In most areas of the United States, spring is considered the kapha season with a higher amount of moisture in the air, spring showers and gray clouds.  It can be a nice time for anyone to integrate some kapha reducing recipes but it is especially important to do so if you have a kapha dominant or dual constitution or have a kapha imbalance.

Using the treatment principle of opposite qualities lowering an excess in a dosha or life force, one would use qualities of dry, light and stimulating to combat the kapha nature or wet/oily, heavy and stable.  

Barley is a drier and lighter grain and the spices used in the recipe are warm and stimulating to move the stable kapha.  

Spring Barley Kitchari

Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Keyword barley, kitchari, mung dal
Prep Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 35 minutes
Servings 4


  • 1 cup barley
  • 1/3 cup split yellow mung dal
  • 3 cups filtered water
  • 1 tablespoon sunflower oil or ghee
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon ginger powder or substitute 1 teaspoon fennel seeds to decrease pitta
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper


  1. Soak the mung dal for 1 to 2 hours. Thoroughly rinse the rice and mung dal twice.
  2. Put the rice, dal, sunflower oil, and water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil and boil for 5 minutes, uncovered, stirring occasionally. 

  3. Reduce the heat to low and cover, leaving the lid slightly ajar. Add the spices after 15 minutes. Cook until tender, about 25 to 30 minutes.

  4. Alternatively, use a rice cooker and put in the oil then the spices and sauté for a couple minutes. Add the rice, dal and water and cover to cook.

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