Moong Dal Payasam is a delicious and creamy south Indian dessert made using coconut milk, yellow split moong dal, sweetened with jaggery, flavoured with cardamom and garnished with nuts and raisins. The blend of creamy, sweet, nutty, and aromatic flavours makes it a comforting and satisfying dessert that's perfect for special occasions, family gatherings and festivals.
Making Moong Dal Payasam in an Instant Pot is a convenient and time-saving method. This dal payasam recipe's simplicity in process and ingredients make it an excellent choice for even the most inexperienced cook.
The combination of moong dal and coconut milk creates a unique, delightful taste and flavour profile making it one of the most loved desserts of Indian cuisine.
This jaggery moong dal sweet dish is also known as moong dal kheer, hesaru bele payasa, pesara pappu payasam or pasi paruppu payasam in various regions of India.
Why you will love this Indian dessert?
No extra step to make jaggery syrup.
It’s a convenient and mess-free method
Zero monitoring required
- Lentils: Yellow moong dal (pasi paruppu/split yellow lentils) are used in this recipe.
- Sweetener: Jaggery to sweeten the payasam. Both block or in powdered form works well. Check FAQ section to for tips to break jaggery blocks.
- Nuts and dried Fruits: Cashew nuts and raisins are used here.
- Liquid: Water to pressure cook moong dal, coconut milk to cook further and flavour the payasam, and ghee (clarified butter) to fry nuts and raisins.
- Spices: Cardamom powder for added flavour.
See the recipe card for quantities.
How to make moong dal payasam in instant pot?
Plug in the instant pot and press the SAUTE button.
Dry roast 1 cup moong dal for 5-8 minutes until it is fragrant and starts to turn golden brown.
Press the CANCEL button to cancel saute mode and then transfer the moong dal to a bowl. Wash the roasted dal and keep it aside to use later.
Press the SAUTE button again and add the ghee.
Add cashews and raisins to the hot melted ghee, fry until raisins swell and cashews turn light brown.
Take out the fried cashews and raisins from the pot and keep them on a plate for later use.
Add washed moong dal to the pot.
Add water and stir thoroughly.
Place broken jaggery block and ¼ cup water in a steel container.
Put the trivet in place and place a steel container containing jaggery.
Place the lid on the pot and turn the pressure valve to SEALING.
Select the PRESSURE COOK/MANUAL button and set the timer to 0 minutes.
Once the timer on the instant pot goes off and it beeps, let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes.
After 10 minutes, turn the pressure valve to the VENT position, wait until the pressure is released completely and the small knob next to the pressure valve drops.
Remove the lid, take out the steel container with melted jaggery, and remove the trivet.
Slightly mash the dal using the back of the spoon.
Combine the coconut milk and jaggery mixture with the cooked dal and stir until well blended.
Press the saute button now and cook the payasam until it reaches the desired thickness, about 3-5 minutes.
Stir in ½ teaspoon cardamom powder, fried cashews, and raisins, and press CANCEL button.
Serve the instant pot moong dal payasam warm or chilled, as per your preference.
Substitutions and Variations
Vegan: Use vegan butter instead of ghee.
Coconut milk: I have used light coconut milk also called thin coconut milk or reduced fat coconut milk. But feel free to use thick coconut milk to get an extra rich texture and taste.
Jaggery: You could use powdered jaggery instead of a block. Add it to the cooked dal. Unlike the jaggery block, powdered jaggery doesn't have to be melted.
Fridge: Store leftover payasam in the fridge in an airtight container and finish it up in 3-4 days.
Reheat: Place payasam in a microwave-safe bowl and heat it in the microwave oven until piping hot. Stir at regular intervals for uniform heating. Alternatively, heat it in a saucepan on the stovetop over medium heat stirring regularly.
Freezer: Divide the leftover payasam into portions and store it in airtight freezer-safe containers or ziplock bags for up to two months.
Defrost: Thaw it the night before you intend to consume it. Grab a portion from the freezer and place it in the fridge. Warm it up in the microwave or on the stovetop after defrosting until it’s hot.
Tips and Tricks
It is essential to dry roast moong dal as it gives payasam a good aroma and taste.
Before adding it to the cooked dal, strain the jaggery water through a steel strainer to remove any debris.
Before straining, ensure to press the jaggery lumps with the back of the spoon to break them and stir thoroughly. Lumps would be soft and it’s not required to put a lot of pressure.
It’s not really necessary to break jaggery lumps if you don’t want to strain melted jaggery.
Ensure not to cook moong dal too soft or mushy. Payasasm tastes best with texture.
How to make moong dal payasam with coconut milk on sovetop?
Wash the moong dal thoroughly and soak it in water for about 30 minutes. Then, drain the water.
In a heavy-bottomed pan, heat ghee over medium heat. Add the soaked and drained moong dal to the pan and sauté it until it turns golden brown and emits a nutty aroma. Stir constantly to avoid burning.
Once the moong dal is roasted, add water to it and cook until it becomes soft. This may take around 15-20 minutes.
In a separate pan, melt the jaggery with little water. Strain melted jaggery to remove any debris if present.
Add boiled milk to the cooked moong dal and mix well. Let it cook together for a few minutes, allowing the flavors to meld.
Add jaggery syrup to the mixture and continue to cook on low heat until the payasam thickens and reaches a creamy consistency. Keep stirring to prevent it from sticking to the base of the pan.
In a small pan, heat a teaspoon of ghee and roast cashew nuts and raisins until they turn golden brown. Add these roasted nuts and raisins, and cardamom powder to the payasam and mix well.
Turn off the heat and let the moong dal payasam cool down a bit before serving.
Serve warm or chilled, garnished with more nuts if desired.
Payasam, also known as Kheer in some parts of India, is a traditional South Asian dessert, especially popular in the southern states of India. It is a sweet, creamy, and rich pudding made by simmering rice, vermicelli, lentils or other grains in milk and sweetening it with sugar or jaggery.
Payasam is typically seasoned with cardamom and topped with nuts and raisins.
This moong dal payasam with jaggery is a versatile dessert and can be customised in various ways. Different regions of India have their own variations of payasam with unique ingredients and flavours. It’s a beloved dessert for celebrations, festivals, and special occasions throughout India and is enjoyed by people of all ages.
Whole green moong dal (sabut moong), split green gram (chilka moong), and yellow moong (dhuli moong/moong dal) are the three varieties of moong dal. All these varieties are available in Indian grocery stores and are used in Indian cooking.
The hardest part of making Indian sweets with jaggery is dealing with the rock-hard jaggery!! Don’t you agree? The simple trick is to soften it and then break it rather than trying to break hard jaggery.
Place the jaggery block in a microwave-safe bowl/plate, and heat it in the microwave for 8-10 seconds at a medium power level. Either press the softened jaggery with your fingers to break it or cut it with a knife.
The time it takes to soften the jaggery varies depending on the size of the jaggery block and microwave settings. So keep an eye while heating in the microwave. Do not let jaggery melt rather heat just until it turns soft.
Yes, you can make moong dal payasam with milk. Follow the same procedure but use either full fat or skimmed dairy milk instead of coconut milk.
More South Indian Dessert Recipes
Wheat Payasam: A delicious, healthy creamy dreamy dessert made with whole wheat berries, sweetened with jaggery and flavoured with cardamom.
Belgaum Kunda: North Karnataka special sweet is made by reducing and curdling the milk and cooking with caramelised sugar.
Sweet Pongal: A popular south Indian sweet made with rice, jaggery and flavoured with cardamom.
7 Cups Burfi: One of the easy Indian sweets made with basic ingredients. A perfect sweet dish for beginners to try.
Lauki Halwa: It is a delectable Indian sweet made from bottle gourd (lauki), sugar, flavoured with cardamom and garnished with nuts.
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📖 Recipe Card
Instant Pot Moong Dal Payasam
- Plug in the instant pot and press the SAUTE button.
- Dry roast 1 cup moong dal for 5-8 minutes until it is fragrant and starts to turn golden brown.215 Cup (or) 1 Cup Moong Dal
- Press the CANCEL button to cancel saute mode and then transfer the moong dal to a bowl. Wash the roasted dal and keep it aside to use later.
- Press the SAUTE button again and add the ghee.1 Tablespoon Ghee
- Add cashews and raisins to the hot melted ghee, fry until raisins swell and cashews turn light brown.20 Raisins, 6 Cashew Nuts
- Take out the fried cashews and raisins from the pot and keep them on a plate for later use.
- Remove the water from the soaked moong dal and add dal to the pot.215 Cup (or) 1 Cup Moong Dal
- Add water and stir thoroughly.2 Cups Water
- Place broken jaggery block and ¼ cup water in a steel container.250 gms Jaggery, ¼ Cup Water
- Put the trivet in place and place a steel container containing jaggery.
- Place the lid on the pot and turn the pressure valve to SEALING.
- Select the PRESSURE COOK/MANUAL button and set the timer to 0 minutes.
- Once the timer on the instant pot goes off and it beeps, let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes.
- After 10 minutes, turn the pressure valve to the VENT position, wait until the pressure is released completely and the small knob next to the pressure valve drops.
- Remove the lid, take out the steel container with melted jaggery, and remove the trivet.
- Slightly mash the dal using the back of the spoon.
- Combine the coconut milk and jaggery mixture with the cooked dal and stir until well blended.400 ml (or) 1¾ Cup Coconut Milk
- Press the saute button now and cook the payasam until it reaches the desired thickness, about 3-5 minutes.
- Stir in cardamom powder, fried cashews, and raisins, and press CANCEL button.½ Teaspoon Cardamom Powder
- Serve the moong dal Kheer warm or chilled, as per your preference.
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Welcome to Flavours Treat. I share vegetarian recipes made with wholesome, mostly fresh ingredients. Every recipe has easy-to-follow instructions with process shots (detailed step-wise pictures), a short video and lots of tips to help your cooking journey. Read more