Chana Masala (White Chickpeas in hot and spicy gravy)

Chana Masala

Today the recipe which I am sharing with you is called Chana Masala. (White Chickpeas in hot and spicy gravy). White chickpeas also are known as Garbanzo beans in my parts of the world. Sometimes it is known by the name Egyptian peas also. There are many varieties of chickpeas. Few of them which are majorly consumed are green chickpeas, black chickpeas, and white chickpeas.

In India, there are many ways of cooking chickpeas. Flour form of chickpeas is often used in making the batter and used in deep frying. Or it can be made into simple gravy which is eaten along with steamed rice or Indian bread like( roti, paratha, naan, and puri)

Chana Masala
The recipe which I am sharing is a gravy based recipe which is slow cooked in Indian spices. The seeds have to be soaked for a minimum of 8 hours or overnight. Then pressure-cooked and slow cooked. Ending off with the tempering of clarified butter(ghee) and Kashmiri red chilli (a variety which is not hot in taste). The slow cook method of cooking the chickpeas allows it to blend with all the spices evenly giving a distinct flavour to the recipe. Chickpeas are a nutrient-dense food, providing rich content of protein, dietary fibre, folate, and certain dietary minerals such as iron and phosphorus. This recipe is my take on it. However, there are several ways of making this recipe. So here is my recipe.

Preparation Time:- 5 minutes Standing Time:- 8 hr Cooking Time:- 45minutes Total Time:- 9 hrs
Number of Serving:- 4-6 persons

1 cup= 250 ml
1 tablespoon = 15 ml
1 teaspoon= 5 ml


1. White chickpeas:- 2 cups
2. Cumin Seeds:- 1 teaspoon
3. Coriander Powder:- 1teaspoon
4. Green Chilies:- 2-3 finely chopped (optional)
5. Kashmiri Red chilli powder: -2 +1 teaspoon (you can use sweet paprika powder if not available)
6. Salt:- to taste
7. Garam Masala Powder:- 1 teaspoon
8. Oil:- 1+1 tablespoons
9. Ghee (Clarified butter):- 2 teaspoon or 1 tablespoon
10 Turmeric Powder:- 1/2 teaspoon
11. Soda bicarbonate:- 1/2 teaspoon
12. Ginger juliennes and Slit Green chilli for garnishing
13. Water:- 3+ 1/2 cups
14. Hot Red chilli:- 2 teaspoons (optional)


1) Soak 2 cups of white chickpeas in 4-5 cups of water for minimum 8 hours or overnight. Wash the chickpeas before soaking it. The chickpeas should double in size and volume. Drain the water and wash the chickpeas again in cold water for 2 times.

2) Take a pressure cooker, add chickpeas, 2 1/2 - 3 1/3 cups of water ( the water level should be 1 inch higher than the chickpeas), turmeric powder, salt and soda bicarbonate in it. Close the lid and let it cook under 2-4 whistles(depending on your pressure cooker). Switch off the stove and let it stand until all the pressure is released on its own. Don't open it by your self otherwise, the chickpeas will not cook properly. The flame should be in medium high. When you open the lid after 10 mins the chickpeas should be cooked properly. To check the chickpeas if it's cooked or not,  take one pea and press with your fingers it should be very soft. 

3) Now in a deep pan, add 1 tablespoons of oil, once the oil is hot add cumin seeds to it. Make sure you don't burn the cumin seeds, the flame should not be too high. Add the cooked chickpeas to the pan. 
Toss well. Now add 2 teaspoons of chilli powder, hot chilli powder, coriander powder, green chillies, garam masala powder and salt to it. ( make sure you use less salt this time as will cooking in a pressure cooker, we already used salt) Combine well. If you feel you can add 1 cup of water to the pan while cooking. Close the lid and cook it in slow flame for 45 minutes. Stir it occasionally. Switch off the flame and let it rest for 10 minutes.

4) Now in tempering pan or any small pan add 2 tablespoons of ghee and 1 tablespoon of oil, let it melt and heat a little. Switch off the flame. Cool the oil and ghee mix a bit. Now add 1 teaspoon of Kashmiri chilli powder and ginger juliennes to the oil add combine. Allow all the flavours of chilli and ginger to infuse in the oil mix.

5) Now take out the cooked chickpeas in a serving bowl, and add all the infused oil mix on top of it. And its done. Your Chana masala is ready to be served.


* If you don't have a pressure cooker you can cook it in open pan for 1-1/2 hours in a medium flame. Then follow the same process as mentioned in point 3. In that case, you don't have to cook the chickpeas further for 45 minutes. 15- 20 minutes are well enough.

* You can also make this from canned chickpeas. Its already cooked, So wash it nicely and follow with point number 3.

Chana Masala

Serving Tip:-  Serve it with any Indian bread like roti, paratha, naan or puri or just with steamed rice.

Do try my recipe and leave your comments below until then happy cooking. 

Creative Commons License by Madhurima Roy is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License