Crock-Pot Madras Lentils make a delicious side that doubles as a main dish. Whip up this delicious vegan comfort food with zero effort at all! Simply break out your slow cooker and let dinner make itself!
My typical grocery shopping routine is quick and concise thanks to my finely tuned cart-stuffing system but sometimes I just want to wander! I recently spent a little extra time playing in the ethnic food aisle and found myself gawking at all the colorful Indian sauces and fancy packaged meals.
When was the last time I made an Indian dish for the blog!? It’s been forever right?
I glanced at a random pouch of Madras Lentils and decided to play a little game of copycat.
Though this will be my most inventive copycat creation yet, simply because I’ve [a.] never had madras lentils and [b.] glanced at the pouch for a total of 2.5 seconds before getting distracted by something shiny.
I’m writing this part of the post before the dish has even been completed but oh. my. gosh. does my kitchen smell amazing! I’ll be back in a little bit with the outcome!
…I’m back! Ahhh! This dish is INSANE! It was love at first bite!!!!! MAKE IT.
Crock-Pot Madras Lentils
Crock-Pot Madras Lentils
Yield 6-10 servings
Whip up this delicious vegetarian comfort food with zero effort at all! Simply break out your slow cooker and let dinner make itself!
This recipe serves approx. 6 large portions or 10 side-dish sized servings. Recipe yield: 10 cups.
- 2 cups of cooked lentils*
- 2 cups of canned tomato sauce/puree
- 1/2 a large onion, approx. 1 + 1/2 cups finely diced
- 1 large potato** approx. 2-3 cups peeled and cubed
- 1/2 cup of unsweetened coconut milk
- 3 TBSP butter (vegetarian) or Earth Balance (vegan)
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- red pepper flakes, to taste
- rice or quinoa make a great base for this dish!
- fresh chopped basil or parsley to garnish
- a dollop of sour cream (vegan or regular) -- MY FAVORITE TOPPING!
- something SPICY! I added chili paste to this dish recently and LOVED it!
- curry powder/paste <-- they change the entire flavor profile of the dish but are super delicious if you're up for it!
* Prefer to used dried lentils? Simply add 1 cup of raw dried lentils to your crock-pot and increase the amount of tomato sauce used to two 15 oz cans (total) of sauce, plus add 1/2 cup of veggie broth to the mix. The lentils will soak up the extra liquid as it cooks.
** You can use one extra large russet potato for this dish or go with two smaller russet potatoes. I've also made this with Yukon gold potatoes and it works great! You'll want to aim for 2-3 cups of diced potato total.
The original dish also had red kidney beans in the mix so if you're a fan, feel free to add some! You may want to add little extra liquid and seasonings if you do, but otherwise you're good to go!
- You're going to laugh at how easy this is: Use some the butter or Earth Balance to lightly grease the sides of your crock-pot then dump EVERYTHING into your slow cooker.
- Set to HIGH for 3.5-4 hours and go about your day/evening as per usual.
- Once time is up, taste and add any additional seasonings your taste buds prefer. This dish comes out super thick (LOVE IT) but you could also thin it a bit with some additional coconut milk or veggie broth as desired. Simply amp up the seasonings to compensate!
- Garnish with an optional sprinkle of parsley or basil and serve over a bed of fluffy rice, quinoa, or alongside a big green salad!
Looking to amp up the flavors even more? I've added a spoonful or so of curry powder to these luscious lentils and LOVED IT! It's also crazy delicious with Thai red curry paste too.
If you get a chance to try these Crock-Pot Madras Lentils, let me know! You can leave me a comment here (LOVE checking those daily!) or tag @PEASandCRAYONS on Instagram so I can happy dance over your creations. I can’t wait to see what you whip up!
Much like my crockpot black beans, I cook up a big batch of lentils, portion them into 1-2 cup servings and then pop them in the freezer to enjoy all month long!
They’re ridiculously simple to cook. The instructions on the bag should tell you sort and rinse the lentils while you bring 6 cups of water to a boil in a pot. Once the water is boiling, add the lentils and reduce to simmer, in about 15-25 minutes you’ll have a pot of lentils to play with! Drain the water from the pot, portion them out and make this recipe! Then make lentil-veggie tacos or Lentil Tortilla Soup with the rest!
Garnish these crock-pot madras lentils with a sprinkle of parsley or basil and serve over a bed of fluffy rice, quinoa, or alongside a big green salad
This dish will also pair marvelously with lamb/beef/poultry if you’re of the t-rex variety.
So pictured above is the blog photo shoot version obviously; my fancy schmantzy attempt to make this delish dish easy on your eyes… but I could never eat such a teeny portion! After all, I thoroughly devoured all 4 servings by myself over the course of two days. Here’s what my plate looked like once the photoshoot was complete, pre-faceplant:
umm… I think I need to make this again; STAT!
I even made a soup version! Score!