Legumes, lentils, pulses, or beans, a fundamental ingredient in any food platter of the world, we know them by more than many names. No matter how tiny they may appear, when it comes to health incentives, who can underestimate the power of these itsy-bitsy kernels that are a powerhouse of all the possible nutrition of the world?

No one indeed. Part of the Fabaceae family, lentils are edible seeds of the lentil plant native to Asia and North America. From vitamins and minerals to gut-friendly fibers, they are blessed with almost every nutriment that any plant-based meal can provide to the human soul. During one of those days when fresh peas (which is more of a winter veggie) are not available and you are looking forward to savoring a starchier, hardier, flavorsome similar legume, black vatana will come to your rescue. A nutritionally mighty member and dried version of the legume family, this semi greenish rather blackish pea is super starchy, fibrous option that is easy to cook, easier on pocket and sumptuous on the tongue. The method of preparation for this legume is a tad bit different from its other lentil cousins, but it is a great source of cholesterol-lowering fibres, minerals and other important nutrients.

Health Benefits Of Black Vatana

A fabulous source of proteins for vegetarians, vatana is quite a punch in its nutritional value. Here is what this pearly legume offers when it comes to combating chronic health anomalies:

Enhances Eye Health

Vatana contains carotenoids and lutein which helps protect eyes from chronic diseases such as cataracts, loss of vision, macular degeneration and age-related eye ailments.

Prevents Cancer

The higher the consumption of lentils and legumes, the lower the risk of all types of cancer. Vatana contains various phytochemicals that release a substance to destroy toxic cells, prevent tumors, besides slowing down the division of cancer cells. It also contains phytic acid and a good amount of choline that are also helpful in preventing the body from cancerous cells.

Manages Blood Pressure

Vatana are a good source of potassium, which decreases the growth and development of blood vessel plaques. This aids in keeping blood pressure issues at bay and reducing high blood pressure levels.

Regulates Blood Sugar Control

Vatana is loaded with a higher fibre level, as well as a higher protein content which helps to slow the breakdown of carbohydrates, thus controlling blood sugar levels. They also have a low glycemic index implying that there are less chances for diabetics to get their blood sugar levels spiked up after meals.

Combats Arthritis

Anti-inflammatory nutrients in vatana have potential benefits in lowering the risk of inflammatory conditions like chronic joint pain and arthritis.

Also Read: Osteoarthritis: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

If you are thinking about how to cook this little wonder of nutrition, we bring you two unique lip-smacking spicy recipes that can be quickly prepared and added into your regular meals.

Kala Vatana Sambhar
Kala Vatana Sambhar


1 cup vatana

2 big, sliced onions

6 garlic cloves

4 tsp grated dry coconut

3 tsp oil

1 tsp garam masala

1 tsp red chili powder

Salt to taste


Soak vatana in water overnight

Transfer the soaked vatana and pressure cook for 5 whistles and keep aside

Heat oil in another pan and add 1 onion and garlic

Fry onion until golden and keep aside

In another pan, add coconut and fry it well

Mix onion and coconut and let the mixture cool down

Transfer the mixture into a blender jar and blend it

While blending, no extra water should be added

Masala for making vatana sambar is ready

For making sambar, heat oil in a pan and add remaining 1 onion

When onion gets light golden color, add garam masala and red chili powder

Add freshly blended masala, fry everything well for about few minutes

When masala begins to release oil, add cooked vatana

Add salt and and mix well

Bring it to boil for few minutes

Kala vatana sambar is ready to be served


This coconut-based recipe that needs very few ingredients has vatana as a key ingredient. Vatana is a good source of minerals, B-vitamins, and protein with almost no fat. Coconut is an excellent source of healthy fats as well as antioxidants.

Kala Vatana Gravy
Kala Vatana Gravy

2 cup vatana

3 chopped onions

Half cup chopped tomato

1 tbsp ginger garlic paste

Few coriander leaves

Handful of curry leaves

Half tsp red chili powder

1/4 tsp turmeric powder

1/4 tsp cumin powder

1/4 tsp coriander powder

1/2tsp garam Masala

Few rai seeds

Salt to taste

2 tbsp oil


Boil and cook kala vatana and keep aside

In a pan heat oil

Add mustard seeds, jeera, few curry leaves to crackling oil

Add ginger garlic paste, chopped onion and chopped tomatoes

Sauté ingredients well

Add haldi, cumin, coriander powder, garam masala and red chilli powder

Add cooked vatana

Add salt and cook well

Garnish with chopped coriander leaves

Kala vatana gravy is ready to be served


Spicy and zesty, this delicious delicacy is prepared in Konkan region of Maharashtra and can be eaten with chapati or rice. Vatana has a good amount of iron which helps to build hemoglobin levels. It has ample calcium and phosphorus that aids in maintaining bone health. Coriander is rich in immune-boosting antioxidants and Vitamin C, besides promoting digestion and gut health.