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Creamy Kapha-Balancing Lentils

Creamy Kapha-Balancing Lentils

To balance an excess of Kapha, it’s recommended that you opt for bitter, pungent and astringent foods to clear congestion, dry dampness and boost energy. In this dish, I sauté onions and garlic (pungent), add red lentils (astringent and bitter) and finish it off with leafy green kale (bitter). Spices add extra flavor to make this a light, satisfying dish that’s perfect for Kapha season.


Creamy Red Lentils
Serves: 4

1 ½ Tbsp. olive oil
1 small onion
2-3 cloves garlic
1 tsp. ground cumin
½ tsp. ground ginger
½ tsp. ground turmeric
1 cup red lentils
4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
2 cups chopped kale
Sea salt


  1. Heat oil in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté until soft, about 3-4 minutes. Add cumin, ginger and turmeric, and sauté for another minute to incorporate.
  2. Stir in the lentils, broth and ¼ tsp. salt. Bring to a boil, stir, cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove the lid and stir in the kale.
  3. Simmer for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are smooth and creamy. Adjust seasonings to taste (I recommend finishing with about ½ tsp. salt).
  4. Serve over brown basmati rice or with an arugula salad.

Nikki’s Note: As you can see in the photo, I often add a few handfuls of frozen organic corn kernels for texture. Simply toss the corn in at the very end and the heat from the lentils will defrost it.

By Nikki Croes

Nikki Croes is a Personal Chef & ISHTA’s resident Nutrition Coach. She trained at the Natural Gourmet Institute for Health & Culinary Arts and the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. Her focus is on cooking nutritious, mouthwatering, (mostly) plant-based meals for her clients and their families. As a coach, Nikki also teaches busy people how easy and elegant it is to cut the crap out of their diets and revitalize their health one delicious bite at a time. For recipes and lifestyle tips, follow Nikki on Twitter and Pinterest.

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