Buttery black eyed peas swimming in a spiced curry! You are going to love this dish:
I grew up eating this Punjabi black eyed pea curry. It’s warm and comforting and the beans are so rich and buttery!
This is my mom’s recipe – although, hers is slightly different every time she makes it because she doesn’t use “measurements” when she cooks (real deal Indian mamas don’t do the whole “measuring” thing). I’ve also adapted this recipe so that you can make it in an electronic pressure cooker, like an Instant Pot. I’m sure you can also easily adapt this to make it on the stovetop too if you’d like.
Black eyed peas are also called “lobia” in northern India. So, this recipe is also known as “Punjabi Lobia Masala.”
The great thing about black eyed peas is that they don’t take as long as other legumes to cook. You don’t need to soak the beans at all – but I always soak legumes to help reduce phytic acid (more info on that here). During my pregnancy, I ate this dish pretty often because black eyed peas are high in calcium and I actually tolerate soaked & prepared beans better than I tolerate most dairy.
This recipe not only tastes great, but it makes me feel good too. It’s hearty, rich in fiber, high in protein and as I mentioned – a good source of dairy-free calcium (1/2 cup of black eyed beans has 185 milligrams of calcium).
We always make this recipe on New Years Day in our house because it’s thought to bring good luck. I always thought this was an Indian superstition (or maybe just a thing that we believed in our house?), but it turns out that black eyed peas are considered good luck in many other cultures too! Even here in the US (mainly in southern states). I wouldn’t wait for a holiday to make this though – it’s so easy that you can make it any time you want!
My hubby, who isn’t a huge fan of legumes, loves and requests this curry often. He also likes my dal makhani so try that too if you get a chance.
Serve this black eyed pea curry over some rice, cauli-rice, paleo naan or you can do what I often do and eat a bowl of it on its own.
This popular Punjabi dish, also known as lobia masala, is made with buttery black eyed peas. This is a recipe that’s almost always served on New Year’s Day in our house because it’s thought to bring good luck. Don’t wait until then to make this though!
- 1 cup dried black eyed peas, soaked for 1–2 hours
- 2 tablespoons oil of choice
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon minced ginger
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- 1 teaspoon salt, adjust to taste
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ⅛ – ¼ teaspoon cayenne, adjust to taste
- 1 tomato, diced
- 2 cups water
- Cilantro leaves, garnish
- Soak the dried black eyed peas in cold water for 1-2 hours. Drain, rinse and set aside.
- Press the sauté button, and add the oil and allow it to heat up for a minute. Add the cumin seeds and once they begin to turn brown, add the onion and bay leaf. Stir-fry for 6-7 minutes, or until the onions begin to turn brown.
- Add the garlic, ginger and spices, stir, then add the diced tomatoes. Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until the tomatoes break down.
- Add the drained black eyed peas to the pot along with the 2 cups of water and mix well.
- Secure the lid, close the pressure valve and cook for 20 minutes at high pressure.
- Naturally release pressure.
- Garnish with cilantro if desired.