A basic Indian Khichdi recipe with new flavors. Made with quinoa, lentils, chickpeas & veggies in an Instant Pot, it's a wholesome plant-based meal for all.
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What is Khichdi?
Khichdi (khich rhymes with ditch - dee) is an Indian dish that is primarily made of rice and lentils. The term Khichdi comes from the northern part of India, but other regions have their own version of this dish. The dish is usually served with a dollop of ghee (clarified butter) on top. It provides a good mix of carbohydrates, proteins, and fat. Add some vegetables to this dish and you can also get a good amount of fiber and nutrients. In India, it is primarily eaten as comfort food because it is quick and easy to make and of course great tasting. The beauty of this dish is that although it can be made as basic as possible, it can also be made exotic.
Fond Memories of Khichdi and Mom.
When I have Khichdi, it takes me back to my childhood. Growing up, my mother used to make Khichdi when she was too tired or didn't have enough ingredients to whip up an elaborate meal. Even though it was a quick fix meal made with just a few ingredients, the flavors were lip-smacking! All mothers have this superpower: they can take a bunch of seemingly random ingredients and whip up a delicious dish! At my age now, I'm a fairly competent cook, but I still feel there's so much we (as the next generation) could learn from our mothers! No matter how much I try, I can never quite replicate the taste or flavor that my mother could bring to her dishes. That is why certain foods are always associated with mothers and for me, Khichdi is definitely one of them. The spices used to make Khichdi are not very overpowering and the flavor of the dish is fairly mild so it's easy on the stomach. All in all, this is a very nourishing and wholesome meal.
Since I enjoy giving classic recipes a twist of my own, this recipe is my take on Khichdi. I decided to make a couple of ingredient swaps. Khichdi is always prepared in ghee, but I decided to swap ghee with Pure Blends ™ Plant-Based Butter instead. Although I was a bit skeptical about the taste, I ended up loving it and didn't once miss the good old ghee. It's creamy and soft making it easy to spread and has a mild salty flavor. I even toasted some bread and smeared it with this vegan butter and had it as a light snack till this khichdi was cooking in the Instant Pot. I give this plant-based butter a big thumbs up! One of the main ingredients for this dish is rice which I swapped with the wonder grain -quinoa-. I used Ancient Harvest Organic Quinoa for this recipe. Adding some vegetables to the dish made it even more nourishing and hearty. I also chose to use pink lentils in this recipe because I thought it would lend a nice flavor to the dish. To give this dish it's own distinctive taste, I decided to garnish this khichdi with Saffron Road ® Chickpeas in the Bombay Spice flavor. This truly changed the flavor of the dish. They are crunchy, spicy, mildly sweet and very addictive. I literally had to control myself from finishing it till I was done with the photo-shoot. Food blogging is so not easy!
Publix - My One Stop Grocery Shop!
I get all of my groceries at Publix. I love their store! It is big, clean and well-lit! They stock high-quality products and offer a lot of choices when it comes to products. I enjoy traversing their aisles to see what's on sale. Though I stick to my grocery list, I usually spend some time looking around. Sometimes I end up finding an interesting vegetable or ingredient that I did not know of before. It's fun! 🙂
Publix has a great assortment of plant-based products! Nearly all of the plant-based products they offer are easy to locate in the store. So, for this recipe, off I went to Publix. Now having bought salted butter for my morning toast - I was aware that Pure Blends ™ Plant-Based Butter was a thing. It sits on the same shelf as my brand of salted butter. I never had an occasion to use it, but I figured today was the day I was going to try this product. There were two flavors available - Avocado Oil and Coconut Oil. I decided to go with Avocado Oil. Since I had already tried Ancient Harvest Organic Quinoa before, using this for my Khichdi was a no-brainer. Khichdi has a very mushy consistency. I also thought to myself, maybe adding some crunch would bring another dimension to the dish. To this end, I decided to purchase some Saffron Road® Chickpeas for some crunchy garnish. I can't tell you how easy it was to get all of these products at Publix! I seriously recommend shopping at Publix - you will not be disappointed! In fact, here is some incentive to shop there: From 9/28/19 – 10/11/19 you can save on select plant-based products at Publix! Visit the plant-based site here for a full list of savings offers. Trust me, you do not want to miss this!!
Khichdi Revamped - the Recipe!
Here is how to make this simple and easy Instant Pot Quinoa & Chickpea Khichdi. As the first step, soak the quinoa and pink lentils in separate bowls for about 30 minutes. Drain the water and keep aside for now. Turn on the Instant Pot in sauté mode. Add the plant-based butter and once it melts, temper some cumin seeds. After about 10 seconds, add some minced ginger and garlic along with chopped jalapeño and onions. Sauté till the onions turn translucent. Then add some chopped veggies - carrots, beans, pigeon green peas, spinach, and bell pepper. Continue to sauté for a minute. Transfer the soaked quinoa and lentils to the Instant Pot. Add spices like turmeric powder, curry powder, roasted cumin powder, and salt. Add water and stir all together. Close the pot. Select “manual mode” and place the pressure valve in the sealing position. Cook on high pressure for approximately 6 minutes (Cooking times may vary based on your brand of Instant Pot). Release the pressure naturally for 7 minutes and then do a quick pressure release. Then open the lid, garnish with chopped cilantro and lemon juice. Transfer to a serving bowl, top it with Saffron Road Chickpeas for that extra crunch and flavor. Serve this delicious Quinoa and Chickpeas Khichdi piping hot with some papad, raita, and pickles!
Simple & Easy Instant Pot Quinoa & Chickpeas Khichadi
- Instant Pot
- 1/2 cup Ancient Harvest Organic Quinoa
- 1/2 cup pink lentils/masoor dal
- 1 tbsp Pure Blends™ Plant-Based Butter
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1/2 inch ginger
- 3-4 cloves garlic
- 1 onion
- 1 jalapeno
- 2 cups chopped mixed veggies - beans, carrots, green pigeon peas, spinach and bell pepper
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp roasted cumin powder
- 1/2 tbsp curry powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- salt as required
- 3 1/2 cups water
- cilantro for garnish
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1/2 cup Saffron Road® Chickpeas any flavor
- The first step is soaking. Soak the Ancient Harvest Organic Quinoa and pink lentils in separate bowls for about 30 minutes. Drain the water and keep it aside for now.
- Turn on the Instant Pot in saute mode. Add Pure Blends™ Plant-Based Butter and once it melts temper cumin seeds.
- After 10 seconds, add minced ginger and garlic along with chopped jalapeno and onions. Saute till the onions turn translucent.
- Then add these veggies - carrots, beans, green pigeon peas, spinach and bell pepper. Continue to saute for a minute.
- Drain the quinoa and lentils, then transfer it to the IP.
- Add spices like turmeric powder, paprika, curry powder, roasted cumin powder and salt. Add water and stir it all together.
- Close the pot. Select Manual mode and place the pressure valve in sealing position. Cook on high pressure for 6 minutes. Release pressure naturally for 7 minutes and then do a quick pressure release.
- Open the lid, garnish with chopped cilantro and lemon juice.
- Transfer it to a serving bowl, top it with Saffron Road ® Chickpeas for that extra crunch and flavor and serve this delicious Quinoa & Chickpeas Khichadi immediately.
Some recipes to try with Quinoa are Quinoa Dosa | How To Make Instant Quinoa Uttapam, Spicy Quinoa & Red Pumpkin Adai | Lentil Dosa, Instant Sweet Potato & Quinoa Idli/Steamed Cakes, Quinoa Paneer Mini Pancakes and Steamed Quinoa Chana Dal Idli.