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Instant Pot Kerala Parippu Curry (Lentils in Coconut Curry)

Coconut Dal (Kerala Parippu Curry)

Instant Pot Kerala Parippu Curry (Lentils in Coconut Curry)

This rich and creamy Kerala-style parippu (another word for “dal”) is one of the main dishes served during Onam, a harvest festival celebrated by people of all religions in the state of Kerala. It’s a simple and flavorful recipe made with coconut milk. Serve this dal with ghee drizzled on top!
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Cuisine Indian


  • 1 cup split pigeon peas toor dal OR small yellow lentils (moong dal), rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • ½ teaspoon black mustard seeds
  • 30 curry leaves
  • ½ - 1 Serrano pepper or green chili minced, to taste
  • 1 ½ cups water
  • 1 13.5 ounce can of full-fat coconut milk
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt to taste
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric
  • Ghee for serving


  • Press the sauté button, add the coconut oil to the pot. Once the coconut oil melts, add mustard seeds, curry leaves, and green chili to the pot. When the mustard seeds begin to pop, add the remaining ingredients to the pot.
  • Secure the lid, close the pressure valve, and cook for 10 minutes at high pressure.
  • Naturally release pressure (or wait 10 minutes then release pressure).
  • Give this dal time to cool down; it will look thin upon opening the lid, however, after a few minutes it will thicken quite a bit. Drizzle ghee on top before serving (if desired).


  • You can make this recipe with either toor dal or moong dal - they have slightly different flavors but are both delicious! 
  • I updated this recipe (October 2020) so that it calls for rinsing the toor dal rather than soaking it first. My previous recipe called for soaking the dal for 2 hours, however, I no longer find this necessary for this type of dal. You can still soak the dal if you prefer to do so.
  • This dal will thicken the longer it sits so feel free to stir in a bit more water when reheating if needed.
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