chole recipe – how to make chole masala or chana masala recipe

punjabi-chole-masala-recipe

punjabi chole masala or chana masala recipe – one easy and yet lip smacking punjabi chole recipe. this is one of the most tried and tested chole recipe. it has been tried not only by me innumerable times, but also by many readers.

the recipe has been adapted from anita’s blog here. over a period of six years years from the time i adapted this recipe, i made some changes in proportions as well as ingredients. after so many changes, here is the recipe which gives a good balance of spiciness, taste and flavor. so i decided to update this in the post too. the result is a punjabi chole like you get in the streets of delhi and punjab.

the original chole recipe on this blog was published on aug 20 2009. its 6 years now and i have now updated the recipe with the variations and with step by step pics. however, keeping the old pic of the spices i took with mobile when i started the blog, just as a memoir.

spices for punjabi chole recipe

to get an authentic taste in the punjabi chole masala, i use dried amla (dried indian gooseberry) and dry pomegranate seeds. the dried amla gives a dark color to the chole, along with a light tang. the pomegranate seeds give a sour taste. now i know that these two ingredients are not easily available everywhere in india as well as in the world. so as a substitute, when i did not get these, two ingredients, i would add dry mango powder (amchur powder) towards the end. in the absence of amchur powder, you can also squeeze some lime juice towards the end.

if you are not fussy about the dark color, then just plainly cook the chickpeas in water with some salt. a pinch of baking soda added while cooking, makes the chickpeas light and soft. i usually do not add baking soda. what contributes to the flavors and aroma of the chole is the freshly ground chole masala. the spices are roasted till they get extra browned and are later ground. this chole masala is then blended with sauted onion-ginger-tomato mixture. this makes the chole more flavorsome.

chole bhature is mine and the family’s my favorite dish. when living in delhi & gurgaon, we would get awesome chole bhature in many places. since i do not live in these places any more, i make this recipe often which tastes exactly like the street side chole, minus the heat. since we don’t prefer too spicy food. but you can increase the quantity of red chili powder & garam masala powder to get the extra spice and heat.

although, there are many variations of making chole like methi chole, palak chole or chole with coconut but i liked this punjabi chole recipe the most.  for folks people who love chole (chickpea) recipes, there are few more wonderful chole recipes in the blog amritsari cholepunjabi kala chanapunjabi chanachana chaat and chana pulao.

step by step punjabi chole or chana masala recipe:

1. wash and soak the chole (chickpeas) in enough water overnight. add enough amount of water as the chickpeas increase in size after soaking it. rinse the soaked chickpeas in water. pic of rinsed & soaked chickpeas.

soaked and rinsed chole or chickpeas

2. to give a dark color to the chana, traditionally dried amla (indian gooseberries) are added. these also give a faint sourness to the stock. if you do not have dried amla, then add 1 black tea bag. you can also just cook the chickpeas with salt and water.

dried amla (indian gooseberry)

3. in a pressure cooker add the chole along with the 2 to 3 dried amla pieces or a tea bag. taj tea bags work very well. then pour water.

adding water

4. season with salt. stir very well.

season with salt

5. pressure cook the chana for 18 to 20 whistles. the chana should be cooked well an softened. the chole should be soft when you mash it with a spoon. the chana should not give you a bite when you eat it. if you do not have a pressure cooker, then cook the chickpeas in a pot with plenty of water.

pressure cooking the chole or chickpeas

6. meanwhile, in a pan, take all the whole spices for the chole masala and on a low heat begin to roast them.

whole spices of chole masala

7. stir often and roast the spices till they get extra browned. don’t burn them. you have to go beyond a point roasting them, even after they become fragrant and they get more browned than what is the norm usually.

roasting spices for chole masala or chana masala

8. the extra browned & roasted chana masala spices below.

extra browned and roasted chana masala or chole masala

9. let theses roasted spices cool and then grind them finely in a coffee grinder or in a dry grinder.

ground chana masala or chole masala powder

10. by now the chana is cooked. pic below. you will see a darker brown shade in the safed (white chana) or chickpeas. remove the amla pieces which would have softened by now or the tea bag from the stock.

cooked chana or chole or chickpeas

11. heat oil in a pan or kadai. add ginger-garlic paste and saute till their raw aroma goes away.

adding ginger-garlic paste for chole masala

12. then add chopped onions and saute till the onions turn translucent or light brown.

saute onions till translucent or light brown

13. add finely chopped tomatoes.

adding finely chopped tomatoes

14. saute the tomatoes till they soften and the oil starts to leave the sides of the masala.

sauteing the tomatoes

15. then add the powdered spices that we made, along with red chili powder & turmeric powder.

adding chole masala or chana masala powder

16. stir well. then add slit green chilies to the onion-ginger-tomato mixture.

adding slit green chilies to punjabi chole masala

17. add the cooked & drained chole. reserve the stock.

add the chole or chana or chickpeas

18. stir well.

stir the chana masala

19. season with salt. stir. keep the addition of salt in check as salt is also there in the stock.

add salt to the punjabi chole masala

20. add about 1 to 1.25 cups of the reserved stock or water. stir well.

adding water and stirring chole masala

21. and cover the chole masala. simmer on a low to medium flame.  you can also cook without the lid. the gravy will thicken and reduce. mash a few chana. this will help thicken the gravy.  you can keep the consistency you prefer. at home we prefer the chickpeas with a bit of gravy.

cover the chana masala with a lid

22. in case, you have not added dry pomegranate seeds while roasting the spices, then you need to add amchur powder (dry mango powder) now. about 1 tsp amchur powder is enough. however, you can add less or more of it as per your taste. stir very well.

simmering punjabi chole masala

23. the chana masala ready to be served.

chana masala ready to be served

24. garnish punjabi chole asala with chopped onions and coriander leaves. serve the punjabi chole with kulcha, bhaturas, aloo bhatura, poori, naan, along with sliced onions and lime. chole also tastes good with plain rice or jeera rice.

punjabi chana masala recipe

 

if you are looking for more chole recipes then do check methi chole, palak chole, aloo chole, pindi chana, amritsari chole and south indian chana masala.

punjabi chole masala or chana masala recipe below:

4.8 from 35 reviews
Punjabi Chole Masala Recipe
 
PREP TIME
COOK TIME
TOTAL TIME
 
Chole Masala or Chana Masala - Chole is a popular north indian curry. Chole goes well with poori, bhatura, roti, naan or rice.
AUTHOR:
RECIPE TYPE: curry
CUISINE: north indian
SERVES: 4-5
INGREDIENTS (measuring cup used, 1 cup = 250 ml)
ingredients for pressure cooking:
  • 1 cup chickpeas (garbanzo beans, white chickpeas, kabuli chana or chole
  • 2.5 to 3 cups water for pressure cooking the chickpeas
  • 2 to 3 dried amla or indian gooseberry (optional) or 1 black tea bag
  • ½ tsp salt
ingredients for the masala gravy:
  • 1 medium sized onion, finely chopped
  • 1 medium sized tomato, finely chopped
  • 2 to 3 small garlic cloves + ½ inch ginger, crushed to a paste in a mortar-pestle or ½ tsp ginger-garlic paste
  • ¼ tsp turmeric powder/haldi
  • ½ tsp red chili powder/lal mirch powder
  • ¼ tsp garam masala powder (optional)
  • ¾ to 1 tsp amchur powder/dry mango powder - optional and only to be added when you do not have dry pomegranate seeds
  • 2 to 3 green chilies, slit
  • 1 to 1.25 cups water or the stock in which the chickpeas were cooked.
  • 1.5 to 2 tbsp oil
  • salt as required
spices for the punjabi chole masala:
  • 2 black cardamoms/elaichi
  • 1 inch cinnamon/dalchini
  • 3 to 4 peppercorns/sabut kali mirch
  • 2 cloves/lavang
  • 1 medium indian bay leaf/tej patta or 2 small tej patta
  • ¼ tsp carom seeds/ajwain
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds/jeera
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds/dhania
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds/saunf
  • ½ tsp dry pomegranate seeds/anardana
  • 1 or 2 dry red chilies
for garnish:
  • some chopped coriander leaves/dhania patta
  • ½ inch ginger/adrak, julienne
  • 1 medium onion, sliced or chopped
  • 1 medium tomato, sliced or chopped
  • 1 lime/nimbu, sliced or quartered
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. rinse and soak the chole (chickpeas) in enough water overnight. add enough amount of water as the chole increase in size after soaking it. rinse the soaked chickpeas.
  2. to give a dark color to the chana, traditionally dried amla (indian gooseberries) are added. these also give a faint sourness to the stock. if you do not have dried amla, then add 1 black tea bag.
  3. in a pressure cooker add the chole along with the 3 to 4 dried amla pieces or a tea bag. taj tea bags work very well. then add water
  4. season with salt and pressure cook the chana for 18 to 20 whistles. the chana should be cooked well an softened. the chole should be soft when you mash it with a spoon. the chana should not give you a bite when you eat it.
  5. In a pan, take all the whole spices for the chole masala mentioned above and on a low heat begin to roast them.
  6. stir often and roast the spices till they get extra browned. don't burn them. you have to go beyond a point roasting them even after they become fragrant and they get more browned than what is the norm usually.
  7. let theses roasted spices cool and then grind them finely in a coffee grinder or in a dry grinder.
  8. by now the chana will be cooked. you will see a darker brown shade in the safed (white chana). remove the amla pieces which would have softened by now or the tea bag from the stock.
  9. heat oil in a pan or kadai.add ginger-garlic paste and saute till their raw aroma goes away.
  10. then add chopped onions and saute till the onions turn translucent or light brown.
  11. add tomatoes & saute them till they soften and the oil starts to leave the sides of the masala.
  12. then add the powdered chole masala that we ground, along with the red chili powder, turmeric powder & garam masala powder (optional).
  13. stir the dry masala and then add slit green chilies
  14. add the cooked chole. stir well.
  15. add salt. then add about 1 to 1.25 cups of the stock in which the chana was boiled. you can also water instead.
  16. stir and cover the chana.
  17. simmer on a low to medium flame. you can also cook without the lid. the gravy will thicken and reduce. mash a few chana. this will help thicken the gravy. simmer till you get the consistency you prefer. the consistency is not thin, but medium consistency or dry.
  18. in case, you have not added dry pomegranate seeds while roasting the spices, then you need to add amchur powder (dry mango powder) now. stir.
  19. garnish chole masala with coriander leaves & ginger julienne.
  20. serve the punjabi chole with kulchas, bhaturas, pooris, rotis, along with sliced onions, tomatoes and lime. chole also tastes good with steamed rice or jeera rice.
NOTES
if you don't have amchur or dried pomegranate seeds then add
lime or lemon juice toward the end.

2. if cooking chole in the pan or pot then:
you have to take enough water in the pot while cooking the chickpeas. it takes a lot of time though. for 1.5 to 2 cups of soaked & drained chickpeas, you can take about 5-6 cups of water. adding a pinch of baking soda in the water along with salt, also helps in the cooking process and the chickpeas become really soft when cooked. you can add about 1 tsp of salt. a little less salt is also alright. i usually add less salt. cover the pot and cook. if the water starts to become frothy, then remove the lid and cook for some minutes. remove the scum if there is any while cooking the chickpeas.

3. you can also use canned chick peas and add them once the tomatoes are sauteed.


{ 258 Responses }

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  1. divya deep chawla vaishnav says

    I am big fan of your recipes bcz the way u present is very beautiful and simple to understand. My mom is great a cook and we are Punjabi and your recipes are somehow similar to my mom recipes. I love your chite chole ke recipe one query I have that instead of chopped onion and tomato we can grate them also? Or recipe require chopped one only??? Kindly advise

    • says

      thanks divya. most punjabi homes have more or less the same recipes. for the chole, you can grate also the onions and tomatoes. i choose to chop them as its faster to do so than grating. you can even puree or make a paste of them.

  2. Lata Sharma. says

    I follow your recipes, they turn out great. Step by step photos help to know how the end product should look. I stopped to look at any other sites for recipes.

  3. meera says

    I am a regular follower of your recipes…they are just yummm… Thanks a lot for sharing your pearls of culinary art.i I just had to ask one thing: Can I make the masala in bulk say for using 2-3 times in say 3-4 weeks. I am a working lady so to save time can I prepare and store in bulk..if yes, does it need to be refridgerated. Also please give the proportion of spices and the way to do it.

  4. Vibha says

    Omg,perfect punjabi chole.i was searching out for this recipe since so long.finally…I’m thinking y I haven’t tried it earlier.
    Anyways,thnx dassana.awesome recipe.u reminded me taste of “Bengali market ” k chole..thnku again..

  5. Supriya says

    Made this recipe today with garlic naan (also from your site). It was so yummy! Thank you so much for this awesome recipe. Also a note on the pomegranate seeds, I had some pomegranate molasses and added them instead of the seeds or the amchur and it worked very well.

  6. neha says

    Your recipes always turn out great. I followed this one exactly as you have posted ( left out amchur and lime juice since I didn’t have either)…. turned out great! Thank you

  7. Sheeba says

    Thanks for the detailed recipes. With the pics we’ll get the exact look of the dishes. Thanks a lot. I want to know what is seedlac. I saw it somewhere else. Thank you.

  8. jaswinder kaur says

    I like the way chole has been made…..this is the favt.dish of my kidz…now no need to go to sindhi…to relish channa bhatura…..i will make it at home…..thanx

  9. Ruchi Upadhyay says

    Hello,this is first time that i am posting a comment on any blog.I just couldn’t resisit myself your recipes are awesome :-) .The way it’s described and photos of each step is marvellous.
    Already planning to try so many of the recipes and your site is totally ADDICTIVE:-) totally passioante about cooking and your recipes helps me to do something about it and you make even the most trickiest recipes seem so easy.

    Love it to the core :-)
    tons n tons of love and thanks

  10. Mallika Pramod says

    Hi,
    I dunno wat to say abt ur site. Cos anything said will not give enough justice. I love ur blogs. I always look for the recipes u made nd try nd it always turns out gr8.
    I have so much to tell. Guess the comment box ll fill up. :)
    I love ve the way u actually reply to all ur comments. this is the first time I’m commenting on any blog. I feel u r like my sister. Cos cooking is something I love nd I feel connected to u.
    Love loads. May God bless nd keep u happy always.

    • says

      mallika, your loving comment has touched my heart. i don’t know what to say. a common passion or hobby between individuals always connects. hugs and i pray that you live in light, love and abundance always.

  11. ad says

    Hi,

    I tried this recipe yesterday and it turned out really nice. I am becoming a fan of your blog. I also like your step by step pictures. as it is easy to follow. Can you please make a recipe of petha- north Indian sweet and micro wave oven recipes because I work and when I get back home, I want to be able to cook quickly in micro wave. Thank you.

    • says

      thanks. petha is a time consuming recipe. thats why i have not yet made it. it also requires some ingredient which i don’t think i will get here. plan to add microwave recipes.

  12. Emma says

    I am so glad I found your website! As a vegetarian I often find it hard to find new recipes, but now I have many new ones to try – thank you! I’m trying this one this week :)

  13. Veena says

    Tried the dish today and it was absolutely delicious. I dislike the chole my cook prepares, I tried Your recipe and it was a HIT! It was even better than the ones I’ve had from restaurants. Thanks for the yummy recipe. Keep blogging for people like me who love good food :)

  14. Freda says

    Hi dassana , I made this recipe the other day, and it was awesome, never again buying ready made chole masala powder.. Thank u for a simple yet mouthwatering recipe

  15. Ruchi says

    Hi…. Whenever I’m getting confused about any ingredient while cooking I am taking help from your website …. N its too gud especially for girls like me who never cooked any thing n after marriage you have to cook every day. Well today I’m gonna try chole first time with ur help… :) thank you….

  16. Monica says

    This recipe did not turn out well for me. There wasn’t enough oomph, and it was quite bland. I used ALL the ingredients. I thought my mistake bay have happened when you said add 1 1/2 cup of chickpeas. Is that 1 1/2 dried chickpeas or 1 1/2 cup cooked chickpeas. I used 1 1/2 cup dried chickpeas, soaked, and cooked them which yielded around 4 1/4 cup wet chickpeas. Thanks

    • says

      the recipe is a bit spicy. i am not sure what went wrong. but so many readers cannot be wrong. its dried chickpeas and not canned chickpeas. its mentioned in the steps to soak the chickpeas. so obviously its dried chickpeas that need soaking.

  17. Sush says

    Hi dassana

    First I want thank you for the wonderful recipes on this site.
    Very neat & beautiful presentation.
    I tried chole recipe and it turned out really awesome.my hubby who likes only restaurant chole. after eating this one he said no need to go to restaurant.this chole is more tasty than restaurant one.

  18. Shreyas Jadhav says

    Is one and half cup peas equal to 250 grams and what shall I do to make gravy more thicker

    • says

      1 cup of dried chickpeas is about 180 gms. so 1.5 cups would be about 270 gms. this recipe gives a good smooth gravy. for a thicker gravy, you can make onion paste and tomato puree. i have chopped them. but you make separate pastes of them. saute the onion paste till it becomes golden and then follow the recipe. if you mash some chickpeas while cooking, this also helps in thickening of the gravy. some people also add boiled mashed potatoes. the starch in the potatoes help in thickening of the gravy. in chole recipes we never add cream, cashew paste or yogurt as thickening agents.

  19. says

    Just made it for breakfast today. it turned out great. Didnt have fennel seeds but it still has amazing flavours!!!! Thank you

  20. prici says

    Hello aunty,
    I just love your reciepe, I am student use to cook food myself whenever i make anything of your reciepe it turns too good my frnds and roomates use to love it they have given me the title of good cook but its all because of you
    Love
    Prici

  21. Neelam says

    Hi Dassana,

    Thanks for all the wonderful recipes.
    I need your help with a quick question.
    I need to make this recipe for 10 people , can you please advise if I should just double the recipe/ingredients . Would that work ? your inputs will be much appreciated. Thanks

    • says

      welcome neelam. usually doubling or tripling the ingredients does not work. but for 10 people you can try. be little careful when you add amchur and garam masala. add them as per the taste in the very end.

  22. Krithi says

    Dear,
    I want to try this at home today, but I do not have Amchur powder or bayleaf. Is it okay to prepare without them?

    • says

      krithi, add some lemon juice towards the end to replace amchur powder… or you can also use dry pomegranate seeds/anardana and powder them instead of using amchur. skip tej patta, if you don’t have.

  23. shruthi says

    This dish turned out very good…got compliments from family and friends. Could you possibly suggest a replacement for amchur powder? I did not have any…nevertheless, dish turned out awesome.

    I also made kadai paneer and tadka daal…loved both.
    Thanks!

    • says

      shruthi, you can use lemon juice (in the end) or dry pomegranate seeds/anardana (powder them and add it while sauting the masala) as replacement for amchur. the chole should have a tang.

  24. Preeti says

    Hi Dassana,

    I made a scaled-down version of this recipe for 2 people and it has turned out finger-licking good! I didn’t have amchur so I added Everest chole masala because it has quite a bit of amchur in it. I omitted garam masala and fennel because I didn’t have it. But still it’s sooo good :)

    5 stars for your awesome recipe!

  25. Kailesh says

    The chole turned amazing It was a finger licking Sunday at my home Pity I coked a small quantity since I was trying out for the first time Thanks for the recipe

  26. Sandy says

    Dasanna,
    You are a blessed person and so we all, who are reading your blog. My new addiction is to read your receipes and more than that read the way people are writing so many praise worthy words for you. I can not stop reading them.I am learning lot of cooking now. and I tell all my friends to go on your site for any receipes and I tell them that once they start cooking from your receipes, that is the ultimate destination. I am just pressure cooking my choles. I will post the results by evening. My husband and daughter went to Chinmaya Mission this morning, while I stayed back to make choles for lunch

  27. Manjari Kulkarni says

    Hi Dassana,
    First, thank you so much for sharing your amazing recipes. I feel like we are friends. It is beautifully presented and honestly, flawless.
    I have made the homemade paneer, butter paneer, and now just tried the punjabi chole. I have been making chole for years, and this is the first time it has tasted “right”. I feel so liberated to be making great punjabi food at home and not have to go to the restaurant. Whoo hoo!
    I do have a question: Regarding ginger, what amount is one inch? Do you have tips for grating ginger/garlic into paste?
    Thank you again. (Behind me is simmering rajmah masala, can’t wait to try it)

    • says

      thanks manjari for your genuine positive feedback. cooking punjabi food at home is quite great if you get a few nuances right. sometimes i feel i make better punjabi food at home rather than the oily, cream and color loaded stuff they serve in restaurants. there are a lot of punjabi recipes on the blog. you can try them too.

      for ginger, i just scale it to one inch visually for medium sized ginger. since i know how much is one inch, i can scale it easily visually. if the ginger is large, then i just take 1/2 or even 1/4th inch of it. basically using the andaz or approximation while cooking. i prefer to use fresh ginger-garlic paste. so what i do is i chop them roughly. then using a mortar-pestle i grind the. they paste does not have to be very fine. just a semi fine paste will also do. hope the rajma masala was good too.

  28. Robert Jones says

    I’m very interested in how/why you modified the MTP recipe. I noticed some similarities in your recipes, e.g. no garlic. I also noticed some interesting differences. You balanced coriander and cumin more 50/50, and you ‘replaced?’ an ardana with amchur. Also, you didn’t use tejpatta, but added fennel. I’m just curious how you reached your final recipe.

    I will make this recipe soon and post my results. My benchmark is a local Indian street food place which makes insanely good Chhole Bhature. Better than I had in Bangalore!

    • says

      most of the times i adapt recipe, i always end up changing or altering the original. half-half of cumin and coriander would balance the taste and thats why i added half-half. i have used tej patta/bay leaf in the ground chole masala. i have added fennel as i have tasted chole before with fennel and its gives a very good flavor and taste. i did not have anardana so substituted with amchur powder. do try making this chole recipe.

  29. J.P. Moroney says

    This is the best channa masala I have ever had, and a new family favourite in our house. Many of your recipes are turning out to be that way. Thank you so much for putting all the time into this blog.

    Here in Vancouver, I use a half-and-half mixture of shallot and red onion to approximate the flavour of the onions I had in southern India–it makes a substantial difference. I substituted chipotle chile powder for straight chili powder to complement and add to the smokiness of the black cardamom, and added a little garlic with the ginger to create a base for the chipotle. Finally, I added a sprinkle of green, red, and yellow bell peppers at the end for a little contrasting colour and crunch.

    • says

      thanks a lot. in fact in india, we don’t get many varieties of onions as abroad. just a few varieties. it will make a difference on the kind of onions used. the bell peppers would have added a lot of color and crunch. thats nice.

  30. says

    My mouth is watering looking at all of those flavorful and rich spices! What a wonderful dish Nisa! Nice to meet you Dassana! Headed to surf around your blog.

  31. Michael Elwin says

    hi! I have a recipe for chana masala which works great to serve five people and I want to scale it up to serve 50 people. I did a test run last night and it did not taste good! Would you be able to take a look at the recipe and let me know what I am doing wrong?

    Thanks, Michael.

  32. Varsha says

    Hi !
    I want to make an onion and tomato paste coz I dun like to see the pieces in cooked food … What can I do ? Should I first use a mixer and then cool the paste ? How much time should I cook this paste ? I look forward to your help

    • says

      just grind the chopped onions and tomatoes in the mixer or blender first. no need to add water while blending. then when the oil becomes hot, add the onion-tomato paste and saute till the color changes and the mixture starts to leave oil from the sides. then proceed with the next of the recipe.

  33. Kavya says

    Dear my love I like to say, tell me your address so I could come there personally and give you a big hug. I have started a new business of lunch box service since 3days from today, it is your recipe I trust and it is making my business go viral and every dish I make with the influence of your recipe is giving loads of complements. Thank a lot a lot. . . Am 22, since 6months am cooking never entered kitchen before that but all credit to you and your recipes, my family love it. I do necessary changes as per taste. M loving it. And love you too take care and keep updating. .

    • says

      Thanks Kavya for this lovely comment. i am glad that this blog is making your cooking easier and successful. your loving words have touched my heart, thanks. i wish you all the best in your business. keep visiting.

  34. Nandini says

    Thanks a lot, it was very yummy…., small amount of jaggery I added as per my daughters request and it was excellent

  35. Sowmya says

    I prepared it yesterday and I must say its one of the best chana masala I’ve ever had!! Thanks for the recipe!!

  36. meenu luthra says

    hiii ur channa masala recipe is fantastic. i made it at home. its vry delicious. every body like this. thanks for sharing ur pricious recipe.

  37. Aarthi says

    I ve always used the packaged Chole masala but my packet got over and I had lot of guests last week. I tried this recipe keeping my fingers crossed. It came out soooo well, we were all licking the juice more than the Chole itself. Thank u!!

  38. RG says

    Hi Dassana,
    With an overly energetic 8 month old I dont have much time/ energy to prepare “kuch to special’ kind of dishes. Luckily your blog has those special dishes with ingredients easily available in our indian homes.
    Today being Diwali, I thought of making Punjabi Chole (hubby loves) and phulka rather than taking an easy way out. My husband and I very happily sniffled our noses and wiped our teary eyes into blissful satisfaction ;) we both love spicy food – I may have been a little liberal there. It turned out great !!!. I also added a bit of kasuri methi for a different angle on taste (my mom does that).
    So my husband and kiddo are now happily dozing off and I am wondering what I shall cook tomorrow :)

    There’s nothing more I can say but- ‘THANK YOU’!!!

    Happy Diwali!!
    Regards,
    RG
    PS yesterday I tried your insant rava dhokla – successfull there too..:)

  39. cook na kaho says

    Hi

    Appreciate ur blog a lot.visit it on a daily basis.Have tried some other recipes and they were quite good.
    I have few doubts in this chole recipe
    1.How come the color of ur ground masala is so red?It contains only two red chillies. Mine was not that color
    2.The taste of my chole was pretty bland.The color was also very dull.I was forced to add chole masala and amchur to compensate for the taste!!
    What happened??
    Kindly help!!

    • says

      1: i have used kashmiri red chilies and hence the color of the masala is red.
      2: i am not sure why the chole you made was bland. this masala gives a slightly spicy chole. did you follow the recipe to the T? did you use canned chickpeas? any changes or modifications you made in the masala… meaning not adding some spices etc.

  40. Harminder says

    Hi ijust want to know where to get fresh coconut ,sohe of your receipe says use fresh coconut.i love all your receipes .thanks

  41. says

    Hi Dassana,
    Wow landed on your page from Google search for a different or may be typical North Indian Chole recipe. And I am glad to tell you, I found it at last. Thanks much for sharing this awesome recipe. Chole is my favorite dish all the time!! A new fan and follower:)
    Love,
    Epsita

  42. Casey says

    I have never cooked Indian food before so I apologize for this question. I saw in a reply to a question you said that we could cook the chick peas in a deep pot instead of a pressure cooker. You mentioned make sure there is enough water and add salt. How much water do I need to add and how much salt?

    • says

      you have to take enough water in the pot while cooking the chickpeas. it takes a lot of time though. for 1.5 to 2 cups of soaked & drained chickpeas, you can take about 5-6 cups of water. adding a pinch of baking soda in the water along with salt, also helps in the cooking process and the chickpeas become really soft when cooked. you can add about 1 tsp of salt. a little less salt is also alright. i usually add less salt. cover the pot and cook. if the water starts to become frothy, then remove the lid and cook for some minutes. remove the scum if there is any while cooking the chickpeas.

  43. Vinay says

    Hi Dassana,

    I made the Chole today and it came out really well. I had 2 questions though

    a) Can I put tomato puree rather than chopped tomatoes..I felt the gravy was not thick enough bcoz they were chopped and not a puree
    b)While grinding the spices,should the skin of the black cardamon be taken out or should it be grinded with the skin?

    • says

      hi vinay, thats nice to know.

      a: if the tomatoes are juicy, then there is enough moisture in the dish. you can also make tomato puree and add it. the chole gravy will have a more smooth texture
      b: the skin need not be taken out of the black cardamom. its ground with the skin.

  44. Seema says

    Hi Dassana :)

    I’m making this for my family tomorrow. I have 2 toddlers so I was thinking of omitting the green chilli, red chillies and chilli powder in case it turns out too spicy for the kids. Would that alter the taste too much?

    Thanks :)

    • says

      hi seema. the absence of any of the chilies, would make a difference in the taste. instead of green chilies and the dry red chilies, i would suggest you to add a little bit of red chili powder only for the taste and flavor. if there is no option howsoever, then just skip all three.

  45. says

    I have some boiled chana in the fridge….gonna try this and will let you know the feedback!! I think the dry roasting of the spices….gives it the authentic Punjabi taste…so good you thought of updating the picture….

  46. Saroj Nagpal says

    Hello
    I liked your recipe & also tried many times. My family enjoyed it. But i garnished it with small pieces of cheese & instead of amchur powdar i used dry pomegranate powdar. Everyone relished it.
    Thank you.

  47. MG says

    Hi Dassana,

    Thank you for the recipe, looks yummy! I’m wondering, can I use canned chick peas and skip the soaking overnight and the pressure cooker? I do not have a pressure cooker.
    Thank You :)

  48. Ashwini says

    Hi Dassana,
    Thank u for this recipe.It was the best chole recipe I have tried so far. Came out fragrant and tasty . I had one doubt. In the ingredients you mention half tsp garam masala powder but nowhere in the recipe I see the mention of adding it. So do we add the garam masala powder with the other dry powders? I missed using it when I made it yesterday,it tasted good even without it.

    • says

      thanks ashwini. you can add the garam masala powder with the rest of the dry powders. but its not required, since we have already made the ground masala powder in this recipe. i shall update it in the recipe.

  49. Ika says

    Hi Dassana. I’ve been long time wanting to make chole, but here’s no amchur around here. What can you suggest to substitute it? Mango chutney?

    • says

      don’t add mango chutney. some lemon juice would do. if you can get dry pomegranate seeds, then these also can be used. dry roast and then crush the seeds in a mortar-pestle. then add to the chole.

  50. aparna says

    Thank you for this recipe. Like many I’ve tried several recipes (stopped using instant powders a long time ago) for this beloved dish but never found the right one. The one ingredient that was always missing was the black cardamom and this is THE spice that brings that lovely smoky flavor to the chole we all love. Absolutely wonderful recipe and with some minor tweaks (pinch of saunf and much less amchur) it has brought back memories of delicious meals shared with loved ones far away!

    • dassana says

      you can add dry pomegranate seeds powder (anardana powder) or lemon juice. the taste will be different though, but works well. add lemon juice toward the end.

  51. Navneh says

    I loved your recipes . The amazing pictures that explain the steps…….all other websites do have recipes but yours do reach to people in an original way as if i am standing in the kicthen and my mom is teaching me. Thanku so much . I can’t explain how authentic and original they are and you made my day !

  52. Rumana Khan says

    Hi,

    Thanks for sharing the recipe. I would try the recipe tomorrow. Just one quick question. Is it possible that I do not boil Chole separately and cook them with the masala itself? My mom says boiling would take away the essence and aroma. Please reply. Thanks :)

    • says

      you can cook the chole with the masala. first fry all the masala and then lastly add the soaked chana. saute for a few minutes. add water and then pressure cook the chana.

  53. neil says

    Dassana
    when you talk of using the pressure cooker. How long is 5-6 whistles
    I’m not familiar with this
    Neil

  54. Seema says

    After surfing the net for a good amount of time, came across this recipe for Chole.
    Tried it and it was awesome. Thanks!

  55. Laxmi says

    I tried this, followed all the steps but used MDH masala instead of your spice mix becuz I was a bit rushed and tired.
    It was AWESOME. many thanks for sharing

  56. Latha says

    I tried this recipe yesterday and came out wonderful and has got excellent taste in it.
    We both enjoyed having it and my husband asked me to make it often.i think after marriage this is the first tasty one i made.
    About the taste i can’t express it in words & it was so lovely and perfect,feel like having it often.One thing is i didn’t get this much red color in outcome,what mistake i did?
    Thanks for this lovely recipe Dassana chechi.

    • says

      thats nice latha. the red color depends upon the type of red chilies used. eg if kashmiri red chilies are added, the dish will have more red color. so the red coloring when using red chilies often depends upon the variety of red chilies. the spice and heat also depends on that.

  57. Elle says

    Hi dassana,
    The recipe is awesome just one question when do we add the red chilly powder and the green chillies. I added it at the end along with amchur and garam masala. Hope that is correct

    • says

      hi elle, they are added when the powdered spices are added. green chilies is alright to be added at the end, but better to add red chili powder when sauting the onion-tomatoes and spices. i will update the post as well.

  58. PeterH says

    Dassana — THANK YOU for posting the links to the aloo tikki burgers, and the Amritsari chhole. Great recipes. I’ll be making both of them soon.

  59. Michael says

    Hi, i travelled around India and ate alu tikki with chole pretty much every day! I wanted to make it back in England. Is this chole recipe the best one to serve with tikki? or should i be tweaking it at all? Thanks in advance.

    • says

      hi michael. even when we lived in delhi, we would have aloo tikki with chole almost every week :-) this chole recipe is good for aloo tikki. there is one more chole recipe on the blog called amritsari chole and this recipe is also good. you can make any one to go with the potato patties.
      link here: http://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/amritsari-chole-recipe/

      and here’s are the links to make aloo tikkis:
      1: http://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/aloo-tikki-chole/
      2: http://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/aloo-tikki-burger/

      • Michael says

        Thank you for sharing these with me, now I can make everything using just your website!

        With the amritsari chole – it sounds delicious but to me the darker colour makes it look less appetising than the Punjabi version You say it takes on this colour from the addition of teabags. If i left these out would it be a different colour and would it effect the flavour much?

        Thanks again, Michael.

        • says

          hi michael. the darker color is due to the tea bags. you can omit adding the tea bags. sometimes even i don’t add them. the taste would be slight different as tea flavors to add to the recipe. but not that the flavors change completely. the chole would be still delicious without adding the tea bags. the color of the chickpeas would be its natural creamish color and the color of the curry will be less darker.

  60. Rhana says

    Hi Dassana,

    I was wondering how can I cook the chickpeas in a regular pot? I do not have a pressure cooker.

    • says

      you can cook the chickpeas in a pot. use a deep and large pot. just add enough water with salt and a pinch of baking soda. cover and cook the chickpeas. keep on checking in between. if the water become less, then add some hot water and continue to cook till the chickpeas become soft. you have to keep on boiling till the chickpeas get cooked. it will take a lot of time to cook chickpeas in a pot… approx 45 mins to 1 hour.

  61. Kelly says

    Hi, I made this for my family – who happen to adore Indian food- and they loved this recipe! Thanks so much, and I think that your website is fabulous!!

  62. says

    This is something I luv to do in my life.. cooking and serving food is my passion, and I do at home for my kids.. experimenting whatever little I know about cooking, I saw and learned from my mother. Good to see your website and looking forward to learn more and more

  63. Ramneet says

    Cut out fennel seeds n add dried pomegranate seeds….n add haf amout of mango powder….n c the taste…..straight from a real punjabi….

  64. Zoe says

    Hi
    This recipe looks delicious. When do you add the 1/2 tsp garam masala? And is the gravy still on flame when you add the Mango Powder? Just wondering how long should I keep it on the flame after adding the mango powder.

  65. says

    I made this and linked it on my blog. Just amazing! First time making chole it turned out perfect! Can’t wait to try it again with rotis and amchur powder (haven’t found any in France yet).

  66. Anant says

    hii Dassana…
    it’s such a nice work u had done for others…
    today i am going to make this dish..
    i will tell u tommorow about the dish..
    thanksssss

  67. vini says

    Hi,

    I am planning to make this recipe for a group of 20 people. Your recipe serves 4-5, should i just multiply whatever quantity by 4, to cook for 20 people?

  68. Ramya Prabhath says

    Hi Dassana,,,,!! New to ur blog and totally in luv with ur recipes……. Need to try all of dem :D Today i tried d chole recipe and i must say it is d best i’ve ever tried….a total keeper for sure,,,, Had tried a lot of chole recipes from other blogs but all of dem were huge disappointment for me…. :( But wen i made chole using ur recipe….i was in total luv with it,,, :) Thanx a lot dear,,, :) Keep up the gud work…. God bless u …

    • says

      thanks ramya for that wonderful feedback. keeps me motivated and gives me encouragement to share my love and passion for cooking as well as blogging.

  69. Rajan Rawal says

    Hello Dassana, Great Post and Great Recipe. I am gona to make it today for dinner. The way you mentioned will help me to prepare delicious dinner.

  70. Raanu says

    Very nice and delicious recipe thanks dassana…. I tries it and it turned sooooo yummy… very thankfull to you.

  71. shubha mondkar says

    Hi,Dassana.Your chole recipe is great.My friend for delhi had given me the same recipe for both chole and bhaturas(with Potatoes).THe only difference is that there no tomatoes are used instead roasted anardana powder was used.also I added some dreid amla while cooking the cholas.All this brings about a rich black colour.I love your blog.It is very genuine.Thanks for the great recipes.

    • says

      thanks shubh. i do know about the dry amla and anardana powder being added to chole. the dry amla gives a good black color and the anardana powder a good sour taste. tomatoes add some body and gravy to the chole. otherwise one can just make dry chole with the spices. both ways the chole tastes good.

  72. Sunshine says

    Wow the Punjabi Chole and Aloo Bhaturas turned out so well.. The colour of the Chole was a bit dark as I had used Dark Red chillies in the spices.. Everyone loved it at home.. Thanks a lot Dassana.. God Bless You.. :)

  73. sunita sil says

    hi dassana

    yesterday i made this everyone ate heartily to their content and as usual no leftovers and loved the taste too, only the chilli part was a bit more for me but otherwise damn delicious and only one change i made is that for the gravy i mixed milk and water to give that thick consistency and the taste was very good.

    thanks so much again dassana, my next is garlic dal, will let you know how it came out.

    • says

      thats so nice to know sunita.

      to get a thick consistency, just simmer the chickpeas for some minutes in the masala. you can even mash a few chickpeas whilst they are simmering with the back of the spoon. this way the gravy becomes thick. i think milk would have diluted the spicy nature of this recipe.

  74. Janet Saldanha says

    Hi Dassana,

    Just want to know Punjabi Chole goes well with poori or chapathi… ????pls give the right combination that i cook next sunday…

    This Sunday i plan to cook your garlic dal/ Aloo jeera… hope it comes out well… for 4 memembers…

    Love

    Janet

    • says

      punjabi chole goes very well with pooris. ideally chole is served with bhatura. but if not making bhatura then best to serve with pooris.

      don’t worry… the recipes are tried and tested and will come out well.

  75. Janet Saldanha says

    Hi Dassana,

    Just want to tell you that the best thing about your receipe is that all the ingredients is so easy available in the kitchen that i dont have to search for itor look out for it out for it…. some website is so complicated ……………….

    Pls continue the same always …:-)

  76. amit says

    hi !i am very happy with this site .after a long time of reading and searching other sites this site is very unique.although i have bookmarked it also.the step by step photo presented by u is awesome .even we can get the picture of what is happening in each and every step.
    thank you so much for fabulous receipes.
    keep it up.

    • dassana says

      thanks aishwarya. usually people write positively about recipes or both recipes and photos, but this is the first time i am getting a comment exclusively for photographs.

      i hope to take my photography to the next level and present even better photographs.

  77. PeterH says

    The recipe sounds delicious and I’ll be making it this week. One question, though:

    Your #6 instruction says to “add the amchur powder”, but you don’t include it – or the quantity – in the ingredients list.

    How much amchur is needed ?

  78. midprof says

    HI, Can you tell me what is meant by “chilly powder” in the recipe — is this the same thing labeled as Chili Powder for American chili recipes? Or is it actually just ground chiles?

    • dassana says

      the chili powder that is used in the recipe is the hot variety of red chili powder available in india. basically, its ground red chilies in pure form.

      i think the american chili powder is usually a blend of chilies with other herbs or spices.

      cayenne pepper comes close to the indian chili powder and you can easily use it in the recipe.

      there are different types of red chili powder available in india and this recipes uses the hot variety.

      • midprof says

        Thanks so much. I couldn’t wait to try the recipe and did — my little one had three servings. It’s the first chole recipe that’s actually a “keeper”. Thanks so much for it! Look forward to trying others.

  79. jyotsna says

    This is my all time fave chole recipe! tried it once and it turned out to be yumm! Hit this page everytime I make the dish! Thankoooooo

  80. Sean O says

    Amchur powder is mentioned in the body of the recipe? How much and what is it? What about the yield and serving size?

    • says

      sean…. amchur powder is dried mango powder…. it makes the dish sour and is a souring agent used for recipes in north india. you could add about 1 tsp of amchur powder.
      this punjabi chole serves 3 to 4 people.

  81. Umakarthikeyani says

    wow…. It really came out well. my hubby liked it very much. thanz a lot to dassana and anita.
    thanz for posting this wonderful recpie………..

  82. says

    Thanks, for acknowledging the original amongst the copies, Dassana! It is no small thing!

    Why don’t you join us for the Mad Party. You know the theme! The rules are simple – have yourself some tea (at home or at your favourite cafe) write a post about that with the theme woven in! :) There is time till my laggard friends post!

    • dassana says

      Thanks Anita.

      Count me in. I just completed right now posting a galangal lemon grass tea recipe. And then your comment appears. What a coincidence? This is my entry for the mad tea party.

      In fact, I had checked the date for the event but I felt I was late. Your comment came at the right time. So lets have a tea party.

  83. sweetstuff106719 says

    Absolutely delicious! I just made this recipe and it came out perfect. Thanks so much for posting this recipe. I have been looking for a good chole recipe for a couple of years now. Yumm!

  84. sweetstuff106719 says

    I have been looking for a chole recipe for a couple of years now. Everytime I make chole, they never turn out right. Either too spicy, too bland, too watery etc. I came across yours this morning and decided to try it. I must say that this is the best recipe except for the one that my mom makes. I am saving it under my favorites! Thanks a whole bunch for posting this!!