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Easy Chickpea Curry

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This Indian-inspired chickpea curry recipe is incredibly easy to make in less than 30 minutes and simmered in the most delicious lemon-ginger coconut curry sauce.

Easy Chickpea Curry

When you’re craving a flavorful, feel-good, quick vegetarian dinner, it doesn’t get much easier than this cozy chickpea curry.

Inspired by Indian chana masala, this chickpea curry is one of those gloriously simple meals that only requires you to briefly chop two ingredients (hi, onion and garlic!). Then everything else is simply stirred in and simmered together until the sauce bubbles up to creamy, vibrant, delicious perfection. Served warm over rice and drizzled with an extra squeeze of lemon, I’m telling you, this chickpea curry feels like the coziest hug in a bowl. And my goodness, is it delicious. ♡

The coconut curry sauce here is already naturally vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free, simmered with tomatoes, ginger, garlic, and a rich blend of seasonings. And while I chose to keep things simple in this batch by just wilting a few handfuls of spinach in with the chickpeas, you would of course be welcome to add in any extra veggies or proteins that happen to sound good too.

We find ourselves returning to this curry recipe here in our family constantly since it mainly uses pantry ingredients that we always have on hand. So if you’re looking for a last-minute idea for dinner tonight too, grab a few cans of chickpeas and let’s make a big pot of curry together!

Chickpea Curry Ingredients

Chickpea Curry Ingredients

Before we get to the full chickpea curry recipe below, here are a few notes about the ingredients you will need:

  • Onion and garlic: These are the only two ingredients that you need to chop and will serve as the base aromatics for our sauté.
  • Fresh ginger: I highly recommend using fresh instead of ground ginger for richest flavor, which you can either grate or finely-mince. That said, if you do not have fresh ginger on hand, you can sub in 1 teaspoon ground ginger instead.
  • Dried spices: We’ll use a simple blend of garam masala, ground cumin, and ground turmeric, which we will sauté briefly with the onion and garlic to enhance their flavors. We’ll also use fine sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper for seasoning.
  • Chickpeas: I always opt for canned chickpeas to make this recipe extra quick and easy, but you are welcome to cook your own chickpeas from scratch if you prefer.
  • Coconut milk: This is my go-to brand of coconut milk, which is always wonderfully thick and creamy and tastes delicious in this curry.
  • Diced tomatoes: I recommend using fire-roasted diced tomatoes if possible, but plain diced tomatoes will also work perfectly well here.
  • Greens: I tossed a few handfuls of baby spinach into this batch, but kale or collard greens would also work well.
  • Lemon: I always like to add a hint of fresh lemon juice to the pot of curry, and then serve each bowl with a few extra lemon wedges on the side for squeezing. (I personally prefer this curry very lemony!)
  • Fresh cilantro: I love topping this curry with lots of fresh cilantro, but feel free to omit if cilantro’s not your thing.

Easy Chickpea Curry in Pot with Wooden Spoon

Chickpea Curry Variations

Here are a few more ways that you’re welcome to customize this chickpea curry recipe to your liking:

  • Make it spicier: Sauté a fresh chile pepper (Thai chile, jalapeño, serrano, etc) along with the garlic and onion, or simmer extra crushed red chili peppers or cayenne in the sauce.
  • Use cream or half and half: If you’d rather not use coconut milk, you’re welcome to sub in heavy cream or half and half instead.
  • Add a protein: Chicken, beef, pork, meatballs, or shrimp would all go well with this curry if you would like to add a protein.

Chickpea Curry Closeup with Wooden Spoon

More Favorite Curry Recipes

Looking for more cozy curry recipes to try? Here are a few of our faves:

Easy Chickpea Curry with Rice and Lemons in Serving Bowls

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Easy Chickpea Curry (Chana Masala)

Quick Chickpea Curry

  • Author: Ali
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: 4-6 servings 1x

Description

This Indian-inspired chickpea curry recipe is incredibly easy to make in less than 30 minutes and simmered in the most delicious lemon-ginger coconut curry sauce.


Ingredients

Scale

Instructions

  1. Sauté veggies. Heat oil in a large stockpot or sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and sauté for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened. Add the garlic, grated ginger, garam masala, salt, cumin, turmeric, a pinch of cayenne, and a few twists of black pepper and sauté for 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
  2. Simmer. Add the chickpeas, coconut milk, diced tomatoes and stir to combine. Continue cooking until the sauce reaches a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low to maintain the simmer, and cook for 5 to 10 minutes.
  3. Finish. Add the baby spinach and lemon and stir until the spinach has wilted.
  4. Season. Taste and season the sauce with additional salt, pepper and/or lemon juice, if needed.
  5. Serve. Serve warm over rice, garnished with fresh cilantro and extra lemon wedges. Enjoy!


Notes

Source: This recipe is inspired by Indian and Pakistani-style chana masala, which translates to mean “spiced chickpeas.” To learn more about the origins and details of this delicious dish, I recommend diving into this post from 196 Flavors, which also includes a more authentic chana masala recipe.

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Recipe rating

11 comments on “Easy Chickpea Curry”

  1. This looks so good, I cannot wait to try this week! Thank you!

  2. So easy and delicious!! Just like they said!! Highly recommend!!

  3. Easy, flavourful, budget-friendly dish, and just what I wanted tonight!

  4. I love chana my favourite dish. I’m Bangladeshi .
    Keep it up. Great.

  5. The seasonings in this are just perfect! We will definitely be making this again soon.

  6. Made this recipe exactly as written and it was amazing! Another great dish

  7. This recipe was delicious and so cozy!
    I didn’t have spinach or turmeric but I still thought it tasted great! The lemon really jazzes it up. I love cilantro and tried it with and without. I liked it better without. Super easy to make too – thank you!!!

  8. Definitely a new favorite! YUM!

  9. Such a tasty and easy recipe, perfect for a weeknight dinner! We added some mushrooms that really absorbed the curry flavors and it was delicious. We will definitely make it again!

  10. This was SO good, especially given how easy it was to prepare! I added shrimp that I cooked in the Insta Pot and it was a heavenly meal.

  11. Exactly what i needed today and also i may have purchased a dozen cans of chick peas. This is so simple and so flavorful i absolutely loved it! Thank you so much you are a go to for new and favorite recipes.