Chana Masala (spicy chickpeas)

Chickpeas, like all legumes, are a good source of fiber. These versatile beans are also a favorite vegetarian protein of mine. Instead of adding cream of this traditional Indian dish, I added Moong Dal flour slurry (mix of flour and water) in the same manner of using cornstarch to thicken a gravy. I love the texture white lentil flour adds to gravies and to gluten-free breads.


Chana Masala
1 cup chickpeas
2 onion
3 tomato
2 green thai chili
1tsp ginger garlic paste
1tsp fenugreek leaves (can omit or replace with dried cilantro)
1tsp red chili powder
1/4tsp garam masala powder
2tsp coriander powder
2-3 Tbsp moong dal flour
Salt as needed

To temper:
1Tbsp oil
1 stick cinnamon
1 cardamon pod
1 clove
1 bay leaf


Soak beans overnight, drain water, boil for 30 minutes, or until soft.
(pressure cook 4-5 whistles, or used canned garbanzos if you’d like)

1. Chop onions and tomatoes finely. In frying pan or wok, heat oil and season with cinnamon, cardamon, cloves and bay leaf. Add chopped onion. Fry till translucent.

2. Add ginger-garlic paste and let fry for a minute. Add chopped tomatoes, slit green chillies. Mix well.

3. Add salt, red chili powder, garam masala, coriander powder. Cook in medium flame for 4-5 minutes. Add crushed fenugreek leaves.

4. Add beans and cook for 5 minutes. Add reserved water and cook for another 5 minutes.

5. Mix well (water should have reduced). Add 1 cup water and cook another 5-8 minutes.

6. Lastly, mix the moong dal flour to the least amount of cold water to create a thick liquid. Stir this into the pot. Do not let boil. Turn off flame.

Serve over Rice or Naan.

(Check out Nicole’s Gluten-Free Naan Recipe at Gluten Free on a Shoestring.

Note on Naan:
I followed this recipe with a few changes.
I proofed the sugar & yeast in bowl alone to let rise, then added small amount club soda, oil, yogurt, egg and flaxseed meal and mixed well.
Slowly, add wet to dry ingredients and avoid making lumps.
Add little flour if too sticky.
Cover dough and hands with oil in order to manipulate it.
Divided into small loaves and bake in oven on highest setting (500°) for about 7 minutes or until dough looks like it has risen slightly and cooked, then flip to cook another 2 minutes on broil to brown.


Just like I used to make at the café I worked at, only gluten-free!

3 thoughts on “Chana Masala (spicy chickpeas)

  1. Pingback: How to Make Cauliflower Rice | Garden of Good Eatin'

  2. This sounds so good! Thought I’d make it tomorrow (Thanksgiving today) but then I remembered that I forgot my chickpeas that I cooked last week in the freezer where I was housesitting. Maybe Saturday…

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