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overhead shot of two bowls of the dhal

Eggplant Red Lentil Dhal (Vegan)

  • Author: Allison
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6 servings 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


An easy, healthy, and delicious lentil dhal recipe with eggplant.


  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 cups finely chopped yellow onions
  • 3 medium garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tbsp finely minced/grated fresh ginger, or 1/2 tsp dried
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp chili flakes
  • 3/4 tsp fine sea salt, plus more to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, diced
  • 5 cups diced eggplant (1/2-inch dice)
  • 1 1/2 cups red lentils
  • 3 cups vegetable broth, plus more as needed
  • 1 cup full-fat coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice


  1. Warm the coconut oil in a Dutch oven or large soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, ginger, and a small pinch of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 8 minutes. Add the spices, freshly ground black pepper, and salt. Stir to coat, then add the bell pepper and eggplant. Cook five minutes more.
  2. Add the lentils, vegetable broth, and coconut milk. Bring to a simmer, then turn down heat slightly, cover the pot loosely with the lid, and cook until the lentils have fallen apart and the dhal has thickened. Stir often, as red lentils have a habit of burning in a heartbeat! Add more broth if a thinner dhal is desired. Stir in the lemon juice right before serving.
  3. Serve over rice and/or with naan, chapatti, or samosas, and top with cilantro or mint and yogurt, if desired. I also like serving with a lemon or lime wedge.

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Lunch, Supper
  • Cuisine: Indian

Keywords: vegan eggplant lentil dhal