Red lentils and rice casserole (Mujaddara safra)

May 8, 2009  •  Category: , ,


This is a second version of the traditional mujaddara; this one is made with red  lentils;  the onions, once browned,  are mixed with the orange lentils and rice and cooked in water  until thickened;  simple, delicious and iron-rich!

INGREDIENTS: Quantity will yield 8 generous portions.

1 1/2 cups orange  lentils

1/2 cup medium-grain rice or sushi rice

1/4 to 1/3 cup vegetable oil

6 cups of water (can throw in a vegetable bouillon cube)

2 large onions (or more if using some for garnish), chopped

Spices: salt, 1/2 tea. cinnamon, 1/4 tea. white pepper, 1/2 tea. paprika, 1/4 tea. black pepper


  1. Heat oil and fry the onions till golden-brown
  2. Add lentils and rice and mix well, then add spices and mix again
  3. Add the water (bouillon cube too), cover and simmer gently till the lentils split and the mixture starts to thicken
  4. Uncover the pot and boil gently, stirring from time to time, until the lentils are almost dry and very thick

Pour into a serving platter, garnish with the extra browned onions. Eat hot or at room temperature with a salad or fresh green onions and tomatoes. Sahteyn!

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The addition of spices is optional, some people like it plain with just salt and some people like it with hot pepper!


7 Comments  •  Comments Feed

  1. Arlette says:


    Is this the Mjadarah Jnoubiyeh???
    I heard about it but never tried it??
    it looks like Shourbat Al Adas!!!

    thanks for sharing, I like to try it one day.

    • Joumana says:

      I will find out for you when I am there this summer. I just remembered our cook who was Kurdish using red lentils a lot, and we all loved it.

  2. Laila says:

    Looks really delicious .. never really tried it before … but looks really interesting .. Laila ..

  3. Leyla says:

    This is how we cook it in Beirut, we do not use any of the spices, we eat it with fattouch, olive, green onion, kabis you can prepar it in 10 minutes in pressure cooker,(presto).
    nb: Salt should be put at the end or the lentils will take forever to cook.
    the shourbet el adas or adas bel hamod is prepared with black lentils that we put in food processor we add to it cummin and spices and cooked onion…….
    you can cook mudardarah (Rice and lentils) and garnish with fried onion eat it with yogurt or salad.

  4. Lena says:

    i find this dish very well presented and it seems very tasty too, as everything I saw in your blog!

  5. Roy says:

    Having grown up in Beirut I really wanted to make this for my non-Lebanese wife. My parents came over for the occasion too. It came out great. Like another comment my mom mentioned that in Beirut it’s made without the spices just salt, but she actually liked it with the spices (she’s a 72 year old Lebanese woman that’s allergic to most spices so that’s saying a lot). Interesting thing is I bought the Taste of Beirut book off of Amazon and the recipe in there uses only salt and removed the bouillon (also something my dad immediately picked up on). Wondering which recipe is more recent. Also wondering how many of the book’s recipes have a website version that’s slightly better.

    • Joumana says:

      The recipes on the blog are older, and not as authentic since I created them from memory. I moved back to Beirut in 2011 and published the book in 2014, and during that time collected first-hand recipes from seasoned cooks. This recipe is from 2009.

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