Chana Masala Pulao

Chana Masala Pulao

Tangy spicy Chana Masala Pulao, why eat chana masala and plain rice separately while you can combine those two to make the most comforting plant-based, GF, vegan meal ever!!!

I love chana masala!! It is such a comforting and versatile dish. I love pairing it with plain rice and some cucumber raita. Although many times on weeknights I tend to find quick and easy meals which are filling, tasty and easy to fix. Making chana masala and rice separately means more cooking time and more dishes. For that very reason, I fix up this easy and quick recipe!

chana masala pulao
chana masala pulao

I like to have some extra steamed rice in my fridge during weekdays as part of my meal prep. And I always have canned chickpeas and canned tomato sauce. Well, using those core ingredients, this comforting dish comes together within minutes!! And honestly it tastes so so good, I do not miss making chana masala and plain rice separately as this dish gives me the same comfort and satisfaction!

This is one of those dishes that is perfect to make on busy days. Pair it with simple cucumber raita and you have a winner dinner ready! This is also very healthy. It is plant-based, gluten-free and dairy-free. You can make this with white rice, brown rice, quinoa, cauliflower rice etc. I mean, if all my healthy meals taste this delicious, why would I want anything else?!?! I cut down on spices a little when my kids are also eating the same so that way I do not have to make separate meal for them.

chana masala pulao
chana masala pulao

Make this delicious Chana Masala Pulao under 30 minutes using just one pot. Enjoy rest of your evening lounging on sofa with a glass of wine or a cup of tea!! If you end up making it and liking it, tag me on Instagram @myvegetarianroots. I would love to see your recreation of this deliciousness!
Happy and Healthy Eating!

Chana Masala Pulao

Tangy spicy Chana Masala Pulao, why eat chana masala and plain rice separately while you can combine those two to make the most comforting meal ever!!!
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Indian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings 5


  • 3 tbsp Peanut Oil
  • 1 can Chickpeas
  • 1 cup Thinly Sliced Yellow Onions
  • 2 cup Tomato Sauce
  • 1 tsp Grated Ginger
  • 1 tbsp Minced Garlic
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 3 Whole Dry Red Chilis
  • 3 Cloves
  • 3 Whole Peppercorn
  • 1 Cinnamon Stick
  • 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1 tbsp Chana Masala 1½ tsp if making it kid friendly
  • 1 tbsp Garam Masala 1 tsp if making it kid friendly
  • 1 tbsp Cumin Coriander Powder dhana jiru powder
  • 1 tsp Red Chili Powder skip this if making it kid friendly
  • ½ tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • ½ tsp Mango Powder aamchur powder
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • 3 cup Cooked Rice leftover steamed rice is preferred
  • ¼ cup Chopped Cilantro

Cucumber Raita

  • 1 cup Shredded Cucumber
  • ¾ cup Whole Milk Indian Plain Yogurt
  • ¾ cup Non fat Greek Yogurt
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • ½ tsp Roasted Cumin Powder


  • Heat oil in a wide shallow pan.
  • Add whole spices, bay leaf and dry whole red chili peppers to the oil. Saute for a minute or until it starts to form aroma.
  • Add cumin seeds and saute until they start to turn color to deeper brown.
  • Add chopped onions, garlic and ginger along with a pinch of salt. Saute till the onions are completely translucent.
  • Add tomato sauce, mix well. Add other spices listed above, mix well and cook till it starts to simmer. Stir frequently.
  • Rinse canned chickpeas, add it to the sauce without any liquid.
  • Mix well and cook it for couple of minutes.
  • Add steamed rice, mix well gently, making sure the rice does not break or gets mushy. Leftover rice works the best for this recipe, specially al dente, not mushy rice. Taste it and add more salt/spices if needed.
  • Cover it and cook for a minute or two.
  • Garnish it with cilantro and serve it hot with side of raita!
    Chana Masala Pulao

Make Cucumber Raita

  • Squeeze out water from shredded cucumber.
  • Mix all the ingredients listed under "Cucumber Raita" along with squeezed shredded cucumber.
  • Mix everything well and keep it refrigerated until ready to serve with the Chana Masala Pulao.
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