Chana Masala

Nate McCallisterGeneral, Parent Resources

Posted by Nate McCallister on September 17, 2019
Plate with chana masala, watermelon chunks, and brown rice

We usually serve Chana Masala with brown rice, fresh fruit, and maybe some more veggies. It’s a great option for large groups of young children because it is free of nuts and animal products. The most common allergies that we’ve seen in young children are dairy, eggs and nuts.

We serve this to infants, toddlers, and preschoolers. I just got done watching two toddlers devour some. Sorry about the turmeric spots on their fingers and faces parents! One of our older infants poured a little milk in to the bowl with the Chana Masala and then gobbled it up.

This is a rough sketch of the recipe. We may omit some ingedients if they aren’t available and the quantities vary a lot depending on the needs of the day.


  • Raw chick peas (6 cups)
  • Water
  • Onion (one large or two small)
  • Tomatoes (four medium sized tomaotoes)
  • Turmeric
  • Coriander
  • Cumin
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Garam masala
  • Fennel
  • Fenugreek
  • Olive oil


  1. Soak chick peas over night. We just put the chick peas into a container, pour water about inch higher than the chick peas. Then put the lid on and let them soak in the refrigerator over night.
  2. The next day, chop the onion and tomatoes. Then add them to container.
  3. Add the seasonings. We usually do larger amounts of cumin and coriander and smaller amounts of everything else. Then salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Place back in the refrigerator and use in the next few days or proceed to step five to cook now.
  5. Add olive oil. We usually do 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup.
  6. Add the ingredients to an electric pressure cooker with enough water to stop about a 1/4 inch below the top of the chick peas. This will vary depending on your cooking method.
  7. Go to the bean setting and pressure cook for 30 to 40 minutes.
  8. Mash some of the chick peas on the inside side of the pot with a plastic or wooden spoon, stir, and serve.