Dal Bhaji: A lentil-based version of Pav Bhaji, a curried vegetable sandwich from Mumbai.
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5 from 5 votes

Dal Bhaji

I used zucchini in this recipe because I didn’t have any cauliflower, so feel free to substitute other vegetables for the ones listed here. If you’re not a fan of spicy food, be careful with the masala and the chili pepper. Add a little and taste; you can always add more if necessary.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Appetizer, Sandwich
Cuisine: Vegan
Servings: 6
Calories: 169kcal
Author: Susan Voisin


  • 1 cup masoor dal , moong dal or red lentils
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup each of each of these vegetables, finely diced: green beans, carrots, zucchini, cabbage
  • 1/2 cup frozen green peas
  • 1 large onion chopped finely
  • 1 teaspoon ginger , minced
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 bell pepper , finely chopped
  • 2-3 teaspoons pav bhaji masala (spice mix available at Indian markets) (use less for less spicy bhaji)
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder or cayenne , or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 3 roma tomatoes , finely chopped
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice


  • Put the dal and water in a pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the dal is softened, about 15 minutes. Add more water if necessary to prevent it from drying out.
  • Cook the green beans, carrots, zucchini, and cabbage in water until soft. (I did this in the pressure cooker, with 1/2 cup of water at high pressure for 5 minutes.) When they’re soft, add the peas and mash the vegetables well, in the liquid. Stir in the cooked dal.
  • Heat a good non-stick wok or large pot. Add the onions and cook, adding a little water as necessary, until they begin to brown, about 4 minutes. Add the ginger, garlic, and bell peppers and cook for another 2 minutes.
  • Stir in the pav bhaji masala, red chili powder, turmeric, and salt. Add the tomatoes, and cook until they start to break down, about 5 minutes. Add the mashed vegetables and salt to taste. Cook on low for about 20 minutes. Add lemon juice and serve on toasted buns, with pita bread, or as a dip.


Serving: 1Serving | Calories: 169kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 1g | Sodium: 39mg | Fiber: 14g