Who needs takeout when you can make this easy Chana Masala Recipe? Gluten-free, packed with protein, and ready to eat in under 30 minutes.
Garam masala spice, chickpeas and tomatoes produce a simple chickpea stew that is a hearty budget-friendly meal.
Chickpea curry (or some call it stew) is so delicious and nutritious. When you can cook dinner at home in under 30 minutes (and have leftovers too), why dish out dollars for takeout? This super easy chickpea recipe is a favourite around here.
RECIPE and INSTRUCTIONS for this vegan chana masala can be found in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
If you are like me, cooking once and eating twice or more makes life easier in the kitchen.
For This Chickpea Recipe You Will Need:
- Chickpeas – I used canned but you can cook dry chickpeas ahead of time if you prefer.
- Tomatoes – canned diced tomatoes work well. If you have any roasted tomatoes in the freezer they would be perfect for this recipe.
- Onion – I like white onions, but any onion will do.
- Garlic – Fresh is best, but powdered works if you don’t have any on hand.
- Ghee – Olive oil or coconut oil are great substitiues.
- Curry Powder – mild or hot depending you, your preference.
- Garam Masala – easily found in the grocery store.
- Chili Powder – hot or mild works.
- Fresh Ginger – fresh is best for this recipe, but again powdered works in a pinch. You will have to adjust the amount.
- Garnish – parlsey or cilantro.
What Is Garam Masala?
It is a blend of spices that usually consist of:
- green cardamom
- black cardamom
- bay leaves
- dried chilies
There are many combinations and variations to this spice blend. The spices are generally toasted, then ground to a powder. You can for sure make your own homemade blend. I like to try different blends from stores and speciality markets. They are different every time. It adds so much flavour to dishes. Warm, sweet with only a touch of heat.
Making Chana Masala Is So Easy
This is a one-pot chana masala recipe. Well, ok if you are cooking the chickpeas from scratch, it will be more than one pot. As I said, I use canned chickpeas for convenience (so much easier).
30 Minutes to Dinner:
- If you are making rice, get that cooking. This is an option, but I recommend it.
- Turn the oven on to warm the naan bread too (or not), but you will really want to.
- Rinse your chickpeas and have them ready and waiting. Try not to eat all of them before you use them.
- Dice your onions, grate your ginger and mince your garlic.
- Now you will just cook the onions until tender.
- Add the spices and tomatoes.
- Cook a little more.
- Add the chickpeas and heat through.
- Your rice should be ready, your bread should be warm.
- Put some rice in a bowl, spoon the chana masala over the rice. Grab some naan. DIG IN!
OMG, how fast is that? Most people are still debating which pizza they want to order. Simple right?
This recipe was adapted from (affiliate) Yum & Yummer.
Healthy Chickpea Recipes
What is chana masala? It is actually an Indian chickpea stew from the Punjabi region. I don’t know about you, but we LOVE Indian food. All those warm, spicy flavours are so enticing. It really is like travelling the world without leaving the kitchen.
This vegan-friendly dish is perfect for the plant-based diet craze. Chickpeas are such a great ingredient. Hands down one of my absolute favourite proteins to cook with. Especially if I am looking for a meat alternative.
A healthy ingredient to work with, chickpeas are filled with fibre, vitamins, and minerals. You can cook them from dry if you like, but for the most part, I use canned organic chickpeas.
Do you consume chickpeas on a regular basis? They work well in chili, salads, and make the perfect snack. I usually munch away on them as I rinse them for recipes.
Some of our favourite ways to enjoy them are:
- Healthy Chickpea Salad
- Hot Italian Sausage and Apple Stuffed Squash
- Fall Flavours Apple Salad
- Greek Nachos and Creamy Hummus
Just in case you were wondering the difference between Chana Masala and Tiki Masala? Tiki masala is made with meat, usually chicken. Both contain the wonderful spicy sauce.
Serving and Storing
When making this chana masala recipe, I did make sure I had lots of extra sauce. Pouring this wonderful Indian chickpea stew over some rice, and sopping up the sauce with naan bread is the ONLY way to eat it (in my opinion anyway). I would have no problem eating this with mashed potatoes too.
Place in sealed containers and keep in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Can you freeze chana masala? YES!! This is the PERFECT batch recipe. Great to pop into containers or freezer bags for easy meals down the road. Budget-friendly too.
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Easy Chana Masala Recipe
- 26 ounces canned chickpeas (rinse and drain)
- 28 ounces canned diced tomatoes
- ¾ cup water
- 1 cup onion (diced)
- 1 clove garlic (minced)
- 1 tablespoon ghee (or olive/coconut oil)
- 2 teaspoons garam masala
- 1 teaspoon yellow curry powder
- 1 teaspoon chili powder (I used Aleppo Chiles)
- 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger (I used a micro plane for this)
- Parsley for garnish (optional)
- Get all your spices measured into a small bowl.
- Dice your onion, mince the garlic and grate the ginger. Set everything aside.
- Rinse your chickpeas and put them aside. Open the canned tomatoes.
- Heat a non stick pan over medium high heat. Add the ghee.
- Add the onions, cook until soft and start to brown (about 10 minutes).
- Add the garlic, ginger and spices. Cook for 30-40 seconds.
- Add the tomatoes and water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Liquid will start to absorb (slightly). You still want to have some sauce especially if you are having this with rice and naan bread. YUM!!
- Add the chickpeas, mix, cover and heat through (about 5 minutes)
- At this point the Chana Masala is done. Dish over rice and serve.