Healthy Recipe: Chhole

Diwali is the Hindu festival of lights.  The festival spiritually signifies the victory of good over evil.  Diabetes Educator, Neelu Kohli, shares her recipe for Chhole which she makes during Diwali.  This recipe is a wonderful meatless and gluten-free option, and a great way to learn an easy and tasty Indian dish.


  • Garbanzo Beans – 1 can (drained and rinsed)
  • Red Onions- 1 cup diced
  • Ginger- 1/2″ piece grated
  • Garlic- 3-4 pods grated
  • Tomato paste- 1 1/2 tbsp
  • Fresh tomato- 1/2 cup
  • Green Chilli-1 (optional)
  • Cilantro for garnish

Dry Spices

  • Chili powder- 1 teaspoon
  • Turmeric-1/2 teaspoon
  • Coriander powder-1/2 tsp
  • Mango powder-1/2 tsp
  • Garam Masala- 1 tsp
  • Salt to taste


In a pan heat 1 tbsp of olive oil. Add diced red onion and cook them till they are golden brown.( Takes about 5-6 minutes). Add all the dry spices and sauté if for a 30 seconds. Add chopped  tomatoes and tomato paste. Deglaze the pan with a glass of water. Let the tomatoes absorb the spices and cook for another 5-8 minutes. When you see some oil leaving the sides of your pan, you can add garbanzo beans. Add another cup of water and cover the pan. Let the mixture cook for another 8-10 minutes. Taste for salt and garnish with chopped cilantro.

Serve with Naan or whole wheat chappati, and a side of plain yogurt. Yogurt helps in balancing the spicy flavor of Chhole and has a cooling effect on your palate. You can always modify this recipe for spices as per your personal family preferences.

This recipe is Vegetarian, Gluten- free and a good source of protein.

Nutrition Information: 1 cup of garbanzo beans will provide ~200 kcals, 7 grams of fat, 12 grams of protein, 3-4 grams of fiber, and 30 grams of carbs (2 carb exchanges)