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A RICH AND CREAMY CHICKPEA CURRY, WITH A GREAT DEPTH OF FLAVORS, MAGICALLY READY IN ONLY 10 MINUTES
I have a bit of a problem with this chickpea curry. I cook it ALL THE TIME!
And Dan is getting a bit tired of it, lol! But I love it: this is my go-to weeknight meal, for many reasons!
It’s rich, spicy, but not overpowering, filling, and ready in no time.
What’s not to like?
Plus, it’s ideal for meal prep on Sunday. You can cook a big batch, put it in the fridge or freezer, and be done for the week. It’s rich in protein from the chickpeas and iron from the spinach. And it’s super cheap to make. A portion comes out at less than $2.
This is all it takes: heat some olive oil, add the spices, add the chopped onion and garlic, add the chickpeas, add the spinach!
And if you love a good curry, you also need to try this incredibly creamy coconut lentil curry.
What spices do you need to make this chickpea curry?
After living in India for over a year, I’ve fallen in love with spices. I always loved cooking with herbs, and I know how much difference they can make to a dish. But I didn’t know much about the depth of flavor spices can add to simple ingredients and how they can turn anything into something incredibly exciting.
I am trying to make your life easy here (and mine too!). That’s why I selected only a few spices, easy to find anywhere:
- Garam masala
- Chili flakes
If you love hot food, you can experiment with a little more spices. My Indian friends might find this recipe a bit mild, but as I said before, I eat this most weeks, and I love to get a bit of a kick from the spices without making it too hot.
If you are a big spice lover, you can also add:
- A pinch of cinnamon
- Ground clove
- Black pepper
I normally use dry ground spices to keep it quick and simple. If you have fresh ginger, turmeric, and chili at home, feel free to use them. They’ll give your curry a fragrant aroma.
Other ingredients you will need to make this chickpea curry
This chickpea curry requires only a few ingredients. And you’ll be able to find most of them in your pantry and cupboards.
- Canned chickpeas
- Fresh spinach
- Coconut milk
- Spices (garam masala, turmeric, ginger, chili flakes)
- Olive Oil
This is all you need!
Meal prep it on Sunday!
Meal prep is super easy. Ideally, you want some carbs, some protein, add some vegetables, and a bit of healthy fat. Guess what? This chickpea curry has it all. When I meal prep this on Sunday, I normally add some basmati rice and fresh spinach to make it more filling.
If you like the look of these glass meal prep containers, you can find them here.
Can I freeze this chickpea curry?
Oh yes! That’s what makes it ideal for meal prep. You can freeze this curry for up to 3 months (although I normally try to consume my frozen meals within one month, as I find they keep more flavor). You can also store it in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.
Is this chickpea curry vegan?
Yep, this curry is naturally vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, dairy-free, and nut-free!
Can I use any other ingredients?
The great thing about this curry is that you can add pretty much anything to it.
- If you don’t have fresh spinach, you can use frozen spinach. Or if you don’t like spinach at all, try adding kale, Swiss chard, or beet greens.
- You don’t have to use chickpeas. You can use any other type of beans or lentils. But chickpeas are one of my favorite legumes, so I always use them!
- I normally eat this curry with basmati rice, flavored with some aromatic cardamom. But you can also eat it with some delicious naan bread. Or on its own.
- If you want to add more veggies, you can add sweet potatoes, cauliflower, butternut squash, carrots, or aubergines. But it will take a bit longer to cook.
- A lot of chickpea curry recipes add canned tomato in the mix. You can too, but I prefer this curry without.
- If you like to add a bit more zest to your curry, try a splash of fresh lemon juice and some fresh coriander on top.
More delicious dinner ideas:
10-Minute Chickpea Curry
- 2 cans chickpeas 15 ounces per can, rinsed and drained
- 1 can coconut milk (13.5oz)
- 2 teaspoon garam masala
- 2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon ginger powder
- 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes
- 1 medium-size onion, chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 10 oz fresh baby spinach, uncooked (10 cups, loosely packed - you can use 10 oz frozen spinach instead of fresh)
- 4 lemon wedges (optional)
- Fresh coriander (optional)
- Heat the oil in a large pan. When the oil is smoking hot lower the heat and add the spices (see additional notes below).
- After a few seconds, add the chopped onions and the minced garlic.
- Once the onion and garlic are golden brown (around a minute), add the chickpeas and the coconut milk. Add salt to taste.
- Cook for 5 minutes, then add the washed fresh spinach, stir well and cover.
- Let the spinach wilt for a couple of minutes. And it's ready to serve.
- You can add a splash of fresh lemon juice and some freshly chopped coriander if you like. But it's not essential.
- This curry is delicious with basmati rice or naan bread.
- Please note the nutrition values are based on 1 serving (without rice).
- You can substitute spinach with kale, swiss chard, or other greens.
- You can freeze this curry for up to 3 months (although I normally try to consume it within one month). Or you can store it in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.
Yes, you could simply throw the spices into your curry after adding the coconut milk. But the secret to creating a wonderful aromatic curry is to fry the spices in the oil. This will enhance their original flavors, making them bolder and more intense, allowing them to infuse the rest of the ingredients with their aroma.
But make sure you don’t burn them!
Just let them fry with the onion for a minute or two, until you start to smell the intense curry fragrance.
This method of cooking spices is called Bhunooing, and its purpose is to build the flavors of a dish gradually.
First, heat the oil to a high temperature, then lower it to medium heat. Add the spices, and after a few seconds, add the chopped onions and then reduce the heat to low until the onions are gold in color.
Bhunooing helps to create creamy, rich gravies, thanks to the slow extraction of essential oils from the spices and the gentle cooking of the onions until they are translucent and sweet.
This sort of base is especially delicious with curries, stews, and sauces.
Ready for a yummy chickpea curry?
If you are going to try this curry, let me know what you think in the comments!
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