Chana masala recipe – Easy chole recipe with minimum ingredients made in restaurant style. One of the most simple Indian recipes to make chana masala with a delicious gravy that goes great with roti, bhatura, naan,poori, plain paratha and even with plain basmati rice or variety rice like jeera rice, biryani rice, ghee rice.
There are so many ways a chana masala is prepared, this is the one that is our favorite at home and tastes like a restaurant style gravy.
But this restaurant style recipe is very very delicious due to the roasted onion and tomatoes in it. This lends a unique aroma and creamy taste to the gravy. It is a quick and easy recipe good for home preparation with very less oil.
Chana masala recipe
Chana masala recipe | How to make chana masala in restaurant style
Ingredients (1 cup = 240ml )
Ingredients for chana masala
- ¾ cup chana or chickpeas raw (or 2¼ cups soaked or canned)
- 1½ cups water
- 1 Pinch soda – (baking soda or cooking soda) skip if using canned
For frying & blending
- 1 tbsp oil or as needed
- 1½ cup onions (thinly sliced, about 2 to 3 medium)
- ¾ to 1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
- 1¼ to 1½ cup tomatoes (chopped, 2 medium)
- ½ to ¾ tbsp red chili powder (adjust as desired)
- ¼ tsp turmeric or haldi
- Salt as needed
For chana masala gravy
- 2 tbsp oil or as needed
- 1 small bay leaf or tej patta
- 1 inch cinnamon or dalchini
- 2 to 3 cloves or laung (optional)
- 2 to 3 green cardamoms or elaichi (optional)
- ½ cup onions (fine chopped) (optional)
- 1 green chili slit
- 1 to 1½ tsp garam masala (I used punjabi garam masala)
- 1½ tsp coriander powder or daniya powder
- 1 tsp kasuri methi (or dried fenugreek leaves)
- 2 pinch amchur (or dried mango powder or 1 to 2 tbsp lemon juice) optional
- ¼ cup coriander leaves or cilantro chopped finely
Preparation for chana masala (skip if using canned)
- Wash chickpeas thoroughly and soak for 6 to 8 hours.
- Add them to a pot or pressure cooker. Pour 1½ cups water and add a pinch of soda. You can also cook them in a pot adding more water as needed.
- Cook until soft for 2 to 3 whistles. When you bite the chana it must be soft and should not feel a bite.
Frying & blending
- While the chana cooks, saute onions until golden in 1 tbsp oil.
- Saute ginger garlic paste as well to remove the raw smell.
- Fry chopped tomatoes with salt. Make sure tomatoes turn soft and the raw smell goes away.
- Saute again along with chili powder and turmeric till the raw smell goes off.
- Blend once cooled to a smooth paste. optional – You can also add 1 tbsp cooked chana to the mixture and blend until smooth with out water. This makes the gravy thick and delicious.
How to make chana masala recipe
- Saute cinnamon, cloves, bay leaf and cardamom in 2 tbsp oil.
- optional – Add chopped onions and chilli. Fry until golden.
- Next transfer the blended paste. Stir well. Add garam masala powder, coriander powder and saute until the mixture leaves the sides of the pan.
- Add the cooked chickpeas and then the stock (chana cooked water) as needed. You may need to use up all. If needed pour little more water to bring it to a consistency.
- Bring it to a boil. Simmer for about 5 minutes or until it reaches the desired consistency. Taste the gravy and add more garam masala and salt if needed. Cook further for another 2 to 3 mins.
- Add kasuri methi and amchur. Stir and switch off. Add chopped coriander leaves. Cover and set aside until served.
- Chana masala is ready to serve with rice, onion and lemon wedges.
*update: The quantity of ingredients have been updated to make more gravy.
Do not use more baking or cooking soda than mentioned in the recipe card as it leaves a aftertaste.
For best results make the recipe from scratch and avoid canned chickpeas.
Preparation for chana masala recipe
1. Wash and soak chana for about 6 to 8 hours. Pressure cook chana with 1.5 cups water and a generous pinch of soda for 2 whistles. If cooking on a low flame, cook for 1 whistle. They can also be cooked in a pot. Chana must be soft cooked and you should not get a bite into it.
2. While the chana cooks, add 1 tbsp oil to a pan. When the oil heats up, add onions and fry until they turn golden.
3. Add ginger garlic paste.
4. Saute until the raw smell disappears.
5. Add tomatoes and salt. Fry until they turn completely mushy and soft.
6. Add turmeric and red chili powder.
7. Saute until the raw smell of chili powder goes away for a minute or two.
8. Cool it and blend to a smooth paste. Optional – you can also add 1 tbsp of cooked chana and blend to smooth. This yields a thick gravy. No water is used for blending.
Step by step photos on how to make chana masala recipe
9. Add 2 tbsp oil to the pan. Saute 1 small bay leaf, 3 green cardamoms,3 cloves and a small cinnamon stick.
10. Add finely chopped onions nad green chili. Saute until lightly golden or transparent. You can also skip onions, it just adds volume to the gravy.
11. Add the blended puree.
12. Stir and mix well. We don’t need to cook for long since we roasted the onions and tomatoes before. Add garam masala and coriander powder.
13. Cook until the mixture begins to leave the pan.
14. Add the soft cooked chana and stock (chana cooked water). Make sure channa is soft cooked before adding here. Stir and add more water if needed to bring to a consistency.
15. Mix everything well and bring it to a boil. Lower the flame and simmer for 3 to 4 minutes or until it reaches a desired consistency. Taste the gravy. Add more garam masala and salt if needed. Cook for 3 to 4 mins if you have added more garam masala. Just before turning off the stove add crushed kasuri methi and amchur (if using).
Stir well and Turn off the stove. Add few chopped coriander leaves. Cover the pot to retain the flavors.
Serve chana masala with rice or roti.