Chapatis, Dal, Subji, Rice: The Standard Yoga Diet


The simple and tasteful way to translate your eating into spiritual blis, according to the teachings of the great sages of India. This is the Vedic method of conducting the ordinary affairs of life in transcendental consciousness.

Uddhava das Brahmachary


The simple diet of the yogis consists of a combination of milk products, grains, fruits and vegetables. All the nourishment to carry on the normal activities of life can be obtained from these four sources. The person who cooks these items, before tasting anything himself, offers the meal to God, and thereby serves another, higher puspose of life—to please the Supreme Lord. Since Yoga means linking one’s consciousness with the Absolute Truth, this method od eating is perfectly suited to it, and has been practiced by sages throughout history.

In this world it is impossible to cease all activity. One must think, breathe, talk, and eat. As Krishna Consciousness teaches one to perform these activities in order to please the Lord, the yogi eats only what is pleasing to Krishna. In the revealed Scriptures of all religions God Himself tells man what he may eat, so that he can know what is pleasing to the Lord. In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna says to offer Him a fruit, a leaf, a flower, or some water. He doesn’t ask for meat. So the devotee does not eat meat, simply because Krishna does not eat meat. It is not so much for health or for moral principles per se, because if Krishna desired, then the devotee would eat meat. But by serving Krishna’s will in this way, both the devotee’s health and his moral strength are automatically served. The devotee also does not eat such vegetables as onions, garlic and mushrooms, because Krishna does not like them.

The point of all actions in Krishna Consciousness is to please Lord Krishna, and so the diet of the yogi is selected according to Krishna’s desires. In this third installment of Food for Krishna, we offer recipies for the yogi’s mainstay or basic diet.

Yellow Rice

1 cup white rice
2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon tumeric
sweet butter

Wash rice carefully in cold water and drain. Measure water into a pot along with the salt, tumeric and rice. Stir nicely and cover tightly. Cook over a low flame for twenty minutes. Garnish with sweet butter to taste, and offer to Krishna. Serves 4.


1968-01-20-072 cups whole wheat flour
3/4 cup water (app.)
sweet butter

Mix flour and water to make a dough, and knead for ten minutes to a consistency less than the feel of your ear lobe (see photo on previous page). Make th dough into one-inch balls, and then roll out into 1/8-inch thick circles (see photo opposite). Pre-heat a skillet to medium-high, and place a chapati on the dry skillet. Watch closely: in a few minutes the edges will curl up slightly. Cook a few seconds longer, until the whole chapati begins to puff up. Remove from skillet with tongs, and hold over an open high flame, turning often. If chapati has been made correctly, it will puff up like a balloon (see photo above). Now it’s done.

1968-01-20-06Brush finished chapati with weet butter and out into a covered pot to keep it warm. When all are finished, offer to Lord Krishna. Serves 4-6

Banana Nectar

3 cups powered milk
4 cups water
2 very ripe bananas
6 tbsp. honey
1 tbsp. butter
cinnamon—a pinch
nutmeg—a pinch
coriander—a pinch
ginger—a pinch
1 vanilla bean

Place water in pot. Stir in milk. Beat with hand mixer for one minute. Place on medium heat. Smash up the ripe bananas and add to milk. Stir in honey. Melt butter in small cup. When butter is hot, place one finely chopped vanilla bean into it. Let cook for a few minutes, don’t burn, then stir into milk. Let nectar come to a boil. Remove from heat. Add cinnamon, coriander, nutmeg, and ginger. Stir. Allow to cool before before offering to the Lord. Serves 4-5.

String Beans & Eggplant

1968-01-20-081 large eggplant, chopped
1/2 lb. stringbeans
1/4 cup oil
1 tsp. cumin seeds
1/2 tsp. crushed chili peppers
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. tumeric
1/3 cup water

Boil stringbeans in water until soft. Drain and set aside. Place oil in frying pan, heat till smoking. Add cumin seeds and crsuhed chili pepper and cook until burnt. Add choppsed eggplant and stir. Add the water, stire, and cover the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the eggplant is soft as butter. Mix in the cooked stringbeans, add the salt and tumeric. Cook five minutes, with lid off, then offer to Sri Krishna. Serves 2-3.


1 cup split peas
4-1/2 cups water
1/2 cup sweet butter
3 tablespoons vebetable oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon chili peppers
1 tablespoon tumeric

Wash split peas nicely in plenty of cold water and drain. Measure water, split peas and tumeric into a pot, stir and cover. Heat to boilding, then lower flame and cook, stirring occasionally, until medium thick soup forms (about 1 hour). Stir in salt, cover and set aside. Place oil into a small pot, or metal measuring cup. Heat over flame until smoking. Add cumin seeds and chili peppers, and cook until burnt.

CAUTION: This next step must be done with care: With a pair of tongs, drop this hot cup upside down into soup, cup and all. (The cover of the pot makes a good shield to gaurd your face against the hot soup, which tends to splatter.) Add the butter and offer. Serves 4.

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