Mujadara is a Middle Eastern side dish or can be a meal if served with salad. A combination of amazing flavors coming from the stock, olive oil, and caramelized onion. I’m sharing a vegan Mujadara recipe, but you can use chicken stock instead of vegetable stock, the taste will amaze you. Perfectly seasoned and fluffy rice garnished with crispy onion slices to add a wonderful texture to this dish! Watch the video for the tutorial.
What is Mujadara?
Mujadara is a Lebanese side dish, and it is cooked slightly different in different Middle Eastern countries. In some recipes you will find the addition of cumin; in another recipe it is cinnamon. Mujadara is known as a poor man’s food or a poor man’s lunch. On the internet, you can find it written as mujaddara, mejadara, and mojadara!
You will spend a minimum amount of money imagined making this dish compared to the mind-blowing delicious flavor. Mujadara consists of rice, lentils, olive oil or regular oil, salt, and stock.
6 Ingredients to Make Mujadara
This vegan dish is quick to prepare; the only lengthy process is caramelizing the onion, which can take up to 8 minutes. After caramelizing the onion, all you need is 20 minutes to cook the rest of the ingredients and serve the dinner in a short time. Mujadara is perfect for those who live in a dorm and for camping, it is a very light dinner.
To make the Mujadara you will need:
Green lentils or Brown. You will find small and large size green lentils, use the small sized ones since it cooks faster, otherwise the large ones are fine. You can use brown lentils in this recipe and follow the same method of cooking.
Onions. Use red or yellow onions, although the yellow onions are sweeter, you can cut the sweetness by increasing the amount of the salt a little. You can use store-bought caramelized onion, but don’t use caramelized onion paste!
Olive oil. The caramelized onions enhance the flavor, but when fried in olive oil, it tastes much better. Olive oil can be used in cooking but shouldn’t reach a smoking point, a tip to help you save more of your olive oil and cook safely is by adding another cooking oil like canola or sunflower oil to the olive oil you have poured in the pan. But if you are fine with frying the onion on low heat and give it its time to caramelize then you are fine using olive oil alone!
Rice. Long grain rice is best for this recipe, but you can use short grain rice and even brown rice. What you have to keep in mind is cooking time. Parboiled rice and brown rice take longer time to cook.
Vegetable stock. Use your favorite vegetable stock, or you can use vegetable bouillon instead. Low sodium stock is better, so you have control over seasoning the Mujadara.
How to Cook Mujadara
I am sharing two ways of making Mujadara, one is one stovetop using a pan, and the other way is by using a pressure cooker.
In short, the process of making Mujadara is:
- Caramelizing the onion.
- Cook the lentils for 10 minutes.
- Add all ingredients in one pan.
- Cover the pan and cook on low heat for 15 minutes.
How to serve Mujadara
You can serve it with plain yogurt, green salad, or if you are not vegan, you can serve it along with steak, baked chicken, or fried fish.
More delicious recipes:
A healthy dish that has flavors coming from the stock, olive oil, and
- 1 cup long-grain rice wash and then soak for 15 minutes. Check note #2
- 1/2 cup green or brown lentils wash and then soak for 15 minutes.
- 1 cube chicken bouillon or vegetable bouillon check note #3
- 2 1/2 cups water
- Salt to taste
- 2 medium onions thinly sliced red or yellow
- ¼ cup olive oil check note #1
COOKING IN REGULAR PAN
- In a saucepan, boil enough water to cover the brown lentils. Add the lentils and cook for 8 to 10 minutes. Strain the lentils and set it aside.
- Fry the onion in olive oil until brown. Keep aside.
- In a medium pan, add 2 1/2 cup water and let it come to a boil. Add the previously cooked lentils, salt, and the /vegetable or chicken bouillon stir for one minute. If you are using stock, then add the 2 ½ cups of it to the pan and omit the vegetable or chicken bouillon.
- Add the rice and ¾ of the previously fried onions along with the olive oil, let it boil for 20 seconds.
- Reduce heat to the lowest, cover the pan properly, and let it cook for 15 minutes. Uncover, and gently fluff the rice using a fork or thin spatula.
- When serving the mujadara, garnish with the remaining fried onion.
USING A PRESSURE COOKER
- Fry the onion in olive oil until golden brown. Keep aside.
- Add the drained rice and lentils to the pressure cooker. Add to it 2 ¼ cup water. If you are using stock, then use 2 ¼ cups of it instead of water and omit the bouillon the coming step.
- Add the chicken or vegetable bouillon, salt, and ¾ of the fried onion.
- Close the pressure cooker and place on the stove. Keep the heat on high. After the first whistle, turn off the heat and allow the pressure cooker to release the steam on its own. The steam might take up to 20 minutes to release naturally.
- DO NOT OPEN THE PRESSURE COOKER IMMEDIATELY AFTER TURNING OF THE HEAT ALLOW THE PRESSURE COOKER TO RELEASE ALL THE STEAM
- TO MAKE SURE THAT THE PRESSURE COOKER IS NOT HOLDING ANY STEAM INSIDE, GENTLY PULL UP THE WHISTLE WITHOUT PULLING IT OFF THE LID! If you see steam coming out when doing so, give the pressure cooker more time to release the steam.
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