A delicious and super easy chana masala recipe is ready fast while retaining the deep, complex flavors of the original dish.
Chana masala is a popular Indian dish, a savory, flavorful stew of chickpeas and onions, slowly cooked and flavored with a long list of Indian spices.
My version uses a pre-blended spice mix and canned chickpeas and is ready in just 30 minutes. It’s my oldest daughter’s favorite lunch. I pack it in her lunchbox in a thermos at least twice a week, and she never tires of it!
The ingredients you’ll need
You’ll only need a few simple ingredients to make this tasty Indian dish. The exact measurements are included in the recipe card below. Here’s an overview of what you’ll need:
- Chana masala spice blend: I get it on Amazon (link provided below in the recipe card).
- Garam masala: You should be able to find it in the supermarket, or on Amazon.
- Kosher salt: if using fine salt, have the amount.
- Olive oil for frying.
- Aromatics: chopped onion, minced garlic, and minced ginger root
- Canned garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed.
- Chopped parsley for garnish.
How to make this easy chana masala recipe
I’m a lazy cook. So to make things easier, I use canned chickpeas and a spice mix that I get on Amazon (link provided in the recipe card below). And despite these shortcuts, and even though this dish is ready super fast, it’s delicious!
It’s so easy! Scroll down to the recipe card for the detailed instructions. Here are the basic steps:
- Cook the aromatics and the spices in olive oil.
- Stir in the chickpeas.
- Now add the water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes, until the liquid reduces and the chickpeas are soft.
How to serve it
I usually serve it over rice, especially when I make it for my growing, active kids. But sometimes, when I want to minimize the carb impact, I use cauliflower rice, which is also excellent.
Is this chana masala recipe healthy?
That would depend on how you define “healthy.” This recipe is obviously not paleo and it’s also not low carb.
However, chickpeas are very healthy. So if you don’t need to be on a low-carb diet, I think you can enjoy this dish in moderation.
What about leftovers?
One of the best things about this easy chana masala recipe: leftovers keep really well in the fridge, in an airtight container, for 4-5 days.
In fact, this is one of those dishes that gets even better after a day or two. I reheat the leftovers covered, in the microwave on 50% power.
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Chana Masala Recipe
- In a small bowl, mix together the chana masala spice mix, garam masala, and kosher salt. Set aside.
- Heat the olive oil over medium heat, about 3 minutes. Add the onion and cook until soft and golden, 4-5 minutes.
- Add the garlic and ginger and cook, stirring, 1 more minute.
- Add the spices. Cook for 30 seconds, until fragrant.
- Add the chickpeas and stir to coat.
- Add the water. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes, until the liquid reduces by half and chickpeas are soft.
- Serve the easy chana masala immediately. Delicious!