Channa Masala

6 p.m. is when I (try to) shut down my computer, tidy my desk, and make my way to the kitchen to cook dinner.

In reality, it’s more like 6:45, and my desk is usually left a mess.

Rho’s already eaten his dinner (which I prep in the mornings), but I tend to procrastinate when it comes to my and my husband’s meals. (Apparently I’m not alone, according to this book).

Easy, fast dinners are a must in our home. Healthy, too.

Channa masala is that dish. It’s also a cozy, hearty one – perfect for cold winter nights.

The number of spices required for Indian food can be intimidating, but this recipe features one of my favorite hacks for cooking it as home.



  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 to 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 jalapeño, minced
  • Two 15- to 16-ounce cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 3 teaspoons garam masala (I like this one)
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 3 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
  • 1 15-ounce can of fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro, or to taste
  • Salt  and pepper, to taste

  1. Heat the oil in a wide skillet. Add the onion and sauté until translucent. Add the garlic and jalapeño and continue to sauté until the onion is golden.
  2. Add the chickpeas, garam masala, turmeric, ginger, tomatoes, and about 1/4 cup water. Bring to a simmer, then cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes, stirring frequently.
  3. Remove ½ cup of the stew and blend it until puréed. Add it back into the stew, stirring until combined.
  4. Stir in the cilantro and lemon juice and season with salt.
  5. Serve with your favorite grain – I like it with basmati rice or quinoa.

adapted from Epicurious

What’s your go-to dinner in the winter comments? COMMENT below and let me know!

P.S – my go-to breakfast (plus lots of coffee), and another hearty soup for winter.

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  • Katy Thomas

    Yes! I make channa masala regularly. Probably weekly, so good and easy. here in Italy curry (we aren’t in a big city) is hard to find so it’s something we only eat at home. I usually add some coriander and cumin, but I guess that isn’t traditional?

    • hithaonthego

      The garam masala has both spices in it! Sometimes I’ll add extra (and top with fresh coriander, if I have it at home), but you don’t need to add extra unless you love the taste. I’ll usually add a jalapeno or two, or some cayenne, if I want to make it spicy.

  • I scribbled this recipe down and can’t wait to try it! I’d love to see some more Indian dish recipes that are “doable” (especially to those of us who don’t routinely cook Indian food!). I’m always discouraged (terrified may be a better word) by the amount of ingredients many dishes require…

    • hithaonthego

      More Indian dishes is the plan! My mother is the queen of simple, easy Indian dishes, and I will clear a day to cook and shoot with her the next time she visits! She has yet to teach me how to make her world famous biryani, which is the best thing ever. Ever. EVER.