Here is my EASY 10-minute recipe for homemade Chana Masala Spice Blend with authentic warm flavors and earthy aromas. This simple recipe will help you bring the flavors of the restaurant-favorite Chana Masala to your kitchen.
This recipe originally published on March 10, 2016, has been updated with new photos, videos, and a step-by-step recipe. I have also modified the recipe slightly to use less amchur and more black peppercorns.
I have been working to perfect the chana masala spice blend for my restaurant-style chana masala for almost a month. Although there are many variations of this powder, I wanted to make one that uses basic spices that are readily available.
This homemade spice blend has the perfect balance of spice that brings out the spicy and tangy flavors while using just a handful of ingredients.
I am so excited that I finally have my recipe nailed and happy to share it with you!
Ingredients For Homemade Chana Masala Spice Mix
Here are the spices I use to make aromatic chana masala spice mix. You may also enjoy my Essential Indian Spices Guide for more detailed information on each of these spices:
- Dried Whole Chilies - I use Kashmiri chilies that add a brilliant orange hue and smokey flavors to the curries without adding too much heat. Tip - You can also add 1 to 2 tablespoons of mild ground red chili powder instead of whole chilies
- Coriander seeds - Adds earthy textures and robust flavor to the curry.
- Cumin seeds - An essential ingredient in Indian cooking, cumin adds nutty, warm flavors and dimension.
- Green cardamom pods - I always add the whole pods as the outer skin is aromatic and adds flavors
- Cinnamon/Cassia Bark - Adds earthy flavors to meat and curries and is essential in making spice blends. Tip: Make sure to break the cinnamon stick into small pieces so they are easy to roast and grind
- Black peppercorns - Adds heat and warmth to the dish
- Whole cloves - Have sweet yet intense aromas and warm flavor.
- Ground Turmeric - The bright, healing spice that adds a peppery-woody taste and a deep golden color to curries
- Amchur powder - Dry mango powder available in Indian grocery stores adds tangy flavors to the curry. Don't have Amchur powder? Use fresh lemon juice instead, Simply add it to the curry once it is done cooking.
How to Make Chana Masala Spice Mix
- Lightly roast all spices (except amchur and turmeric powder) in a pan until they are fragrant and hot to the touch, about 2 to 3 minutes. Stir frequently and make sure not to burn by roasting too long. The goal is to make them a bit toasty so they are easy to grind. Take out the roasted spices in a dish and allow them to cool down completely.
- Add the spices to a spice grinder and make a fine powder. Add amchur powder and turmeric powder and pulse 2 to 3 times or until mixed well.
Store in an airtight container in a cool dry place away from direct sunlight for up to 6 months.
- Use ground cumin in place of whole cumin
- Use 1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon instead of one 3-inch stick
- Don't have Amchur Powder? Add freshly squeezed lemon juice to the cooked chana masala curry.
More Indian Spice Blend Recipes
If you enjoy cooking, you have to try making homemade spice blends that will elevate the flavors of any dish you make. You will be blown away by the taste and quality if you compare them to store-bought spices. From my easy 5-ingredient garam masala to the Mom's Garam Masala recipe, learn more about different spices and spice mixes in this cooking 101 guide.
Chana Masala Spice Blend
- 6 to 8 whole dried Kashmiri chiles use less if using a hotter variety of chilies
- 3 tablespoons coriander seeds
- 3 teaspoons cumin seeds
- 6 whole green cardamom pods
- 1 3-inch cinnamon sticks broken into smaller pieces
- ½ teaspoon black peppercorns
- 10 cloves
- ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
- 3 teaspoons amchur powder
- Lightly roast all spices (except amchur and turmeric powder) in a pan until they are fragrant and hot to the touch, about 2 to 3 minutes. Stir frequently and make sure not to burn by roasting too long. The goal is to make them a bit toasty so they are easy to grind.
- Take out the roasted spices in a dish and allow them to cool down completely.
- Add the spices to a spice grinder and make a fine powder. Add amchur powder and turmeric powder and pulse 2 to 3 times or until mixed well. Store in an airtight container in a cool dry place away from direct sunlight.
- If you do not have amchur powder, you can simply skip it and instead squeeze the fresh lemon juice into the chana masala once it is done cooking.
- Ground cumin can be used instead of whole cumin
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon can be used instead of cinnamon stick
- This recipe makes about 4 oz or half a cup of chana masala spice blend
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This is so good Archana. One of my friend shares her home made channa masala powder and Goda masala. Now I know the channa masala recipe. 🙂 Good share.
Thank you! I hope you like it! Once you have the spice blend ready making Chana masala is simple. I am sharing my Chana masala recipe using this spice blend shortly!
Lynz Real Cooking says
Wow nice spice blend!
Lynz Real Cooking says
Always looking for great spice blends!
Hope you like this one!
Cooking For The Time Challenged says
Thank you! ?
Cooking For The Time Challenged says
This is something I have been trying to make too.?
Hey, I'm kinda late so I hope you are going to see this, how many cinnamon sticks do you use? Are they 3 inch long or do you use 3 sticks? Thank you
Hi Alice, 3 inch long. Let me know how it works out
Just to clarify- this is 3inches total of cinnamon stick?
Only one 3 inch long cinnamon stick.. am i right Archana?
Joan Wallace says
I need to make my mixes from powdered spices. (I only purchase organic due to a health condition and the whole varieties are difficult to find.) Is there any way you can convert your whole spices to powdered measurements?
Hi Joan, sorry for the delay in replying. Here you go. This will make mix 8 to 10 tablespoons of spice mix. Add only 2 at a time taste and add more as needed. IF you do ot have aamchoor powder that is added in the end simply squeeze fresh lemon.
3 tablespoons Kashmiri chili powder
3 tbsp ground coriander
3 tsp ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground pepper
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
Hi! Is there any limit to how long this spice blend can be stored? Thanks!
Usually they stay fresh for 6 months in an airtight container.
Made channa masala with this spice blend yesterday since I was out of my usual store bought spice blend. My son absolutely loved it and said it was better than the usual channa masala I make. I dont think I am ever buying the readymade spice blend again. Very easy and fast to make as well. Thank you 🙂
Thank you! Love when kids enjoy and appreciate real homemade foods.
Hi is it 3 tbsp coriander seeds or tsp? Thank you
yes! 3 tablespoons of coriander seeds
Cooking in Texas says
Hi! I love this recipe! Can we use this spice blend in other recipes with other ingredients (aside from chickpeas)?
Yes! You can use it in many different curries and also it will go well with fish. You can also use it as a rub on chicken and meats
Tom Windelborn says
This is a great spice blend, not just for Chana Masala, but also if you want an easier way to season the poha snack mix! Instead of all the spices in the MOC poha mix, I just put 3 tablespoons of this blend and some extra turmeric into the tempering oil and tossed it with the toasted poha and nuts, and it was very delicious.
What an awesome use of the chana masala spice blend! Love your creativity!
Antonia James says
Excellent recipe. A keeper for sure. I use it whenever garam masala is called for in a recipe (and even when it's not). Thank you! ;o)
You are most welcome!
If I use lemon juice will it be a paste rather than a dry mix
So you add lemon juice when you cook the chana masala curry.