Red Lentil Butternut Squash Curry


  • 1 tsp safflower or sunflower oil
  • 1/2 tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1/2 medium-size red onion
  • 1 fresh ginger piece
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 hot green chile
  • 3/4 tsp plus a pinch of salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala or curry powder
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper or cayenne pepper
  • 1 cups large tomato
  • 3/4 cup Water
  • 12 oz uncooked butternut squash or pumpkin
  • 1 can unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/3 cup dried split red lentils
  • 3 to 4 ozbaby spinach
  • chopped fresh cilantro
  • red pepper flakes
  • freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Preheat the Instant Pot by selecting the Sauté setting. Heat the oil in the preheated pot for a few seconds, then add the mustard seeds and leave for about 30 seconds, or until they start to splutter. Add the onion, ginger, garlic, chile, and a pinch of salt and cook until the onion is translucent, about 2 minutes. Stir in the turmeric, garam masala, and black pepper and cook for 30 seconds. Add the tomato and 1/4 cup (60 ml) of the water and cook, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, until the tomato is softened, about 2 minutes. Add the butternut squash, coconut milk, remaining 3/4 teaspoon of salt, and remaining 1/2 cup (120 ml) of water. Add the lentils to the pot, and give it a good stir to combine and scrape up any bits of tomato from the bottom of the pot. Select the Cancel setting.
  • Lock the lid into place, set the Pressure Release Knob to Sealing, select the Pressure Cook/Manual setting at high pressure, and set the cook time to 3 minutes.
  • Once the cooking cycle is done, carefully set the Pressure Release Knob from Sealing to Venting to quick release. Open the lid and fold in the spinach to wilt it. Taste for seasoning, adjusting if needed.
  • Garnish with lime juice, red pepper flakes, and cilantro. Serve over rice or with vegan flatbread or fresh vegan dinner rolls.
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