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Curried Chickpeas Chana Masala

by Maria
Curry de Naut Chana Masala

I love every type of curry I ever tried: Thai, Indian, Trinidadian, Chinese, you name it! So I always try to incorporate one type or another into my diet as often as possible. Curried Chickpeas Chana Masala is an easy to make, Indian curry dish with lots of flavor and with chickpeas as the main ingredient.

I had this for dinner on a weeknight and the leftovers for lunch, both with basmati rice.


  • It’s a vegetarian/vegan dish, but if you really want to, you can also make it with meat, chicken or shrimp, stew style. I will make a note below in the recipe where you would add either. 🙂
  • I used canned chickpeas for the recipe as it was faster, but you can also use dried chickpeas and make them from scratch. Soak the chickpeas in cold water for 1-2 hours. Next, add the chickpeas to a pot of salted water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook until the chickpeas are tender, about an hour. This option takes longer, but it’s also the healthier way to go.
  • I used Greek yogurt for the recipe, but dairy-free yogurt works as well.
  • The green chilies are used to make the dish spicy, so how many you use and whether you remove the seeds and the ribs is up to you and how much hotness you can take. I used one with the seeds and ribs removed. To check the spiciness of your chilies, cut one up and taste it.
  • Keep in mind that coconut oil is a low heat oil so don’t overheat the pot before adding the oil or you will burn the whole thing and will need a do-over. I speak from experience.

Servings: 2

Time: 1 hour


19 oz/500g can Chickpeas
3 tablespoons Coconut Oil
1 Large Yellow Onion
3 cloves Garlic
1 Green Chilies
2 Small Tomatoes (to yield 1½ cup)
1 inch/2 cm piece Ginger
½ Lemon
¼ cup Yogurt
1/3 cup Water
1¼ teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon Coriander Seeds
½ teaspoon Cumin Seeds
¼ teaspoon Ground Cayenne Pepper
1/8 teaspoon Kashmiri or Chilli Powder
½ teaspoon Turmeric


  1. Crush the garlic into a paste either by using a knife or a mortar and pestle. Finely chop the onion, the ginger, and the tomatoes and mince the chilies. Drain and rinse the chickpeas under cold water and set aside.
  2. Heat a medium-sized pot over medium heat and add the coconut oil. Once melted, add the onion and a pinch of salt and saute for 5-10 minutes, stirring from time to time, until soft and gold colored. Note: this is when you would add the chicken or meat, along with some salt, and continue with the recipe.
  3. Using a mortar and pestle, finely grind the coriander and the cumin.
  4. Once the onion is soft and golden, add the garlic, ginger, and chilies. Mix well to combine and let cook for a minute, until they release their aroma.
  5. Then add the coriander, cumin, ground cayenne pepper, chili/Kashmiri powder and turmeric to the pot for another minute until they too release their aroma.
  6. Turn up the heat to medium-high. Add the tomatoes and a pinch of salt and stir well to combine. Cook until the tomatoes start to break down and leave their liquid, about 15-20 minutes.
  7. Add the chickpeas, and the water and another pinch of salt. Stir to coat with the rest of the ingredients. Bring the mixture to a boil and then bring to a simmer. Cover partially with a lid and cook for another 20 minutes, or until the liquid is reduced to your desired consistency. The dish should be thick but still have some liquid. Note: if cooking with shrimp, you would want to add it in the last 2 minutes and stir until they are opaque.
  8. If serving with rice, you should start cooking the rice while the dish cooks at number 7 above.
  9. Once almost all of the liquid has evaporated, squeeze the lemon half over the pot and stir.
  10. Remove the pot from the heat, add the yogurt and mix to combine.
  11. Enjoy!

Did you enjoy our Curried Chickpeas Chana Masala recipe? Questions, comments or concerns? Leave us a note below or contact us, we’d love to hear from you!

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