Slow Cooker Indian Tacos

Slow Cooker Indian Tacos

Each December, my children’s school hosts a craft fair that is as homespun as they come. Parents and middle schoolers spend weeks, if not months, planning and making handmade wares that range from colorful sock puppets to delicate wreaths crafted from tree branches. An entire section of the fair is devoted to edible crafts, mostly cookies and cupcakes made by fledgling young cooks. Tempting as the sweets may be, though, my favorite fair booth is manned by one of the teachers whose family hail from India. He brews up a pot of savory lentils, which he spoons over tortillas, finishing the whole business with yogurt and chutney. Lines form to buy one (or several) of these Indian-style tacos; they’re often the first to sell out.

Today’s recipe is a nod to those craft fair tacos. It comes courtesy of our resident guest contributors and crock pot experts Jane McKay and Meg Barnhart of the Zen of Slow Cooking. And while it might sound sort of exotic, the recipe calls for familiar ingredients and requires minimal fuss in the kitchen. French lentils stew alongside ginger and a host of Indian spices until tender and flavorful. The result is not only delicious, but a nutrient powerhouse, packed with protein, folate, fiber, and iron.

So, get these lentils going in your slow cooker. When they’re done, spoon them onto tortillas, finish with a few garnishes, and you’ve got a meal worthy of family dinner, or perhaps, your next craft fair.

Like lentils? Check out my French Lentil Salad with Feta and Mint by going here or my Red Lentil Coconut Curry Soup by going here

4.75 from 4 votes
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Slow Cooker Indian Tacos

An easy slow cooker recipe that gives traditional tacos a decidedly Indian spin. Lentils are seasoned with south Asian spices and then piled onto tortillas with yogurt, cilantro, and if you happen to have it in your pantry, Indian chutney.
Course Dinner
Cuisine Indian
Prep Time 15 minutes
Servings 4
Author katiemorford

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups French green lentils
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium diced onion
  • 2 medium diced carrots
  • 2- inch piece minced fresh ginger
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 small finely chopped jalapeno pepper (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 8 Corn or small flour tortillas
  • Garnishes: roughly chopped cilantro , plain yogurt, favorite Indian chutney

Instructions

  1. Pick through the lentils to be sure there is no debris or tiny stones.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a skillet. Add the onion, carrot, ginger, garlic and optional jalapeno. Saute gently for 3 minutes. Add the coriander, turmeric, cumin and curry powder and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Transfer to the slow cooker. Add the tomato paste, lentils and broth and stir well to combine the ingredients.
  3. Cook on high for 2 ½ hours until the lentils are tender. Add the salt, stir, and taste to see if more salt is needed. 

  4. When ready to serve the lentils, warm the tortillas directly over a gas burner or in a cast iron skillet until just slightly blistered. Store in a clean dish towel until ready to serve. Make tacos by topping a tortilla with a generous spoonful of lentils, a dollop of yogurt, a pinch of fresh cilantro, and if you have it, a dab of your favorite Indian chutney.

Recipe Notes

Very slightly adapted and used with permission from the Zen of Slow Cooking, where you can find an abundance of fabulous slow cooker recipes.

Comments

05.19.2015 at 10:14 AM #

[email protected] Athletic avocado

these look so good! pinning 🙂

05.19.2015 at 10:14 AM #

katiemorford

Thanks Rachel! And so easy.

05.19.2015 at 1:39 PM #

Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine

Such a good idea! My two favorite cuisines! Mexican and Indian! Ah!

05.19.2015 at 1:39 PM #

katiemorford

Two of my favorites on one plate too!

05.20.2015 at 12:39 AM #

yunah

!!!! Those are the best!!!

05.20.2015 at 12:39 AM #

katiemorford

Perhaps you need an SF field trip come December!

05.21.2015 at 9:06 AM #

aida mollenkamp

These sound delicious!

12.28.2015 at 11:38 AM #

Jessica @ Nutritioulicious

Most popular recipe of 2015? I’ll definitely be giving this one a try!

01.09.2016 at 12:25 AM #

Katie B - Australia

We’ve been enjoying these every couple of weeks since you posted them. We’re a mad keen on Mexican family so I love tha my two little people (4 and 7) adore these meat free options.

Thanks for an awesome blog Katie (great name btw) I’ve introduced a bunch of my friends to it, you make me look great on a regular basis. Here’s to a magnificent 2016!

01.09.2016 at 12:25 AM #

katiemorford

Hi Katie

So nice to hear from you. We’re big fans of those tacos, too. I so appreciate you spreading the word down under. Happy 2016 to you too.

09.24.2017 at 8:24 PM #

Britt

These were terrific!

09.24.2017 at 8:24 PM #

katiemorford

Probably my favorite slow cooker dinner recipe. Glad you liked it too.

10.28.2017 at 1:59 PM #

Gloria

Can I use Red Lentils instead of the green lentils?

10.28.2017 at 1:59 PM #

katiemorford

Without having made it with red lentils, I couldn’t say what to expect in terms of results. Red lentils cook much more quickly than other lentils and they also tend to fall apart a bit more, so it might be a bit mushy. If you want to use red lentils, I’d suggest making my Red lentil coconut curry soup. http://www.momskitchenhandbook.com/recipes/a-soup-for-lentil-red-lentil-coconut-curry-soup/

09.06.2018 at 7:48 PM #

Rebecca E Case

🙂

09.10.2019 at 5:03 AM #

Beverly

I added 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper. Turmeric is so good for you, but the piperine in the black pepper increases the bio-availability. It looks like a great recipe and I can’t wait to try it.

09.10.2019 at 5:03 AM #

katiemorford

Great addition! And yes, you are right about the turmeric and black pepper.

09.10.2019 at 1:47 PM #

Christine

Would this work in an instant pot?

09.10.2019 at 1:47 PM #

katiemorford

Hi Christine, I definitely think this recipe lends itself to the Instant Pot. That said, I’ve not tried it, so can’t say how to adjust the liquid and cooking time. A little Google research on cooking lentils on the IP might provide some insight.

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