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What to Serve with Dal? 7 BEST Side Dishes

Dal is an Indian dish made from split pulses that are dried and soaked before cooking, and it is a classic among Indian dishes.

This dish is mainly prepared by frying it with some simple vegetables, but there are many ways to prepare dal.

If you’re preparing to make an Indian meal, you must know what to serve with dal.

Since it is an important dish among Indians, you cannot avoid it in any Indian-based meals.

Why Consider Serving Side Dishes with Dal?

why consider serving side dishes with dal

Indian dishes are known for their many flavors and spices, and it shows just how detail-oriented the inventors of the dish were.

Side dishes will balance out the many spices that come with Indian dishes.

It now becomes essential to choose one that will keep your eating experience refreshing and healthy.

Deciding on a side dish to serve with dal should be easy because dal is a basic dish, so anything can work fine.

What to Serve with Dal? 7 BEST Side Dishes

Whatever way you cook your dal, there is always a side dish that will bring out its best.

Read on to discover the seven best side dishes for dal.

1. Skillet Potatoes with Pepper and Veggies

skillet potatoes with pepper and veggies

Want a filling and tasty side dish? The skillet potatoes are an exciting dish that goes well with almost anything and can be served at brunch, dinner, or even breakfast.

If you are craving a carb and calorie-rich diet, you can cook this dish in various ways.

One of the most preferred methods is to sauteé the tomatoes and onions in olive oil before adding the potatoes.

Before the potatoes get entirely cooked, add colorful veggies such as red and green pepper and carrots, giving that beautiful yet tasty dish.

Finally, add black pepper for that extra kick of flavor.

2. Classic Basmati Rice

classic basmati rice

Basmati rice is long-grained, flavorful, and comes with many health benefits.

This carb-rich flavored rice is basic in most homes and is the easiest recipe.

However, the correct way to cook this rice is very challenging.

One has to be very observant of the amount of water used or the pot to maintain the shape and flavor of the rice.

Soaking the rice for 30 minutes before cooking helps achieve better results from this recipe.

Avoid stirring the rice while cooking to preserve the shape of the rice.

This would take around 10 -30 minutes, depending on the pot you use to cook the rice.

Using a pressure cooker takes lesser time.

You can cook this rice with just water, but if you want some flavor, you can add some complementary herbs like bay leaves, cumin, and star-shaped anise.

3. Roasted Tomato and Egg Chutney

roasted tomato and egg chutney

This is not the most common recipe but a super tasty side dish that complements with dal.

You can try out this dish if you have no options left to cook; you would be surprised by how much it blows your mind because you didn’t think it would be tasty.

A barbeque-roasted tomato brings out the most flavor and aroma to this dish.

First, roast the tomatoes till it’s soft but not dried off their juice to make this dish.

In a mortar, grind some roasted chilies and fresh garlic and make it into a paste.

It is best to cool the tomato before mixing it with garlic-chili paste.

Then the best part of this dish is to add a fried egg to the remaining paste.

Finally, add salt to taste.

4. Methi Missi Roti

methi missi roti

Roti means flatbread. Methi Missi roti is a type of Indian flatbread that is spiced and flavored and pairs well with many Indian dishes, including dal.

Most Methi Missi roti has a simple flavor achieved using salt and pepper, and they are also spiced with turmeric and green chilis.

It is simple in preparation because these rotis are generally used to accompany other dishes, so they do not need much flavoring.

To serve methi missi roti with dal, dip the rotis in the dal or tear them and add the pieces into the curry.

5. Peas Pulao

peas pulao

Peas pulao is a classical Indian dish commonly known as matar pulao.

There is no specific way to make this dish, and it can be made in any style, depending on one’s palate.

This one-pot meal can be taken without other dishes, but it can never go wrong when combined with dal or meat.

To make this simple and easy one-pot dish, you need classic basmati rice, some dried herbs, and green peas.

Use either the fresh peas or the frozen ones, and skip any herbs that don’t compliment your palate.

You can easily prepare this pulao in under 30 minutes.

6. Lemon Garlic Pork Ribs

lemon garlic pork ribs

This dish requires only a few ingredients and is relatively simple in preparation, but the result is a work of awe.

Pork ribs, garlic, olive oil, and fresh lemon juice are the main ingredients you will need.

The pork ribs are marinated in a seasoning mixture before being barbequed.

Squeeze some fresh lemon juice over the cooked pork ribs to give a tangy freshness to the meat and also prevent possible causes of gastrointestinal issues.

This recipe is so delicious that you’ll be tempted to lick your fingers to get that residual gravy off.

7. Dry Bombil Masala with Beans

dry bombil masala with beans

If you love fermented food or its aroma, you should try this recipe. Bombil is also known as Bombay duck.

It is a fish usually dried and has a fermented odor and many health benefits.

Those having it for the first time would find its taste weird, but you will want more of this dish with the right ingredients and spices.

This is how addicting the dish is. Since it is dried and fermented, wash the fish well in hot water before cooking.

Use vegetables such as beans, onion, garlic, ginger, turmeric, curry masala, and garam masala to bring out that flavor.


This article must have introduced you to various strange names and ingredients as you read this list.

They are the Indian names that so beautifully represent each food.

You should give a try to the many spicy and richly-flavored dishes.

After all, what better way to pair Indian dal than with an Indian side dish? You might even discover your next favorite food while trying them out.

Yield: 4 Servings

What to Serve with Dal? 7 BEST Side Dishes

What to Serve with Dal? 7 BEST Side Dishes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • Skillet Potatoes with Pepper and Veggies
  • Classic Basmati Rice
  • Roasted Tomato and Egg Chutney
  • Methi Missi Roti
  • Peas Pulao
  • Lemon Garlic Pork Ribs
  • Dry Bombil Masala with Beans


  1. Pick your favorite recipe from the article.
  2. Organize your ingredients and utensils.
  3. Follow the detailed instructions in the recipe to make your side dish.
  4. Prepare and serve for delicious meal!
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