Unlock the secrets of cooking flavorful Toor Dal with our expert recipe

Learn how to cook Toor dal (Using Pressure Cooker) with our step-by-step guide.


  • 1 cup Toor Dal (split pigeon peas)
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 medium tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 2-3 green chilies, slit (adjust to your spice preference)
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 4-5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-inch piece of ginger, grated
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil or ghee
  • A pinch of asafoetida (hing)
  • Few curry leaves (optional)
  • Salt to taste
  • Fresh coriander leaves for garnish


  1. Rinse the Toor Dal thoroughly under running water until the water runs clear. Soak the dal in water for about 15-20 minutes.
  2. Drain the soaked dal and transfer it to a pressure cooker. Add 3 cups of water, turmeric powder, chopped tomatoes, chopped onions, green chilies, and a pinch of salt. Mix well.
  3. Close the pressure cooker with its lid and cook the dal on medium heat. After the first whistle, reduce the heat to low and let it cook for about 10-15 minutes or until the dal becomes soft and mushy.
  4. Once the dal is cooked, turn off the heat and allow the pressure to release naturally.
  5. Meanwhile, in a separate pan, heat cooking oil or ghee over medium heat. Add cumin seeds and mustard seeds. Let them splutter.
  6. Add minced garlic, grated ginger, and optional curry leaves to the pan. Sauté them for a minute or until the garlic turns golden brown.
  7. Add a pinch of asafoetida (hing) to the pan and stir for a few seconds.
  8. Now, carefully pour the tempering (tadka) over the cooked dal and mix it well. Adjust the seasoning with salt as per your taste.
  9. Garnish the Toor Dal with fresh coriander leaves.

Your delicious Toor Dal is now ready to be served! It pairs well with steamed rice, roti, or naan. Enjoy the wholesome flavors of this classic Indian dish!

Expert Tips for Success!

  1. Quality of Toor Dal: Use good quality Toor Dal to ensure better taste and texture in the final dish.
  2. Pre-soaking: Soaking the Toor Dal for about 15-20 minutes before cooking helps in reducing the cooking time and results in a smoother consistency.
  3. Right Water Ratio: Use the appropriate water-to-dal ratio while cooking. Generally, a 1:3 ratio of dal to water works well, but you can adjust it according to your preferred consistency.
  4. Pressure Cooking: Cooking Toor Dal in a pressure cooker ensures faster and even cooking, leading to a well-cooked and creamy texture.
  5. Seasoning: The tempering (tadka) is crucial for enhancing the flavor. Use fresh ingredients like garlic, ginger, and curry leaves for a delightful taste.
  6. Spice Level: Adjust the number of green chilies according to your spice preference. You can also add a pinch of red chili powder for extra heat.
  7. Variations: Experiment with additional spices like cumin powder, coriander powder, or garam masala to give a unique twist to the traditional Toor Dal recipe.
  8. Consistency: If you prefer a thicker dal, you can reduce the amount of water used during cooking. For a thinner consistency, add more water.
  9. Resting Time: Allow the dal to sit for a few minutes after cooking. This helps the flavors to meld together and enhances the taste.
  10. Garnish: Fresh coriander leaves add a burst of freshness to the dish. Don’t skip the garnish; it enhances the presentation and taste.
  11. Healthy Fats: Consider using ghee (clarified butter) for the tempering, as it adds richness and authentic flavor to the dal.
  12. Lemon Juice: Squeezing some fresh lemon juice into the dal just before serving adds a tangy twist and elevates the taste.
  13. Serve Hot: Toor Dal tastes best when served hot with steamed rice, roti, or naan. Keep it covered until serving to retain the warmth.

Remember, cooking is an art, and everyone’s taste preferences may vary. Feel free to customize the recipe to suit your liking and enjoy the delightful flavors of Toor Dal!

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