Essential Ayurvedic Kitchadi


Kitchadi is a powerful dish. Often used in Ayurveda to give the digestive system a rest, it’s ideal for times of high stress, indigestion, or general imbalance. Kitchadi may be prescribed for several meals, days, or even weeks so that the digestive system can run without working too hard, and yet, the patient receives nutrient-dense food. It’s a form of a ‘re-set,’ if you will, since the dish allows the digestive fire, or agni, to re-ignite.

There are many styles and versions of kitchadi. This is the one I most often make at home, but I swap the grain, spices, and veggies depending on what I have around.



  • 1/2 cup green lentils

  • 1 tsp asafetida

  • Ghee

  • 1 tsp each: fennel, cumin, and mustard seeds (whole)

  • 1 yellow onion, chopped

  • 5 carrots, peeled, chopped

  • 1/2 head cauliflower, chopped

  • 1 tsp Himalayan pink sea salt

  • 1 tsp each: turmeric, coriander (ground)

  • 3-4 cups water, or vegetable broth

  • 1 cup brown rice, or quinoa


  • Cliantro, sesame seeds




  1. Cover lentils with cool water in a large pot

  2. Add asafetida and bring mixture to a boil

  3. Cover and let soak in overnight

  4. In the morning, drain and rinse the lentils with cool water

  5. When you’re ready to make the kitchadi, heat ghee in large pot (I use a dutch oven)

  6. Once hot, add whole seeds (fennel, coriander, mustard), heat for 1 minute

  7. Add onions, cook for a few minutes stirring continuously

  8. Add carrots and cauliflower, mix well

  9. Add salt and ground spices (turmeric, coriander)

  10. Add lentils and rice (or quinoa), mix well

  11. Add water, or broth, bring to a boil

  12. Simmer for 1 hour, check periodically and add water as needed (you don’t want the mixture to dry out, but avoid creating a soggy mixture)

  13. Once the lentils and rice have softened, your kitchadi is done (this may take an additional 10-20 minutes depending on the grain you’re using)

  14. Serve topped with cilantro and sesame seeds


Recipe Key


Best in: Suitable to all seasons

Best for: Suitable to all doshas