Kala Chana Curry

5 from 5 votes

Kala Chana or Black Chana is a very good source of vegetarian protein. It can be cooked in a variety of forms like chaat, curries, or ghugni. Here is how to make Kala Chana Curry.

You can also try these Black Chana Recipes too – Sookha Kala Chana, Jaisalmeri Chana, Kadala Curry, and Chana Chaat

Kala Chana Curry served in a bowl.
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What is Kala Chana?

Black Chana or Kala Chana is also known as Bengal Gram in English. These are also called Desi Chana and belong to the family of chickpeas. Although they are called Kala Chana but they are actually brown to dark brown in color.

These desi chickpeas are a great source of protein, especially for vegetarians. Not only this, but they also have much higher fiber content and lower glycemic index.

Black Chana is an excellent source of protein, therefore a great replacement for meat in vegetarian and vegan diets. It is said to be high in antioxidants, which promotes heart health, boost immunity and reduce the risk of heart diseases

Also rich in fiber, it helps in controlling the cholesterol levels which also promote cardiovascular health. It also aids weight loss and helps in digestion.

It is a great ingredient to include in the diet of growing kids and diabetic people.

I always have some boiled chana in my fridge and I use it to make a salad, chaat, or curries. Soaking the chana is very important before cooking it. Once soaked, you can either cook it in a pressure cooker, Instant pot, or even in a pot

Kala Chana Curry

This curry is a perfect high protein curry, that is spicy, delicious, and is surely a perfect curry that will take away your weekday blues. It is gluten-free, super healthy, and is made using basic pantry staples.

I prefer making this curry often at home, as it is a one-pot dish, high in protein, and will take just 30 minutes of your kitchen time. Yogurt is added to the curry, which adds that the perfect amount of tanginess along with making the curry rich and creamy.

I even like to mix a little gram flour along with yogurt, to make the curry thick and nice. If you do not prefer the thick consistency, you can avoid adding it too.

This curry also makes an apt curry when you are out of vegetables or just want to give your usual vegetable curry a break. Also for the best taste, make sure you make this curry in mustard oil as it lends it a delicious flavor.

This Kala Chana Masala is,

  • High in Protein
  • Gluten-Free
  • Easy to make
  • A one-pot dish
  • Delicious
  • Apt for everyday meals

Ingredients

Kala Chana Curry Ingredients.

Kala Chana – Also known as black chickpeas, is a great source of protein. They are soaked overnight or for a minimum of 6 hours so that they cook faster.

Yogurt – This curry has a spicy yogurt base. You can use either homemade fresh yogurt or the store-bought ones.

Gram Flour – Along with yogurt, gram flour is also added to thicken the curry.

Oil – Make this curry in mustard oil, it lends a beautiful flavor to the curry. If mustard oil is not available, you can use any vegetable oil to make this high protein curry.

Kasuri Methi – This makes any simple dish taste better and it goes really well with the spicy yogurt curry.

Whole Spices – For whole spices, I have used cloves, cinnamon, and cardamom. You can even add bay leaf and dry red chilies to the tadka.

Other Ingredients – Some of the basic ingredients required for this curry are onion, tomato, ginger, garlic, coriander powder, turmeric powder, Kashmiri red chili powder, and salt.

Step By Step Recipe

Add onion, ginger, garlic, and tomato in a blender and blend to make a coarse paste.

Onion, ginger, garlic, and tomato added in a grinder.
Coarse paste made.

Heat oil in a pressure cooker.

Oil heating in a pressure cooker.

Add cloves, cinnamon, and cardamom and fry for a few seconds. Add onion tomato paste, and cook for 5-6 minutes.

Whole spices, onion tomato paste added in the cooker.

Now add coriander powder, turmeric powder, and Kashmiri red chilli powder and fry for another minute.

Dry spice powders added in the pan.

Add the soaked chana, yogurt, besan, kasuri methi, and salt and cook for a minute.

Soaked chana, yogurt, besan, kasuri methi and salt added in the cooker.

Add 2 cups of water and pressure cook the chana until it is well cooked.

2 cups of water added in the pan.

Remove the cooker from heat and let the pressure release. Open the lid of the cooker. Garnish the chana with fresh coriander and serve hot.

Ready kala chana curry garnished with fresh coriander.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long to soak Black Chana?

Chana is difficult to cook and to digest as well. So soaking it before cooking makes sure it gets cooked faster and is good for the tummy as well.

Check out for any stones in chana. You can soak it overnight or a maximum of 3-4 hours are enough to make them grow plump and ready for cooking. Wash the chana well with water 1-2 times and then soak in a good amount of water. Once soaked, drain the water and wash well with water once again before adding in the curry.

The water in which chana is soaked is considered very good for health but if you are not buying organic chana, do not use this water. You are not sure what chemicals were used while growing this chana.

If you are in a hurry, you can soak them in hot water instead of about 2 to 3 hours. If I have forgotten to soak the chana, I soak them in boiling water in a hot case. It just takes 2 hours for them to soak perfectly. Do try this trick.

How long to cook Black Chana?

Cook it in a pressure cooker till the cooker releases about 6 to 8 whistles on high to medium flame.

You can also cook on a high flame for about 2 whistles and then on a medium flame for about 15 minutes.

If cooking in an instant pot, then you need to cook it at high pressure for about 25 to 30 minutes.

Can I use any other Chana to make this curry?

Yes, you can! Follow the same recipe and use other Chana such as Kabuli Chana, Hara Chana, or even White Peas instead of Black Chickpeas in this curry.

How to make it Vegan?

You can skip yogurt and make this gravy with only an onion tomato base. If you like to have your curry creamy, you can add in coconut milk instead of curd/yogurt.

The Sookha Kala Chana recipe is vegan if made in oil in place of ghee, so you can try that too.

Instant Pot Directions

To make this recipe in Instant Pot, add onion, ginger, garlic, and tomato in a blender and blend to make a coarse paste.

Press the saute button on the instant pot. Once it displays hot, add the oil.

Add cloves, cinnamon, and cardamom and fry for a few seconds.

Add onion, tomato paste, and cook for 3-4 minutes.

Now add coriander powder, turmeric powder, and Kashmiri red chilli powder and fry for another minute.

Add the soaked chana, yogurt, besan, kasuri methi, and salt and cook for a minute.

Add 2 cups of water and close the pot with its lid.

Press PRESSURE COOK.

Set the time to 30 minutes at high pressure and make sure that the pressure valve should be in the sealing position.

Let the pressure release naturally.

Open the pot, garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves.

Storage Suggestions

This curry will last for about 2 days when stored in the fridge in an airtight container. Heat it properly while serving. If you feel its a little dry, add in a little water while reheating.

I will not recommend you to freeze it as it has yogurt, which will split while you thaw it later. But if you are making it without curd and only with an onion-tomato base, you can freeze it for about a month.

Serving Suggestions

This curry can be served Peas Pulaowith Indian Bread such as Phulka, Plain Tawa Paratha, Lachha Paratha, Bhatura, Naan, or Poori.

This curry also tastes delicious along with Steamed Rice, Jeera Rice, and even Peas Pulao.

Pro Tips By Neha

Soaking Black Chana is very important. It helps in fast cooking and soaking also ensures easy digestion.

Using an onion-tomato puree adds a smooth texture to the curry. If you do not mind course texture, you can use chopped onion and tomatoes too.

Taste the yogurt before adding. If it’s too sour, it will ruin the taste of your curry.

Cook this Black Chana Curry in mustard oil for the best taste.

You can also add in some chopped spinach in this curry, for a variation and extra nutrition.

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Kala Chana or Black Chana is a very good source of vegetarian protein. It can be cooked in a variety of forms like chaat, curries, or ghugni. Here is how to make Kala Chana Curry.
5 from 5 votes

Kala Chana Curry Recipe

Kala Chana is Black Chana which is a very good source of vegetarian protein. It can be cooked in a variety of forms like chaat, curries or ghugni.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 40 minutes
Servings: 4 people

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup Onion (chopped)
  • 2 teaspoon Ginger (chopped)
  • 2 teaspoon Garlic (chopped)
  • 1 cup Tomato (chopped)
  • 4 tablespoon Mustard Oil
  • 2-3 Cloves
  • 1 inch Cinnamon
  • 1 Black Cardamom
  • 2 teaspoon Coriander Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Turmeric Powder
  • 2 teaspoon Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder
  • 1 cup Black Chana (soaked)
  • ¼ cup Yogurt
  • 2 tablespoon Besan
  • 2 tablespoon Kasuri Methi
  • Salt (to taste)
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Instructions 

  • Add onion, ginger, garlic and tomato in a blender and blend to make a coarse paste.
  • Heat oil in a pressure cooker.
  • Add cloves, cinnamon and cardamom and fry for a few seconds.
  • Add onion, tomato paste and cook for 5-6 minutes.
  • Now add coriander powder, turmeric powder and Kashmiri red chilli powder and fry for another minute. Add little water if the masala is burning.
  • Add the soaked chana, yogurt, besan, kasuri methi and salt and cook for a minute.
  • Now add 2 cups of water and pressure cook the chana until it is well cooked.
  • Remove the cooker from heat and let the pressure release.
  • Open the lid of the cooker. Garnish the chana with fresh coriander and serve hot.

Notes

Cook Kala Chana in a pressure cooker till the cooker releases about 6 to 8 whistles on high to medium flame.
You can also cook on high flame for about 2 whistles and then on medium flame for about 15 minutes.
If cooking in an instant pot, then you need to cook it at high pressure for about 25 to 30 minutes.

Nutrition

Calories: 190kcal, Carbohydrates: 13g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 15g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 2mg, Sodium: 39mg, Potassium: 287mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 759IU, Vitamin C: 11mg, Calcium: 62mg, Iron: 1mg
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Recipe Rating




2 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This is by far the best recipe of Kala chana. I was not very fond of Kala chana except for sukhe chane, but I love this recipe.