Instant Pot Masala Dal

Instant Pot Masala Dal

  • Author: My Heart Beets
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Cuisine: Indian


This is one of my go-to recipes to make on a rainy day because it’s both comforting and flavorful. I love the combination of chana dal and toor dal, but you can make this recipe with a different type of split lentil if you want to change things up.


  • ½ cup split chickpeas (chana dal), soaked for 1-2 hours – optional
  • ½ cup split pigeon peas (toor dal), soaked for 1-2 hours – optional
  • 4 tablespoons oil of choice
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 Serrano pepper or green chili, minced
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon minced ginger
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped


  • 1 ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon coriander powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • ¼ black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne



  1. Soak the lentils in cold water for 1-2 hours. Drain, rinse and set aside.
  2. Press the sauté button, add the oil and allow it to heat up for a minute. Add the cumin seeds and mustard seeds to the pot. Once the cumin seeds brown and the mustard seeds begin to pop, add the onion and Serrano pepper. Stir-fry for 6-7 minutes or until the onions begin to brown.
  3. Add the garlic and ginger and stir-fry for 30 seconds.
  4. Add the tomatoes and cook for 8-10 minutes, or until they completely break down.
  5. Add all of the spices except for the garam masala, stir, then add the lentils and water and mix well.
  6. Secure the lid, close the pressure valve and cook for 7 minutes at high pressure.
  7. Naturally release pressure (or wait 15 minutes, then release remaining pressure).
  8. Stir in the garam masala and serve.


If you’d like to use onion masala in this recipe, you can use 1/2 cup and omit the onion, tomato, ginger, garlic. Adjust spices to taste.