Kheema Ki Khichdi Recipe

Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 75 mins
Total: 105 mins
Servings: 4 to 6 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
487 Calories
14g Fat
56g Carbs
34g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 to 6
Amount per serving
Calories 487
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 14g 18%
Saturated Fat 5g 24%
Cholesterol 72mg 24%
Sodium 343mg 15%
Total Carbohydrate 56g 20%
Dietary Fiber 7g 24%
Protein 34g
Calcium 74mg 6%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Kheema ki khichdi ranks among India's most beloved comfort foods. You may recognize khichdi, also spelled khichadi or kitchari but pronounced kich-a-ree, as an Ayurvedic detox meal. Practitioners prescribe the combination of rice and beans cooked to an easily digestible mush as a nourishing but cleansing meal.

This version combines basmati rice and red lentils with ground meat and warming Indian spices. Kheema, for minced or ground meat, may also be spelled keema or qeema. You can find garam masala in many grocery stores or online. Serve kheema ki khichdi piping hot with raita, a yogurt-based condiment.


  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 1 cup saboot masoor daal (whole red lentils)
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable, canola or sunflower oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ginger paste
  • 2 teaspoons garlic paste
  • 2 teaspoons coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 2 large tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 2 cups chopped mixed vegetables of your choice
  • 1 pound ground meat (beef, lamb, chicken)
  • 2 chicken stock cubes
  • Salt to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Put the rice in one bowl and the lentils in another, add water to both and rinse. Do this until the water runs clear. Add more water to cover and soak the rice and lentils for 20 minutes.

  2. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or deep pan with a tight lid on medium heat until the oil shimmers. Add the cumin seeds and cook until they stop spluttering.

  3. Add the chopped onions and fry until transparent.

  4. Add the ginger and garlic pastes and fry for 1 minute. Add the remaining spices through garam masala and mix well. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring frequently.

  5. Add the tomatoes and cook until the oil begins to separate from the masala and the tomatoes turn pulpy.

  6. Add the ground meat and lentils. Cook until the meat turns evenly brown.

  7. Add the vegetables, rice, stock cubes and 4 cups of water. Taste and season with salt if necessary. Mix well and bring to a boil.

  8. Cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes, then lower the heat to a simmer. Put the lid on and cook until the rice and lentils get really soft, about 30 to 45 minutes. Add more water as needed to keep the mixture thoroughly moist as it cooks.

  9. Once the rice and lentils get soft enough to mash, turn off the heat and allow the khichdi to rest without removing the lid for 10 minutes. Stir before serving. The khichdi should be moist and porridge-like in consistency.