Coconut Curry Chickpeas

$7.44 recipe / $1.86 serving
by Beth - Budget Bytes
4.95 from 34 votes
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Quick curries are my favorite kind of weeknight dinner because they’re incredibly flavorful, require very little effort, and the leftovers are even better the next day. Plus, that creamy curry sauce makes everything taste good, so you can pack them with all sorts of nutrient-dense goodies, like chickpeas and kale. So basically, what I’m trying to say is, you need to make these Coconut Curry Chickpeas ASAP!

Close up overhead view of a bowl full of coconut curry chickpeas with naan bread on the side.

What’s in Coconut Curry Chickpeas

You’ll only need a handful of ingredients to make this warm and hearty dish, most of which you can keep on hand for last-minute dinners. Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make coconut curry chickpeas:

  • Aromatics: onion, garlic, and ginger create a powerful flavor base for this dish.
  • Spices: Curry powder and cumin. If you want a hot curry, you can always add a bit of cayenne pepper, too!
  • Tomato sauce: a little bit of tomato sauce adds just the right amount of acidity to the dish to balance the creamy coconut.
  • Coconut milk: full-fat coconut milk gives the curry sauce a ton of body and provides a creamy base to balance the potent flavors of the spices and aromatics.
  • Chickpeas: Inexpensive chickpeas fill out this dish, providing tons of belly-filling power and good-for-you fiber.
  • Kale: kale adds a little more variety in texture, color, and flavor to this dish. If you’re not into kale, you can substitute with fresh spinach.

What Kind of Curry Powder to Use

Curry powders can vary quite a bit in flavor from brand to brand, so make sure you experiment to find one that you enjoy. I’ve never met a curry powder that I didn’t like, so I don’t have one particular brand to suggest, but you definitely want to make sure it’s fresh! Old spices that have been sitting in your pantry a while begin to lose flavor and become dull and bland with time.

You also have the option to use either hot or mild curry powder. If you enjoy spicy foods you can use a hot curry powder, OR simply add some crushed red pepper or cayenne pepper to the dish when adding the curry powder and cumin.

How to Serve Coconut Curry Chickpeas

This warm and saucy dish is great over rice, or crusty bread or naan for dipping. You definitely want some sort of starchy goodness to soak up all of that sauce! You can also experiment with topping your chickpeas with fresh cilantro or even a squeeze of lime. Something light and refreshing, like Creamy Cucumber Salad, would also pair nicely with these curry chickpeas.

Overhead view of a skillet full of coconut curry chickpeas with a wooden spoon.
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Coconut Curry Chickpeas

4.95 from 34 votes
Coconut Curry Chickpeas are a flavorful and filling easy weeknight dinner packed with chickpeas, kale, and a flavorful creamy curry sauce!
Overhead view of a bowl full of coconut curry chickpeas with a piece of naan.
Servings 4 1.5 cups each
Prep 10 minutes
Cook 25 minutes
Total 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 yellow onion ($0.38)
  • 2 cloves garlic ($0.16)
  • 1 tsp grated fresh ginger ($0.10)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.41)
  • 1.5 Tbsp curry powder ($0.45)
  • 1 tsp cumin ($0.10)
  • 2 15oz. cans chickpeas, drained ($1.58)
  • 1 8oz. can tomato sauce ($0.50)
  • 1 13.5oz. can full-fat coconut milk ($2.99)
  • 4 oz. chopped kale (about 3 cups) ($0.75)

Instructions 

  • Dice the onion, mince the garlic, and grate the ginger. Add the onion, garlic, and ginger to a large deep skillet along with the olive oil. Sauté the aromatics over medium-low heat for about five minutes, or until the onions are soft and translucent.
  • Add the curry powder and cumin to the skillet and continue to stir and cook for about one minute more to toast the spices.
  • Drain the chickpeas, then add them to the skillet along with the tomato sauce and coconut milk. Stir everything to combine.
  • Turn the heat up to medium-high to bring the sauce up to a simmer. Once simmering, turn the heat back down to medium-low and allow the curry to continue to simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the kale and stir it into the sauce. Continue to cook and stir until the kale has wilted to your desired tenderness (I cook for about 5 minutes more). Finally, taste the curry and add salt to taste (about ½ tsp). Serve hot with rice or bread for dipping!

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Nutrition

Serving: 1.5cupsCalories: 615kcalCarbohydrates: 73gProtein: 23gFat: 29gSodium: 316mgFiber: 22g
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Close up side view of a bowl full of coconut curry chickpeas.

How to Make Coconut Curry Chickpeas – Step by Step Photos

Diced onion, minced garlic, and grated ginger in a deep skillet.

Dice one yellow onion, mince two cloves of garlic, and grate about one teaspoon of fresh ginger. Add the onion, garlic, and ginger to a deep skillet along with 2 Tbsp olive oil. Sauté the aromatics over medium-low heat for about five minutes, or until the onion is soft and translucent.

Spices added to the skillet with onions, garlic, and ginger.

Add 1.5 Tbsp curry powder and 1 tsp cumin to the skillet. Continue to stir and cook for about one minute more to toast the spices.

Chickpeas, tomato sauce, and coconut milk added to the skillet.

Drain two cans of chickpeas, then add them to the skillet along with 8 oz. tomato sauce and a 13.5 oz. can of coconut milk (full fat).

Simmered chickpeas in curry sauce.

Stir until everything is evenly combined, turn the heat up to medium-high, and allow the sauce to come up to a simmer. Once simmering, turn the heat down to medium-low and let it continue to simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Fresh kale added to the skillet.

Add 4 oz. (about three cups) of fresh chopped kale to the skillet. I buy the pre-chopped bagged kale to make this easier.

Finished coconut curry chickpeas with wilted kale.

Continue to cook and stir until the kale has wilted to your desired tenderness. I enjoy the kale with a bit more texture, so I only simmer for a few minutes more. Taste the curry and add salt to taste to help the flavors pop (about ½ tsp).

Finished skillet full of coconut curry chickpeas with naan and a wooden spoon.
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Comments

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  1. Excellent! I made this tonight, and just added about a cup of chicken, chopped up, one more can of coconut milk, and about a half a cup of sweetened coconut flakes. Yummy!

  2. So delicious! My dad asked for the recipe. Will make many more times!

  3. I used my trusted garam masala mix. My only regret is not buying any naan-bread to go with this. What a delightful, simple dish. I added green beans for extra added vitamins. I might add tofu or chicken next.

    You always delight me with your recipes. I’m doing better now, but when I didn’t have a big budget, I still was satisfied with the recipes I made from your site. I rarely eat breakfast and lunch is always the same, but you’ve pushed me towards striving for a well-rounded diet that’s also affordable. And your tips and tricks are always true and tried. Many thanks for the happiness you’ve bought me (and all my dinner guests).

    Cheers!

  4. I cook for one, and I’m so busy I rarely have the energy to make something. This is one of my go-to recipes, though. I’ve made it so many times, and I love it! It’s a hot meal with nutritional value, and it tastes great. I usually skip the ginger to save time, and I sub frozen spinach for the kale. ONE MILLION thanks for posting this recipe :)

  5. delicious! added in some carrots bc I had them lying around. my kids ASKED FOR SECONDS!!

  6. This is my favorite of the budgetbytes curry recipes! It’s easy and delicious and can be adjusted a bit depending on what you have on hand. Initially, I made this as written, then tried it again a week later subbing in cooked lentils and frozen spinach for the chickpeas and kale (but keeping the sauce).

    1. I froze these and it worked out great! The thawed version tasted delicious and the texture held up.

  7. This recipe is in my lunch meal prep rotation. Quick, easy, & delicious. You can easily add in more spices to fit your preferences. Great base recipe.

  8. My boyfriend & I were looking for a quick dinner with ingredients we already & this was a winner. We added a few extra seasonings to suit our tastes, but did everything else as described. It’s so good, we’ve already made it a second time. Will definitely be a regular in our rotation.

  9. i’ve made this recipe twice in a week now, and just love it. it is super easy, cheap, but more importantly, DELICIOUS! the only thing i did was add a bit of maple syrup and some lime juice at the end. some cilantro would be great too. enjoy y’all (and thanks Beth)!

  10. I love love love this recipe. So easy and fast, I make it most weeks! Thank you :)

  11. My daughter’s girlfriend made some curry chickpeas without a sauce. She asked how they tasted and I told her they were ok, but needed more seasoning and nextbtime make a sauce. My 3 year old granddaughter eats like a vegetarian and didn’t eat anything on her plate. I put everything in a container and took it to my house. I found this recipe and added a small portion of the ingredients you shared for this recipe and everything turned out awesome. My granddaughter ate her meal andcsaid it was good. I now have a new dish to eat. Thank you for sharing.