June 30, 2019

Punjabi Chana Dal Masala

Chana dal masala is one of the delicious, comforting and easy to prepare dish which pairs perfectly with Roti or Jeera Rice. And no doubt that this curry is a nutritious and healthy dish as it is packed with proteins. The chana dal / Bengal gram is soaked and pressure cooked before adding to the masala. Though soaking of chana dal is not required in this recipe, I have done it to speed up the cooking process. I have included ginger and garlic paste in this recipe which can also be replaced with finely chopped ginger and garlic.

Sending this recipe to a lovely event Shhh Secretly cooking challenge which is happening among a group of food bloggers. For this June month, I was paired with a blogger Archana Gunjikar Potdar who blogs at The Mad Scientist's Kitchen. Her page is filled with loads of yummy recipes and yeah, if you are looking for simple and vegetarian diet then her page is the must visit one. Personally, I loved all the recipes which she has posted on her page. And coming to the challenge, she gave me Tomato and garlic as my secret ingredients for this month challenge and using those, prepared this flavourful punjabi dal masala recipe. Likewise, she prepared a delicious punjabi recipe Lauki ke Kofta using the secret ingredients given by me.

Here comes the detailed recipe for Punjabi Chana dal masala recipe...

Ingredients :

1/2 Cup Chana dal / Bengal Gram 
A pinch of Turmeric 
2 Tbsp Oil for preparing masala 
2 Tsp Oil or ghee for Tadka / Seasoning 
1/2 Tsp Cumin seeds 
2 Dry red chillies 
1 Tsp Ginger garlic paste 
1 Green chilli, sliced 
1 Onion, finely chopped 
2 Medium sized Tomatoes, finely chopped 
1 Tsp Red chilli powder 
1 Tsp Coriander powder 
1/2 Tsp Cumin powder 
1/2 Tsp Garam masala powder 
A pinch of turmeric powder
Finely chopped Coriander leaves
Salt to taste  

Method :

Soak chana dal for 1 hour. Though this process is not necessary, it helps to speed up the cooking process.

Pressure cook the soaked chana dal for 4 - 5 whistles or until soft by addling a pinch of turmeric powder and 1 1/2 cups of water.

Once done, remove from the flame and wait till the pressure gets released. Slightly mash the cooked chana dal and keep aside.

Heat 2 tbsp oil in a pan and add green chillies followed by ginger garlic paste.

Add the finely chopped onion and sauté until it turns translucent.

Now add the chopped tomatoes and cook until it turns soft and mushy.

Add all the masala powders along with the required quantity of salt and saute for a minute.

Add the cooked dal to the masala and mix well.

Let it boil for another 5 minutes and add the finely chopped coriander leaves.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a small pan and add cumin seeds followed by dry red chillies.

Fry and add it to the prepared chana dal masala.

Remove from the flame and serve hot.

Serving Options :

Serve with steamed Rice, Jeera Rice or Roti.


  1. This simple and yet flavorful dal is my all time favorite. And you're so right its easy to make it. I too like to soak it as it helps to cook it quicker.

  2. Isn't this the best gravy to have with some plain rice or some chapathis! Looks so delicious...

  3. I had the opportunity to try out this Punjabi style Chana Dal Masala a few years ago at Delhi, and absolutely loved it. Since then, I make it often at home. :) Makes for a lovely change from the regular toor dal we use in everyday cooking.

    Your Chana Masala Dal looks super inviting and delicious!