Global Veg » A Culinary Journal

Ethiopian Red Lentils- Misir Wot


Continuing my Ethiopian theme from last week, here is another recipe from their vegan cuisine. Misir Wot, is a creamy (yet creamless) and spicy red lentil dish. It is almost exactly the same as Indian dal, except for the addition of “berbere” seasonings.


Berbere seems to be the garam masala of Ethiopia, except it is much more spicier. If you look at the ingredients of berbere, you know that it has to be good- paprika, cayenne, fenugreek, coriander, cumin, black pepper, cardamom, cloves, ginger and turmeric. I’ve used all these spices before, maybe not in this exact combination though.  I was contemplating making the spice blend, until I saw it at Whole Foods.


If you want to convert this dish to Indian dal, just omit the berbere or replace with garam masala. This is a perfect dish to make in a slow cooker as well.

This is an easy to make, healthy, tasty dish.



Ethiopian Red Lentils- Misir Wot

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 4 to 6 Servings


  1. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  2. 1 small onion, minced
  3. 1/2 inch fresh ginger, minced
  4. 2 cloves garlic, chopped finely
  5. 1 cup masoor dal (red lentils)
  6. 3-4 cups water (enough to cook the red lentils)
  7. 1-2 teaspoons berbere seasoning (very spicy, adjust to your tolerance level)
  8. salt to taste


  1. Heat the olive oil in a heavy saucepan or dutch oven.
  2. Add the onions, ginger and garlic.
  3. Sauté for a few minutes until lightly browned.
  4. Add the masoor dal and 3 cups water. Stir and add the berbere seasoning.
  5. Cook for about 30 minutes until the masoor dal is soft. Add more water as necessary while the lentils cook.
  6. Salt to taste.


  • Barbara J - Great Recipe. I always loved Ethiopian food and recently started cooking it myself. I found lots of recipes online that were really helpful and Ethiopian spices such as berbere and shiro from It’s been a great experience. I’d say my favorite food is now spicy Misir wotReplyCancel

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