Lentil Rice

lentil rice 02Sweet raisins, lentils, sauteed onions, and a hint of cinnamon.  Your taste buds will be begging for more!

Lentil Rice (aka Adas Polo), is a traditional Iranian dish.  Usually served with chicken or some type of meat on the side.  I like it just the way it is!  The lentils offer enough protein so meat really isn’t necessary, and the sauteed raisins and onions add the perfect amount of flavor.

Of course, making this dish is supposed to be a much longer process, but I ain’t got time for that!  The way I make it may be slightly less traditional but it takes half the time so I don’t feel guilty about it.  This recipe is for 3 to 4 people, but can easily be doubled if you need more.  You can also use currants instead of raisins.  They are smaller than raisins and give the dish a more delicate look.



1 cup Basmati rice

1/2 cup green lentils (I buy the ones labeled “fancy lentils”.  They’re smaller and look a little nicer)

2 cups water

2 tsp salt

3 Tbs and 2 tsp veg oil

1 Tbs butter

1/2 raisins

1 large onion, sliced

1/2 tsp cinnamon



Rinse lentils and place in a pot with 1 cup water.  Heat until the water begins to boil.  Let it boil for a few minutes, then remove the lentils from heat and drain.  Place rice in a bowl and rinse and drain 3 times with room temperature water.  Place the rice, lentils, 2 cups water, salt, and 3 Tbs veg oil in a pot.  Give it a light stir and heat on medium/high heat until it begins to boil.  Once the rice mixture begins to boil, lower the heat to medium/low and let it simmer for about 20 minutes or until all the water is gone and the rice is cooked.  You can take a couple pieces out and try them to see if they’re ready.  Once the water is gone and rice is cooked, place a paper towel over the pot and put the lid on.  This will help absorb the rest of the water from the rice so it doesn’t come out too mushy.  Leave on very low heat for at least 5 min.

Heat 2 tsp oil in a pan and add the slice onions.  Saute on medium/high heat, stirring occasionally until onions start to turn a golden color.  Remove them from the pan and place to the side. In the same pan, add raisins and butter.  Heat until raisins are warm.  This usually takes 3 to 4 min.  Stir in the cinnamon, sauteed onions, and a dash of salt.  Heat for a couple minutes and its ready to go!

You can serve it individually or family style.  The lentil rice goes first and the raisins and onions get poured on top.  When its just us, I serve it individually because my little one isn’t crazy about the onions.  She loves those raisins though!


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