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Whole mung beans: Why you should make a curry out of them

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Whole Mung Beans Curry

Mung beans why are they good for you

whole Mung beans is a more popular legume in Asian countries because of its draught friendly shorter crop cycle and easy to grow crop. It is curried, used in salads and in desserts and breads.  Many popular desserts in Sri Lanka uses roasted whole mung beans, however my favorite use is the creamy and flavorful curry my using boiled mung beans and coconut milk-based sauce. Typically, it is a coconut milk-based curry that has runny consistency with milder flavor to it, but my mother’s way of making this curry is quite like making refried beans without tomatoes.

Whole mung beans vs hulled version is packed with nutrients and delivers a healthy balanced dose of micronutrients like protein, carbohydrate, and fiber along with wider array of important micronutrients. My favorite part is a serving of this pulse delivering 15.2 grams of fibers per 38.7 grams of carbohydrates. whole mung beans contain more soluble fibers, benefiting to promote digestive health, blood glucose and cholesterol regulation. Also mung beans are high in Vitamin A, Folate and minerals like potassium and phosphorus.

Whole mung beans like all legumes contain antinutrient like phytic acid. Removing antinutrients by sprouting them or boiling them helps digestion and absorption of micronutrients. Overall benefit to health and digestion is much improved By Pre-soaking and boiling legumes before using in curries, desserts and filling in addition to improving the taste. Soaking removes phytic acid, and help kickstart the enzyme activity within the seed to convert some of the complex carbs into polysaccharides and sugars. Currying process including boiling with hot water not only improves flavor, but help stop the enzyme activity at right point, deactivate seed coating to extract some of these important nutrients, thus helping better absorption.

if you would like to read more about mung beans and why its beneficial to you Healthline has a great detailed article about it

how to make mung bean curry

image of mung beans curry
Curried whole mung beans

Serving size: Half a cup of curry

Cooking time: 30 minutes


  • Boiled whole Mung beans 2 cups
  • Teaspoon of Salt
  • One piece of Malabar tamarind
  • 2 teaspoon of roasted red curry powder
  • One inch stick of Cinnamon
  • Two pods of Cardamom
  • One teaspoon of Sri Lankan black curry powder
  • Half a teaspoon of Cayenne pepper
  • Tablespoon of coconut oil
  • One inch piece of ginger
  • One clove of Garlic
  • 10 curry leaves
  • Two green chilies
  • One medium size red onion
  • Teaspoon of mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon of Turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin powder
  • Half a cup thick coconut milk
  • Half a teaspoon of crushed black pepper


Rinse and soak whole mung beans overnight. There are many recipes that skip this step, because if you are prepared to boil mung beans for longer time you can still make it work. However, I highly recommend presoaking the mung beans, because of the extra enzyme action and removing phytic acid.

Boil mung beans for 10 to 15 minutes with Malabar tamarind.

Puree red curry powder, onions, garlic, ginger, green chili, cumin powder, turmeric, cumin powder, salt, and pepper together, with little boiled mung bean water.

Heat coconut oil in the pan and add mustard seeds when it crackles add the pureed seasoning and sauté for a minute.

Add Malabar tamarind, curry leaves, cinnamon, bruised cardamom pod and a cup of the whole mung bean liquid.

Bring to boil and add boiled mung beans. Cook for 5 to 10 minutes until flavors are absorbed and sauce is thick.

Tempering to the curry (OPTIONAL)

  • two teaspoons of sliced onions
  • Thinly sliced garlic clove
  • Thinly sliced ginger
  • Two or three curry leaves
  • Dry red chili broken in half
  • One tablespoon of coconut oil
  • Pinch of mustard seeds

Heat the oil in small wok and add everything to hot oil. Sauté about 10 seconds until fragrant and carefully turn everything over curry and mix it up.

image of rice and curry meal.
Rice and curry meal with mung beans curry, tempered eggplants, cabbage and lentils and crispy chickpeas and cashews



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