Dal Chawal Arancini


Dal Chawal Arancini

Dal (lentil) and Chawal (rice) are staples in my household and comfort food for my family -- after all, we are an Indian house! I recently decided to mix the two and make balls out of them, much like the Italian cuisine arancini (rice balls). This version is healthy, though, with lentils instead of rice, and no cheese, and I bake them instead of frying them. 

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Servings: 6


  • 1 cup leftover basmati rice
  • 3/4 cup leftover cooked yellow lentils
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon garlic (crushed)
  • 1 teaspoon ginger (minced)
  • 1 yellow or red bell pepper (finely chopped)
  • 2 carrots (peeled, finely chopped)
  • 1/4 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs or gluten-free breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/2 cup cilantro leaves (chopped)
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)
  • Extra breadcrumbs (for dusting)


  1. In a large mixing bowl, add cooked leftover rice, cooked leftover lentils, bell pepper, green peas, carrots, crushed garlic, ginger, cumin seeds, turmeric powder, garam masala, breadcrumbs, cilantro leaves, salt, and pepper, mixing well.

  2. Use wet hands to form the mixture into golf-ball-sized balls until the mixture is gone.

  3. Roll each ball in breadcrumbs, shaking off any excess.

  4. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

  5. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 

  6. Line 2 baking trays with non-stick baking paper.

  7. Place refrigerated balls on the prepared tray and brush with olive oil. 

  8. Bake in the oven until crisp and golden (about 20 minutes).

  9. Serve with coriander and tamarind chutney.