Palak Chana
Palak Chana
5 from 21 votes
Whip up a heart-warming pot of palak chana, a classic Indian dish that combines the nutritious goodness of spinach and lentils. This nourishing meal, deeply rooted in Indian culinary tradition, can bring a bit of exotic flavour into your kitchen. 
Palak Chana

Palak Chana, a delightful and nutritious dish, is a cherished gem in Indian cuisine. Its origins lie deep within the heart of traditional Indian cooking, where the vibrant flavors of spinach and lentils come together in a symphony of taste and texture.

Hailing from the northern regions of India, this recipe has been passed down through generations, evolving and adapting to suit modern palates while retaining its authentic essence.

While Palak Chana may seem daunting to some, it’s surprisingly simple to prepare, making it an ideal choice for both novice and seasoned cooks alike.

With its aromatic blend of spices and wholesome ingredients, this dish offers a flavorful journey that satisfies both the palate and the soul. Whether served as a hearty main course or a comforting side dish, Palak Chana never fails to impress with its rich flavors and nourishing goodness.

Expert Tip: Adjust the amount of spices according to your taste preferences for a personalized flavor profile.


Spinach (Palak): Packed with vitamins and minerals, spinach adds a vibrant green hue and a nutritional boost to the dish, enhancing its overall health benefits.

Lentils (Chana Dal): Lentils provide a hearty texture and a source of plant-based protein, making Palak Chana a satisfying and nutritious meal option.

Oil: Used for sautéing the aromatics and spices, oil helps to infuse the dish with flavor and ensures a rich, well-rounded taste.

Onions: Onions form the base of the curry, adding sweetness and depth of flavor to the dish as they caramelize during cooking.

Garlic Cloves: Garlic lends its distinctive aroma and savory taste, complementing the other spices and enhancing the overall flavor profile of the dish.

Cumin Seeds (Jeera): Cumin seeds impart a warm, earthy flavor and add a subtle nuttiness to the dish, enhancing its aromatic appeal.

Tomatoes: Tomatoes provide a tangy sweetness and help to balance the flavors of the dish, adding a bright and refreshing element to the curry.

Salt & Spices: These spices contribute to the complex flavor profile of Palak Chana, offering a harmonious blend of heat, warmth, and depth

Expert Tip: For a creamier texture, you can blend a portion of the cooked lentils before adding the spinach.

Serving Suggestions

  • Main Course Delight: Serve Palak Chana as the star of your meal, accompanied by a variety of traditional Indian sides. Lay out a spread of fluffy basmati rice, warm chapatis, or crispy naan bread to soak up the flavorful curry. Add a refreshing cucumber and tomato salad tossed in a tangy yogurt dressing to balance the richness of the dish.
  • Family Feast: Gather your loved ones for a memorable family feast centered around Palak Chana. Create a communal dining experience by placing large bowls of Palak Chana, fragrant rice, and assorted chutneys at the center of the table. Encourage everyone to dig in and savor the flavors together, fostering a sense of togetherness and joy.
  • Healthy Lunchbox Option: Pack leftover Palak Chana into individual containers for a nutritious and satisfying lunch on the go. Pair it with whole grain rotis or multigrain crackers for a balanced meal that provides sustained energy throughout the day. Add a side of sliced fruits or veggies for a wholesome touch that will keep you feeling energized and satisfied.
  • Party Pleaser: Impress your guests with a vibrant and flavorful Palak Chana dish at your next gathering. Set up a DIY Indian street food station with all the fixings, including Palak Chana, crispy papadums, tangy tamarind chutney, and cooling mint yogurt sauce. Let guests customize their plates and enjoy the interactive dining experience.
  • Weeknight Dinner Solution: Whip up a quick and delicious dinner with Palak Chana as the hero of your weeknight menu. Serve it alongside steamed basmati rice or quinoa for a fuss-free meal that comes together in no time. Add a side of garlic naan or toasted pita bread for a comforting touch that will leave everyone satisfied and content.

Expert Tip: To enhance the flavor of the dish, add a squeeze of lemon juice just before serving for a burst of freshness.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to cook Palak Chana?

Palak Chana typically takes around 45 minutes to 1 hour to prepare, including prep and cooking time.

Can I use canned lentils instead of dried lentils?

While canned lentils can be used as a shortcut, dried lentils are preferred for their superior texture and flavor.

Can I freeze leftovers of Palak Chana?

Yes, Palak Chana can be frozen in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

Is Palak Chana spicy?

The level of spiciness can be adjusted according to personal preference by varying the amount of chilli powder and green chillies used.

Can I substitute spinach with other greens?

Yes, you can substitute spinach with other leafy greens such as kale or collard greens, although the flavor and texture may vary slightly.

Check Out These Other Recipes

Here are some more recipes for you to enjoy! If you my recipes don’t forget to rate and leave a comment.

If you have any recipe suggestions, please do not hesitate to ask me. A great way to stay in contact with me is through Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Don’t forget to tag me @CookwithNabeela in your recipe photos!

Palak Chana

Palak Chana

by Nabeela Kauser
Whip up a heart-warming pot of palak chana, a classic Indian dish that combines the nutritious goodness of spinach and lentils. This nourishing meal, deeply rooted in Indian culinary tradition, can bring a bit of exotic flavour into your kitchen. 
5 from 21 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 6
Calories 233 kcal


  • 500 g Spinach Palak
  • 200 g Lentils Chana Dal
  • 50 ml Oil
  • 1 Onions
  • 4 Garlic Cloves
  • 2 tsp Cumin Seeds Jeera
  • 2 Tomatoes
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Turmeric Powder Haldi
  • 1 tsp Chilli Powder
  • 2 Green Chillies
  • 200 ml Water


  • Heat up the oil on medium heat in a pan then add the finely diced onions and cook for 4-5 minutes until lightly browned
  • Add the cumin seeds and finely chopped garlic cloves then cook for 1-2 minutes until fragrant
  • Add the onions and cook for 3-4 minutes
  • As the onions are cooking dice the tomatoes then add into the pan and cook for 3-4 minutes until softened
  • Add the salt, chilli powder, turmeric powder, and green chillies then cook the spices for 3-4 minutes
  • As the spices are cooking thoroughly wash the split Bengal gram lentils before adding into the pan and cooking for 5 minutes
  • Add the water then cook for a further 10 minutes
  • As the lentils are cooking wash and finely chop the spinach before adding into the pan and covering then cook for 6-8 minutes
  • Remove the lid and give the curry a mix before reducing the heat to low and covering again then cook for 15 minutes
  • Serve immediately with a side of chapatti and enjoy!



Nutritional facts:
The provision of nutritional information is done so merely as a courtesy and should not be taken as a guarantee.


Calories: 233kcalCarbohydrates: 29gProtein: 12gFat: 9gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0.03gSodium: 517mgPotassium: 942mgFibre: 14gSugar: 3gVitamin A: 8277IUVitamin C: 34mgCalcium: 122mgIron: 6mg
Keyword Cooking, Curry, Food, Lentils, Recipe, Spinach, Vegan, Vegetarian
Tried this recipe?Mention @CookwithNabeela or tag #CookwithNabeela!



Subscribe now to receive my latest recipes directly in your inbox. Stay up-to-date and never miss out!

Latest comments (2)

Nabeela Kauser

5 stars
Thanks for checking out my recipe. If your chana was crunchy, you can cook it slightly longer and also soak it before cooking. Hope this helps 🙂

Cook with Nabeela

Hi, I'm Nabeela!

I love to cook! I want to share with you my favourite, delicious family-friendly recipes. I want to inspire you to create fantastic food for your family every day.

More Recipes

Aloo Ki Sabzi

Aloo Ki Sabzi

Bhindi Do Pyaza

Bhindi Do Pyaza

Chana Biryani

Chana Biryani

Aloo Fry

Aloo Fry

Dal Keema

Dal Keema

Aloo Bhindi

Aloo Bhindi