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Chicken Dhansack

This dish is ideal if you’d like to try out more Indian cuisine beyond butter chicken.
Serves: 6
Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 40 min


6 chicken legs
1 tbsp canola oil
1 red onion(s), chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp ginger, freshly grated
¼ tsp turmeric
2 tsp cumin, ground
½ tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp coriander, ground
1 tsp cardamom, ground
½ tsp pepper
¼ tsp cinnamon
4 tomato(es), chopped
1 cup red lentils, dried
1 tbsp fennel seed
1 ½ cup brown basmati rice, dry
1 eggplant, cubed
2 cups spinach
½ cup cilantro, fresh, minced
½ tsp salt
1 tbsp brown sugar
onion(s), thinly sliced, for garnish
lemon, sliced, for garnish

Food Safety

Before you start, wash all surfaces and your hands with soap and warm water, and remember to wash your hands, utensils and cutting boards after they touch raw meat or eggs. Avoid cross-contamination by using a different cutting board for your meat and other ingredients. Make sure you’re cooking to safe temperatures and chilling any leftovers within two hours. For more food safety tips, visit our Food Safety at Home Section.


  1. Cut chicken legs into drumsticks and thighs.

  2. Heat oil in a deep skillet and sauté the chopped onion until lightly browned. Add garlic, ginger, turmeric, cayenne, cumin, ground coriander, ground cardamom, pepper and cinnamon; stir fry 1 minute.

  3. Add tomatoes and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add chicken and cook until the juices have evaporated (about 10-15 minutes).

  4. Add the lentils. Mix well and add the water. Cover and cook on low heat until chicken is tender and fully cooked (about 30 minutes) or until a meat thermometer inserted into the chicken pieces reads 165°F (74°C).

  5. Meanwhile, prepare basmati rice according to package instructions.

  6. Sauté fennel seed for 2-3 minutes until fragrant. Add rice and stir to brown.

  7. Remove chicken and lentil mixture from heat. Take chicken pieces out and put on platter. Mash lentils until smooth.

  8. Add eggplant, spinach, cilantro, salt and brown sugar. Return chicken to pan, cover and cook for 10 minutes. Add a little water if the gravy is too thick. Taste and adjust seasoning. Garnish with finely sliced onion rings, lemon slices and serve with rice.

Helpful Tip

This dish is delicious reheated for lunch the next day.

Nutrition Info

Per 600 g serving Amount
Protein67 g
Fat19 g
Saturated Fat4 g
Carbohydrate71 g
Fibre13 g
Sugar10 g
Cholesterol215 mg
Sodium470 mg
Per 600 g serving % Daily Value
Vitamin A10
Vitamin C50
Vitamin B663
Vitamin B1249