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Chana Masala (Savory Indian Chick Peas)


30 min

Chana Masala (Savory Indian Chick Peas)

Chana Masala (Savory Indian Chick Peas) Photo 1


30 min


2 persons




4.00 rating-star (220)

Author: Victoria Bailey
Give this chana masala dish a try and don't look back. Indian food is not just curried sauces. This spin on an Indian chickpea curry features a healthy mixture of chickpeas, tomatoes, onion, and spices. Both carnivores and vegetarians will enjoy this meal. My kids love it. Leave out the green chile if the kiddies will be eating. Serve over basmati or jasmine rice and enjoy. Namaste y'all!


  • onion, chopped: 1 piece
  • tomato, chopped: 1 piece
  • (1 inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped : 1 piece
  • garlic, chopped, or more to taste: 4 clove
  • green chile pepper, seeded and chopped (Optional): 1 piece
  • olive oil: 3 Tbsp
  • fresh bay leaves: 2 piece
  • chili powder: 1 tsp
  • coriander powder: 1 tsp
  • garam masala: 1 tsp
  • turmeric powder: 0.5 tsp
  • salt to taste: 1 pinch
  • water as needed: 0 piece
  • (15 ounce) can chickpeas: 1 can
  • fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish, or more to taste: 1 tsp

Metric Conversion

Stages of cooking

  1. Grind onion, tomato, ginger, garlic, and chile pepper together in a food processor into a paste.
    Chana Masala (Savory Indian Chick Peas) Photo 2
  2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Fry bay leaves in hot oil until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Pour the paste into the skillet and cook until the oil begins to separate from the mixture and is golden brown in color, 2 to 3 minutes. Season the mixture with chili powder, coriander, gram masala, turmeric, and salt; cook and stir until very hot, 2 to 3 minutes.
    Chana Masala (Savory Indian Chick Peas) Photo 3
  3. Stir enough water into the mixture to get a thick gravy; bring to a boil and stir chickpeas into the gravy. Reduce heat to medium and cook until the chickpeas are heated through, 5 to 7 minutes. Garnish with cilantro.
    Chana Masala (Savory Indian Chick Peas) Photo 4

History of the Chana Masala (Savory Indian Chick Peas):

Chana Masala is a popular vegetarian dish in India, especially in the northern regions. It is mainly made with chickpeas, spices, and a tomato-based sauce. This dish has a rich history of being served during special occasions like weddings and festivals. The recipe has evolved over time, and now there are many variations available of this dish. It's a staple at Indian restaurants and also makes a comforting homemade meal.

Tips and Tricks for Chana Masala (Savory Indian Chick Peas) Recipe:

  • Use canned chickpeas to save time, but you can also use freshly cooked chickpeas.
  • You can make the tomato-chili paste ahead of time and store it in the fridge to save time.
  • For a richer and creamier gravy, add some yogurt or coconut milk.
  • Adjust the spices according to your taste preferences. Add more or less chili powder and green chilies, depending on how spicy you want it to be.
  • Adding a teaspoon of sugar towards the end will balance out the tartness of the tomatoes.

Tips for presenting the dish:

  • Serve the Chana Masala with basmati rice or naan bread.
  • Garnish with chopped cilantro, coriander leaves, or sliced onions.
  • You can also add a dollop of yogurt or sour cream on top.
  • If you're making this dish for a party or a special occasion, serve it in a traditional Indian style by using a thali, which is a large round platter with small bowls for different accompaniments like chutneys, papadums, and pickles.

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