Chana Masala for Two

From by Christina Lane
Chana Masala for Two

Chana Masala for Two Photo

I’m having a bit of a moment with homemade Indian food. First, my Indian Butter Chicken, and now Chana Masala. The warm spices of Indian flavors make me feel warm and cozy inside. Plus, I love that the fall colors on the trees right now are matching this bowl of comforting spiced chickpeas.

When it comes to making your own takeout, do not fear this recipe—it calls for common ingredients you already have in your pantry. I won’t send you to the ethnic market for obscure spices. Though, I do recommend you go there at least once, it’s so fun what you can find! 

Every time I leave my local ethnic market, I come away with a new obsession. It was at my local market that I discovered rose water, baking dates, and lately, Madras curry powder. Madras curry powder is a tad spicier than other types of curry powders, but use whatever curry powder you already have in your pantry. 

Chana Masala for Two Picture

Once this dish becomes a fast favorite, you can seek out new, fun curry mixes. Each brand is unique in its spice blend.

This recipe has pretty simple ingredients: onion, garlic, fresh ginger, curry powder, tomato sauce, chickpeas, and spinach. It sounds too simple to be so good, but it all comes together to be a craveable dish. Plus, it only takes 30 minutes to make!

You can use fresh spinach that you wilt down slowly, or a box of frozen, defrosted spinach. I typically go the frozen spinach route, because it takes so much fresh spinach to make the amount of frozen spinach in the box. 

One final tip: I’m one of those ginger-loving freaks, so I always have fresh ginger in my house. I use it to make homemade chai, green juices, etc. But if you don’t have it, dried ground ginger will do in a pinch. Use the bottle you buy every year which with to make pumpkin pie.

Chana Masala for Two Image


Chana Masala for Two Recipe



  • 2 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1-inch piece fresh ginger, grated, or 1/2 teaspoon dried
  • 1 tablespoon madras curry powder
  • 1 8 ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 10 ounce package chopped frozen spinach, defrosted
  • 1 15 ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • fresh cilantro, for garnish


  1. In a medium saucepan, add 1 tablespoon of the butter. Turn the heat to medium and let the butter melt.
  2. Add the onion and sauté for 5 minutes or so, until translucent.
  3. Add the minced garlic and ginger and sauté for 30 seconds.
  4. Sprinkle in the curry powder and cook while stirring constantly for 30 seconds.
  5. Pour in the tomato sauce, adding a splash of water to achieve the sauciness you prefer.
  6. Meanwhile, wring the defrosted spinach dry using your hands. Removing every drop of water isn’t essential, but it’s nice to give handfuls of it a squeeze over a sink to get rid of the excess water.
  7. Add the spinach, chickpeas, and salt to the pan.
  8. Bring to a simmer, cook for 5 minutes. Taste and adjust for seasoning.



Le Creuset 3-quart Stainless Steel Saucepan

Wusthof Santoku Knife - 5 inch

Adapted from target="_blank">Budget Bytes

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