Dhaba Style Dal Fry Recipe

Dhaba Style Dal Fry Recipe

25 mins
2-3 people
15 mins



Hey there, fellow food enthusiasts! Let me take you on a journey to the heart of India, where every bite tells a story. Picture this: the aroma of spices lingering in the air, the sizzle of tadka in the pan, and the warmth of freshly cooked dal tickling your taste buds. That's the magic of Dhaba Style Dal Fry, a recipe close to my heart.


I vividly remember the first time I encountered this culinary gem. It was during a road trip through the rustic lanes of India when hunger struck and we stumbled upon a quaint dhaba. Little did I know that the simple bowl of dal served there would leave a lasting impression on my palate. Since then, I've been on a quest to recreate that authentic flavor in my own kitchen.


Now, let's dive into the essence of this timeless recipe, where every ingredient holds a tale of tradition and every spoonful is a journey to culinary bliss.




Recipe of Dhaba Style Dal Fry




  • ½ cup Chana Dal
  • ½ cup Yellow Dal
  • ½ cup White Urad Dal
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Turmeric
  • 1 tbsp Mustard Oil

For Tempering:

  • 1 tbsp Butter
  • 1 cup Chopped Onion
  • 2 Whole Red Chilies
  • 2 Cinnamon Sticks
  • 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1 tsp Green Chili Julienne
  • 1 tsp Chopped Ginger
  • 1 tsp Slit Green Chilies
  • 1 tsp Coriander Powder
  • 1 tsp Roasted Cumin Powder
  • 1 tsp Garam Masala
  • 1 tsp Hing (Asafoetida)
  • 1 tsp Red Chili Powder
  • 1 tsp Kasoori Methi (Dried Fenugreek Leaves)

For Garnish:

  • 1 tsp Ghee
  • 1 tbsp Chopped Coriander
  • ½ Lemon Juice
  • 1 tsp Ginger Julienne
  • 1 tsp Green Chilies





  1. Preparation:

    • Soak all the dals separately for at least 3 hours.
    • Mix all the dals with double the quantity of water.
    • Add turmeric, salt, and mustard oil.
    • Boil in a pressure cooker for 2 whistles.
  2. For Tempering:

    • Heat butter in a pan, when half melted.
    • Add chopped onion and cook till light brown.
    • Add whole red chilies, cinnamon sticks, and cumin seeds one by one.
    • Now add chopped ginger, chopped green chilies, and slit green chilies.
    • Add chopped tomatoes and sauté well.
    • Add coriander powder, roasted cumin powder, and garam masala powder.
    • While it is cooking, add hing, red chili powder, and kasoori methi and cook further.
    • Add boiled dal and mix it well on medium flame, adjust the seasoning.
  3. Finishing:

    • Finish the dal with ghee, chopped coriander, lemon juice, and julienne of green chili and ginger.


Enjoy your delicious Dhaba Style Dal Fry!




About the Recipe:


Dhaba Style Dal Fry is not just a dish; it's a celebration of flavors crafted with love and tradition. Combining the earthiness of lentils with the fiery punch of spices, this recipe is a testament to the rich culinary heritage of India.


In this recipe, a harmonious blend of chana dal, urad dal, and moong dal is simmered to perfection, creating a luscious texture that is both comforting and indulgent. The secret lies in the tadka, where onions, ginger, garlic, and green chilies dance together in a symphony of flavors, infusing the dal with depth and character.


Served hot with a drizzle of ghee and a sprinkle of fresh coriander, Dhaba Style Dal Fry is a soul-satisfying dish that brings people together around the dining table. Whether enjoyed with piping hot rotis or steamed rice, this dal never fails to evoke nostalgia for roadside dhabas and heartwarming conversations.



Cooking Tips:


  1. Perfect Consistency: Achieving the right consistency is key to a delicious dal fry. Adjust the water content according to your preference, keeping in mind that the dal thickens upon standing.

  2. Tadka Technique: Take your tadka game to the next level by sautéing the onions, ginger, and garlic until translucent. This releases their aromatic oils and enhances the flavor of the dish.

  3. Spice Sensation: Experiment with different spice levels to suit your taste buds. Add a pinch of red chili powder for extra heat or dial it down with less green chilies for a milder flavor.

  4. Fresh Ingredients: Use fresh ingredients whenever possible to elevate the taste and aroma of your dal fry. Opt for plump, unblemished tomatoes and vibrant green chilies for the best results.

  5. Finishing Touch: Don't forget the final flourish of ghee or butter before serving. This adds a decadent richness to the dal and enhances its overall flavor profile.



Pairing Guide:


  • Roti: Soft and fluffy rotis complement the hearty texture of dal fry, making it a classic combination loved by all.

  • Steamed Rice: For a more comforting meal, pair dal fry with fragrant basmati rice. The fluffy grains soak up the flavorful gravy, creating a match made in culinary heaven.

  • Pickle and Papad: Add a burst of tanginess to your meal with a side of tangy pickle and crispy papad. The contrasting flavors and textures enhance the dining experience, leaving you craving for more.

  • Fresh Salad: Balance out the richness of dal fry with a refreshing side salad of cucumber, onion, and tomato tossed in a zesty dressing. It adds a delightful crunch and freshness to every bite.



FAQs about Dal Fry:


  1. What are the different types of lentils used in dal fry?

    • The traditional recipe combines chana dal (split chickpeas), urad dal (split black gram), and moong dal (split green gram) in equal proportions.
  2. Can I make dal fry in advance?

    • Yes, dal fry can be prepared in advance and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days. Simply reheat it before serving.
  3. Is it necessary to temper the dal with ghee or butter?

    • While tempering with ghee or butter adds richness and flavor to the dal, you can omit it for a lighter version of the dish.
  4. Can I customize the spice level of dal fry?

    • Absolutely! Adjust the quantity of green chilies and red chili powder according to your preference for a milder or spicier dal fry.
  5. What is the significance of tadka in dal fry?

    • Tadka, also known as tempering, is a crucial step in dal fry where spices are sautéed in oil or ghee to release their flavors and aromas, which are then infused into the dal.
  6. Can I use canned lentils for making dal fry?

    • While fresh lentils are preferred for the best texture and flavor, you can use canned lentils as a time-saving alternative. Rinse them thoroughly before using to remove excess sodium.
  7. Is dal fry a healthy dish?

    • Yes, dal fry is a nutritious dish packed with protein, fiber, and essential vitamins. It's a wholesome addition to a balanced diet.
  8. What can I serve with dal fry besides roti and rice?

    • Dal fry pairs well with a variety of Indian breads like naan, paratha, or puri. You can also enjoy it with quinoa or couscous for a fusion twist.
  9. Can I freeze leftover dal fry?

    • Yes, you can freeze leftover dal fry in airtight containers for up to 1 month. Thaw it overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
  10. Can I add vegetables to dal fry?

    • Absolutely! Feel free to add diced vegetables like carrots, potatoes, or spinach to enhance the nutritional value and add a pop of color to your dal fry.


Indulge in the timeless flavors of Dhaba Style Dal Fry and embark on a culinary adventure that will tantalize your taste buds and warm your soul. Happy cooking!