Curried Chickpeas

5 from 3 votes

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Curried Chickpeas, also known as Chana Masala, is another favorite side dish from our friend from India. They are loaded with Indian flavors. With rice it’s a very filling dish!

Curried Garbanzo Beans in a Dish

Curried Chickpeas

These Curried Chickpeas are so delicious as an Indian main dish or side dish. My sister-in-law Paige first made me these a year ago when we were at a family reunion. When she came to visit again last month I begged her to make them again so I could document the recipe. They are loaded with flavor and will fill you up along with a side of rice. I think I ate this for lunch every day until it was gone. Paige also made us Mickey’s Curried Cauliflower and Potatoes HERE, it was so good!! Curried chickpeas are also referred to as Chana Masala.

Curried Chickpeas vs. Chana Masala

If you go to an Indian restaurant, Chana Masala will be the name of curried chickpeas on the menu. According to Wikipedia, Chana Masala literally means “mix-spiced small-chickpeas.” It is chickpeas cooked in a tomato based sauce flavored with garlic, onion, and spices. Chana Masala is a delicious vegetarian option for those who love the spices of Indian food without the meat. We love it served over rice and with Naan bread.

What are Chickpeas?

Chickpeas are a legume that are high in protein. They are cream-colored and relatively round, and have the texture of a kidney bean. The flavor of a chickpea is nutty with a buttery texture. Similar to any kind of bean, they can be purchased either canned or dried. Chickpeas are heralded as being a food rich in vitamins and minerals. In addition, they are high in fiber as well as protein. Because of the high protein content and mild flavor, chickpeas are a great substitute for meat in recipes for vegetarian and vegan diets.

Is there a difference between Chickpeas and Garbanzo Beans?

Chickpeas and garbanzo beans are one and the same. The term people use to describe this legume varies from state to state. The name “chickpea” come from Latin origins and is generally the English name that is used. Garbanzo bean is the Spanish term for the legume. I was raised in the western part of the United States and have always called this legume a “garbanzo bean.” My good friends from the East coast refer to it as a “chickpea.” It is interesting to see how brands label it. When purchasing canned chickpeas, I usually see both names on the label.

Curried Chickpeas Recipe

This recipe originally comes from Paige’s friend Mickey who is from India. I asked Paige to tell me a little bit more about Mickey and this is what she sent me:

Mickey was raised in India, and now lives in Bothell, Washington. She has irritable bowel syndrome and can only eat raw foods — no rice, no wheat. She does the most amazing things with vegetables and I can’t believe its just veggies. If I were to eat like she does I know I would feel so much better. She knows what spices work well with vegetables and she taught me that salt makes everything better. Mickey always showed me how to prepare this recipe with dried beans because she can’t have any of the preservatives in canned food, but you can use canned if you are short on time. Her dishes are a delicious vegetarian option. She is an amazing cook!
Curried Garbanzo Beans in a Dish

Curried Chickpeas

5 from 3 votes
Curried Chickpeas are another favorite side dish from our friend from India. They are loaded with Indian flavors. With rice it's a very filling dish!
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 8 hrs
Soaking 12 hrs
Total Time 20 hrs 10 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4


  • Crockpot Slow Cooker


  • 1 cup dry chickpeas (see recipe notes for using canned chickpeas)
  • 1/2 cube butter
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 1/2 onion diced
  • 8 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 1/4 jalapeño finely chopped
  • 3 tomatoes (medium to large size)
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala or to taste


  • Soak the chickpeas overnight, then drain excess water.
  • Melt butter in a skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Sauté the cumin seeds, onion, garlic, and jalapeño in the butter. Cook until onions are caramelized.
  • Blend the 3 tomatoes in a blender. Add tomato purée to the onions and garlic sauté.
  • Add chickpeas with 2 cups of water, salt, garam masala, and the tomato garlic sauce in a crock pot.
  • Cook on low for about 8 hours. If the beans have not popped open and the sauce is not coming together you can move them to the stove top and cook them at a soft bubbly boil until the sauce comes together. If lacking in flavor, add more salt and Indian spice.
  • Serve chickpeas over rice and/or with Naan bread.


If you are short on time, canned chickpeas can also be used. Skip step one of instructions. Drain the chickpeas and use in place of the dry beans in the crock pot.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 220kcalCarbohydrates: 38gProtein: 11gFat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 602mgPotassium: 718mgFiber: 11gSugar: 8gVitamin A: 815IUVitamin C: 19mgCalcium: 85mgIron: 4mg

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About the author

Emily Walker

Emily lives in Meridian, Idaho, with her husband, Beau, a physician assistant, and her three incredible children: a son and two daughters. Travel is one of her favorite ways to experience new cultures and cuisines, and she has a love for all things Disney.

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