Deeply satisfying and redolent of caramelized onions and aromatic spices, mujadara is considered a staple throughout the Middle East. Consisting of steamed Basmati Rice and Green Lentils cooked pilaf-style with golden-brown fried onions, mujadara is a pleasantly spicy-yet-sweet dish.

Prep time: 10 min

Cook time: 70 min

Total time: 80 min

Copyright Recipe © 2015 Woodland Foods


Makes 8 servings


  1. Place lentils in small saucepan, and cover with water by 2 inches. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer 15 minutes. Lentils should be slightly softened, but not fully cooked. Drain and reserve.

  2. Place onions in large bowl, and toss with flour and 1/2 teaspoon salt until lightly coated. Line baking sheet with several layers of paper towels; set aside.

  3. Heat vegetable oil in medium, steep-sided sauté pan over high heat. Test oil temperature by adding one piece of onion; it should sizzle and spit.

  4. Reduce heat under oil to medium-high, and add one-quarter to one-third of onions, depending upon size of pan. Fry, stirring and turning onions a few times, until golden brown, about 5 to 7 minutes.

  5. Use tongs or slotted spoon to transfer onions to prepared baking sheet. Repeat process until all onions are fried. Carefully pour off oil, and wipe out pan.

  6. Set pan over medium heat, and add cumin and coriander seeds. Toast 1 to 2 minutes, until slightly darkened and fragrant. Add rice, par-cooked lentils, olive oil, allspice, cinnamon, turmeric, sugar, remaining 1 teaspoon salt and black pepper. Stir to coat with oil and spices. Add water, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover pan and simmer 15 minutes.

  7. Remove pan from heat, uncover, and quickly cover with clean kitchen towel. Replace lid, sealing tightly to keep steam inside pan. Let sit 10 minutes.

  8. Stir about two-thirds of fried onions into rice mixture. Transfer to serving vessel, and top with remaining onion. Serve immediately with yogurt for topping.