Mdardara – Lebanese Rice with Lentils and Caramelised Onions

  • Yield: 1 cup of green or brown lentils, washed

I have already posted the recipe of Mjadara which ingredients are the same but not the proportions.

Mjadara is made mainly with lentils and only a tiny bit of rice to make the dish creamy whereas this recipe, Mdardara, is a pilaf of cooked rice and cooked lentils topped with caramelised fried onions.

It’s said that it’s the favourite meal of Lebanese fishermen when they go fishing. Try it, it’s really good!


  • 1 cup of washed green or brown lentils, cooked in water until tender (no salt!)
  • 1 cup of washed rice, cooked in salty water then drained
  • 4 onion: 2 chopped into cubes and 2 cut into wings
  • 1 tsp of each: cumin powder, allspice and black pepper
  • 4 tbsp of olive oil or more if dry
  • Salt, to taste


Step 1

After having cooked the lentils and the rice separately, drained them then put them aside.

Step 2

In a large frying pan, add the olive oil and start frying first the onions cubes until browned. Put aside. Now fry the onions wings also until browned. Add more olive oil if needed. Remove the onions wings and put them aside.

Step 3

In the same frying pan, mix the rice with the lentils, the spices and the fried onion cubes. Combine with the oil left from the frying over a light heat (2 minutes only). Taste, adjust the seasonings if needed and serve on a plate topped with the fried onion wings. Eat slightly warm or at room temperature with a fattoush, a Lebanese mix salad (recipe available on the website).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.