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A bowl of lauki chana dal is on the table.
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5 from 13 votes

Lauki Chana Dal Instant Pot

An Instant pot curry with Lauki and chana dal (Bengal gram lentil) brings complementing flavors along with a few spices to create a mouth-watering dish that is sure to please.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian
Diet: Vegan
Allergen: Dairy free, Gluten free
Difficulty: Easy
Servings: 5
Calories: 187kcal



  • 1 lauki or 5 cups chopped
  • 1 ¼ cup chana dal
  • 1 cup onions chopped
  • ½ cup chopped tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 1 green chili sliced serrano peppers
  • ½ teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 2 clove spice crushed
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 3 cup water
  • salt to taste
  • 3 teaspoon cooking oil

Tadka ingredients


  • Soak the Bengal gram for 4 hours in clean water. (recommended) or soak at least 30 minutes in warm water.
  • Peel and chop the bottle gourd into (cubes) pieces.
  • Press the saute button on the Instant Pot and heat oil.
    3 teaspoon cooking oil
  • Once the oil is hot, add cumin seeds and crushed cloves and allow them to splutter.
    ½ teaspoon cumin seeds, 2 clove spice crushed
  • Add chopped green chili pepper, grated ginger, and chopped onions. Saute for a minute. Then add chopped tomatoes and stir well.
    1 cup onions chopped, 2 teaspoon grated ginger, 1 green chili sliced, ½ cup chopped tomatoes
  • Add salt, and all the spices like Kashmiri red chili powder, turmeric powder, and garam masala. Mix well.
    ½ teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder, ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder, ½ teaspoon garam masala powder
  • Now add chopped lauki and soaked chana dal. Mix well to get an even mix.
    1 lauki or 5 cups chopped, 1 ¼ cup chana dal
  • Add water and stir well. Cancel the saute mode.
    3 cup water
  • Close the Instant Pot lid with the valve in sealing position. Cook on manual mode (high pressure) for 6 minutes. Once done, use the natural pressure release option for at least 15 minutes before opening the lid. (see above for step-by-step pictures)
  • Open the lid and stir the cooked dal gently to get an even mix. Garnish with freshly chopped cilantro leaves (optional).
  • Prepare tadka: Place a pan over medium heat and add 1 teaspoon of oil. Once the oil is hot, add a pinch of Kashmiri red chili powder, hing, and Kasuri methi. Fry them for a few seconds and pour them over the dal.
    1 teaspoon Kasuri methi
  • Serve this delicious Lauki Chana Dal with steamed rice or roti.
    pinch of asafetida/hing powder, 1 teaspoon Kasuri methi



  • If you don't have an Instant Pot, you can make this recipe in a traditional pressure cooker or stovetop pot. The cook time will be the same.
  • Soak the chana dal for at least 30 minutes before cooking. This will help to cook the dal faster.
  • If you don't have lauki, you can use any other summer squash like zucchini or yellow squash.
  • You can also add a little bit of jaggery to this recipe to balance the flavors.
  • Chop the lauki into larger chunks to retain their shape in the dal after pressure cooking.
  • Adding mustard seeds and curry leaves to the Tadka is also an option to consider.
  • If the dish turns out too spicy, squeeze a teaspoon of lime juice or lemon juice.
  • If you soaked Bengal gram for only 30 minutes then you should increase the cooking time by a minute or two in the Instant Pot. If the dal is too thick for your liking, you can add more water and stir well.


Calories: 187kcal | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 0.4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 44mg | Potassium: 51mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 31IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 94mg | Iron: 2mg