amritsari chole

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Amritsari chole recipe with step by step photos – this amritsari chole masala tastes similar to the chole one gets in the Punjabi joints on the streets of Delhi.

amritsari chole, amritsari chana

This recipe had been requested my many of you when I had posted the garlic naan recipe. So finally posting the amritsari chole recipe. They taste great with bhatura, butter naan and even with aloo tikki. The first day I just served the chole with garlic naan. The next day, I made aloo tikki to go with the chole. The combo of aloo tiki – chole is very famous in north India.

This is an Awesome recipe of Amritsari chole and you must give it a try. I have used organic chole/chickpeas for making the chole and they do taste better than the regular ones. If you love chole then you would like to check a few more chickpea recipes from the blog like:

While boiling the chole/chickpeas, if you add some baking soda, it makes the chole melt in the mouth when they get cooked. If possible use a pressure cooker for cooking the chole/chickpeas, as in a pan they take a longer time.

How to make amritsari chole

Cooking chole/chickpeas

1: first pressure cook the soaked chole (chole have to be soaked overnight or for 8-9 hours) with the whole spices and tea bags or black tea leaves tied tightly in a muslin like a Bouquet garni, along with some black salt. The chole will get a nice dark color of the tea leaves. They should be completely cooked. Strain the chole/chickpeas and reserve the stock.

making amritsari chole recipe

Making onion tomato masala

2: in a pan, heat oil and add chopped onions.

making amritsari chole recipe

3: fry the onions till they become golden brown.

onions to make amritsari chole recipe

4: now add slit green chilies and fry for a minute. Yes the chole is spicy.

making amritsari chole recipe

5: add chopped tomatoes and ginger.

preparing amritsari chole recipe

6: saute the tomatoes till they become soft and mushy.

making amritsari chole recipe

Making amritsari chole

7: add the chole and saute for 5-6 minutes.

making amritsari chole recipe

8: add all the dry masala/spice powders.

making amritsari chole recipe

9: stir the spice powders and saute for a minute.

making amritsari chole recipe

10: now add the strained stock to the chole/chickpeas or add the chole to the strained stock. I just removed the chole with a slotted spoon and kept the strained stock in the pressure cooker itself, so added the chole to it.

cooked chole for amritsari chole recipe

11: keep the whole mixture on fire and simmer till the gravy thickens a bit. You don’t want a watery chole. Adjust the spices and seasonings as per your taste preferences.

making amritsari chole recipe

12: when the gravy thickens, add some julienned ginger to the chole.

amritsari chole recipe, how to make amritsari chole

13: stir and serve hot.

amritsari chole recipe, how to make amritsari chole

14: Amritsari chole goes well with pooris, bhatura or naan with some raw chopped onion and lime wedges by the side.

amritsari chole recipe, how to make amritsari chole

Few more Punjabi recipes for you

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amritsari chole recipe

Amritsari Chole

4.9 from 39 votes
Amritsari chole masala is white chickpeas curry made in Punjabi style.
Prep Time 8 hrs
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 8 hrs 45 mins

Cuisine Indian
Course: Main Course

Servings 5 to 6


for cooking chickpeas

  • 2 cups dried white chickpeas (kabuli chana or chole) soaked overnight in enough water
  • 2 inch cinnamon sticks
  • 4 to 5 black cardamom
  • 1 large tej patta or 2 medium tej patta (indian bay leaf)
  • 1 teaspoon ginger paste
  • 4 teaspoon black tea leaves or 3 tea bags
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda, optional
  • salt or black salt as required

for gravy

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 to 4 medium size tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon chopped ginger
  • 4 to 5 green chillies, slit or julienned
  • 2 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 2 teaspoon coriander powder (ground coriander)
  • 2 teaspoon fennel powder , optional
  • 2 teaspoon dry mango powder (amchur powder) or 2 teaspoon dried pomegranate powder (anardana powder)
  • 1 teaspoon red chili powder
  • 2 teaspoon Garam Masala Powder or chana masala powder
  • 3 to 4 tablespoon oil
  • some julienned ginger
  • few coriander leaves (cilantro leaves)


cooking chickpeas

  • Firstly soak the dried chickpeas overnight in water or for 8-9 hours.
  • Next day pressure cook the soaked chickpeas adding the whole spices mentioned above with black salt or salt and tea bags or tea leaves wrapped tightly in a muslin cloth.
  • Pressure cook for 8-10 minutes or till the chickpeas are completely cooked.
  • Strain the chickpeas and reserve the stock along with the whole spices. Discard the tea leaves or the tea bags.

making onion tomato masala

  • In a large pan or a large kadai, heat oil. Add the chopped onions. Fry till golden brown.
  • Add slit green chilies and fry for a minute.
  • Add the chopped tomatoes and chopped ginger and saute the tomatoes till they become soft and mushy.

making amritsari chole

  • Add the cooked chickpeas (chole) and saute for 5-6 minutes.
  • Add all the spice powders, stir and saute for a minute.
  • Now add the strained stock about 2.5 to 3 cups to the chole. If the stock is less you can add some water.
  • Keep the whole mixture on fire and simmer till the curry thickens a bit.
  • When the gravy thickens, add some julienned ginger to the gravy.
  • Check the salt and seasonings and add more if required.
  • Stir and serve amritsari chole hot garnished with coriander leaves along with some bhatura, naan, pooris or even steamed basmati rice.


  1. The spices can be adjusted as per your preferences.
  2. This recipe can be doubled or tripled.
  3. You can also use canned chickpeas instead of dried chickpeas.

Nutrition Info Approximate values

Nutrition Facts
Amritsari Chole
Amount Per Serving
Calories 422 Calories from Fat 126
% Daily Value*
Fat 14g22%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Sodium 673mg29%
Potassium 960mg27%
Carbohydrates 60g20%
Fiber 18g75%
Sugar 13g14%
Protein 17g34%
Vitamin A 795IU16%
Vitamin C 20mg24%
Calcium 128mg13%
Iron 6.3mg35%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Dassana Amit

Meet Dassana

Welcome to Dassana's Veg Recipes. I share vegetarian recipes from India & around the World. Having been cooking for decades and with a professional background in cooking & baking, I help you to make your cooking journey easier with my tried and tested recipes showcased with step by step photos & plenty of tips & suggestions.

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  1. The recipe turnout just fine but my chole colour was normal inspire of using tea powder. Though the gravy was nice.Thank you for sharing this recipe.

    1. thanks ekta. depending on the quality and strength of tea leaves, the color will vary. most welcome.

  2. Came out awesome. I am really fan of ur recipes and presentation of the whole act5 stars

    1. thank you natasha for this lovely feedback. thanks for the rating too. happy cooking

  3. Thank you very much for sharing your knowledge. I made this today, it is lipsmacking. God bless you.5 stars

  4. Hello! Thanks for this delicious recipe. I tried exactly as per the recipe given and it came out yumm! Would you please help me how much quantity I should take if I have to make for 20-25 people. Thanks:)

    1. thanks for the feedback. with gravy recipes it become tricky if the recipe is exactly doubled or tripled as the balance of the spices can go wrong. so when making gravy recipes eyeball the ingredients and then add or you can use the method of ‘andaaz’ (approximation) and then add.

    1. thanks for sharing the suggestion. even dried amla is used to darken the chickpeas.

  5. Superb recipe. Tried it and liked it very much!! Thanks for the recipe amit.

  6. This recipe is great. Thanks Dassana. I prefer a thicker gravy so I added more onion and tomatoes to make the gravy. But everything else is just perfect. I also use organic chole and take longer to cook but the baking soda tip was great. chole cooked fast and melt in mouth consistency. Thanks again Dassana 🙂5 stars

    1. Welcome Grace. Thanks for your positive feedback. Glad to know that you liked the chole recipe. Even I have noticed that organic chole takes little long time to cook.

  7. I love your website!!
    Tried this recipe and it turned out great, and earned me lovely compliments.. 🙂
    Thanks a lot! :))
    More power to you5 stars

    1. welcome maanvi. glad to know this. thanks for your positive feedback and best wishes.

  8. Thank you for this wonderful recipe! The photographs were very helpful too. I made a double batch for a taste of India dinner party, our Indian born hostess said this recipe was like eating at home. My neighbor asked for the recipe and my husband said I could make this anytime! Thanks again for taking the time to share this wonderful dish! ( I had three helpings ).

    1. Welcome Cecilia. Glad to know that everyone liked the recipe. thanks for sharing this awesome feedback on amritsari chole.

  9. hi dassana, i made this chole today and it turned out t nice.. thanks for sharing… actually i wanted to make this for a very long time but did not have tea bags… so what i did is tied some tea powder in a muslin cloth and tied it properly ….ha ha ..
    tk care n regards
    marina5 stars

  10. Man thanku so much….i am biggest fan of all ur recipes ur website tought me how to cook good food …

  11. Made this Chole in this style for the first time, wow is all I can say, they were so tasty and soft, and the gravy was just perfect not top thick and not watery, thank you for this amazing recipe,

    Kind regards,
    Fan from Birmingham

  12. Followed the chole recipe..turned out well. Thanks! It’s just that I dint get that much black in color..I did not use black that the reason?5 stars

    1. the black color is due to the tea bags/tea leaves. so could be due to the type and quality of tea bags or tea leaves. black salt is not responsible for the dark color.

    1. niveditha green tea bags won’t give the dark color. hope this help’s you.

  13. Brilliant! I made lot of your dishes and i must say, all of them are simple and tasty! Thankyou for your consistent updates. Made Chole today and they as usual turned out to be good.
    P.S- I also made the green chillis stuffed with bhuna hua jeera and salt, equally good.
    Thanx again4 stars

    1. pleased to know this deepti 🙂 thankyou for your kind and positive words. glad you liked the chole and green stuffed chili too. you are always welcome.

  14. Thank you very much. I find your blog the easiest to follow in order to make any dish. My husband also has complimented me on the various dishes I havr tried from your blog. Thank you very much once again.5 stars

    1. welcome always shruti 🙂 and pleased to know this. thankyou for your positive words.

  15. Hi Dassana,

    I happened to come across your blog a couple of months or so ago and have been trying your recipes with your twist on them, since then. Love your recipes. You explain the step by step process very well with lovely photos, that would help anyone understand how to cook that particular dish without going wrong. Thank you so much for sharing these along with your tips.

    I had a question on chole / channa, not specifically on the chole / channa recipe but with regards to the green chilli that is served in some Delhi / Punjabi restaurants. They serve the chole with a lovely fried green chilli on which some masala has been either sprinkled, or the chilli is stuffed with this and then fried. It’s been many years since I last had this, so was wondering if you know what this is called? It doesn’t seem to be a pickle (as the chilli seems pretty fresh though fried), but adds so much flavour to the chole, if one takes an occasional bite of this chilli! Could you share the recipe of this too please – if it’s not already on your blog?

    thanks. And keep up the great work!5 stars

    1. thanks a lot deepa. the chillies are stuffed with dry mango powder, salt and cumin powder (optional). i don’t know what they are called. there is one variation i make, where i stuff the chilies with cumin powder+salt+lemon juice mixture and pan fry them with a little oil. once they are fried, you can squeeze in some more lemon juice. they really taste good with dal-rice, curd-rice and khichdi. i will try to take pics of the fried chilies next time when i make punjabi chole.

    1. baking soda can be added to the chana directly. tea leaves you have to tie in a muslin cloth. you can also tie the whole spices in the same muslin in which tea leaves are there.

  16. Hi….i am a beginner in cooking …Can u tell me how much salt we have to put in pressure cooker for boiling the chola’s?Sorry for asking silly question…..

    1. neha, you can use rock salt (kala namak). if you don’t have rock salt then you regular salt. its alright. feel free to ask any query. we all learn at some time of life.

  17. This was such an easy recipe and it turned out great! Thanks for sharing it!5 stars

  18. amazing easy recipe everybody liked it so much at office and as well as at home yummy recipe one should try to make every sunday with puries.Thanks for such a tasty recipe.I made it first time and they were really YUMMY.5 stars

    1. welcome rupali. glad to know this. thanks for sharing your positive feedback.

  19. This is probably one of the best dishes I’ve ever made!

    Best part.. it was SO easy for something so tasty

    You are my go to person for veg recipes.. ! I have also recommended your recipes to many friends and family and now all of us really enjoy your food! 🙂

    I just wish someone started a nonvegrecipesofindia blog as well 😛5 stars

    1. Also, I didn’t have muslin cloth or tea bags.. so i boiled the tea leaves in water separately and then strained the tea water into the chana and then cooked it in the pressure cooker.. Still tasted very nice.. 🙂5 stars

      1. thanks harsha. good to know this. you can use dried amla instead of tea bags to give the color.

    2. thanks harsha. thats a sweet comment from you. also thanks for sharing the blog with your friends.

  20. Hi,
    I’ve just discovered your wonderful blog, which has really inspired me to eat more pulses and veg, and I’m not a big fan of veg usually!
    There’s a few recipes I can’t wait to try, including this one which I’ll be doing tonight. I don’t have black salt but I do have smoked salt which might work well?
    Anyway, thanks for these lovely recipes!

  21. Hi.. First of all i want to tell you your recipes are amazing.. Love them.! Wheneva i wana cook somethin and i need a recipe i open vegrecipesofindia.. Recipes have never disappointed me.. Always turned out to b good.!
    I had a question
    What is the difference between “Daal Makhani” and “Daal Bukhara”
    Except the kidney beans in daal makhani which are option anyways??
    Please reply me back

  22. Hi Dasanna, I have tried quite a few of recipes from your website (mostly north indian dishes) and they have come out really good. I want to try this but I have a question. Is Baking soda & Baking powder different ?

    Thank you

    1. thanks lalitha. both are baking soda and baking powder are different. baking soda is just sodium bicarbonate. whereas baking powder is a dry mixture of sodium bicarbonate or baking soda, an acidifying agent like cream of tartar and corn starch.



    1. the tea flavor blends very well with the masala.. try this method. the chole tastes very good.

  24. This is the recipe that made me fall in love with your blog!

    I had tried several (and I mean SEVERAL) variations of this recipe and none of them tasted right… until I found this one. This dish is definitely far better than those you get in restaurants. ‘Perfectly balanced’ doesn’t even begin to describe it. Using this recipe, and learning it, has made me appreciate food at another level. I also have my mom loving chickpeas now. This recipe is a perfect comfort food. I like to eat it and then take a nap. It’s perfect.

    I made this recipe every single week for months after coming across it until I had it memorized! I still make it at least once a month, sometimes more. It’s my favorite recipe. 🙂 You seriously changed the way my family eats. We love your recipes. We truly do. If you ever come out with a cookbook I will buy it. (And I would be sure to buy it for my friends too.)5 stars

  25. Hi, if I am using canned chickpeas how do I incorporate the tea bags and whole spices to get the dark brown colour?

    1. skip the tea bags and add the whole spices to the oil, before you add the onions.

  26. Dear Dassana,

    Another hit diwh rocks my guests and bags me a mouthfull of praising…… thanks a millions5 stars

  27. Hey. If i am using canned chickpeas, how long should i let it be in the pressure cooker for along with the spices?

    Thanks.5 stars

    1. if the chickpeas are cooked then you just need to prepare the curry base and then add the chickpeas and simmer for some minutes till the gravy thickens and reduces.

  28. Hi… Want to try making this but can I use black channa (gram) instead of the Kabuli channa? Would it taste different?

    1. the taste will be different. black chana has a different taste and texture than kabuli chana. still you can try.

  29. As an Englishman growing up with the embarrassing excuse for Indian food served up here my first taste of proper chole was a revelation. It looked unappetising to me: a blackish red colour most odd to western eyes. But the taste! Sour, smoky, hot with dark spicy notes in perfect harmony and set off by a fresh green chutney. I had no idea what I was tasting but realised that I was in the presence of one of the great cuisines of the world. And from a street vendor!

    This recipe is the dish I remember; uncompromisingly spiced and full of flavour. Thank you so much for posting it.

    PS I too added a spoonful of tamarind instead of one of the tomatoes. It was good, slightly different but by no means a significant improvement. But would recommend what a friend suggested and I remember from street vendors – adding a tablespoon of chopped fresh onion and a squeeze of lemon with the coriander.5 stars

    1. Sorry I forgot to add that I love your website and cook from it at least once a week. You have a large and growing fan base here in Sussex in cold southern England! Thanks again!

      1. welcome andrew for this positive feedback. such genuine appreciation always motivates me. many street food vendors are known for their specialty dishes like chole, tikki (patties), pakoras (fritters), pav bhaji, vada pav and so on. they some time make very good use of spices.

  30. Tried Amritsary chole recipe today for a few special guests, it’s really mouth watering & very delicious.

  31. Can you please tell me substitute for black cardamom? What if I don’t get will it alter the taste? Thanks in advance.

    1. black cardamom gives a nice earthy and smoky flavor. it will alter the taste as well as flavor and even the aroma. there is no substitute. if you don’t have then just skip them. the chole would still taste delicious.

  32. Will it make any difference to the taste if I don’t use tea bags or black tea in this recipe?

    1. the taste would be a bit different without the tea bags. however the recipe can be still made without tea leaves.

  33. This looks amazing. How would you make it without a pressure cooker or a crock pot? Also what is the ratio of water to be used?

    1. kiran, i have never cooked chole without pressure cooker. once a friend had cooked and it has taken her hours to cook them. you will have to use an approximate estimation of adding the water as the water will keep on evaporating while cooking and if the water becomes less then you have to add more water.

  34. Dassana, I havent tried any of your recipes yet … just came across your blog today…. must say I really liked it … Well everyone gives their recipe step by step but you’ve even taken pictures on how the dish should look while cooking makes it even more easier and interesting… congratulations for share these wonderful recipes with everyone….

    1. also you read most of the comments … you sure have a fan following … guess i’ll be joinin them soon 🙂

    2. thanks gracy for writing these motivating words. generally, i like to share step by step pictorial recipes whenever i feel the recipe is too complicated and step by step photos will make it easier for readers to understand the recipe. keep visiting the blog and do share your feedback.

  35. Hey this is a nice recipe, but when cooking for kids I don’t like adding tea leaves. What I do instead is I add lots of roasted cumin powder it will give nice color and flavor to chana.

  36. This is a good recipe.i used black tea and pomegranate tea bags along with a spiced fruit tea bag. I added chopped frozen peaches and a squirt of fish sauce, soy and a tbs. brown sugar…and finished with chopped fresh cilantro when served. For breakfast I crush one Biscoff spiced cookie on top for crunch….

  37. Hi,
    I tried the above amritsari chole recipe and it came out very well. Can you please tell what is the difference of adding the spices while cooking peas in cooker rather than the ordinary boil?

    1. thanks siaa. when adding the spices while cooking the chickpeas, they absorb the flavor of the spices a bit. this won’t happen obviously when you cook the chickpeas without the spices. the stock with the spices also add a lot of flavor and taste to the recipe.

  38. I am so glad I found this recipe. I used to have this every morning for breakfast at school in Amritsar. I NEVER got tired of it…especially when we had pooris.

  39. hey dasaana just wanted to let u know I made this recipe and I have posted it in my blog. I had a old chef reference with me that I have been carrying for the past 2 yrs shocking thing is u and him have the exact measurement, This guy name is rohan he is a chef… any chance u guys r cousins r a family member. well I loved the recipe thanks to u too. Only seeing ur recipe I got reminded of that recipe from my diary.

  40. I must say, you are good. I have seen and tried some of your recipes and I will follow to try almost all of them. I appreciate your hard work of cooking so well (as I can see from the dishes), clicking snaps, maintaining the website, etc.

    I will request you to kindly also put on the website the following things:
    1. Frequently used items, gadgets, ingredients, where do you buy them from, or where can we find them.
    2. Menus for household or large scale parties. (with or without themes)

    I hold you in high regards, Keep up the good work.

    1. thanks for all the kind words. i have been thinking along the suggestions you have mentioned and will make a few pages. am sure it will help the readers too. there are a few helpful gadgets i use in the kitchen and i think i should share these with my reader along with the ingredients etc. thanks once again.

  41. Hey a very Good Morning Dassana!!!!

    your recipe for amritsari chole is just commendable… i have always been wanted 2 make dark brown coloured chole but never got it right…i used to end up ending adding lots of garam masala thinking it will help change the colour…

    But today i tried using tea bags while putting in cooker and it doesnot burst at all, leaving behind nice dark brown colour….

    thanks a lot…. have been following all ur recipes and it had helped me turn to a better cook…. nd the best part is you explain and have easy accessible solutions and options for everything… nd yes ur pics r quite attractive

    Have a good day:)

    1. hi khushboo, firstly thanks for all your comments. secondly cooking is easy and not difficult, just that one needs to add the ingredients in proper measures and cook with love & patience. the dark colored chole can be achieved either using tea bags or adding dried amla. but both ways the chole turns out good.

  42. Dassana, these chole look delicious, the kind that want me to make them, soon:)

  43. You have advised to put tea bags don’t you feel that the whole curry will smell tea?what is the specific advantage of adding tea bags or tea leaves.I usedto prepare without tea bags.please explain

    1. the amristari chole curry does not smell of tea. there is a good amount of spices and in the curry. thats why the tea aroma or taste is not obvious. the addition of tea bags or tea leaves helps in coloring the chickpeas to a dark brown color which is a speciality of amristari chole. tea bags are used a substitute for amla powder which helps in darkening the chickpeas. also addition of tea bags help in digesting the chickpeas.

  44. lovely presentation Dassana, we also cook Chole almost similar to your recipe..loved the color of the dish ..tempting :)!

  45. My mom uses tea bags whenever she cooks chole, she says its good for health and helps in preventing all the stomach problems that can be caused because of chole.

  46. The chole looks delicious. Love that texture and flavours too. My mother in law uses the same idea of adding tea bags into the cooker with the channa for colour and flavours.

  47. My mouth is watering uncontrollably. The Chole looks so yum! I love your idea of adding tea bags into the cooker with the channa. I’m definitely trying that next time. Do the tea bags stay intact through the pressure cooking? No risk of bursting?

    1. hey thanks susmitha. till now whenever i have pressure cooked, the tea bags have never burst. in fact this scary thought did not even cross my mind. but you can also add the tea leaves in a muslin and pressure cook the chickpeas.

  48. This looks absolutely delicious! I am going to make it this weekend!

  49. My mom uses stock of tamarind instead of tomatoes to get the tangy flavour. Tastes much better.

    1. hi abhishek, i know of the tamarind paste being added to chole. there is one recipe i make with tamarind stock and it is yum. shall post soon on the blog. will also next time try with tamarind paste.