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lauki chana dal in a blue bowl with roti on the side

Lauki Chana Dal (Bottle Gourd Curry with Lentils)

Lauki chana dal sabzi is bottle gourd (also known as lauki or dudhi) cooked with chana dal (split chickpea lentils) in a very tasty, thick tomato gravy. Paired with roti or any Indian bread or plain rice, it is a healthy vegan meal that can be made easily on busy weeknights in your instant pot.
Course Brunch/Dinner
Cuisine Indian
Keyword bottle gourd curry, lauki and chana dal, lauki recipe, vegan Indian recipe
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 197.5kcal


  • 6-quart Instant Pot Duo


  • 1 medium bottle gourd peeled and chopped
  • ½ cup chana dal
  • ¼ cup cooking oil
  • ¼ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 medium red onion sliced fine
  • 1 teaspoon ginger paste
  • 1 teaspoon garlic paste
  • 1 medium tomato chopped
  • 1 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ tablespoon coriander powder
  • ¼ teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 2-3 green chillies optional
  • 1-2 sprigs cilantro or parsley
  • half a lemon or lime
  • sea salt to taste


  • Soak the chana dal in 1 cup water. Peel and chop the bottle gourd, onion and tomato (5 minutes).
  • Turn the instant pot to saute mode and add cumin and onions. Fry until the onions are just beginning to caramelize (5 minutes).
  • Add the ginger and garlic pastes, tomato, powdered spices and a little water to prevent the masala from sticking to the bottom of the pot. Cook this masala until thick and shiny (5 minutes).
  • Add the soaked chana dal along with the water and cook again (5 minutes). Turn off the saute mode.
  • Add the lauki, salt and a little water if required. Secure the lid, turn on the pressure cooking mode and make sure the vent is in sealing position. Set the timer to 5 minutes. Once the timer goes, release the pressure after 5 minutes (QPR).
  • Remove the lid, take out the lauki chana dal in a dish and garnish with green chillies (if using) cilantro or parsley. Sprinkle a little lemon or lime juice on top. Your lauki chana dal is ready to be served with some warm Indian bread or rice.


  1. You can buy ginger and garlic pastes from the market or make your own. Since this recipe requires both, you can make them together. Put equal quantities of peeled ginger and garlic in a blender along with some water and blend to get a smooth puree. Keep refrigerated in a glass bottle and use as required. Use one tablespoon in this recipe if making your own paste.
  2. If adding green chillies, reduce the quantity of red chilli powder by half if you don't want the curry to be extra hot. 


Calories: 197.5kcal | Carbohydrates: 12.6g | Protein: 1.8g | Fat: 14.5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 12.2g | Sodium: 325mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 1.9g