Detox Dal: Ayurvedic Winter Soup For Cleansing

January used to be the hardest month. Back to school, back to work, back to cold, intense urban environments.

Now January is this… warm soup on lovely days. Writing. Researching. Planning. Walks on the beach. Morning prayers with the sunrise. Sitting by the fire in the evening. Meals with my beloved.

January. Slow. Mindful. Deep. Days of hope. Days of white snow, skies, interior scapes. Days of spiced tea and hot soup.

This simple winter soup has been our favorite so far.

Made with three basic ingredients: split mung bean, carrots and chard, it’s easy, the way January should be.

This winter soup recipe is easy to digest, easy to make and easy to love.

Be sure your mung beans are split, otherwise it will require soaking and a longer cooking time, and frankly it just never tastes as good. You can find them at any good Asian or Indian grocery store.

Enjoy! Got a question or want to share? Leave a comment below!

Don’t know your Ayurvedic Body Type or Prakriti? Click HERE to take the FREE Quiz.

Detox Dal


  • 1 Tbsp ghee (be generous)
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp Vata spice mixture (see below)
  • 1 tsp ginger powder
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1 cup split mung beans, rinsed and drained
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 small to medium sized carrots, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 bunch chard, rinsed and loosely chopped
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp white miso
  • Seasoning: gluten-free tamari or shoyu, extra virgin olive oil, fresh cracked black pepper
  • Optional: scallions, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, cilantro, sage leaves


  1. Melt the ghee over a medium flame.
  2. Sweat the onions, then add the garlic and give it a swirl.
  3. Add the spices and swirl again, now for about a minute.
  4. Stir in the mung beans, turn the heat to high and slowly pour in the vegetable broth.
  5. Add the bay leaves. Bring it to a boil, cover and reduce heat.
  6. Allow it to gently boil for about 25 minutes. Add the carrots. Stir and check your liquid levels. It might need another cup of water. If so, add it now.
  7. Cook for another 15 minutes then add the chard. Let it sit on top of the soup to steam. Cook until it wilts, about 5-10 more minutes. Stir the chard into the soup. Taste to check if the beans are cooked through. They will be soft if they are done.
  8. When the beans are done, turn off the heat. Remove the bay leaves. Stir in the miso and mix well.
  9. Ladle the soup into bowls. Season with tamari or shoyu and a generous splash of olive oil. Sprinkle with cilantro, chopped scallions, roasted seeds and optionally, a toasted sage leaf.

Happy New Year. May it be nourishing and bright.

Don’t know your Ayurvedic Body Type or Prakriti? Click HERE to take the FREE Quiz.

Images via Laura Plumb and

Laura Plumb is the author of =Food: A Love Story, and an internationally recognized teacher of Ayurveda, Yoga, and Jyotish. As cofounder of the Deep Yoga School of Healing Arts, she writes, teaches, and leads retreats and workshops on healing, wellness and self-empowerment worldwide. She also consults with major medical universities and develops programs for wellness in body, mind and spirit. Laura devotes herself to teaching girls and women self-esteem, sacred leadership, and compassionate service. She is regarded as a leader in the global recovery of the Divine Feminine, restoring spiritual authority in women, preserving ancient wisdom traditions, and ensuring that this wisdom is carried forth into our modern lives in an accessible, practical and transformative way.


  1. How can this dal be customised for vata-pitta prakriti?

    • hi aparna, it depends on where the vata and where the pitta show up…. is your digestion more vata or more pitta? what season are you in now and how are you responding to it? i ask because this recipe is good for vata. if you are in winter, and more or less balanced, this recipe may be fine as is. but if you are experiencing high pitta, or a pitta gut, then reduce or omit the garlic, halve the amounts of the spices (at least to half), add ground fennel and ground coriander seed in stead, replace carrot with celery, and halve or omit the miso. top with cilantro leaves, chopped mint.

  2. Looks delicious ! Thank you :). (Would be nice and appreciated if we could print…)

  3. Hello, Laura, I have a question concerning the Vata spice mixture – is it OK to use it in case of vitiated Pitta and Kapha? Thank you a lot for your answer. Eva

    • Hello Eva, What is your Ayurvedic practitioner suggesting to you for spices? So either use what is recommended by your practitioner or use just a very little bit of the Vata spice. Thank you for asking! xo

  4. Hi Laura
    I am brand new to ayurveda. I saw a ayurveda practioner last week. I suffer from psoriasis under my feet and general medicine just does not work…..i am completely out of my comfort zone with this thought process, however i really want to heal myself in more ways than just the psoriasis. I have recently moved to Spain to change my lifestyle i am 64 yrs old.
    I feel conflicted with this way of life as i am a Christian.
    Can you give me some advice please

    • Brenda – I don’t really think should conflict with your Christian belief system – even though it is based in over 2000+ years of use and proven to be helpful. Remember, the wise men came from the East….

    • Hi Brenda, Ayurveda is an ancient medical approach–not a religion. It happens to come from a country where the main religion is not Christianity but embracing Ayurveda is not in conflict with any other religion. If you are working with an Ayurvedic practitioner you should be fine. I have found Ayurveda to be very helpful. It is all about learning the best way to nourish your body type–your dosha–and stay in balance. You will find that even small changes make a difference so don’t be afraid to start. Best wishes for your improved health and hopefully you can let go of feeling conflicted.


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