Chana Masala

Return to This Week’s Menu

Chana Masala

Serves 4  | Prep Time: 15 minutes | Cook Time: 30 minutes

Chana masala is a wonderful chickpea dish (chana is a variety of chickpea) spread through out India, Pakistan and Morocco. All with slight variations. This particular version is adapted from Bon Appetit.


  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon (12g) double-concentrated tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1, 2” piece ginger, peeled, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • ¼ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper or crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2, 14.5-oz. cans chickpeas, rinsed
  • 3 cups (660g) water or vegetable stock
  • Kosher salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 2 teaspoons arrowroot
  • 2 tablsepoons (30g) extra-virgin olive oil
  • Chopped cilantro, mint and rice and/or flatbread (for serving)

Chef Tips

This dish is great for the weekday because you can clean up and have everything organized before the chana is finished cooking. If you have any plain yogurt hanging around it would make a lovely addition on top.


Step 1

Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium. Cook onion, season lightly with salt, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and very tender, 10-12 minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook one more minute. 

Step 2

Meanwhile, toast coriander seeds and cumin seeds in a dry small skillet over medium heat, tossing occasionally, until slightly fragrant, about 2 minutes. Transfer to spice mill or mortar and pestle and let cool; finely grind.

Step 3

Add spice mixture, garlic, ginger, garam masala, turmeric, and cayenne to pan with onion. Cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add chickpeas, and 2 water (or vegetable stock); season with salt and pepper. Cover pan; simmer, adding up to 1 cup more hot water (or stock) if chana masala looks dry, until chickpeas are very tender and sauce is flavorful, 20 minutes.

Step 4

Stir arrowroot and 2 teaspoons water in a small bowl, then stir into chana masala. Simmer just until thickened, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in olive oil. Season with more salt if needed.

Step 5

Top chana masala with cilantro, mint (and yogurt if using) and serve with rice and/or flatbread.