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  • Writer's pictureMilhaan Home

How to Make Restaurant-Style Tadka Dal

Updated: Jan 25, 2023

I love tadka dal! It's full of protein, a simple and a very tasty dish!

As I get older (and yes, it happens to everyone!), my diet changes and I am enjoying eating simple foods more often. The best thing is, it's so easy to make too! You only need a few ingredients and they are readily available in your supermarket.

So what are we waiting for? Let's get cooking!

Tadka Dal Recipe Cooking Time: 25 Minutes (Approx)

Serves 3-4 People


  • 1 Cup (200g) Split Chickpeas (Chana Dal)

  • 2 Cups (480ml) Water

  • 2 Small Onions, peeled & sliced

  • 2 small tomatoes, diced

  • 1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds

  • 1 tsp Salt

  • 1/4 tsp Tumeric Powder

  • 1 tsp Curry Powder

  • 1 tsp Grated Ginger

  • 1-3 Green Chilis

  • 3 TBSP Oil (Mix of olive Oil, Sunflower Oil or Ghee)

  • Coriander to Garnish


Look over the dal and remove any stones or dal that look bad.

Wash the dal under running water and drain.

Place the dal in your Instant Pot or Pressure Cooker and add 2 Cups of water.

Pressure cook for 12 minutes in your pressure cooker or 15 minutes in your Instant Pot. You want the dal to be soft when pressed between 2 fingers but not completely mushy.

While the dal is cooking, heat up a saucepan and add your oil. I recommend using 1 TBSP Olive with 2 TBSP Sunflower oil if you are vegan, or 1 TBSP Ghee with 2 TBSP Sunflower oil if you are not vegan.

Let the oil heat up for about 30 seconds. Then add the sliced onions. Mix them well so they are coated with the oils.

Then add the cumin seeds. When you add the cumin seeds later, it gives a different flavour and doesn’t overcook the cumin seeds.

Fry the onions until they are lovely and golden in colour.

Remove a spoon full of the fried onions to a side dish, as we will use this to garnish at the end.

Add your chopped tomatoes and all the spices to the remaining fried onions. Mix this in and let it cook (covered) until the tomatoes are completely softened.

Then add the cooked dal to the sauce or add the sauce to the cooked dal if you want to continue cooking in your Instant pot. Stir the dal and sauce together until it is well combined. Cover it and let it simmer for 5-7 minutes, stirring every now & then.

Once the dal is done simmering, turn off the heat and garnish with the reserved fried onions and some chopped coriander.

Enjoy the tadka dal with roti, naan and rice.


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