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Square photo of a bowl of vegan chana masala

Vegan Chana Masala

  • Author: Iosune
  • Prep: 10 mins
  • Cook: 15 mins
  • Total: 25 mins
  • 2 1x
  • Main Dish
  • Indian
  • Vegan

Servings 2 1x

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Vegan chana masala, an Indian recipe full of flavor. Delicious and comforting, it’s ready in less than 30 minutes and packed with protein!


  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • ½ -inch piece fresh ginger (1 cm), peeled and minced
  • 1 14-ounce can crushed tomatoes (400 g)
  • 1 tsp garam masala 
  • 1 tsp ground cumin or cumin powder
  • 1 tsp ground coriander seeds (optional)
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ⅛ tsp ground black pepper
  • ⅛ tsp cayenne powder (optional)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas (425 g), drained and rinsed, see notes


  1. Heat the oil in a skillet and add garlic, onion, and ginger. Cook over medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until golden brown, stirring occasionally.
  2. Incorporate the canned tomatoes and the spices (garam masala, cumin, coriander seeds, turmeric, salt, pepper, cayenne, and bay) and cook over medium-high heat for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. 
  3. Put the bay leaf aside and blend the sauce. This step is optional.
  4. Add the chickpeas and the bay leaf again (optional) and cook for 5 more minutes. 
  5. Serve your vegan chana masala immediately (I added some chopped parsley on top) over basmati rice or naan bread. 
  6. Store the leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 5-7 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month. Thaw overnight in the fridge. It can be reheated in the microwave or on the stovetop over medium heat until warmed through. Add a little water or vegetable stock if needed.


  • You can also use 1 and 1/2 cups of cooked chickpeas (250 g) instead of the can of chickpeas. Feel free to cook them following our Instant Pot chickpeas.
  • Omit the spices you don’t have or add more of another one.
  • Feel free to use fresh tomatoes, but you might need to add a little bit of water if the sauce is too dry.
  • You can replace cayenne with any other chile or spicy ingredient.
  • If you don’t like spicy food, omit the cayenne or add less amount of it.
  • If you want to reduce the amount of sodium in this recipe, just omit the salt, or add less.
  • For this vegan chana masala recipe, I didn’t use coconut milk but feel free to use it if you want. 


  • Serving Size: 1/2 of the recipe
  • Calories: 325
  • Sugar: 13.6 g
  • Sodium: 1343 mg (see notes)
  • Fat: 9 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.2 g
  • Carbohydrates: 52 g
  • Fiber: 13.8 g
  • Protein: 12.2 g