Mujadara With Yogurt and Herbs


Don’t let the potentially unfamiliar name of Mudjara dissuade you from trying it. It's a Middle Eastern dish of lentils with onions and rice made with fragrant spices like cumin and coriander. Basically, it’s an easy pantry-ingredient dinner that turns into a satisfying and hearty dish. Not to mention, it comes together in one pot thanks to using pre-cooked lentils as a short-cut. The fresh, crispy salad is the perfect balance to the rich flavors of the mujadara. If you can find heads of little gem, small romaine-like heads of lettuce, they would be perfect here.

Photo: Greg DuPree
Hands On Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
30 mins
4 servings


  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided

  • 2 yellow onions, chopped

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander

  • ½ cup basmati rice

  • 1 cup vegetable broth or water

  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt, divided

  • 1 15-oz. can lentils, rinsed and drained

  • ½ cup fresh cilantro leaves, torn

  • ¼ cup fresh mint leaves, torn

  • 1 ½ tablespoons plus 2 tsp. sherry or red wine vinegar, divided

  • 12 ounces baby gem lettuce, leaves separated

  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

  • ½ cup plain whole-milk yogurt


  1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium. Add onions and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until deeply browned, 12 to 14 minutes. Add cumin and coriander and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add rice and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Add broth and ½ teaspoon salt; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in lentils, cilantro, mint, 1½ tablespoons vinegar, 1 tablespoon oil, and ¾ teaspoon salt.

  2. Toss lettuce with pepper and remaining 1 tablespoon oil, 2 teaspoons vinegar, and ¼ teaspoon salt. Top lentil mixture with yogurt. Serve with salad.

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