traqnsfer sookha chana to serving bowl

Instant Pot Sookha Chana – Punjabi Kala Chana Masala

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Sookha kala chana masala was one of my favorite food growing up. I was a picky eater when I was little. My mom would make a variety of foods for me hoping that I would eat them. Life is a full circle. My younger daughter is a picky eater. One of the most challenging things about cooking for little people is trying to figure great meal alternatives kids in your life will like. When I got this recipe from my mom, I wasn’t sure if my kids would like it. To my surprise, my kids loved the Instant Pot Sookha Chana.

This recipe is also known as Dry Brown Chickpea / Punjabi Sookha Chana / Sookha Kala Chana Masala.

No matter when I make this recipe, it has always been a success. Whenever I serve kala chana, people ask for the recipe.

This recipe does not use onions or tomatoes and is typically made during Durga Ashtami, where believers of Goddess Durga offer prayers to her. It is typically paired with puri (unleavened deep-fried bread), and sooji halwa (semolina pudding).

And it is made in an Instant Pot.

instant pot sookha chana

What is Kala Chana?

Chickpea commonly found in the US, are known as garbanzo beans, Kabuli chana or white chana. Bengal gram also known as Kala chana have the same shape as the garbanzo bean but are smaller, and are brownish black in color. They are known as black chickpea or brown chickpea. They have a nutty, buttery taste and have a thick skin. It doesn’t break down quickly. It takes longer to cook as compared to its white counterpart. Even when fully cooked, it will never be as soft as other lentils or beans. Please keep that in mind while cooking it. You may think it is hard and undone, however, it is delicious.

chana packet for example

Where can I find brown/black chickpea?

In Indian grocery stores in the beans aisle or on Amazon.

How do I make Instant Pot Sookha Chana – Punjabi Kala Chana Masala?

Rinse the dried brown chickpea well. Soak them in 2.5 cups water overnight.

chana soaked in water

When ready to cook, discard the water that was used to soak the chickpeas. Select sauté on the instant pot. Add oil to the pot. When the oil is hot, add cumin seeds, asafoetida, and bay leaves.

saute bay leaves, cumin and asafoetida in instant pot

When the cumin seeds begin to splutter in about 30 seconds to a minute add Kashmiri chili powder and 1/4 cup water. Give it a good stir.

adding kashmiri  chili powder and water to instant pot

Then add ground cumin, ground coriander, ground ginger, and salt. Give it a good stir. Add the chickpea and 1/2 cup water. Give it a good stir. Select cancel.

adding soaked chana to instant pot

Secure the lid on the pot. Select manual and cook at high pressure for 35 minutes. When cooking is complete, use natural pressure release to depressurize.

Add garam masala, mango powder, and pomegranate powder. Garnish with cilantro. If there is excess water, select saute until the water reduces. Transfer in a serving bowl. Discard the bay leaves.

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Here are some other fun recipes for you to try.

Instant Pot Potato, Green Beans and Bell Pepper Curry / Instant Pot Aloo, Beans and Capsicum

Instant Pot Murg Cholay Masala / Instant Pot Murg Chana Masala / Instant Pot Chicken Chickpea Curry

Tried this recipe yet? Give us a rating, comment below in the reply section and let us know what you think.

transfer sookha chana to a serving bowl

 

 

Instant Pot Sookha Chana – Punjabi Kala Chana Masala

Super easy and delicous recipe made in the instant pot.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time1 hr 20 mins
Total Time1 hr 25 mins
Course: Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian, North Indian, Punjabi
Keyword: Black Chickpea Instant Pot, Brown Chickpea, Instant pot Easy Kala Chana, Instant Pot Sookha Chana, Multipot Kala chana, Nut Free, Sookha kala chana, Sukhe Chane, Vegan Curry
Servings: 3
Author: Shilpa

Equipment

  • Instant Pot

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Discard the water that was used to soak the chickpea overnight.
  • Select sauté on the instant pot. Add oil to the pot. When the oil is hot, add cumin seeds, asafoetida, and bay leaves.
  • When the cumin seeds begin to splutter in about 30 seconds to a minute add Kashmiri chili powder and 1/4 cup water. Give it a good stir.
  • Add ground cumin, ground ginger, ground coriander, and salt. Give it a good stir. Add the chickpea and 1/2 cup water. Give it a good stir. Select cancel.
  • Secure the lid on the pot. Select manual and cook at high pressure for 35 minutes. When cooking is complete, use natural pressure release to depressurize.
  • Add garam masala, mango powder, and pomegranate powder. Granish with cilantro. If there is excess water, select saute until the water reduces. Transfer the cooked kala chana in a serving bowl. Discard the bay leaves.
  • Serve hot with puris, rice, or tortilla.

Notes

  • On a scale of 1 to 5, in terms of spice levels, I would place this dish at a 2.5 in terms of heat. 
  • Kala chana tends to be hard even when pressure cooked as compared to garbanzo beans, or other lentils. 
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