Lentil Mahkani with Potatoes and Spinach (Dal Aloo Palak Makhani) – Gluten-free and Vegan

by Beth @ Tasty Yummies

Lentil Mahkani with Potatoes and Spinach (Dal Aloo Palak Makhani) - Gluten-free and Vegan

Oh my gosh do I love Indian food. The unique flavors and spices are unlike any other cuisine and they instantly make me so happy. Although Indian food may be intimidating to some, I find that once you experiment and learn some of the foundational spices used, you can really very easily make many of your favorite dishes at home.

Lentil Mahkani with Potatoes and Spinach (Dal Aloo Palak Makhani) - Gluten-free and Vegan

This particular classic Indian dish is one of my favorites when I order at restaurants and although it is traditionally a butter based tomato sauce with heavy cream, most places will substitute the coconut milk for the cream and leave out the butter,  if you are dairy-free or vegan. The name Makhani isn’t exactly accurate without the butter, since Makhan literally means butter and we are leaving it out here, but for the sake of being an alternative to the traditional recipe, I kept the name the same. I personally think it is just as good this way, if not better.

This creamy aromatic tomato sauce is great as is, it is amazing over basmati, jasmine or brown rice or you could even try it over cauliflower rice, if you are grain-free.  I do think if I made this again, I may add a bit more coconut milk to make it even creamier, but it really is delicious just as it is.

What is your favorite Indian dish?

Lentil Mahkani with Potatoes and Spinach (Dal Aloo Palak Makhani) - Gluten-free and Vegan

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Archena January 10, 2014 at 10:53 am

Nice Indian Recipe – Beth!


2 tastyyummies January 12, 2014 at 2:58 pm

Thanks so much Archena.


3 Julie January 11, 2014 at 8:10 am

This looks delicious! What kind of lentils do you suggest using and how long should they cook for? – separate from the cooking time listed above. Thank you!


4 tastyyummies January 12, 2014 at 2:56 pm

Thanks Julie. Any lentil would work but I used green. Like most beans, I am sure everyone has their way of cooking them. Also like other beans, the cooking time can vary by age and variety, follow the directions on the package for basic cooking. I generally go with one cup lentils to three cups water or broth. Bring to a boil, turn it down to simmer and leave uncovered. Cook for 30 or 40 minutes until they are tender, adding more water if necessary.


5 Monica Bogue January 13, 2014 at 8:33 pm

I made this tonight for meatless monday. Great flavors! Yummy! My husband loved it too.
Thanks for sharing


6 Erica January 15, 2014 at 6:38 am

This was delicious! Thanks for posting the recipe!


7 Marilyn January 20, 2014 at 5:56 pm

This recipe is sooooo good! I’ll do it again and again! Thanks a lot!


8 Tanya Forsyth January 21, 2014 at 9:27 am

Hello Beth, I have been following your blog for a while, but never posted! I made this recipe last night, and it was fantastic, and so easy. I used 1/2 sweet potato, and added a scoop of greek yogurt on top for extra creaminess. Thanks for your healthy inspiration, and keep the great recipes coming!


9 Cassandra January 22, 2014 at 1:43 am

Loved this recipe! We ate it last night and I had to have a second serve it was so delicious. This is the second recipe I’ve made of yours Beth (the first was the veggie socca) and both are winners, sooooo yum. Excited to have recently discovered your site.


10 Joy February 19, 2014 at 6:10 pm

BETH!!!! This was amazing. I am so happy.


11 Kelly May 22, 2014 at 6:02 am

This was the best Indian I’ve ever made! Seriously perfect. I used coconut cream instead of coconut milk and used some fresh tomatoes and half a can of tomato paste instead of canned tomatoes. I also stirred in 1 Tbsp brown sugar with the coconut cream. My husband and I were both super impressed!


12 Mike February 25, 2015 at 6:58 pm

I’m pretty new to the vegetarian lifestyle. I’ve made a few different recipes from your blog and all were delicious but this one was by far my favorite. I’m a huge Indian food fanatic and the transition to not having meat in my dishes has been tough but this definitely hit the spot. Kudos!


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