe it. The only thing I substituted was full fat coconut milk instead of lite coconut milk because it was all I had. My whole family loved it.

    • Roxanne says

      I also make this sauce now for chicken instead of lentils. I just slice the chicken into thin bite sized pieces and saute it in olive oil for a bit and then add the rest of the curry ingredients. So delicious over brown rice.

  86. Arwa Stone says

    I made this tonight. Lentils needed cooking for longer. Followed the recipe and it was delicious!