Vegan chickpea curry recipe

An easy vegan chickpea curry recipe with creamy coconut sauce, fragrant Indian spices, and steamed basmati rice. A comforting and healthy vegan dinner for any time of the week.

Vegan coconut chickpea curryVegan coconut chickpea curry

This simple vegan chickpea curry is the best easy vegan recipe to get all your plant-based protein in one meal. If you just started your vegan journey, chickpea curry is a must-try. It is easy to make even for beginners, it’s tasty and everyone loves them.

How to make chickpea curry vegan?

The best vegan chickpea curry recipe is creamy, with a thick tomato coconut sauce, full of fragrant spices and soft chickpeas.

Vegan coconut chickpea curry ingredients

Let’s see all the simple ingredients you need to make this creamy chickpea curry vegan and gluten-free!

  • Canned chickpeas – a can of chickpea is about 15 oz and it’s the fastest way to make an easy chickpea curry. Open the can, drain the chickpeas over a sieve and rinse quickly before using them in the recipe. If you want to use dried chickpeas, read my paragraph below on how to cook dried chickpeas for a curry recipe.
  • Canned coconut Cream – not coconut beverage! the canned coconut cream or canned coconut milk are thicker and usually don’t contains additives like sugar or thickener. That’s is why canned coconut products are the best option to make a thick coconut curry sauce.
  • Onion
  • Garlic
  • Tomato paste – this helps to thicken the sauce.
  • Canned diced tomatoes – one can is about 15 oz.
  • Spices – the combination of spices is the key to a tasty fragrant curry:
    • Paprika
    • Cumin
    • Curry powder – you can swap by garam masala for Indian curry flavor.
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper or chili powder.
  • Fresh ginger
  • Fresh lime Juice
  • Fresh cilantro – or replace by fresh Italian flat parsley if you don’t like the flavor of cilantro.

Cooking the onion, garlic & ginger

The first step to making the best chickpea coconut curry is to prepare the sauce. A curry sauce always starts by cooking onion, garlic, and ginger over medium heat in olive oil.

Make the curry paste

When the mixture is fragrant and onions browns and soft, stir in spices and tomato paste and keep cooking. This will form a thick, fragrant curry paste. Frying the spices in olive oil with tomato paste not only enhance the curry sauce flavor but also help to thicken the sauce without adding starchy flours.

Forming the coconut curry sauce

Stir in the liquid ingredients to dissolve the curry paste and form a creamy sauce. Add in canned coconut cream or milk, canned diced tomatoes, stir, and continue to cook until sauce is bubbly and simmer.

Creamy chickpea curry vegan

Adding vegetables

Now that the sauce is ready, feel free to add some optional vegetables. Add 1 or 2 cups of soft and hard vegetables following the recommendation below.

Soft vegetables

Soft vegetables below cook well in the sauce and don’t require pre-cooking.

  • Spinach leaves – if they are large, roughly chop before adding or add frozen spinach.
  • Eggplant – peel, and chop into small cubes.
  • Diced capsicum – any color works well.
  • Peas fresh or frozen
  • Mushrooms – feet removed, sliced.

Hard vegetables

If you want to add harder vegetables make sure you steam or roast them before or they won’t cook well in the sauce. Some of the best vegetables to add to curries are:

  • Cauliflower florets
  • Potatoes – peeled, diced in small cubes.
  • Sweet potatoes – peeled, diced in small cubes.
  • Broccoli florets

Adding chickpeas

Finally, stir in the canned chickpeas and continue cooking for 20- 30 minutes or until cooked chickpeas.

Easy vegan chickpea curry recipe

How to serve chickpea curry?

This easy vegan curry chickpea recipe is delicious served with about 1/2 cup of steamed rice like:

  • Basmati rice
  • Jasmine rice
  • Brown rice

Or healthier grain:

  • Quinoa – red or white quinoa
  • Bulgur
  • Farro 
  • Millet

Or low-carb vegetables:

  • Cauliflower rice – simply pulse fresh cauliflower florets into a ‘rice’ like texture in a food processor. Stir fry in olive oil and serve as a low-carb vegan side to curry.
  • Broccoli rice – same technique as above but using fresh broccoli florets.

Or flatbread:

Below I listed my top 3 vegan flatbread recipes to serve with this curry. Choose the one that matches your diet requirement the best.

Can I use dried chickpeas in curry?

Yes, you can use dried chickpeas or garbanzo beans in a curry recipe. However, you must soak or precook the dried beans before adding to a curry recipe.

vegan chickpea curry recipe

How long to soak dried chickpeas?

Soaking dried chickpeas is time-consuming and requires patience. Below I listed the 2 ways you can prepare dried chickpeas for curry recipes.

  • Overnight soak – add the dried chickpeas to a bowl and cover with cold water. Soak overnight or at least 12 hours.
  • Quick soak – add the dried chickpeas in a saucepan and simmer for 3 hours.

You can also cook dried chickpeas. Below I listed how long to cook dried chickpeas to use in a chickpea curry recipe.

  • In a Slow cooker – cook for 4 hours on high heat.
  • In an Instant pot – cook for 1 hour.

How much dried chickpeas is equivalent to 1 cup of canned chickpeas?

Dried chickpeas soak the water they are immersed into and triple in size. It means that:

  • 1 cup of dried chickpeas is equivalent to 3 cups of canned chickpeas.

This vegan curry recipe uses 2 cans of 15 oz chickpeas. It makes about 3 cups of canned chickpeas so you must soak 1 cup of dried chickpeas for this recipe.

More easy vegan dinner recipes

If you love a quick easy vegan dinner recipes, I recommend you also try one of my other recipes below.

Vegan butter 'chicken' style curry with tofu
4.79 from 19 votes
An easy vegan butter chicken recipe made with chewy marinated tofu pieces cooked in a spiced tomato creamy sauce. The best vegan Indian curry recipe for cold days.
Serves: 8
Prep Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Check out this recipe
How to make vegan butter chicken
Red lentil pasta recipe
4.81 from 21 votes
An easy, healthy 30 minutes vegan dinner with a thick red lentil tomato sauce with Italian spices and pasta.
Serves: 6
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Check out this recipe
red lentil pasta easy dinner
Vegan creamy mushroom pasta
4.81 from 31 votes
A creamy vegan pasta recipe with cashew pasta cream
Serves: 6
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Check out this recipe
VEGAN MUSHROOM PASTA EASY Cashew Sauce #veganmushroompasta #creamymushroompasta #mushroompasta #mushroom #pasta #veganpasta #easy #creamy #cashewsauce #cashew #healthy #simple

If you love this recipe, share a review or comment below! I love to hear your feedback. Also, join me on Pinterest for more vegan recipes inspiration.

Your friend, Carine

Easy vegan chickpea curry

An easy vegan chickpea coconut curry with a creamy sauce and delicious healthy vegan dinner served with basmati rice or cauliflower rice.
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American, Indian
Diet: Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword: chickpea coconut curry recipe, chickpea curry recipe, easy vegan curry, easy vegan dinner, healthy vegan recipes, vegan chickpea curry recipe, vegan curry recipe, vegan dinner recipe
Servings: 6 people
Author: Carine
4.83 from 17 votes


  • 2 tablespoons Olive oil
  • 1 Small Yellow onion - finely diced
  • 3 cloves Garlic - Crushed
  • 1/2 inch Minced fresh ginger - or 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 small Red Capsicum - - finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon Paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon Cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon Curry powder - or turmeric
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) Crushed tomatoes
  • 2 cans (2 x 15 oz) Canned chickpeas - drained, rinsed
  • 1 can (15 oz) Coconut cream - or canned coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoons Lime juice
  • 1 handful Fresh cilantro - - finely chopped


  • In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium heat.
  • Add chopped onion, garlic, and ginger. Cook, stirring often until onion soften and brown, about 2 minutes
  • Stir in tomato paste along with all the spices: paprika, cumin, curry powder, and salt. Continue to cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly to form a thick curry paste.
  • Stir in diced tomatoes and canned coconut cream to form a smooth coconut curry sauce.
  • Stir in diced red capsicum and canned chickpeas.
  • Cover the pot and reduce heat to bring to a light simmer. Continue cooking for 20-30 minutes, stirring once in a while until chickpea are soft and cooked.
  • Turn off heat and stir in fresh lime juice and fresh cilantro
  • Serve with basmati rice on the side or cauliflower rice for a low-carb option.


  • Store in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer.
  • Rewarm in the microwave or in a saucepan.


Dried chickpeas - read my blog post above for instructions and measurement to use dried chickpeas.
Can I add vegetables to my curry?
Yes, you can add 1-2 cups of soft or hard vegetables in the curry sauce at the same time you add the canned chickpeas. 
  • Soft vegetables: spinach, mushrooms, capsicum, peeled cubed eggplants.
  • Hard vegetables must be precooked - steaming or roasting method. The best matches with this curry are peeled cubed potatoes/sweet potatoes, cauliflower/broccoli florets.


Serving: 1serve

Easy Vegan Chickpea Curry Recipe

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