Skip to main content

Vegetarian Majadarah

Vegetarian Majadarah

Majadarah, the Arabic name for a delicious Rice and Lentil Pilaf, literally means “having smallpox.” 

The brownish lentils allegedly resemble the disease. Don’t let that put you off. Majadarah is incredibly healthy, full of fiber and iron and low in fat.

Vegetarian Majadarah
  • Duration
  • Cook Time
  • Prep Time
  • 4 servingsServings


  • 1 cup green lentils (red will turn to mush)
  • 2 cups basmati rice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 Vidalia onions sliced into thin crescents
  • 6 cups water or stock


1. Cover lentils with water and cook for 20 minutes until soft. Drain.

2. Sauté rice briefly in oil. Add salt and lentils.

3. Pour boiling water or stock over the rice and lentils mixture. Lower flame and cook covered for 20 minutes.

4. In another frying pan sauté onions stirring frequently until dark brown.

5. Add pepper, cumin and salt to the sauté.

6. Spoon rice and lentils into a serving platter with the fried onions on top. You can serve with Greek yogurt.

NOTE: It is possible to freeze this recipe, but it’s better fresh.