We had an unusual (for here) snow storm about a week ago which was followed by an ice storm, a wind storm and another snow storm all the while getting pounded with a continuous blast of arctic air. I had enough sense to get my arse to the grocery storm right before it hit, but nobody expected that we would all be stuck in as long as we were. By the end of the week, the fridge and pantry were, of course, looking quite bare. We all had to eat and with no way to get to the store, it was time to bust out my slow cooker and get creative.
I have been itching to use this ground Fenugreek seed that my friend Andrea sent me for the Holidays. We have a small group of moms who are scattered all over the US and Canada who have stuck together since having our kids a couple of years ago. We do a fun secret Santa every year. Andrea knows how much I love to experiment with new flavors so she threw in a couple of spices from Penzey’s like a (much appreciated) surprise!
This soup was born of out necessity but is now a freezer staple. It is extremely easy (hello slow cooker), makes the house smell fantastic while simmering away and yields six 2-cup servings!
- Chana Dal are beans. They are a cousin of chickpeas (garbanzo beans). I saw them on sale at Whole Foods and bought some to stash in the pantry. This link is a great resource to learn more about their origin, nutritional profile and where to buy if you don’t see them at Whole Foods, your local Indian Store or in bulk at the natural grocer.
- TIP: If you don’t usually use the spices in this recipe, just buy what you need from the bulk section instead of picking up jars of each one.
- My slow cooker is 6.5 Quarts. I think a 5 or 5.5 Quart would also work for this recipe.
- I was home so I cooked this soup on HIGH for 4 hours, alternatively you could cook it on LOW for 8 hours.
Did you make this recipe? Please give it a star rating below!
Chana Dal Soup. Slow Cooker Chana Dal Soup with Spinach. Vegan.
- 2 teaspoons canola oil
- 2 small yellow onions or 1 large, chopped
- 6 cloves garlic chopped
- 3 inch piece ginger root peeled and chopped
- 2 cups chana dal rinsed and picked over
- 4 cups broth
- 2 cups water
- 15 ounce can of light coconut milk
- 14.5 ounce can of crushed tomatoes
- 2 dried chilies
- 1 tablespoon garam masala
- 1 tablespoon curry powder
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons turmeric
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon mustard powder
- 1 teaspoon ground fenugreek seed
- 6 ounces organic baby spinach
Grab your onion, garlic and ginger.
Be sure to pick over your dry beans and give them a good rinse. Measure out spices and set aside.
Heat a medium frying pan over medium heat, once hot, add oil and then onion mixture. Cook approximately five minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add spice mixture, cook 1 minute stirring constantly.
Remove from heat and add to slow cooker along with chana dal, broth, water, coconut milk, and crushed tomatoes. Set to cook on HIGH for 4 Hours.
Add baby spinach in for last 15 minutes of cooking time.
Did you make this recipe? Tag @EverydayMaven on Instagram with the hashtag #EveryDayMaven and please give a star rating below.
Phillippa Price says
Just started a high protein diet and was looking for a few meat free options, found this and can’t wait to make it later today!
Thank you from the UK xx
Hope you love it!
Yum!! This soup is in the crockpot and it smells amazing!! I can’t wait for my husband to come home and enjoy the tastes and smells!!!
Hope you both loved it Maddie!
OMG, this soup is to die for. I love anything Indian, but so much of it can be a points disaster. Wonderful and filling. Was so nice to come home to dinner already made after an afternoon of dancing with my border collie. Thanks for another keeper!!
So glad you enjoyed it Ann! 🙂
Well, there are some good places in San Diego too believe it or not. Philly Franks here is like walking into a 1980’s cheesesteak shop complete with 80’s sports memorabilia, italian water ice, Herr’s chips and Tastykakes. Since we only eat humane meats, good luck finding a cheesesteak shop that fit’s that bill. I guess I need to just get some Amoroso rolls and some beef from Whole Foods and have at it!
I am also a sucker for a great hoagie (which is not Subway!!) and soft pretzel (not cold and hard like at the old Veteran’s Stadium). My cheesesteak favorite was Pat’s, but I can’t say that Geno’s is any different. Never tried White House.
It’s true – if you want good quality (meat), you are going to have to make them yourself at this point! White House is the best – next time you back to Philly, try to go there – it’s in Atlantic City but seriously worth the drive just for the sandwiches!!!!
Made this again…great again. My wife isn’t a big fan of it, so I get it all to myself! (still couldn’t find Chana Dal)
Glad to see how well you are doing since just a year or so ago. But one thing I want to know from one Philly person to another…when will you be posting an Everydaymaven Philly cheesesteak recipe? 🙂
Great question Scott! I have to admit that I am a bigger fan of hoagies, soft pretzels and Trenton-Style Pizza than cheesesteaks. With that being said, the bread here in Seattle doesn’t compare to what you need to make a “real” cheesesteak so it would be quite the challenge! What is your favorite spot? I am torn between the White House (in Atlantic City) or Geno’s in South Philly!
Amy Webb says
Look great, but I am new to cooking Indian style foods. How will it taste if I can’t find fenugreek seeds? Are they very important to the flavor profile?
I haven’t tried this dish without the ground fenugreek and I think it adds a certain complexity but there are a lot of other strong flavors here, so I say if you can’t find it, go for it! Do you live near a Penzey’s spices? I know they carry it!
This recipe sounds tempting. I haven’t had much experience with cooking dried beans, but have heard that cooking dried beans with tomatoes prevents the beans from getting tender. Is that true?
Hi Dee, Chana Dal cook more quickly than most dried beans and do not need to be soaked (unless you are in a really high elevation as I recently learned!). I have not had this experience with this particular bean so you should be fine! Happy New Year 🙂