There’s nothing better than a red lentil stew with potatoes and peas on a chilly day to warm you up from the inside out. I love rich, (mildly) spicy curries, but sometimes, your belly craves something a little softer, lighter and less carb-heavy.

This is where this stew comes in. It’s in between a traditional Indian potato and pea curry (Aloo Matar) and a red lentil dhal. 

As I like to keep the recipes on The Minimalist Vegan approachable and using everyday ingredients, I have created a stew that uses ingredients that you’ll find in your cupboard.

Even if you don’t make Indian food too often, you won’t have to pop down to your specialty Indian grocer to get these ingredients.

Red Lentil Stew with Potatoes and Peas

Red Lentil Stew with Potatoes and Peas

What’s the difference between a stew and a soup?

Stews are a thicker consistency, using less liquid when cooking. Soups are runnier and use more liquid and can be blended as well. 

I love both types but have a soft spot for stews as I find them more satisfying and filling.  

The creaminess of this stew will make you go back for seconds and thirds. 

The dish serves four people, but in our household, we’d be lucky to have leftovers when the two of us are eating. If you know us personally, you probably know that we’re big eaters.

Red Lentil Stew with Potatoes and Peas

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This red lentil stew is:

  • Creamy
  • Nourishing
  • Healthy
  • Comforting
  • Gluten-free
  • Dairy-free
  • Vegan
  • Filling

Red Lentil Stew with Potatoes and Peas

This dish is full of healthy and beneficial ingredients. I have talked at length about the benefits of split red lentils (aka Masoor Dal) in this post

Ideally, you should soak the red lentils before using them for around 2-4 hours. It’s not necessary to do it overnight like some of the other lentils because they are split and cook much quicker.

If you follow the instructions, you’ll be soaking them for around 15-20 minutes before using them in the stew. If you soak them for a few hours prior, they will probably cook a little quicker. 

Red Lentil Stew with Potatoes and Peas

Stews get better with age

This dish is even better the next day if it doesn’t get eaten in one sitting. It also freezes well, but keep in mind that the potatoes will get mushier and won’t hold their form too well when thawed and warmed up. 

I hope you enjoy it and enjoy the versatility of this dish. You can certainly make this stew with many alterations to suit what you already have in your cupboard. 

Other recipes you’ll love:

  1. One-Pot French Lentil, Mushroom and Sage Stew
  2. Ghanaian Spinach Stew with Chickpeas (Vegan)
  3. Easy Vegan Brown Lentil Stew
  4. Hearty Mung Bean Stew With Kale
  5. Creamy Red Lentil Curry (Vegan-Friendly)

If you try this recipe, let me know! I would love for you to leave a comment and rating below. If you want to go that extra mile, tag us on Instagram, or share your photo of the recipe on Pinterest. Or Pin It for later!

Red Lentil Stew with Potatoes and Peas

Red Lentil Stew with Potatoes and Peas

Yield: Serves 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

This red lentil stew with potatoes and peas is nourishing, filling and hearty. Perfect for leftovers as it improves with age.


  • 2 cups (380g) split red lentils
  • 2 tbsp neutral cooking oil (I used rice bran oil)
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced or finely grated
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds, slightly ground in mortar and pestle
  • 4 medium potatoes (600g), chopped
  • 1 can (400ml) coconut milk
  • 2 cups (300g) frozen or fresh green peas
  • 2 large handfuls (70g) baby spinach
  • Salt to taste

Serving toppings: (optional)

  • Cilantro (coriander)
  • Fresh red chili, sliced


  1. In a bowl, pour enough water to immerse the red lentils and soak while you prepare the rest of the dish.
  2. In a large pot on medium heat, add the oil, onion, and garlic and saute for a couple of minutes until the onion starts to get a little colour.
  3. Add in the ginger, turmeric, curry powder, and cumin seeds and let cook for another couple of minutes to release all the flavours and aromas of the spices. Make sure to stir.
  4. Add in the chopped potatoes and stir for a minute. You'll notice that the potato starts to stick to the bottom of the pot, add a splash of water at this stage.
  5. Cook the potatoes for around 5 minutes.
  6. While they cook, wash the red lentils. Once the water runs clear, add them to the pot.
  7. Stir well and put on your kettle to boil 3 cups (750ml) of water.
  8. Once the red lentils start to turn yellow at the bottom of the pot, add in the boiled water, and can of coconut milk. Stir well and place the lid askew to retain the liquid. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  9. Once the potatoes and lentils are cooked, stir in the peas and baby spinach.
  10. Let cook for another couple of minutes and turn the stove off.
  11. Season to taste and serve with cilantro and chili if desired.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 589Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 30mgSodium: 995mgCarbohydrates: 81gFiber: 18gSugar: 9gProtein: 30g

Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated automatically. The accuracy of this information is not guaranteed.

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Red Lentil Stew with Potatoes and Peas

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      1. Hi, can you suggest anything I can exchange the coconut milk with?
        Could I use soy milk or maybe some blended cashews….Im new to this type of cuisine so any advice would be greatly appreciated

        1. Hi Joy,
          Hmmm…I haven’t tried it with anything else myself, but you could try some unsweetened soy milk with 1-2 tablespoons of cashews, blended. Alternatively, if you have access to soy cream (we don’t here in Aus), use that instead. Let me know how you go!

  1. Eating this right now! Very nice. The only thing that’s missing is when to add the ginger 😉

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