Bisi Bele Bath

This Bisi Bele Bath recipe is hearty and comforting food from Karnataka, a South Indian state. It is so easy to make and is always a big hit with the family. Easy comfort food for any day of the week.

Bisi Bele Bath garnished with tempering.

What is Bisi Bele Bath?

If we translate this bisibelebath (Kannada name), Bisi means (piping) hot, Bele means lentils and Bath means the dish made with rice. So in short, this is a healthy one-pot meal made with dal, rice, and the addition of vegetables. This bisi bele bath is also called bisi bele huli anna (means a hot, tangy dish with dal, rice).

What brand of bisi bele bath powder to use?

If you prefer the store bought one than MTR brand is the best. If you like me who loves homemade masala powders just because homemade one gives a better taste, flavor and aroma then here is my recipe of bisi bele bath powder.

There is another similar dish from Tamil cuisine named sambar rice where dal and rice are cooked together and then mixed with cooked vegetables and freshly made spice paste. But here in bisi bele bath recipe, we are cooking dal and rice separately and then mixed with cooked vegetables, spice powder, and tamarind.

Why rice and dal cooked separately and not together?

The dish should have fully cooked rice grain yet with texture (not mushy) and dal should be really soft and mushy. So the mushy dal gives a creamy, smooth texture and the bite from veggies and rice. If you like rice and dal both mushy like khichdi in your bisi bele bath then you can cook together.

Check out other rice recipes
Curd rice  // Tomato rice  // Tamarind rice  // Indian lemon rice // Coconut milk rice

Step By Step Photo Instructions:

1)Wash rice and dal separately under running cold water till water runs clear. Or rinse them 3-4 times or till water is no more cloudy. If you have time then you can soak for 20 minutes or skip it. Take washed rice, salt, peanuts and 1 ½ cups of water in a small container (that fits into pressure cooker). Here I am cooking dal and rice in my Instant pot using PIP (pot-in-pot) method.

2) In another container take washed dal, turmeric powder, oil and 1 cup of water.

Washed dal and rice in separate containers

3) Add around 1-2 glass of water in the pressure cooker (inner pot of instant pot) and place the rack or stand in the bottom. Then place the dal container.

4) On top place the rice container.

Stack dal and rice container in instant pot

5) Cover the rice container with a lid. Then cover the cooker with lid, put the weight on. Cook for 3-4 whistles on medium heat. Let the pressure go down by itself and then open the lid. If cooking in instant pot then cook on manual (high pressure) 10 minutes.

6) While it is pressure cooking, take tamarind and soak into ½ cup of hot water and let it soak for 20 minutes. Mash it using your fingers and extract all the pulp. Strain and keep it aside. Also, chop all the veggies and keep them ready.

While dal rice is cooking, prep tamarind water

7) Remove the rice container from the cooker.

8) Roughly mix them.

Rice is cooked and roughly mixed

9) Also, remove the dal container.

10) And whisk it till smooth. You can use a wire whisk or hand blender. Keep it aside.

cooked dal is mashed using whisk

11) Heat the oil in a pan on medium heat. Once hot add onion.

12) Saute till onions get soft and translucent or light pink in color.

saute onion for bisi bele bath recipe

13) Then add all the vegetables (tomato, potato, carrot, beans, peas).

14) Mix well and add salt. Saute for 3-4 minutes.

adding vegetables.

15) Then add 1 cup of water.

16) Cover with lid and cook till vegetables are cooked, soft and tender. It took me around 8-10 minutes. Do stir in between and if it dries out too much then add a splash of water as needed.

vegetables cooked till soft and tender

17) Now add jaggery.

18) Also, add bisi bele bath masala powder. Mix well and cook for a minute.

adding jaggery and bisi bele bath powder

19) Then add tamarind water + another 1 cup of water.

20) Mix well and let it come to a boil and simmer for 2 minutes

add tamarind water and simmer

21) Now add boiled dal.

22) Also, add cooked rice.

add cooked dal and rice to veggie mixture

23) Mix well and cook for 4-5 minutes so all the flavors get to mingle. If needed you can add more water to get the right consistency.

24) On another stove let’s prepare the tempering. Heat the small tadka pan on medium heat and add ghee. Let the ghee melt and heat up.

preparing for tempering

25) Once hot add mustard seeds and let them pop.

26) Now add cashew nuts and dried red chilies.

mustard seeds, cashews, dry chilies added to tempering

27) Saute for a minute or till cashews are golden brown in color.

28) Add curry leaves.

adding curry leaves

29) Also, add hing.

30) Immediately pour the tempering into to bisi bele bath mixture. Stir well and serve.

add tempering to the bisi bele bath

Serve piping hot bisi bele bath with a side of roasted or fried papad, potato chips or boondi and chutney or onion tomato raita. This can be packed into the lunch box.

Bisi Bele Bath Recipe (Karnataka Style)

Did you try this bisi bele bath recipe? I’d love to hear about it! Leave a review in the comment section below.

Bisi Bele Bath

4.50 from 6 votes
Bisi Bele Bath Recipe (Karnataka Style BisiBeleBath Recipe)
Bisi Bele Bath Recipe (Bisi Bele Huli Anna) – a traditional classic dish from Karnataka cuisine. 
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Serving Size 4

US measuring cups are used (1 cup = 240 ml)


For Pressure Cooking Dal-Rice:

  • ¾ cup Sona masoori rice , (or any short grain rice) if not available you can use basmati rice too
  • Salt, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons Peanuts
  • 1 ½ cup water, for cooking rice
  • ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons Arhar dal (toor dal or split pigeon peas)
  • ½ teaspoon Turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon Oil
  • 1 cup Water, for cooking dal

For Bisi Bele Bath Recipe:

  • 1 tablespoons Tamarind
  • ½ cup Water, (Hot) to dissolve tamarind
  • 1 tablespoon Oil
  • ½ cup Red onion, chopped (or 4-5 shallots)
  • ½ cup Tomato, chopped
  • ½ cup Carrots, chopped
  • ½ cup Green peas
  • ¼ cup Potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • ¼ cup Green beans (French beans), chopped
  • ** Total 2 cups of vegetables, Approx.
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 cup + 1 cup Water
  • 2 teaspoons Jaggery (Gur)
  • 2 ½ tablespoons Bisi bele bath powder

For Tempering:

  • 1 tablespoons Ghee (Clarified butter)
  • 1 teaspoon Mustard seeds
  • 6-7 Cashew nuts
  • 2 Dried red chilies
  • 10-12 Curry leaves
  • teaspoon Hing (Asafoetida)


  • Wash or rinse the dal and rice separately. Then soak for 20 minutes. This step is optional.
  • Meantime prep rest of the ingredients and chop the vegetables.
  • Soak the tamarind in hot water for 20-30 minutes then squeeze the tamarind to get the pulp out of it. Strain the water and keep it ready.
  • Now discard the soaking water from dal, rice. Take rice, peanuts and 1 ½ cups of water in the small container that fits into the pressure cooker.
  • Take dal, turmeric powder, oil and 1 cup of water in another container.
  • Add a glassful of water in the cooker, place rack/stand first, followed by dal container and rice container. Cover the rice container and then cover the cooker with lid, put the weight on and turn the heat on medium.
  • Pressure cook it for 3-4 whistles and let the pressure go down by itself. If using instant pot then cook on manual (high pressure) for 10 minutes.
  • Remove both containers and whisk the dal till it gets smooth. And mix the rice, peanuts. Keep it aside.
  • Heat the oil in a pan on medium heat. Once hot add onion and cook till they become soft and translucent.
  • Then add rest of the veggies and salt. Mix and saute for 3-4 minutes.
  • Now add water, cover and cook till veggies are soft and tender.
  • Mix in jaggery, bisi bele bath powder, and tamarind water, simmer for 2-3 minutes.
  • Now add boiled dal and rice, mix. Adjust the consistency by adding water.
  • Let it cook for 4-5 minutes.
  • Heat the ghee in a small tadka pan on medium heat. Once hot add mustard seeds and let them pop.
  • Add cashew nuts and dried red chilies, saute till cashews are light brown in color.
  • Then add curry leaves and hing. Immediately add this tempering to bisi bele bath, stir and serve.


What brand of bisi bele bath powder to use?
If you prefer the store bought one than MTR brand is the best. If you like me who loves homemade masala powders just because homemade one gives a better taste, flavor and aroma then here is my recipe of bisi bele bath powder.


Calories: 466kcal (23%) | Carbohydrates: 75.4g (25%) | Protein: 18.1g (36%) | Fat: 11.5g (18%) | Saturated Fat: 2.6g (13%) | Cholesterol: 8mg (3%) | Sodium: 612mg (26%) | Potassium: 315mg (9%) | Fiber: 11.6g (46%) | Sugar: 10.5g (12%)
4.50 from 6 votes (6 ratings without comment)

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  1. The bisi Bala powder recipe is missing. After the narrative about if you are like me you will like the homemade masala….. disappointed to not find the r cite for the masala. The most important piece of the mix.

  2. Do you have a recommendation for how much tamarind concentrate I would use in this recipe? Also, while I’m on the subject, is it worthwhile to buy the compressed blocks of tamarind instead of the concentrate? Thank in advance!

    1. The quantity if concentrate depends on what type and brand you are using. If using the one which is loose, runny paste kind then use 1 1/2 tablespoons. If using the one which is very thick paste then use 2 teaspoons. You can adjust the late after doing the taste test.
      No need to buy tamarind if you already have paste available in your pantry.