Recently when we have eaten out at our favorite Indian restaurant, my husband’s go to has been Dal Makhani, which is an authentic creamy lentil dish. It’s really quite easy to make at home, and the bonus of making it at home is you get four times the amount you get from a restaurant for half the price of a serving at the restaurant. These recipes are great for a family on a budget because the bulk of the dish (lentils and beans) purchased dry are very affordable, onions and tomatoes are also cheap, and spices purchased in bulk are fairly inexpensive and last forever.

Vegan Instant Pot Dal Makhani Black Lentils

The flavor of this dish is really good. the cream adds a lot of flavor to the dish, but using a plant-based cream has the advantage of no cholesterol. Aside from the cream and choice of oil you use, this dish is easily made plant-based. It contains a lot of plant-based fiber, antioxidants, calcium, iron, and healthy complex carbohydrates. Since this is made with the instant pot, there is an advantage of not needing to babysit it while it is cooking under pressure. I take the 60 minutes and either walk the dog or do some chores around the house.

instant pot vegan dal makhani

What you’ll love about this vegan instant pot dal makhani?

  1. It’s a delicious vegan take on the traditional dal makhani. This dish doesn’t taste different than the ghee and cream containing version.
  2. Simple and easy to make. Apart from sautéing vegetables, this dish is so easy that you can just dump everything in the instant pot and cook.
  3. Healthy. Packed with plant-based protein, calcium, iron, and antioxidants, this dish is a guilt-free meal.
Vegan Instant Pot Madras Lentils with Rotis

How to make this Instant pot vegan dal makhani?

  1. Turn on the instant pot to sauté mode. Heat the oil in the pan. 
  2. Add the cumin seeds. Allow them to sizzle for 30 seconds and then add the chopped onions. 
  3. As the onions brown, puree the chopped tomatoes with the ginger and garlic using an immersion blender or food processor
  4. Once the onions are starting to turn translucent (about 5 minutes) and add the puree, turmeric, coriander cumin, salt, kashmiri red chili, lentils, beans, and water to the instant pot. Close the lid, set the vent to seal and cancel the sauté program. Select manual and set the pressure to high. Set the timer to 60 minutes and allow the contents to cook.
  5. Once the 60 minutes is done, release the pressure manually and stir in the cashew cream and fenugreek leaves (optional). 
  6. Enjoy with rotis or rice.

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instant pot vegan dal makhani

Instant Pot Dal Makhani, Vegan Madras Lentils

Dal makhani is a creamy Indian black lentil dish and this vegan Instant pot version is delicious and easy to make with no soaking time required. Serve this dish alongside rotis or rice. Authentic and delicious!
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Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4 bowls
Calories 281 kcal


  • 1 cup urad dal black lentils
  • cup kidney beans
  • ½ cup cashew cream I use this recipe
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 15.5 oz diced tomatoes 1 can, pureed
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 tsp ginger paste
  • 1 tsp garlic minced
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 1 tbsp coriander cumin
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1.5 tsp kashmiri red chili powder sub cayenne (use ¾ tsp or adjust to heat preference)
  • ½ tbsp kasoori methi (fenugreek leaves)
  • 2 cups water
  • ½ tsp salt


  • Turn on instant pot to saute mode. Add olive oil and allow it to heat up. Then add the cumin seeds and allow them to sizzle (about 30 seconds).
  • Stir in the chopped onion and cook until it starts to become translucent. While that is cooking, puree the tomato can with ginger and garlic. I use an immersion blender, but a food processor also works. You can skip this, but the gravy will be thicker.
  • After the onion is starting to brown and turn translucent, add the tomato puree, turmeric, coriander cumin, kashmiri red chili (or cayenne), salt, kidney beans, lentils, and water. Close the lid to the instant pot. Cancel the saute mode and turn on manual pressure, set the pressure to high and timer to 60 minutes. Close the vent and let it cook.
  • While the food is cooking, make the cashew cream by following this recipe (substitute coconut cream if you don't want to use nuts).
  • Once the 60 minute timer is done, manually release the pressure. Remove the lid and stir in the cream and optional fenugreek leaves. Serve with rotis or rice.


Make this nut free by substituting coconut cream for the cashew cream.
You can speed up cooking time by soaking the lentils and kidney beans for 6-8 hours prior to cooking. In this case use 30 minute cook time on high pressure.


Calories: 281kcalCarbohydrates: 40gProtein: 15gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 338mgPotassium: 393mgFiber: 13gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 155IUVitamin C: 17mgCalcium: 91mgIron: 6mg
Keyword dal makhani, instant pot dal, madras lentils, vegan dal makhani
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Did you make this recipe? I’d love to know what you thought in the comments below. Also leave me a rating above so I can make sure to improve for future recipes. Thanks for reading and trying out this delicious Vegan Instant Pot Dal Makhani recipe.


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