Chana masala is one of my favorite already-vegan Indian curries, and it’s definitely one of the easiest to make using only a handful of ingredients. It makes for an excellent slow-cooker meal and makes for an easy side curry, or let it stand alone with a side of rice.
(Slow cooker instructions can be found at the bottom of the page.)
- 4-quart pot with lid
- 1 red or yellow onion diced
- 2 tbsp cooking oil
- 1 14-oz. can crushed tomatoes
- 1 14-oz. can diced tomatoes
- 2 15-oz. cans chickpeas
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1/2 tbsp curry paste or more to taste, up to 1 tbsp
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tsp salt or to taste
- 1 bay leaf
- cilantro for garnish
- Heat pot over high, medium-high heat. Once hot add oil, wait a minute for it to get hot, then add diced onion. Stir frequently until onion turns translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Reduce heat to medium. Add curry paste, cumin, garlic, turmeric, salt, and more cooking oil if needed. Stir about 1 to 2 minutes to temper the spices, then add canned tomatoes and bay leaf.
- Drain the aquafaba from the chickpeas into a clean container and set the aquafaba aside. (You can use the aquafaba to make vegan whipped cream, or you can add some liquid back into the curry if you like it soupier.) Add the drained chickpeas to the pot and stir.
- Cover with lid and reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 40 minutes to 1 hour, checking and stirring regularly. Let cool and serve with rice.
How to cook Chana Masala using a slow-cooker
To make chana masala in a slow cooker, simply combine all the ingredients into a slow cooker, give it a nice stir, and cook on high for about 3 to 4 hours or low for 6 to 8 hours. Again, if your curry cooks for longer, it will only benefit the dish by making it more flavorful.