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Easy Chickpea Tikka Masala

Make Ahead & Freezer Friendly!

Steak Entree

Tikka Masala! 

Ah, The British dish masquerading around as an Indian dish. (Google it!) Don't be intimidated by the long list of ingredients. Indian food is all about spices, so measuring them out together into a little dish before you start cooking will make it so easy to pull this dish together quickly. 

SPOONIE TIP: This MAKE AHEAD recipe freezes wonderfully! Just make the sauce and freeze. When you are ready to eat it, defrost it in a pan and stir in your chickpeas. It makes for a very easy dinner on the night of a flare.


Easy Chickpea Tikka Masala

Serves 4-6 


  • 3 tbsp Butter, unsalted

  • 1 cin stick

  • 6 whole cloves

  • 1 large onion (1.5 cups), minced

  • 2 tbsp grated ginger- Use a microplane or fine cheese grater

  • 2 serrano chilis, seeds & membrane removed, minced

  • 2 tsp sweet paprika

  • 1/2 tsp curry powder

  • 1 tsp garam masala (Buy premade or see my recipe below)

  • 1/4 tsp cardamom

  • 6 tbsp (1/4 cup+2 tbsp) tomato paste

  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream

  • 2/3 cup water

  • 1-2 tsp Sea Salt, start with less and add slowly to taste preference

  • 1 tbsp maple syrup

  • 2 cans organic garbanzos. drained

  • 1/2 cup cashews (optional)

  • 1/2 cup cilantro, rough chopped (optional)

  • 4-6 naan (optional


  1. Heat a large sauce pan over medium heat and add the butter. Once melted, add in the cinnamon stick and cloves. Sauté for 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Add the onions and sauté for 6-8 mins over medium heat until they are softened.

  2. Add the grated ginger and minced Serrano peppers. Sauté another minute.  Pour in all the spices (paprika through cardamom) and sauté another 30sec.

  3. Stir in the tomato paste and combine with onion mixture. Cook a minute or two. 

  4. Slowly add in cream about a quarter at a time stirring constantly to incorporate. Continue until it’s all combined. Simmer 2 minutes, stirring constantly. 

  5. Add in the water and a 1 tsp of salt, stirring to combine. Once fully combined add in the maple syrup. Simmer about 8mins over low heat while stirring occasionally. Check to see if it needs an additional 1/2-1 tsp of salt. 

  6. Stir in your chickpeas and cashews and cook 3-4 mins more.

To make naan pizzas: heat your naan, smear with the chickpea mixture and top with cilantro. You can also serve over rice, cauliflower rice, or eat with naan.

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