Methi Palak Dal ~ Vegan Indian Lentil Stew

Methi palak dal is a flavorful, vegan Indian lentil stew with fresh spinach and fenugreek. It pairs well with rice and Indian flat breads.

Fenugreek Spinach Dal, Methi Palak Dal

Dazzling Dals from India

Theme of the week is dazzling dals. The first two recipes are toor dal and pancheml dal. The last recipe is a South Indian green leaves dal. I mixed two green leaves to prepare this dal.

Dal is a very common preparation in India and it is often prepared with green leaves such as spinach, fenugreek leaves, purslane and sorrel leaves. Tomato, tamarind and lime juice are some of the add ons to dal. Green leaves are rich in iron but is not bioavailable. Iron is not readily available for the body to absorb. Hence, cook spinach with some vitamin C rich food such as tomatoes, tamarind and lime to enhance the bioavailability of iron in green leaves.

Rice with methi palak dal

What is Fenugreek Spinach Dal?

It is moong dal with fresh fenugreek leaves (methi) and spinach (palak). Palak moong dal is a very common preparation in everyday South Indian cuisine. Before coming to India almost 3 weeks ago, I was on clearing my refrigerator mode. I had some methi and palak, hence mixed both the greens to prepare this dal.

Everyday Thali

Methi Palak Dal Recipe

4.85 from 13 votes
Methi Palak Dal
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
25 mins

Vegan Indian green gram dal cooked with fresh fenugreek leaves and spinach

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian, South Indian
Servings: 2
Author: MySpicyKitchen
  • ¼ cup Moong Dal
  • 1 tbsp Oil
  • ½ tsp Cumin
  • ¼ tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 3-4 Curry Leaves
  • ½ small Onion chopped
  • 3 small Green Chilies cut into small pieces
  • 2 fat Cloves of Garlic crushed
  • 1 - 1½ tsp Salt
  • Pinch of Turmeric
  • ¼ tsp Chili Powder (optional)
  • 1 cup Fresh Fenugreek Leaves chopped
  • 1 cup Spinach chopped
  • 1 cup Water
  • 1 tbsp Lime Juice
  1. Wash and cook moong dal with ½ cup of water in a pressure cooker for 3 whites/hisses. Cooking in a saucepan will require more water.  

  2. In a saucepan heat oil, add cumin, mustard seeds and curry leaves.

  3. When seeds splutter, add green chilies, onions and cook till onions are soft. 

  4. Add fenugreek leaves, garlic and cook until fenugreek leaves wilt.  

  5. Next add turmeric, chili powder if using, salt and give a good stir. 

  6. Add spinach and cook for a minute or two till leaves wilt.

  7. Mash cooked dal and add to saucepan.

  8. Let everything blend together, cook for a minute or two.

  9. Add 1 cup of water and bring it to a boil. 

  10. Cook until Spinach is cooked and dal reaches a  desired consistency, about 5-10 minutes.

  11. Taste and adjust salt and chili powder. 

  12. Squeeze ½ lime or 1 tbsp of juice.  

  13. Give a good stir, turn off the flame, cover and let it sit for few minutes before serving.

  14. Serve with rice rice or Indian flatbread.

Recipe Notes
  • Variation - Substitute spinach + fenugreek leaves with any greens of choice or a mix of green leaves.

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2016 – Amaretti Cookies

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27 thoughts on “Methi Palak Dal ~ Vegan Indian Lentil Stew

  1. Comfort food for the south indians! Its one of my favourite dal recipes where i can use palak without the kids complaining!!! Urs looks amazing

  2. 5 stars
    My hands are stretching towards that whole thali… just a fulfilling meal! I also keep mixing up my greens, since it gets spoiled really fast and I end up spending time just to pull out the good leaves… hehe… The dal looks so comforting…

  3. I love the whole thali you got there Usha. And this one is our favorite dal. We used to grow palak and methi sometime back and always used to mix it as it wasn’t enough on its own..such beautiful colour!..I enjoyed your series so much.

    1. Thanks Valli. Yes I too enjoyed doing this series and in fact have couple of more dals in my drafts. Read it as, I will take up this theme again in the future 🙂

  4. 5 stars
    Another comforting, healthy and delicious dal. I have tried spinach and methi dal separately, but never used the combination, sounds interesting, will try it soon.

  5. 5 stars
    When I first landed in the US about 19 years back, I was told by my neighbor that palak here doesn’t taste the same as in India and hence she always adds a little methi leaves in it. I was surprised but I used to do the same then. Later on, I realized that it was just a preference 🙂 Your post reminded me of that and I have not cooked this combo since then ! Thanks for sharing this and taking me down the memory lane.

    1. Thanks and you are welcome. Glad I my post made you go down the memory lane. Yes, it is just individual preference.

  6. 5 stars
    This is such a comforting and delicious dal. Combining methi and palak sounds like a great idea. I’ve never tried that combination, will have to try your version next time I buy fresh methi.

  7. 5 stars
    Mehi and palak together cooked in the dal are so comforting. I love methi palak saag but never tried them in dal, will try next time for sure.

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