Cauliflower and Chickpea Curry | @naturallyella

For me, the key to eating a lot of vegetables is to spice them up. For example, I love cauliflower by itself. But adding a bit of spice can transform it! It becomes something completely different (and slightly magical). In fact, it takes a meal from “Oh, this vegan” to “Oh, this is delicious.” As a result, adding spice can be quite helpful for a vegetarian/vegan diet.

At first, the list of spices here might be a bit scary. But don’t worry! You can easily find what you need at your local health food store. Finally, if you do a quick search online, you will find other curry powders that have fewer spices. Play around a bit and try a few in order to find a combination you love!

The blend below makes more than what you need for this recipe. However, you can store the spice blend in a airtight container for later use.

Cauliflower and Chickpea Curry

Prep Time 20 mins Cook Time 30 mins Serves 4 servings

My favorite chickpea curry recipe with a solid homemade curry powder, chickpeas, and cauliflower to help round out the richness. Serve on your favorite grain!


    Curry Powder

    • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
    • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
    • 1 tablespoon fenugreek
    • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
    • 2 whole cloves
    • 4 teaspoons ground turmeric
    • 2 teaspoons yellow mustard powder (or yellow mustard seeds, ground)
    • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
    • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
    • 1/4 teaspoon celery seeds

    Curry Base

    • 1 tablespoons olive oil
    • 1 small head cauliflower
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 cup full-fat coconut milk
    • 1 to 2 cups low sodium vegetable broth
    • 1 cup cooked chickpeas (drained and rinsed if using canned)
    • a pinch of red pepper flakes

    Serve with

    • Brown Rice
    • Cilantro
    • Greek Yogurt
    • Chutney
    • Chapati
    • Limes


    1. Combine cumin, coriander, fenugreek, and fennel seeds in a skillet and toast over medium heat until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Once toasted, add the spices along with the cloves to a grinder or mortar/pestle. Grind until combined.
    2. Transfer ground spices to a bowl along with remaining spices. Stir until well combined, set aside.
    3. Cut cauliflower into bite-sized pieces, about 3 to 4 cups total. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat and add minced garlic. Saute for 1 minute and then add cauliflower, 3 tablespoons of the curry powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pinch red pepper flakes. Stir until well combined. Then add 1 cup coconut milk, 1 cup vegetable broth and chickpeas. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and let cook for 20 to 30 minutes. While cooking, add more vegetable broth as need to keep a desired consistency.
    4. Serve with brown rice and your favorite toppings.


    Recipe Notes

    Tips & Tricks: Can't find whole spices? I've also used all pre-ground spices before with good success. It's a great blend to have on hand when you want a bit of curry flavoring. Like on popcorn- so good!

    Stock up: get the pantry ingredients you will need: cauliflower, coconut milk, chickpeas

    Nutrition: see the information.

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    Chickpea Curry


    Recently, my curries have become akin to pizza or tacos. While I have favorites, I’ll often check the refrigerator and use the vegetables I have on hand. Then, dinner goes from there. In general, the curry powder is what makes the difference. However, the toppings are a close second. Some additions/substitutions include:

    Vegetables: I love cauliflower in curries. But other vegetables also work well including sweet potatoes, regular potatoes, peas, squash, greens or asparagus.

    Chutney: I always have chutney my refrigerator. In particular, I usually have tomato, apple, or fig chutney. However, the type of chutney you make is really up to you. Around this time of year, I really love the apple version to pair with chickpea curry.

    Grains: To serve the curry, I typically use brown rice. However, quinoa, cracked freekeh, or millet are also great bases for this chickpea curry. With this meal, I avoid longer cooking grains such as whole wheat berries or sorghum.

    Chickpea Curry with Cauliflower | @naturallyella

    Recipe first published on February 25th, 2013. Last updated on September 6th, 2015.

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