Kitchari is a soup- or stew-like dish made with brown rice and beans or pulses. There are lots of variations you can make with different ingredients but this one is my favourite recipe. It is made with green mung beans, as they are the easiest to digest. The mung beans help to remove toxins from the body and stimulate the digestive fire.
It helps to balance all doshas – you can find out more about Ayurveda and the doshas in my programme: Ayurveda: Yoga and Diet
An easy kitchari detox
If you’re looking for a detox or cleanse but you can’t take time away from real life you can use this dish. You simply eat kitchari, and only kitchari, for between 2 to 7 days depending on what your body needs. There’s no fasting or complicated things to prepare, so it’s easy to fit into your normal routine or when you’re under extra pressure. You will still get the benefits of the detox while still eating!
You need to soak some of the ingredients overnight and then you can make a big batch for the whole day. Eat kitchari in place of all meals and snacks but only eat when you feel hungry. Drink just water or herbal teas during the detox.
Some extra detox tips
- Eat only when you’re hungry, and not in a hurry, distracted or emotionally upset or angry.
- Chew well and focus on what you are eating – this is a good chance to practise eating mindfully.
- When you’re doing this cleanse you may experience symptoms such as headaches or emotions clearing. This is normal and will pass but drink more water to help with your headaches.
Please note: this is not intended to replace medical advice. It can be helpful for people who simply feel they need to give their body a rest from processed or rich foods and drinks. However, if you are experiencing any symptoms or illnesses please speak with a qualified health professional before making any changes to your diet.
The night before
- 1 ½ cups green mung beans
- 1 cup brown rice
- apple cider vinegar
Soak the mung beans and rice overnight in plenty of water and a splash of apple cider vinegar. Drain, rinse and set aside.
- 1 tbs coconut oil
- 3 – 5 cloves of garlic
- 1 tbs turmeric
- 1 tbs cumin
- the soaked mung beans
- the soaked rice
- 1 tbs fresh ginger, finely chopped
- 2 stalks kombu (a seaweed, optional)
- 6 – 12 cups water (depending on how watery you’d like your kitchari)
- green veggies to taste, such as zucchini, arugula, spinach, broccoli, fennel…
- tamari or salt to taste
- fresh coriander
In a large pan, melt the coconut oil. Add the chopped garlic and cook for about a minute.
Add turmeric, cumin, mung beans and rice. Stir to combine.
Add the ginger, kombu and water. Bring to a boil. Lower the heat and let simmer until mung beans and rice are tender, almost falling apart (this will take about 40 minutes).
Add the chopped veggies of your choice. Usually, three large handfuls will be enough – but feel free to add more or less. Cook for about five more minutes, or until veggies are tender. You might need to add more water.
Taste and add as much or as little tamari or salt as you’d like.
Garnish with fresh coriander.
Watch my video Easy Peasy Detox for Women (for members) for more gentle detox advice and thoughts on lifestyle changes.