Chole or chana is a famous dish from Punjab in North India, but has takers from around the world. The white chickpeas that are used to make this dish are a great source of proteins. Thus, an important ingredient in vegetarian and plant-based dishes. This Methi Chole recipe is a tasty variant, made with fresh fenugreek leaves (methi) and white chickpeas in a lovely spiced curry.
About Methi Chole
I have to admit that the way I am fond of the plethora of seasonal fresh greens that India offers is not the same with my family. My family has a great liking for chickpeas, but not for greens. Since, I enjoy both these ingredients, I always try to find ways to include them in my diet.
The wholesome combination of fenugreek leaves and chickpeas in this Methi Chole recipe is a result of my love for both these healthy ingredients. Needless to say, it is also a nutritious way to especially include greens in your diet.
Methi and palak (spinach) are two greens that go very well with chole. There are many variations of the dish Methi Chole too. For instance, the way it is prepared in Punjabi cuisine is different than the way it is done in Gujarati or Rajasthani cuisine.
Personally, I have an affinity towards the flavors of the Punjabi style Methi Chole. Hence, my recipe has onion, garlic, tomato, amchur (dried mango powder), garam masala powder and other spices. This is the reason this recipe is spicy as well as sour.
Methi Chole goes well with poori, bhatura, roti, naan, steamed rice or jeera rice. Try making this homemade Naan Bread and serve it with the delicious Methi Chole.
I have been making the Punjabi Chole Masala since a long time now. By introducing fresh methi with chole, I found another yummy way of including these healthy greens in the diet.
Other than this, here are some more recipes that you would want to give a try, if you can’t get enough of chickpeas.
- Spinach with White Chickpeas – Palak Chole
- White Chickpea and Potato Curry – Aloo Chole ki Sabzi
- White Chickpeas with Cottage Cheese – Chole Paneer
- South Indian Style Curry with coconut – Chickpea Curry
How to make Methi Chole
Pressure Cooking Chole
1. Rinse 1.5 cups of chole (white chickpeas) a few times in fresh water and soak them overnight in enough water.
2. Later drain the water.
3. Add the chole with 4 cups of water in a 3 to 4 litre stovetop pressure cooker.
4. Also add black salt as required. Instead of black salt, you can add regular salt too. However, I find the taste better with black salt.
5. Pressure cook till the chole is completely cooked and tender. Allow the pressure to settle down naturally then only open the lid of the cooker.
6. Drain all the water from the chickpeas using a strainer or colander.
Making Onion Paste
7. Add 1 large size chopped onion, 1 inch chopped ginger and 4 to 5 chopped garlic cloves to a blender jar.
8. Blend all the ingredients till a smooth onion paste is achieved. No need to add water. Remove the paste and keep it aside.
Making Tomato Paste
9. Add 2 medium size chopped tomatoes, 1 chopped green chili and 1 dried red chili (seeds removed) to the blender jar.
10. Blend all the ingredients till a smooth tomato paste is achieved. No need to add water. Remove the paste and keep it aside.
11. Rinse 2 cups methi (fenugreek leaves) in water, and drain the water.
12. Measure and keep all the ingredients ready.
Making Methi Chole
13. Heat 3 to 4 tablespoons oil in a pan. Add the following ingredients:
- 1 tej patta
- 1 or 2 black cardamom
- 2 green cardamom
- 1 or 2 inch cinnamon stick
- 2 to 3 cloves.
14. Fry on low heat till the spices are fragrant.
15. Then, add the prepared onion paste.
16. Stir and mix well.
17. Fry till it gets browned.
18. This takes some time and you have to stir frequently so that there is even browning and the paste does not get burnt.
19. Next, add the prepared tomato paste and 2 tablespoons of curd (yogurt).
20. Stir and mix well.
21. Now add the following ingredients:
- ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ½ to 1 teaspoon red chili powder
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder
- 1 teaspoon fennel (saunf) powder
- ½ to 1 teaspoon garam masala powder
- 1 pinch of asafoetida (hing).
22. Stir and mix the spices well.
23. Now, add the methi leaves. If you want you can chop the methi leaves before adding them.
24. Stir and sauté till the oil starts to leave the sides of the mixture. The methi leaves should also soften and wilt.
25. Add the cooked chole and water.
26. Stir and mix well.
27. Add salt as required and mix well.
28. Mash a few chickpeas with the back of the spoon to slightly thicken the gravy.
29. Simmer till the gravy thickens slightly.
30. Lastly, add 1 teaspoon amchur powder (dried mango powder), stir and mix well.
31. Simmer for 1 to 2 minutes.
32. Garnish with few coriander leaves.
33. Serve Methi Chole hot with poori, bhatura, roti, naan or rice.
- You can use regular salt instead of black salt while pressure cooking the chickpeas.
- Don’t use aged chickpeas. As they take a lot of time to cook and don’t taste good.
- Sauteing the onion paste with the whole spices will take some time. Make sure to keep stirring it frequently in order to get an even browning and avoiding the mixture to get burnt.
- Usually chickpea curries are made thicker by mashing some chickpeas with the back of the spoon while the gravy is simmering.
- Make a vegan version of this dish by using non-dairy/vegan curd.
Yes, you can use dried methi leaves instead of fresh ones. When using dried methi leaves, use 1 to 2 tablespoons.
Yes, you can add a few drops of lemon juice in place of amchur.
Yes, you can definitely make it vegan. Just substitute your dairy curd/yogurt with any vegan/non-dairy or plant-based curd.
Please be sure to rate the recipe in the recipe card or leave a comment below if you have made it. For more vegetarian inspirations, Sign Up for my emails or follow me on Instagram, Youtube, Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter.
for pressure cooking the chickpeas
- 1.5 cups dried white chickpeas (chana or chole)
- 4 to 5 cups water for pressure cooking the chickpeas
- black salt as required.
for onion paste
- 1 large onion
- 4-5 garlic
- 1 inch ginger
for tomato paste
- 2 medium size tomatoes
- 1 green chili
- 1 red chili
- 1 or 2 inch cinnamon
- 1 or 2 black cardamom
- 2 green cardamom
- 2-3 cloves
- 1 bay leaf (tej patta)
other ingredients for methi chole
- 2 cups fenugreek leaves (methi leaves)
- ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ½ or 1 teaspoon red chili powder
- ½ or 1 teaspoon Garam Masala
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder (ground coriander)
- 1 teaspoon fennel powder (saunf powder)
- 1 teaspoon dried mango powder (amchur) or as required
- 1 pinch asafoetida (hing)
- 3 or 4 tablespoon oil
- 2 tablespoon yogurt (curd) – dairy or vegan
- 1 or 1.5 cups water
- few coriander leaves for garnishing (cilantro leaves) – optional
- salt as required
- Soak the chickpeas overnight in water.
- Next day, pressure cook the chickpeas with water and black salt, till they are completely cooked.
- Make the onion paste with garlic and ginger.
- And also make the tomato paste with green chili and red chili.
- No need to add water while making these two pastes.
making methi chole
- Heat oil in a pan.
- Add all the spices mentioned under the list whole spices. Fry till the spices are fragrant.
- Then, add the onion paste and fry till it gets browned.
- This takes some time and you have to stir frequently, so that there is even browning and the paste does not get burnt.
- Add tomato paste and add yogurt.
- Add turmeric powder, red chili powder, coriander powder, fennel powder, garam masala powder and asafoetida.
- Also add the fenugreek leaves, stir and sauté till the oil starts to leave the sides of the mixture.
- Add the cooked chickpeas, water and salt.
- Mash a few chickpeas with the back of the spoon to slightly thicken the gravy.
- Simmer till the gravy thickens slightly.
- Lastly, add dried mango powder and stir. Simmer for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Garnish with coriander leaves and serve Methi Chole hot with poori, bhatura, roti, naan or rice.
Nutrition Info (Approximate Values)
This Methi Chole Post from the blog archives, first published in July 2013 has been republished and updated on December 2022.