Recipes

Chana Masala

Serves 4

| Prep Time: 5 mins

| Cook Time: 50 mins

| Total Time: 55 mins

You may need: Dried Garlic Powder

Discover The Recipe

Chana Masala might be one of the most popular dishes in the world. If you haven't heard of it yet, then we're doing our part to bring this easy, healthy, and delicious meal to your table from India. If you have tried chana masala, we think you'll love our take, which includes sweet potato for a heartier meal. This recipe also happens to be vegan and easy to make using canned chickpeas.

This dish is loaded with layers of flavor from the Indian staple-spice blend Garam Masala as well as the 'holy trinity' of Indian cooking: ginger, garlic, and onions. With less than 10 mins of prep and under an hour of cooking, most of the time is passive cooking: simmering the stew to soften the veggies and meld flavors. We make our Garam Masala to authentic South Asian standards using toasted and freshly-ground spices for maximum flavor. Keep extra Garam Masala on the table to sprinkle a pinch here and there on any Indian dishes. Customize this recipe to your liking: use up any extra farmer's market veggies or add ground meat or chunks of chicken breast or lamb for a one-pot meal. You'll want to have hot Indian naan bread on hand to mop up the delicious liquid at the bottom.

Ingredients

  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced

  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (or vegetable oil)

  • 2 tbsp cilantro stems, finely diced (optional)

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 inch piece of fresh ginger, minced or grated

  • salt & pepper to taste (optional)

  • 1 tbsp Piquant Post Garam Masala spice

  • 1 small sweet potato, peeled & chopped into 1" cubes

  • can (15oz) of low-salt diced tomatoes

  • can (15oz) of chickpeas, drained and rinsed

  • 1 cup of low-salt vegetable broth (or water)

  • juice of 1 lemon (~2 tbsp of juice)

  • 1/2 cup of cilantro leaves, coarsely chopped

Notes

Our version of chana masala includes sweet potato, which adds to the cooking time. To make a faster version, leave out the sweet potato or use green peas or other veggies which soften faster.

Cut the sweet potato into small cubes (1/2" - 1") to speed cooking.

Fresh ginger is an essential ingredient in Indian cooking. If you only have access to a jar of minced ginger, it will work but fresh ginger is preferable.

Unless you're tomatoes are vine-ripened and picked at the height of the summer harvest, we find using canned tomatoes gets the best results. Tomatoes are picked and canned at perfect ripeness and beat the mealy year-round supermarket tomatoes any day.

Lastly, optional ingredients add a little character and flavor but don’t sweat it if you don’t have them.

Instructions

Start by chopping and prepping all fresh ingredients. Heat a large skillet (or pan with high sides) on Med-High. Add oil to pan.

Once oil is shimmering, add onions and stir occasionally for 7-9 mins or until onions begin to caramelize and brown slightly. Next, add cilantro stems, garlic, ginger, salt & pepper, and Garam Masala spice. Stir mixture and sauté for 1 minute.

Then, stir in sweet potato, tomatoes, and chickpeas. Cook for 5 mins. Add in broth and reduce heat to Med-Low. Stir mixture until liquid is evenly distributed.

Cover and simmer the stew for 40 mins or until the sweet potato is soft enough to pierce with a fork. Stir occasionally. Finally, when finished cooking, add in lemon juice and stir to mix. Garnish with cilantro leaves. Serve with hot naan bread, basmati rice, or brown rice.

Alternatives & Substitutions

  • Chana Masala chickpea stew is a wonderful blank canvas to customize to your liking. We customized this recipe to use sweet potato. Use up any other veggies you have on hand like carrot, potato, beets, or even add tofu or ground meats.

  • Garam Masala is the ultimate Indian culinary weapon. You can use it to spice up and add authentic Indian flavor to just about any dish. Try it in a red pasta sauce, sprinkle on oven-roasted veggies like carrots and onions, use in any stew, use it as a rub on lamb chops or chicken breasts, or add to sweet baked goods like brownies, pumpkin pie, or cupcakes for delightful, unexpected twist.

  • Looking for another easy vegan dish to make? Try one of our favorite Indian recipes: Saag Tofu (spinach with tofu).

  • Swap it in for curry powder to make a lentil stew like our lamb dal recipe.

  • Make these easy Indian-flavored chickpea veggie burgers. Add our garam masala instead of any other spices.

  • Don't forget to leave comments and feedback on your meals and experiments in the comments for others to read.

  • Post pictures of your masterpiece meal on social media and tag us. We repost!

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