I chose this recipe for several reasons: 1) I need to eat lunch 2) Chana Masala is delicious and 3) I want to learn to cook more Indian food. It came together extremely quickly, and, thanks to a serendipitous trip to the local Indian grocery store, it was pretty inexpensive, despite the fact that I needed to restock on a few of these spices. If you have a local Indian market, I highly recommend that you check it out! I know I’ll be back soon.

I definitely suggest this recipe if you like this type of food (or even if you’ve never tried it!).  My entire apartment smelled amazing as the fragrant spices simmered away on the stove, and in about 20 minutes, I had enough food to eat for lunch all week, plus more.  My husband, who, an hour before I began cooking, turned up his nose at the thought of eating chickpeas, had a taste as I finished and asked me to set some aside for him to eat later. Sounds like a good endorsement to me.

To the recipe!


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 medium onions, minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
  • 1 fresh, hot green chili pepper, minced
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander (I didn’t have it, so I skipped it)
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds, toasted and ground
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 15-ounce can of whole tomatoes with their juices, chopped small
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Juice of one lemon


  • Saute onion, garlic, and ginger in vegetable oil over medium heat for about 5 minutes, until brown
  • Turn heat to medium-low, and add in your spices. Stir and cook for about a minute.
  • Add tomatoes, water, and chickpeas. Stir to combine. Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes
  • Stir in salt and lemon juice

My notes:

  • Yup, it really is that easy!
  • Makes about 6-8 lunch sized portions
  • I sometimes get lazy and used powdered ginger. Don’t do that. Fresh ginger is so worth it.
  • I served with mango chutney and fresh cilantro, and I recommend that you do the same, provided you love delicious things.

Recipe via: Smitten Kitchen


About Ginny

Nerd. Dog Snuggler. Intrepid Social Worker. Lover of Delicious Things.

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