Panchmel Dal – Five Lentil Soup

Five Lentil Soup (Panchmel Rajasthani Dal)

Instant Pot recipe for nutritionally rich Rajasthani Panchmel Dal, using five most common lentils from Indian kitchen pantry and infused with ginger and cloves. ‘Dal’ means lentil soup and ‘Panchmel’ means mixture of five, hence Panchmel Dal is a lentil soup made by mixing five different lentils. Relish it just as a soup, or pair it with rice, quinoa or bread (hot roti).

Panchmel Dal for Dal Bati Churma

Panchmel Dal is a key component of the popular Dal Bati Churma, wherein Dal is referring to the Rajasthani Panchmel Dal featured here. Traditional way of having dal bati is to crush the bati and then pour Panchmel Dal over it. Some people also sprinkle jaggery on top it. Panchmel Dal, because of it’s rich flavor, is treated as a special occasion dal and tastes best when served with unleavened Indian breads such as missi roti, tandoori roti, bati or khoba roti.

Panchmel Dal served in a Kadai

Nutritionally Rich Lentils

Lentil are a main source of proteins and part of staple diet in middle eastern countries and Indian subcontinent, where significant population is vegetarian. They have a hearty texture and have many other nutrients such as folate, manganese, iron, phosphorus, copper, thiamine, potassium, magnesium and vitamins to name a few. Due to all these nutrients, lentils are a great source of fiber, good for heart health, improves digestive health, helps manage blood sugar levels and improve body immunity.

Panchmel Dal Ingredients:

Panchmel Dal Ingredients

From Pantry

From Produce

  • Tomatoes – 3 to 4 finely diced
  • Onions – 1 medium size finely diced
  • Ginger – 1 inch piece grated
  • Green chilies – 3 to 4 chopped or slit
  • Cilantro – handful
  • Lime – juice of 1 to 2 limes

Above quantity of ingredients will yield 5 to 6 servings.

Panchmel Dal Method

Stove Top Pressure Cooker Method for Panchmel Dal

  1. Wash the lentils three to four times and and drain all water each time.2016-9-30-panchmail-daal-step-01
  2. Pressure cook till dal is al dente. Time and number of whistles vary depending on the type of pressure cooker, heat setting and quantity. I boiled it for 10 minute on medium heat until whistle starts sounding intermittently. 2016-9-30-panchmail-daal-step-02
  3. In a separate pan, heat ghee or oil and add asafoetida (hing), cumin seeds (jeera), cloves and dry whole red chilies. Let it roast for a few seconds.2016-9-30-panchmail-daal-step-03
  4. Now add ginger and green chilies. Continue roasting.2016-9-30-panchmail-daal-step-04
  5. Then add finely chopped onion and saute further until onion is translucent or golden brown.2016-9-30-panchmail-daal-step-05
  6. Now add chopped tomatoes and cook further they are mushy and the whole mixture starts separating oil.
    2016-9-30-panchmail-daal-step-06 2016-9-30-panchmail-daal-step-07
  7. Add spices –  turmeric powder, coriander powder, red chili powder and salt.2016-9-30-panchmail-daal-step-08
  8. Once all spices are mixed and you can smell the flavors, add pressure cooked lentils. Mix well and let it cook more.2016-9-30-panchmail-daal-step-09
  9. Add water (if needed) to get to the desired consistency.2016-9-30-panchmail-daal-step-10
  10. Once it starts boiling, then turn off the heat and add garam masala, dry mango powder, lemon juice and chopped cilantro. Mix well and transfer to a serving bowl.
  11. For extra rich look and flavors, like in the picture below, add tamper from the top. Serve with famous Rajasthani bread – Baati.

Instant Pot Recipe Method for Panchmel Dal

  1. Start the instant pot on SAUTE mode and heat ghee/oil in it.
  2. Add asafoetida (hing), cumin seeds (jeera), cloves and dry whole red chilies. Let it roast for a few seconds.
  3. Then add green chili, ginger and saute for 30 seconds
  4. Then add diced onion.
  5. Saute until onions are translucent.
  6. Now add tomatoes and saute until soft and mushy.
  7. Add all the spices except garam masala and lemon juice and mix them.
  8. Wash the lentils for 3-4 extracts of water and then add them to the instant pot.
  9. Add water equal to three times the dry lentil volume
  10. Press CANCEL and close the instant pot lid with vent in sealing position.
  11. Press MANUAL or PRESSURE COOK mode for 0 minutes and let the pressure release naturally (NR)
  12. When float valves pops down, open the lid, add garam masala and lemon juice.
  13. For extra rich look and flavors, add tamper from the top.
Panchmel Dal Ingredients

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― Virginia Woolf, The Common Reader

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Other Lentil Soup Recipes that you may choose from:

For a complete festive occasion serve with other famous Rajasthani recipes as show in plate setting below:


Link to other Dal-Bati-Churma Festive Menu Recipes:

5 from 2 votes
Five Lentil Soup (Panchmel Rajasthani Dal)
Panchmel Dal – Five Lentil Soup
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
40 mins
Total Time
50 mins

Lentil can be cooked in many different ways. This particular recipe uses a combination of five different lentils. This can be had just as a soup, or had with other accompaniments such as rice or bread. Panchmel dal tastes best when served with unleavened Indian breads such as missi roti, tandoori roti, baati or khoba roti.

Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Lentil Soup, Panchmel Dal
Servings: 6
Calories: 211 kcal
Author: Rupali Agarwal
Split Lentils