Dal Makhani

1:20 h

Dark, rich, creamy, buttery and utterly delicious - Dal Makhani is one of India's most special and popular dal. Obviously we're using plant-based butter and oat milk to replicate that epic creaminess, and man is it good. Packed full of flavour with ginger, cinnamon and garam masala, this is the kind of dal that makes any curry night better.

Start cooking ➞




For the dal

<item-todo-done>2 large onions<item-todo-done><item-todo-done>4cm ginger<item-todo-done><item-todo-done>10 large garlic cloves<item-todo-done><item-todo-done>500g pre-cooked Beluga lentils<item-todo-done><item-todo-done>600ml water<item-todo-done><item-todo-done>½ tsp ground cinnamon<item-todo-done><item-todo-done>1 tsp garam masala<item-todo-done><item-todo-done>2 black cardamom pods (optional)<item-todo-done><item-todo-done>½ tsp chilli powder (Kashmiri if possible), plus more to taste<item-todo-done><item-todo-done>60g unsalted plant-based butter<item-todo-done><item-todo-done>2 tbsp tomato purée<item-todo-done><item-todo-done>1 ¾ tsp salt<item-todo-done><item-todo-done>400ml oat milk<item-todo-done>

To finish and serve

<item-todo-done>2 tbsp unsalted plant-based butter<item-todo-done><item-todo-done>150ml oat cream<item-todo-done><item-todo-done> fresh coriander<item-todo-done><item-todo-done> crispy onions<item-todo-done><item-todo-done> plant-based garlic naan, chapati or rice<item-todo-done>

Before you start

Large pot | Frying pan | Grater

Prepare the ingredients

  • Peel and finely dice the onions.
  • Peel and finely chop the ginger.
  • Peel and grate the garlic cloves.
  • Lightly crush the black cardamom pods with the back of your knife, if using.

Cook the lentils

  • Drain the lentils, and add to a pot with the ground cinnamon, garam masala, black cardamom pods (if using), chilli powder and 600ml water, and warm through.


Meanwhile, fry your aromatics

  • Put the butter into a frying pan on a medium heat.
  • When it starts to foam, add the onions and cook for 15 minutes until softened, then add the ginger and garlic.
  • Fry for another 5 minutes - the longer you cook these (without burning), the more flavoursome your dal will be.
  • Add the tomato purée and salt and stir well to coat, then take off the heat and set aside.

Make the dal

  • Add the onion and tomato mixture and oat milk to the spiced lentils, bring to the boil, then turn the heat down to a simmer.
  • Stir every now and then for around 45 minutes until around half the liquid has been absorbed and you have a thick soupy consistency.
  • Roughly mash so some of the dal is squashed and some remains whole.


To Serve

  • Taste and adjust the salt and chilli if necessary, then add the remaining 2 tbsp butter just before serving and stir.
  • Garnish with a swirl of 150ml oat cream, a sprinkling of fresh coriander and crispy onions, and fluffy garlic naans, chapati or rice on the side.


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