Dal Maharani Recipe

Dal Maharani Recipe. Dal Maharani or Maharani Dal is a rustic punjabi preparation of slow cooked lentils made using a mix of lentils. Paired with tandoori rotis or naan, dal maharani makes for a wholesome delicious meal.

Dal Maharani Recipe.
Dal Maharani Recipe

How is Dal Maharani Different from Dal Makhani?

Both Dal Maharani and Dal Makhani belong to Punjabi cuisine. Firstly, the type of lentils used in both the dal is different. Secondly, the consistency of Dal Makhani is buttery and smooth. Dal Maharani has a lot of texture from the lentils itself as well from the chopped onion, garlic and ginger. Thirdly, dal makhani has a rich tomato taste in its preparation, be it from canned tomatoes or tomato puree, Dal Makhani has a sweetness and tang of tomatoes in its taste. Dal Maharani has a robust & vibrant taste of spices in its final form.

Dal Maharani Recipe Close Up

How to Make Dal Maharani/Maharani Dal/Dal Maharani Recipe?

The first step in making Dal maharani is to soak the lentils overnight. They cook evenly and faster. Pressure cook the lentils with spices, ginger and garlic. Then I prepare a tempering of browned onions, tomatoes, ginger & garlic and whole spices. Then I add the the lentils and simmer them over low heat until creamy. I like to finish off with a little bit of heavy cream.

A few things to be kept in mind when making Dal Maharani :-

  1. Soak the lentils overnight. Else they will take a long time to cook and will cook unevenly.
  2. As mentioned before , I use 3 kinds of dal when making Dal Maharani – whole urad, split green mung and chana dal in equal quantity. If you want it chunkier, use whole green mung in place of dhuli (split) green mung. Dont add a lot of rajma, 2-3 tablespoons i more than enough.
  3. Don’t use a lot of tomatoes or garlic. Unlike dal makhani, this dal has a pronounce taste of onions, ginger and spices.
  4. You can also use Instant pot for cooking the lentils instead of pressure cooker. You can slow cook the lentils from scratch over open stove for long hours. However, I like to shorten the cooking time by boiling the lentils in a pressure cooker.

How To serve Dal Maharani?

Dal Maharani is pairs deliciously with rotis or paratha. However you can also serve it with steamed or cumin rice and a salad.I also like to eat it on its own with a dollop of thick yogurt.

Here are few more Dal recipes to try from the blog :-

Dal Makhani

Chana Dal with Lauki

Dal Tadka

Milai Ki Dal (Arhar – Urad)

Kali Masoor ki Dal



Dal Maharani Recipe

Dal Maharani Recipe. Dal Maharani or Maharani Dal is a rustic & wholesome punjabi preparation of lentils made using a mix of lentils. Dal Maharani delicious, creamy and is slow cooked by simmering the lentils over low heat for long time. Paired with tandoori rotis, this dal maharani makes for a wholesome meal. 
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes


For Boil the lentils

  • 1/3 cup whole black urad lentils
  • 1/3 cup split or whole green mung lentils
  • 1/3 cup chana dal (bengal gram lentils)
  • 2 tablespoon rajma(kidney beans)
  • 1 large black cardamom
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chopped ginger
  • 2 teaspoon ghee
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3-4 cup water

For Tempering the Dal

  • 4 tablespoon ghee
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 large bay leaf
  • 1.5 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon hing
  • 2 dried red chilies
  • 1 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1.5 tablespoon ginger garlic paste
  • 2 teaspoon corinader powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder, adjust to taste
  • 1/2 cup tomato puree (simply blend 2 fresh tomatoes)
  • 1/2 tablespoon Chopped ginger (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 2-3 tablespoon heavy cream
  • Chopped cilantro, ginger julienne, chopped green chilies to garnish


  • Wash the lentils and rajma 3-4 times and soak overnight or for atleast 10 hours.
  • Discard the water and add lentils and rajma to a pressure cooker along with all the ingredients listed under "boil the lentils". Pressure cook on medium heat for 6-7 whistles. Takes about 15 minutes (adjust the time as per your pressure cooker//Instant pot). Let pressure release naturally.
  • While the lentils are boiling you can start making the tempering.In a heavy pot or kadai, heat up the ghee.
  • Temper the ghee with clove, bayleaf, dried chilies, cumin seeds and hing all at once. Saute for 10-15 seconds or so and then add the chopped onions. Brown the onions to a dark (but not burnt) shade of brown while sautéing in ghee. Takes about6-7 minutes on medium low stove.
  • Add the ginger garlic paste along with coriander and red chili powder. Saute the spices for 30-45 seconds.
  • Then add the tomatoes and let them cook for 3-4 minutes with the masala till you see oil bubbles separating on the sides.
  • Meanwhile, the dal must have pressure cooked Using back of your spoon, slight mash the dal and stir so that water and lentils are mixed well.
  • Add the warm dal to the onion tomato masala. Add the chopped ginger (if suing) and mix well. Taste and adjust the salt. Also depending on the consistency you like, add 1/2 cup or more water. Let come to a slow boil.
  • Cover and let the dal simmer for about 20-25 minutes on low heat. You will need to stir it in between (that makes it creamy) and make sure that its not sticking to the bottom of the pot.
  • Once the dal has simmered and its of desired consistency, add the garam masala and heavy cream. Mix well and simmer for another 5 minutes.
  • Garnish with cilantro, ginger julienne etc and serve. You can also add some butter if you wish.

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