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Chana Masala in Instant Pot

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Chana masala is also known as chole is an Indian vegan and gluten-free chickpeas curry cooked in onion tomato gravy and spices. It is served with bhatura, deep-fried puffy bread, and the dish is known as chole bhature. Check out how to make instant pot chana masala by soaking and without soaking the chickpeas.
Instant pot chana masala

Chana masala or Punjabi chole is a vegan Indian curry that goes well for brunch, lunch, or dinner. It is a chickpea or garbanzo beans curry and is easily made in an instant pot.

It is popularly served as chole bhature, bhatura (bhature) is an Indian deep-fried bread. It is also served with rice and you can very well make samosa chaat with it.

Do you need to soak chickpeas before pressure cooking?

Soaking the chickpeas for about 8 hours helps in reducing the overall cooking time in the instant pot. It can be cooked along with the spices and gravy without worrying about overcooking the gravy and spices.

Soaking also ensures the beans get cleaned thoroughly well as the water used for soaking is discarded. It gives assurance that the beans are of good quality and will cook well.

Lastly, it also helps with digestion as cooking dry beans causes gas problems in some people. However, if you forget to soak the chickpeas, cooking them unsoaked is always an option.

I personally prefer soaking the beans for all the above reasons.

What goes in chole gravy?

Chana masala gravy is made with tomatoes, onions, ginger-garlic paste,serrano pepper, and whole spices. The main ingredient that gives chole its authentic taste is the chana masala powder. I like to use the Everest or MDH brands.

Instant pot chhole
Chana Masala

How to make chana masala in instant pot?

Before starting to cook in the instant pot, blend the tomatoes, onions, ginger, and garlic in a blender or Vitamix. The mixture can be coarse but not chunky.

Turn the instant pot on saute mode with normal setting and then add the oil, once the oil is hot, add the whole spices. Using whole spices gives a good flavor and taste.

This organic whole spices starter kit has most of the spices needed for this and other beans recipes.

instant pot hole step by step

Add the tomato-onion mixture, chana masala powder, salt, and cook for few minutes until all water evaporates and it releases some oil. Now add the chickpeas and water.

Optionally add a little sugar for enhanced taste and give a good mix. Add a teabag, it gives a dark color to the curry. Pressure cook the chickpeas on high-pressure mode with the pressure valve in sealing position.

Cook for 18 minutes followed by a natural release. Garnish with some cilantro and optionally some lime juice.

How to make chana masala without soaking?

Chana masala can be easily made in the instant pot with very little effort. It can be made from soaked chickpeas or without soaking. Cooking dry beans without soaking will take about 50-60 minutes in the instant pot.

You can cook the gravy on the side on the stove top while chickpeas are cooking in the instant pot and then mix it together. This method of making instant chole without soaking will avoid overcooking the gravy.

You can also make a batch of chickpeas in the instant pot and store it in the fridge or freezer. When you are ready to eat, simply mix them in the gravy and heat for a few minutes.

How to serve chana masala?

Chana masala or chole is popularly served with bhature (puffed bread made from all-purpose flour). Don't forget to check out my bhature recipe.

It can also be served with other Indian bread like paratha and poori and goes well with rice.

While serving, you can garnish with chopped onions, cilantro and a dash of lime.

chole bhature
Chana Masala and Bhature

Including chole in Meal planning

Chana masala can be prepared in advance and stored for about a week in the refrigerator. Just like most beans, chana masala freezes well for a month.

You can portion out and store the chana masala in the freezer and then thaw and heat only what you need.

Don't forget to check out these beans recipes you might like

Don't forget to rate the recipe by clicking the stars. Also, pin the recipe by clicking the "Pin" button, for your future reference.

Instant pot chhole

Instant Pot Chana Masala

Chana masala is also known as chole is an Indian vegan and gluten-free chickpeas curry cooked in onion tomato gravy and spices. It is served with bhatura, deep-fried puffy bread, and the dish is known as chole bhature. Check out how to make instant pot chana masala by soaking and without soaking the chickpeas.
4.8 from 10 votes
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Course: Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Diet: Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 30 mins
Total Time: 45 mins
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 224kcal
Author: Alpa Jain

Ingredients

Spices

For chana masala gravy

  • 1 Onion (medium size)
  • 2 Tomatoes (medium size)
  • 1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1 ½ cup Water
  • 1 ½ cup Chickpeas (soaked in water)
  • 1 Teabag (optional)
  • 1 tsp Organic cane sugar (optional)
  • 1 tsp Salt (to taste)
  • 1 tbsp Oil

Instructions

  • Soak the chickpeas in water for about 8 hours
  • Discard the water before cooking.
  • Blend onion, tomatoes, ginger garlic in Vitamix or any other blender.
  • Turn on "Saute" mode of the instant pot on "Normal" setting
  • Once hot, add oil. After oil is hot, add all the spices - cumin seeds, bay leaf, pepper corn, cloves, red whole chili, big cardamom, star anise.
  • Add the blended tomato onion paste, chana masala powder and salt and continue to saute for another for 5-7 minutes or until all the moisture evaporates from the mixture.
  • Add water, soaked chickpeas and optionally add a tea bag and sugar
  • Select "Cancel" to come out of "Saute" mode. Close the lid, select "Pressure" on high for 18 minutes followed by natural release

Notes

If you forget to soak the chickpeas, you can pressure cook the chickpeas without soaking for 50 minutes.
Nutrition Facts
Instant Pot Chana Masala
Amount per Serving
Calories
224
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
6
g
9
%
Saturated Fat
 
1
g
6
%
Trans Fat
 
1
g
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
2
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
2
g
Sodium
 
407
mg
18
%
Potassium
 
570
mg
16
%
Carbohydrates
 
35
g
12
%
Fiber
 
10
g
42
%
Sugar
 
8
g
9
%
Protein
 
10
g
20
%
Vitamin A
 
423
IU
8
%
Vitamin C
 
9
mg
11
%
Calcium
 
67
mg
7
%
Iron
 
3
mg
17
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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Recipe Rating




chad

Monday 8th of June 2020

I am literally drooling!!! This looks so good, I can't wait to make this, so good!!!

reece

Saturday 6th of June 2020

I just started eating chickpeas, I needed a new recipe that I can make quick so thank you!

Nart at Cooking with Nart

Saturday 6th of June 2020

Looks delicious! Another instant pot recipe for me to try!

Beth

Friday 5th of June 2020

A chickpea curry always sounds so wholesome and delicious - this one certainly does. Yum.

Rochelle

Friday 5th of June 2020

I am a vegan, love curry...and obsessed with using my instant pot. So I obviously LOVE this recipe! Thanks for sharing.