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Chana Masala (Chickpea Curry) Recipe

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Chana Masala is a delicious curry from the heart of Indian cuisine. Bursting with flavors and aromatic spices, this vegetarian delight is a wholesome and satisfying dish that has captured my heart.

It can be enjoyed as the the main dish with rice or naan bread, or it can be a delicious side dish to any meal. This comforting recipe is one of my favorites, especially in the autumn when the weather starts to get chilly and a hot bowl of Chana Masala (Chickpea Curry) seems like the perfect fix.

Chickpeas are nutritious, high in fiber, plant protein, Iron, Folate and have a low Glycemic Index. Due to these attributes, chickpeas can help with intestinal health and regularity, blood sugar control, weight management and satiety. Chickpeas are healthy, inexpensive and versatile. You can use them to make hummus, falafel, add them to any soup, stew or curry, or roast them with different spices for a crunchy snack.

Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a novice in the kitchen, this recipe will guide you through the creation of a hearty and fragrant chickpea curry that’s perfect for a weeknight dinner or a special gathering. Join me on a journey to explore the rich, exotic tastes of India with this Chana Masala (Chickpea Curry) recipe that’s sure to become a staple in your home-cooked meals.

Chana Masala (Chickpea Curry)

Chana Masala, also known as Chickpea Curry, is a flavorful Indian dish featuring tender chickpeas in a rich, aromatic tomato-based sauce. It's a vegetarian delight with a perfect balance of spices and savory goodness.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4 servings


  • 2 cups canned or cooked chickpeas
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated
  • 2 tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1 green chili pepper, finely chopped (adjust to taste)
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds, whole
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • Salt, to taste
  • Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish
  • Juice of half a lemon


  • Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet or pot over medium heat. Add the cumin seeds and let them sizzle for about 30 seconds until they become fragrant.
  • Add the finely chopped onions and cook for 5-7 minutes until they turn translucent and start to brown.
  • Stir in the minced garlic, grated ginger, and green chili pepper. Sauté for an additional 2 minutes, until the raw aroma disappears.
  • Add the ground coriander, turmeric and paprika. Cook these spices for about 2 minutes, stirring constantly to prevent burning.
  • Add the finely chopped tomatoes and cook until they become soft and the oil starts to separate from the mixture, which should take about 5-7 minutes.
  • Pour in the cooked or canned chickpeas and mix well to coat them with the spice and tomato mixture.
  • Add enough water to achieve your desired consistency for the curry. You can start with 1/2 to 1 cup of water and adjust as needed.
  • Season with salt and let the chickpea curry simmer for about 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, allowing the flavors to meld and the chickpeas to become tender.
  • Just before serving, sprinkle in the garam masala and squeeze the juice of half a lemon over the curry. Mix well to combine.
  • Serve the chickpea curry hot, garnished with fresh cilantro leaves, sliced red onion, and lemon wedges. It pairs wonderfully with steamed rice, naan bread, or roti. Enjoy!


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