Chana Masala

Chana Masala

Serves: 4


  • 1 tbs grape seed oil or olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced*
  • 1 1/2 tsp cumin seeds or 1 tbs ground cumin
  • 2 tbs garlic, minced*
  • 2 tbs ginger, peeled & minced*
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped*
  • 1 green serrano chile pepper, seeded & minced*
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1-2 tsp coconut sugar
  • 1 28-oz can whole peeled or diced tomatoes with juices
  • 1 28-oz can chickpeas, drained & rinsed
  • 3 cups basmati rice, cooked (1 cup uncooked)
  • 2 tbs fresh lemon juice (for garnish)
  • Fresh cilantro (for garnish)

*Add garlic, ginger, onion, pepper, and cilantro to a small food processor and mince.


  1. Heat a large, deep pot over medium heat.
  2. If using cumin seeds, add seeds to the pot and toast over medium-low heat for a minute or two.
  3. If using ground cumin, add this, along with the onions, garlic, ginger, and serrano pepper to the pan. Cook for 4 minutes.
  4. Add garam masala, coriander, chili powder, turmeric, and salt and cook for 2 minutes more.
  5. Add the tomatoes and blend with an immersion blender into a thick sauce.
  6. Add the chickpeas.  If the mixture looks too thick, add up to 1 cup of water.  You want the sauce to be a thick soup consistency.
  7. Raise the heat to medium-high until it reaches a rolling simmer, then reduce heat to low / medium-low and simmer (uncovered) for 15-20 minutes. Stir occasionally.
  8. Taste the chana masala and adjust seasonings as needed (adding more salt for saltiness, chili powder for heat, or a bit of coconut sugar for sweetness and to offset the heat of the chilies).
  9. Remove from heat and add the lemon juice.
  10. Garnish with more lemon and fresh cilantro and serve over brown rice or brown basmati rice.

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