Curry-Spiced Chickpeas


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • 4–6


Appears in

Cooking with Spice

Cooking with Spice

By Jennifer Newens

Published 2013

  • About

This dish is based on a northern Indian snack. Serve it as part of a vegetarian feast or as a side dish for roasted meats or poultry. Chickpeas’ neutral flavor is a good carrier for spices, which are layered here for a bold flavor, then refreshed with lemon juice and chopped cilantro leaves.


  • 2 cans (15 oz/470 g each) chickpeas
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp peeled and chopped fresh ginger
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 jalapeño chile, seeded and minced
  • 2 Tbsp canola oil
  • 1 Tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • tsp cayenne pepper
  • ½ cup (3 oz/90 g) chopped tomatoes
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • Salt
  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro


Drain chickpeas into a colander, rinse under cold running water, and drain again. Set aside.

In a mini food processor or mortar, combine onion, ginger, garlic, and chile and process or grind with a pestle to a smooth paste. Add 2–3 tablespoons water if needed to facilitate grinding.

In a large saucepan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion paste and sauté just until it begins to brown, 5–7 minutes. Stir in cumin, coriander, turmeric, garam masala, and cayenne and sauté for a few seconds. Add tomatoes and 1 cup (8 fl oz/250 ml) water and bring to a boil. Add chickpeas, reduce heat to low, and stir in lemon juice and 1 teaspoon salt. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until sauce has thickened, about 15 minutes.

Transfer chickpeas to a bowl, garnish with cilantro, and serve right away.