This Indian red lentil dip with curry and coconut milk is not only quick and easy to make, but it’s also healthy, protein-rich, creamy and incredibly delicious! The lentil dal dip is a great alternative to hummus, and can be enjoyed as a sandwich and spread or as a dip for falafel, veggies, chips & more. Plus, it’s great to make ahead and freeze!
The Best Indian Lentil Dip Recipe
I love hummus and I love Indian cuisine! Especially my red lentil dal and my golden lentil soup are my favorites. And if you’ve follow me for a while, you probably know that I’m a huge fan of falafel. They are a really healthy and delicious finger food snack and a great vegan protein source. Since I also love my sweet potato falafel, I came up with the idea to combine all my favorite recipes and created this delicious lentil dip recipe to serve with them.
The lentil dip is not only suitable for dipping, but is also a great spread for bread, naan & Co! So if you are looking for an alternative to classic dips like hummus or baba ganoush, then you have to try this creamy lentil spread!
Perfect to make ahead – Meal Prep Recipe
You can prepare this lentil dip for the whole week or freeze it. This way you’ll always have a delicious, healthy homemade dip or spread on hand. By the way, you can also save a lot of money this way, because the ingredients are available cheaply everywhere.
Can I make the dip without coconut milk?
Of course! Personally, I love Indian dishes with red lentils, curry with coconut milk because it gives the dish a delicious exotic and slightly sweet flavor, but the dip also succeeds without coconut. You can easily replace the coconut milk with another dairy-free cooking cream like soy cuisine or oat cuisine. You can also cook the lentils in more vegetable broth and then just add more tahini or nut butter for a richer consistency.
- Red lentils: or yellow lentils are best for this recipe because they soften nicely once cooked and make the dip wonderfully creamy.
- Tomato paste: or paprika paste is optional for flavor.
- Vegetable broth: to cook the lentils.
- Coconut milk: or any other dairy-free cream / rich milk.
- Tahini: or peanut butter, cashew butter or almond butter.
- Onion, garlic & ginger: the popular aromatic flavor trio!
- Curry powder: e.g. yellow curry madras, garam masala or any Thai curry paste.
- Salt and pepper: to taste
- Lemon juice: or lime juice.
- Coconut oil: or any other heat resistant vegetable oil for frying like wok oil or peanut oil.
How to make Indian Lentil Dip
As always, I recommend checking out the recipe video and these step-by-step instructions first. Then you’ll find the full recipe with the exact measurements in the recipe card below!
Step 1: Rinse lentils. Sauté onion, garlic and ginger.
First, place the lentils in a fine mesh strainer, rinse thoroughly and drain. Meanwhile, heat the oil and sauté the onions for 2-3 minutes until translucent. Then add the garlic and ginger and sauté for another minute.
Step 2: Add the rest of the ingredients & simmer.
Now add curry powder, tomato paste and lentils and sauté for 1-2 minutes. Add vegetable broth and coconut milk, stir and simmer for about 15 minutes until the lentils are tender.
Step 3: season and blend.
Then season with tahini, salt, pepper and lime juice. (Tip: While the lentils are cooking, you can prepare sweet potato falafel or any other side dish you like.)
What to serve with lentil dip?
You can serve the Indian lentil dip in a pretty bowl and garnish with a drizzle of olive oil, sesame seeds and parsley or cilantro if you like. It goes well with finger food snacks with an Indian or oriental flair, such as sweet potato falafel, classic falafel or various veggie patties, as well as raw vegetable sticks and pita chips or crackers. You can also serve the lentil dip as a spread on naan bread, flatbread, burger buns & Co. The lentil spread is also ideal for making wraps, burritos and savory pancakes!
Red Lentil Dip Recipe Variations
- Vegetables: If you like, you can add vegetables such as carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, squash, peppers or tomatoes.
- Flavors: You can also use other spices and seasoning pastes and add different herbs.
- Spiciness: if you like the dip spicier, you can add chopped chili peppers, chili powder or Sriracha. You could also use hot curry powder or red Thai curry paste. For a mild dip, use yellow curry powder or yellow curry paste.
- Extra creamy: Feel free to make it creamier and richer by adding dairy-free greek yogurt, vegan feta cheese or extra virgin olive oil.
How to store the dip?
The dip will keep in a sealed jar or container for 4-5 days in the refrigerator and can also be frozen in a freezer-safe container.
This lentil spread recipe is:
- Quick and easy
- Dairy-free (lactose-free)
- Healthy & nutritious
- Rich in Protein and Fiber
- Perfect as a dip, spread and antipasti condiment!
More dips and sauces to try:
- The Best Peanut Sauce
- Sweet Chili Sauce
- Sweet and Sour Sauce
- Vegan Mayonnaise
- Aioli (Garlic Dip)
- Baba Ghanoush
- Tzatziki Sauce
- Raita Dip
- Herb Dip
- Garlic Sauce
If you try this lentil dip recipe, feel free to leave me a comment and a star rating! And if you take a photo of your veggie spread and share it on Instagram, please tag me @biancazapatka and use the hashtag #biancazapatka because I love seeing your creations! Enjoy! 🙂
Red Lentil Dip (Creamy Indian Dal Spread)Author:
- 1 tbsp coconut oil or other vegetable oil for frying
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1 tbsp ginger finely chopped
- 2 tbsp curry powder e.g. yellow curry Madras or Thai curry paste
- 1 tbsp tomato paste optional
- 1 cup (180 g) red lentils or yellow lentils
- 1 ¼ cup (300 ml) vegetable broth
- 7 oz (200 g) coconut milk or other dairy-free cooking cream
- 2 tbsp tahini or peanut butter, cashew butter or almond butter
- salt and pepper to taste
- ½ lemon or lime juiced
To serve (optional)
- olive oil
- sesame seeds
- parsley or cilantro
- sweet potato falafel
*Note: Check out the recipe video + step-by-step photos above!
- Place the lentils in a fine-meshed strainer, rinse thoroughly and drain.
- Heat the coconut oil in a large, deep skillet, saucepan or pot and sauté the onions for 2-3 minutes until translucent. Then add the garlic and ginger and sauté for another minute. Now add curry powder, tomato paste and lentils and sauté for 1-2 minutes. Pour in vegetable broth and coconut milk and bring to a boil.
- Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and cook for about 15 minutes until the lentils are soft. Then stir in tahini and season with salt, pepper and lime juice.
- Remove the pan from the heat and let the lentil mixture cool. Then transfer to a blender or use an immersion stick blender and blend until smooth (adding more water or coconut milk to the desired consistency if needed).
- Garnish the creamy lentil dip with a drizzle of olive oil, sesame seeds and parsley, if desired. Serve with sweet potato falafel or other side dishes.
- Spiciness: If you like the dip spicier, you can add more chopped chilies, chili powder or sriracha. You could also use a hot curry powder or red Thai curry paste. For a mild dip, use yellow curry powder or yellow curry paste.
- Variations: You can also use other spices and seasoning pastes and add different herbs.
- Storage: The dip will keep in a sealed jar or container for 4-5 days in the refrigerator and can also be frozen.
- More helpful tips and information about this recipe are mentioned in the blog post above!
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