Lebanese Lentils and Rice or Mujadara recipe is a one-pot, one-step dish, that uses the Instant Pot to make this classic comfort dish.
Lentils and Rice Mujadara
Call it Kushari, Mujadara, Khichidi, or Lentils and Rice, but most cultures have some version of these Greek Lentils. I love the Lebanese/Greek version but when I’ve tried it in the past, the lentils and rice cook at different speeds so you end up having to cook them separately, or suffer undercooked lentils or overcooked rice.
I was determined to cook this as a one-pot, one-step dish and use the Instant Pot to do it so I didn’t have to stand and stir while it cooked.
It worked, but I had to make two modifications, which really didn’t affect the taste as much as I feared they would. For one, I used the French Puy lentils rather than the traditional lentils since these cook faster.
Here’s a picture I found that shows you the difference.
Secondly, I had to soak the French lentils, which I don’t typically do with them. But I used a quick soak in hot water, and it really helped.
I also had to undercook the onions a bit as my son won’t eat crisped onions (why, I do not know but whatever). Make yours nice as brown and crisp as you want, and enjoy the flavors.
I think kids find crisped onions to be somewhat bitter so if you’re feeding little ones, you may want to go easy on the crisping, as I did.
So the steps for Greek Lentils and Rice are:
- Soak the lentils in hot water before you get started
- While they’re soaking, brown the onions and wash the rice
- Cook all of it in an Instant Pot.
If you can’t find French lentils where you live, I suggest you soak regular lentils but use brown rice, and adjust the water accordingly. Both regular lentils and brown rice take 20 mins in the Instant Pot so those should work together.
IF YOU LIKE LENTILS AND RICE, CHECK OUT THIS KHIDCHADI LENTILS AND RICE RECIPE!
EQUIPMENT YOU MAY NEED TO MAKE THIS INSTANT POT PRESSURE COOKER MUJADARA RECIPE:
- Instant Pot Mini Duo, or Instant pot 6 quarts, or Instant Pot 8 Quarts
- Measuring Cups
- My favorite Cutting Board
- Good set of Kitchen Knives
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- 1/3 cup (64 g) lentils
- 2 cup (320 g) Onion, sliced
- 2 tablespoons (2 tablespoons) Ghee
- 1 cup (185 g) Basmati Rice, rinsed (do not substitute short grain rice otherwise the water proportions will be off)
- 1/4 teaspoon (0.25 teaspoon) Ground Cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) Ground Coriander
- 2 cups (500 g) Water
- Salt, to taste
- Soak the lentils in enough hot water to cover them well, and let them soak while you get everything else going.
- Turn on your Instant Pot to Sauté, and when it's hot, add 1 tablespoon of ghee. When the ghee starts to shimmer, add in your thinly sliced onion, sprinkle with a little salt, and sauté for about 5-10 minutes until the onions are crisping around the edges, but not burned. If you have some extra time before dinner needs to be on the table, keep cooking until they are well-browned.
- Remove half the onions to serve as a garnish.
- Place all remaining ingredients into the Instant Pot, stir well, and set it to High Pressure for 6 minutes.
- Allow it to NPR for 10 minutes, and then release remaining pressure. You may still have a little moisture left in the rice. Stir it gently but well, and leave the lid half off and half on the pot. You want it to steam the rice, but you need some of that water to evaporate off as well.
- Let it rest undisturbed for 5-10 minutes. Stirring frequently will break up the delicate rice.
- Uncover and place into your serving dish, and sprinkle with the reserved, browned onions.
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