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4.86 from 41 votes

Instant Pot Lentil Butternut Squash Curry

Instant Pot Red Lentil Butternut Squash Curry. This Warming lentil butternut or pumpkin curry is creamy and comforting. 1 Pot, make in a Pressure cooker or Saucepan. Vegan Glutenfree Soyfree nutfree Recipe
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time15 mins
Course: Main
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: butternut squash lentil curry, butternut squash red lentil soup, lentil butternut squash
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 212kcal
Author: Vegan Richa


  • 1 tsp oil
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 4 cloves of garlic (finely chopped)
  • 1/2 medium onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 inch ginger (finely chopped)
  • 1 hot green chili (finely chopped)
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala (or curry powder)
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper (or cayenne, or both)
  • 1 large tomato (chopped small)
  • 12 oz butternut squash (or pumpkin) raw, peeled and cubed or frozen
  • 1/3 cup red lentils
  • 14 oz can of coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3-4 oz of baby spinach
  • lime juice and cilantro for garnish


  • Start the Instant Pot on sauté. Add the oil and once it has heated, add the mustard seeds and wait for them to sputter or change color. Add the chopped onion, garlic, ginger, chili and a pinch of salt. Cook for 2 minutes. 
  • Add the spices and mix well. Add the tomatoes and a quarter cup of water and cook for 2 minutes stirring occasionally to avoid sticking.
  • Add the butternut squash or pumpkin, coconut milk, lentils, water and salt. Mix well to combine and pick up the tomato from the bottom of the pot. Close the lid and pressure cook for 4 minutes. Carefully quick release the pressure slowly once cooking time is done.
  • Open the lid and fold in the spinach and mix thoroughly. Taste and adjust the amount of salt, heat and flavor. Add a good dash of lime juice. Garnish with pepper flakes or cilantro. Serve over rice or flat bread or with fresh dinner rolls. 

Sauce pan instructions:

  • Follow step 1 and 2 in a saucepan over medium heat.
  • Add the butternut, coconut milk, lentils, salt and water. Partially cover and cook for 12-14 mins or until the lentil and squash are cooked through. Add 1/4 to 1/2 cup more water if the curry is too thick and simmer for a min. Taste and adjust the flavor to your liking, add a dash of lime juice and serve. 



Add other hardy veggies with butternut for variation. 
When doubling, use a bit less water than doubled.
If using brown or green lentils,pressure cook for 10 to 11 mins. 
Use water instead of coconut milk for more dal like, less rich curry.
Nutrition is for 1 of 4 serves


Calories: 212kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Sodium: 506mg | Potassium: 666mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 11290IU | Vitamin C: 32mg | Calcium: 82mg | Iron: 2.6mg