Simple, comforting, healing lentil and rice vegetarian stew with healthy, whole ingredients.

Have you been looking to make kitchari and didn’t know how or what to do? Were you intimidated by some recipes? Did you buy an expensive kit? This simple, comforting healing recipe is here to solve your issues and help you feel your absolute best! This is the easiest comforting and nourishing one-pot wonder.  


We grew up eating kichadi almost every Sunday night.  For years, I thought it was because we had eaten through everything fresh in the fridge and our poor mom was exhausted.  She probably was, indeed with three kids and a full-time job.  In reality, my mom was helping to reset us and nourish us for the week to come.  Many of the things my mom cooked incorporated healing Ayurveda tricks.  Often, we hated it, but we were so lucky.

Simple Ayurveda that I practice in our daily life is gentle and kind.  She is the sweet friend who does not say, I told you so,  but here my darling, eat this and tell me everything.  My ayurvedic kitchari does not have too many spices and it is super quick and simple to pull together.  Both our kids ate this as babies, through toddler years, when they got teeth pulled, braces, and most definitely on Sundays when they had gone to multiple birthday parties and had too many slices of pizza and cupcakes to even count!

I love to eat kitchari at least once a week for dinner to stay balanced, for lunch AND dinner after an overindulgent week. Every season, I eat kichadi for a full day or two, to help gently detox my body. I end up feeling light, nourished, and that my digestion is that much stronger.  In my meditations, I can feel my body thanking me. Now we like to call it a cleanse, a mini cleanse, mono eating, put simply: it’s rebalancing the body so it can do the work we ask it to for us.

The beauty of kichadi is to master the ratios, and then you can add any spices and seasonings that make your taste buds happy.  Once you have the ratios down, you are living on a street called EASY and can make kichadi very quickly, whenever the need or urge strikes.

For a fun change in flavor profile, but still easy on the digestion, I have made Mediterranean Kichadi.  It’s not fusion, per se, but I created a lighter flavor profile.  I love it!  I include the fresh herbs of Italy, adding fresh parsley, basil, fresh-pressed olive oil on top with plenty of juicy lemon. It’s delicious!

Separately, if you don’t have these spices, but still want to give it a try, you can make this without all the Indian spices.  It will still help gently cleanse your digestion.  It may taste bland, so make sure you are using good quality sea salt and lots of fresh-squeezed lemon.  Don’t let not having cumin and coriander stop you from experiencing the healing properties of kichadi.

I know I grew up eating this, but this always feels like a hug and a supportive conversation.  I hope the hug makes you warm and happy, that you make this often and feel the LOVE!

Take a moment.  Take a full deep inhale.  Feel the breath in your side body.  Exhale slowly and smoothly.  Take two more breaths just like that.  Know you are loved.


1 cup split moong dal (the split is important for easy digestion)

1 cup short-grain rice or a mix of rice and quinoa

2 Tablespoons ghee

1 Tablespoon cumin

1 Tablespoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon of turmeric (if you love the taste like I do, add more)

1 — 2 inches of ginger (I love ginger) grated or chopped

½ teaspoon whole cumin seeds

¼ teaspoon of hing, asafoetida

1 bay leaf

2  to 3 teaspoons sea salt

Fresh cilantro

More ghee for serving on top

Fresh lemon for squeezing on top


  1. In a large bowl, add the rice and dal.  Rinse the mix.  I always like to rinse mine three times.  

Take the time to really be present and take deep, grounding breaths. 

  1. Soak the mix for 20 minutes or as long as you have time for, I always find this quickens the cooking process. (Don’t worry if you don’t have the time.)
  1. On medium heat, warm a  large pot or dutch oven, then add the ghee.  As the ghee warms and melts, add the cumin seeds.  As the aromas of earthiness fills your being, add the turmeric, ground coriander, ground cumin, and asafoetida.  Continue stirring,  so the spices do not burn.  Add the grated ginger.  Stir so everything is uniformly colored–one nameless dark color that smells like fresh earth and warm rain.
  1. Add the rice and dal along with 4 to 6 cups of water.   Add the bay leaf.I like mine on the more watery porridge side, but if you want it to be more like fluffy rice, stick with 4 cups of water.  Season generously with sea salt (Please please NOT MORTON’s.  Use real sea salt, celtic salt or himalayan salt).  
  2. Raise to medium high heat to bring the kitchari to a gentle boil, then lower to a medium low.  Cover withthe lid, but keep it a few inches open to allow some steam to escape.  Continue cooking until everything is a tiny bit “overcooked” to maximize digestive ease, usually about 20 minutes.  Stir a few times so nothing sticks to the bottom or sides.  The kichadi will look creamy.  
  3. Taste the kichadi to test the doneness and flavors.  You may need more water or salt.
  4. Squeeze plenty of fresh lemon and sprinkle with fresh cilantro.  

Say a super-specific gratitude, and enjoy healing your body and spirit.

Beef Keema

Looking for a simple, healthy Indian recipe to throw together any night of the week? Beef Keema is the perfect dinner with its flavorful spice and sauce, quick prepare-time, and versatility with ingredients, diet restrictions, and picky eaters. 

When my kids have friends staying over for dinner, this is my go-to recipe. Well, second to dal, that is. Beef keema is a gateway into what we eat at home–the fastest and surest way to invite guests to LOVE Indian food immediately–with all its subtle spices and fresh ingredients. 

As with most things I cook, this is so versatile and flexible.  Not too many spices — not a problem.  Hate peas (that’s for my little perfect child!) — skip the peas.  Add some spinach.  Not into ground beef…try ground lamb…or ground turkey…or ground chicken.  It’s really all so easy and so doable.  I usually serve it with rice and possibly some quickly chopped, crunchy cucumbers.  I love sprinkling everything with loads of cilantro — but if the littles don’t, leave it out or on the side. We usually serve it with warm rice.  If you are limiting rice for yourself, this dish is perfectly satiating without the rice.  Or, you can make cauliflower rice as well, see my recipe for a seasoned and FLAVOR-packed cauliflower rice. 

This was a go-to in my husband’s house growing up, and still a favorite of his even today.  It is saucy and rich but without the heaviness. Funny story, my sweet mother-in-law, who is an incredible cook, would sometimes call her beef keema “Italian meat sauce” to convince her kids that she could cook “American” food.  While she WOULD serve it over spaghetti noodles, she didn’t switch out the flavors!! My husband and his siblings were not amused!

Additionally, when friends ask me to teach them how to make something or want to experiment with an “easy” recipe, this is the one I share the most often.  It doesn’t have too many spices involved, many are likely to be in your larder for other cuisines, and it really isn’t labor-intensive. I am pretty sure I have a 100% success rate! With both the cooks and the eaters. Bold but true!

This one is saucy and thick, so if you are not eating rice, you honestly won’t miss it.  Give the spinach or kale you are cooking a little bit extra love and serve yourself up a heap of veggies to balance it all.  Another great thing about this beef keema is that it lends itself easily to a variety of eating preferences.  Are you serving kids with different eating styles?  Kids want nothing touching anything else? No Problem. You want a big, spicy bowl with everything tumbled together? No problem.  You are a MAGICIAN!

By now, your house should smell amazing— you likely won’t even have to call the children to the table — they will come running. Dinner is served!

Take a moment to ground yourself with one full deep breath and say a very specific in-the-moment gratitude.  I am so grateful for these friends around my table tonight, I value their support and their kindness.

Enjoy the beauty around your HEALTHY family table! 


Medium pot or saucepan, whatever your preference

Wooden spoon to stir


2 tablespoons ghee, butter, grapeseed oil, coconut oil

1 pound of ground, grass-fed beef or lamb

1 cup peas

1 or 2 small shallots, chopped

2–4 garlic cloves, crushed

1 — 2 inches Ginger, grated or finely chopped

½ medium green jalapeno, chopped  (omit if you don’t have and add more red chile)

1 Tablespoon Tomato paste

1/c cup pureed tomato or freshly chopped tomatoes.

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 Tablespoon cumin

1 Tablespoon coriander

1 Tablespoon red chile powder 

Small cinnamon stick

Fresh Cilantro

Salt to taste


  1. On low, heat a large saucepan or pot, once warm, add the ghee or oil.  Once that is warm, add onions  to begin caramelize, cooking the onions low and slow for 15 minutes, stir, but not too often.  Take a deep breath — the onions will smell sweet and fragrant. MMMMMM….Add the garlic and ginger, stirring, so the garlic doesn’t burn and turn bitter. Sprinkle all the spices and the cinnamon stick.  Stir slowly but continuously to not burn the spices.  Once the spices have bloomed — about 30 seconds or so, add the tomato paste.  Sitr frequently so it doesn’t burn–adding a little water if you need to.  We aren’t cooking as much as trying to expand the flavor profile of the paste and make it taste less “tinny.” 
  2.  Now, add the pureed tomatoes.
  3. Add the ground beef, sprinkle with some sea salt and continue to stir to brown the meat.  Add more water as necessary.  You want it to be saucy but not too thin and soupy. Cover to let the flavors come together and the sauce to become integrated.
  4. After 10 minutes, check and add the frozen peas, if using. Let that cook for just a couple minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, wash and chop the cilantro.  Sprinkle liberally!

By now, your house should smell amazing— you likely won’t even have to call the children to the table — they will come running.

We usually serve it with warm rice.


If you are vegetarian, you can substitute garbanzo beans, kidney beans, or your favorite beans, or whatever you have on hand!  This would then be similar to chole or rajma, also a delicious and hearty meal.

You can substitute tofu as well.  It will be a saucy spicy scramble, which would be lovely served with sauteed greens or warm rice.

For a low carb option, substitute with cauli rice, broccoli rice,  or serve over a bed of sauteed spinach, steamed broccoli, and cauliflower, or our sauteed mushrooms.  If I am not having rice, I actually love eating it without rice.  It’s just as warming and so filling in all the best ways. 

I have made this countless times with other ground meats.  Lamb is traditional, ground chicken is fantastic, ground turkey absorbs the flavors well.  

Storage for Beef Keema

This dish stores really well – in fact, it’s one of those magical dishes that continues to taste better as the flavors continue to come together.  Store in an airtight glass container in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days.

Lucky with Leftovers

Beef keema is delicious wrapped in a corn tortilla, cauliflower wrap, whole wheat tortilla, or roti. Throw on some fresh arugula and some warm veggies.  Lunch was never so good.

Recipe: Cilantro Chutney

Cilantro Chutney

The Healthy Family Table

There are certain non-negotiables in life.  For me, to have homemade chutney in the fridge is a MUST.  I love all sauces, but this is my all time favorite.  I love it with Indian food, of course, but I also love how it can LIFT up a bland bowl and make it sing. Add it on top of fresh tomatoes….mmm.  A perfectly toasted piece of bread with butter and chutney is a tiny taste of  heaven.

I keep my chutney recipe simple and often not too spicy. I find that mine lasts well in the fridge, about a week, if we don’t all use it up before!


  • 1 bunch fresh organic cilantro
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 inch jalapeno or more depending on spice level
  • 2 to 3 Tablespoons of water

Wash the cilantro thoroughly.  There is often much dirt and debris.  Chop off the very bottom couple inches where the roots may be.  Discard.  Roughly chop the cilantro, including most of the stems. 

Add to a blender, with jalapenos, sea salt, juice of the lemon.  Start by adding as little water as possible.  Start blending.  Add more water if necessary to keep mixing.  Taste for balance of salt and spice.  It should taste spicy to suit your taste.

Mmmmm…and enjoy!