Chickpea, also known as Chana in India, Chana is one of the few items that can be utilized as a main course, a healthy snack on a quiet weekend, or simply something to chew on to alleviate boredom hunger.
These globules, also known as Chole in Northern India, are not only a staple of Indian food, but also the backbone of Indian agriculture, as India produces 67% of the world’s total chickpeas.
Kala Chana and Kabuli Chana are the two most common types in India. They are also known as Bengal gramme, garbanzo, garbanzo bean, and Egyptian pea. These tasty legumes are also known as Kondaikadali in Tamil, Senagalu in Telugu, Kadala in Malayalam, and Kadale in Kannada.
Though India is one of the world’s leading producers of chickpeas today, its origins may be traced back to the 13th century. While the ancient name Chickpea is derived from the French words chiche and cicer, the contemporary term Garbanzo derives directly from Spanish. Chickpeas have long held a key place in Western food and medicine.
Until the 17th century, roasted and ground chickpeas were brewed in Europe as a replacement for coffee. Chickpeas were connected with Venus, the Roman Goddess of beauty and love, around 800 AD, since they promote fertility by boosting sperm production, inducing menstruation, and nursing.
Despite the fact that most chickpeas are black and white, scientists have uncovered more than 90 genotypes, including wild species.
Chickpeas are a pulse that grows on a 20 to 50 cm tall plant with little leaves that resemble feathers on either side of the stem. The plant produces white blooms with pink, violet, and blue lines, and each seedpod contains two to three pods.
Chickpeas vary in size, variety, and texture depending on locale. Garbanzo or Kabuli chana varieties that are white in colour are widely grown in India and Italy. Kala Chana, also known as desi chana, is a popular type that appears black, dry, and shrivelled. It is sold in little globules and is hulled and divided to produce chana dal.
During Dasara Navaratri, it is usual in Southern India to present ‘Sundal’ – boiling chana with oil, mustard, and jeera spice – to the Goddess Durga, but North Indians eat Chole Masala – a spicy sauce – all year.
Kala Chana Nutrition in 1 Cup
Kala Chana is a kind of legume that is high in protein, fibre, and carbs. It is high in vitamins B6, C, folate, niacin, thiamin, riboflavin, and minerals including manganese, phosphorus, iron, and copper. The abundance of nutrients in Kala Chana benefits the immune system, promotes muscular mass, manages diabetes, and improves hair, skin, and nail health.
*According to the USDA
How To Best Choose Chickpeas?
Choose dry chickpeas wherever possible. Kala Chana has a dark and rough texture, whereas Kabuli Chana has smooth exteriors. Check that the peas are not shrivelled. If you choose canned chickpeas, read the label to learn about other ingredients such as salt. To manage blood pressure, choose those with lower salt content.
If you want to sprout chickpeas, soak them overnight, then drain and pat dry the next morning. Allow it to dry at room temperature for two days before sprouting. You may also soak chickpeas for two days and use them in curries, dals, and salads.
Kala Chana In Ayurveda:
Kala Chana, also known as Chanaka in Ayurveda and classified as a legume – Shimbi Dhanya Varga, is an excellent source of protein. Include this in your daily diet not only for its nutritional worth, but also to help avoid a variety of health problems such as excessive cholesterol, liver enlargement, mouth ulcers, skin illnesses, and so on.
Interestingly, depending on how they are cooked, chickpeas have distinct effects on the body. According to Ayurveda, Kala Chana balances the three doshas – vata, kapha, and pitta – and is far superior to white or kabuli chana.
Chana is described in traditional medicine as astringent to taste with Shita Virya or cold potency, dry in nature, simple to digest but causes constipation. While it efficiently balances pitta and kapha doshas, it also raises vata dosha and is advised for people who have high body temperatures or blood-related disorders.
Boiled And Steamed Kala Chana:
Adrabhista is Kala Chana that has been soaked in water for more than 8 hours and then cooked in boiling water till soft. It helps to improve immunity, physical strength, and taste senses. When these legumes are cooked and then steamed for a few minutes, the pitta and kapha doshas are balanced.
Dry Roasted Kala Chana:
Shushkabrishta is the name given to Kala Chana after it has been soaked in water overnight and roasted dry. According to Bhavaprakasha Nighantu, consuming these legumes might worsen skin issues and promote vata dosha due to their extremely dry nature.
Slightly Roasted Kala Chana:
According to Dhavantari Nighantu, Kala Chana roasted in a small amount of oil makes the body feel lighter after eating, flushes away AMA or metabolic toxins, and alleviates extreme weariness.
Deep-Fried Kala Chana
Deep-fried Kala Chana, according to Raja Nighantu, balances Vata and Kapha imbalances, relieves cold, enhances tongue and taste bud function, and is simple to digest.
Wet Kala Chana:
Kala Chana can also be enjoyed without being cooked. Soak it overnight until soft, then take a handful with breakfast to improve sperm count, digestion, and flavour. However, eat in moderation to avoid diarrhoea.
Kala Chana Benefits:
Black chickpeas provide several health advantages. These legumes, which are complex carbohydrates, include both soluble and insoluble fibre and help the digestive tract operate. Boiling black chickpeas takes a long time, therefore it’s best to pressure boil these small globules to save time and nutrition.
How To Cook Kala Chana:
1 cup Kala Chana soaked overnight or 8 hours
The saturated chana should be washed.
Add soaked chana and 2 cups water to a pressure cooker.
Cook till 7–8 whistles. Turn off the heat. Allow it to cool.
Drain the water from the boiled chana. Cook or eat as desired
What are the benefits of eating kala chana?
20 Chickpea Health Benefits Supported by Science
1. Lowers Cholesterol Levels:
Chickpeas are rich in soluble fibre, which prevents bile acids from being taken into the body and lowers LDL cholesterol and total triglyceride levels. In reality, research show that the dietary fibre content of black chana is significantly greater and beneficial when compared to other legumes.
2. Rich In Iron:
If you have anaemia, you should include boiled and roasted Kala Chana in your diet. It is essential for increasing haemoglobin levels in order to carry oxygen to various body areas. Because it is high in iron, it is also suggested in moderation for pregnant and breastfeeding women.
3. A Phytochemical Powerhouse:
Carbohydrates, amino acids, proteins, flavonoids, iron, phosphate, chloride, and other phytochemicals are found in black chana. These phytochemicals act as antioxidants and help to prevent cancer. Black chickpeas help to strengthen bones and prevent hot flushes in menopausal women.
4. Protein Source:
Kala Chana is a fantastic protein source. If you are a vegetarian who is concerned about finding a protein source, black chickpeas can help. It contains 11 grammes per 100 grammes of serving and aids in tissue repair, biochemical reaction management, connective framework of certain structures in skin, hair, and nails, and keeps bones and ligaments stronger.
5. Aids in Digestion:
The high fibre content of Kala Chana assists in digestion. It provides bulk, avoids constipation, and reduces intestinal tension. To avert different digestive issues, Ayurveda recommends eating a fistful of soaked black beans in the morning.
6. Is chana good for diabetes?
Yes, Chana is good for diabetes. The complex carbohydrates in black chana decompose slowly, and the soluble fibre limits sugar absorption in the blood. Chickpeas have a low glycemic index of 28, which minimises blood sugar spikes and keeps you fed for longer periods of time, minimising hunger pains.
7. Stimulates Weight Loss:
It is common knowledge that meals high in fibre help to reduce appetite and aid in weight loss. Soluble fibre promotes bile excretion, which aids digestion, whereas insoluble fibre avoids constipation. Traditional medicine practitioners recommend drinking water cooked with chickpeas to suppress hunger and minimise calorie intake.
8. Keeps Heart Healthy:
Chickpeas that are black in colour include a high concentration of antioxidants, anthocyanins, cyanidin, delphindin, and phytonutrients that aid in the maintenance of healthy blood vessels. Because they are high in folate, magnesium, and other minerals, these legumes help to reduce the production of plaque in the arteries and blood clots. To maintain optimum cardiovascular health, include black chana in your diet at least twice a day.
9. Brings Down Inflammation:
Inflammation is a chronic condition induced by a variety of conditions, including stress. Several studies show that eating at least four servings of Kala Chana can enhance metabolism and reduce inflammation due to its high concentration of minerals such as Vitamin A, Vitamins C, B6, protein, magnesium, iron, and selenium, all of which help to combat chronic inflammation.
10. Effectively Heals Jaundice:
Kala chana, which is high in proteins, is an effective natural cure for jaundice, a condition caused by the liver’s inability to handle blood, either owing to infection or a reduction in hepatic functioning. Consuming black chickpeas soaked in water with jaggery helps to restore normal liver functions in cases of jaundice fever, supporting smooth filtration of harmful wastes in blood and feeding hepatic cells.
11. Elevates Brain Functions:
Kala chana is high in vitamin B6, also known as pyridoxine, and choline. These provide excellent health benefits by boosting the transfer of impulses to and from the brain via nerves and improving memory, mood, and attention. Furthermore, selenium, a trace mineral found in kala chana, has antioxidant properties that prevent damaging free radicals and pollutants from oxidising healthy cells in the brain system, as well as preventing neurodegenerative illnesses like as dementia and Alzheimer’s.
12. Strengthens Bones And Joints:
Kala chana’s abundant calcium and magnesium reserves ensure adequate intake of important minerals for enhancing bone density and improving joint flexibility. Including this nutritious legume in moderation in one’s daily diet lowers the incidence of arthritis, osteoporosis, and other debilitating diseases in old life. Furthermore, kala chana contains iron, which is necessary for the formation of collagen, a protein that is important for fortifying bones and joints.
13. Black Chana For Skin Diseases:
The skin advantages of black chana are extensive, and it is really suggested for treating a variety of skin disorders.
14. Reduces White Spots In Leukoderma:
Leukoderma is a skin disorder characterised by a lack of pigmentation on the skin. It is an autoimmune condition that mostly affects healthy skin, resulting in white spots. Ayurvedic experts advocate soaking black chickpeas overnight in water with 1 teaspoon triphala churna and eating them after sprouting.
If this therapy is followed for a month, it will provide excellent outcomes and reduce white areas on the skin.
15. Treats Fungal Infections:
Black chickpeas are an effective treatment for fungal diseases such as ringworm, which can cause extreme irritation on the skin. Ringworm can develop on the scalp, foot, or even the crotch. To minimise fungal infections, doctors recommend consuming soaked and cooked Kala Chana without salt on a regular basis.
17. Arrests Hair Fall:
Kala Chana is an excellent source of Vitamin B6 and zinc, both of which are essential for healthy hair development. These minerals are important for the formation of protein in the hair follicles, which helps to strengthen the hair.
18. Clears Dandruff:
If you have dandruff, use black chana flour mixed with water to your scalp and wash it off after 30 minutes. This treatment not only removes dandruff but also adds lustre to the hair.
19. Prevents Grey Hair:
Many youngsters experience premature greying of their hair. Include Kala Chana in your daily diet since the protein and manganese in these legumes prevent pigmentation changes and reduce the greying of hair.
20. Kala Chana For Skin and Hair:
If your mother or grandma ever told you that you should use besan powder combined with milk or rosewater to have glowing skin, take them at their word.
Face packs made from chickpea flour are a tried-and-true beauty remedy that is extensively used and recognised for its numerous cosmetic benefits all over the world. Chickpea flour is created by grinding dried black gramme or chana dal into a fine powder and passing it through a cotton cloth or a sieve.
It contains high alkaline content and is recognised for cleaning blocked skin pores from the inside out. It also eliminates excess oil and keeps skin moist.
The following is the basic chickpea flour face pack:
Besan And Kasturi Turmeric Face Pack:
2 tablespoons fine chickpea flour
12 tablespoon Kasturi turmeric powder
1 teaspoon rose water
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Make a paste using chickpea flour, turmeric powder, rose water, and lemon juice in a mixing basin. If necessary, add a little water.
Apply a small coating to the face and neck and let it to dry.
It should be washed and dried with lukewarm water.
Besan or chickpea flour works wonderfully for eliminating tan and giving the face an immediate radiance. Kasturi turmeric powder is a unique substance with strong anti-septic qualities. It clears acne and protects against fungal infections. Rosewater calms the skin, cures acne, and relieves inflammation. Lemon juice clears blemishes and unclogs congested pores.
Chickpea Flour & Multani Mitti Face Pack
1 teaspoon chickpea flour
1 teaspoon multani mitti (Fuller’s Earth)
Make a fine paste of chickpea flour, multani mitti, and water.
Apply it to the face and neck evenly.
After 15 minutes, wash it. Do not use soap.
Chickpea flour gives skin an immediate shine and removes tan, whilst multani mitti removes excess oil and blemishes. Both of these substances open congested skin pores and enhance blood circulation.
Kala Chana Recipes:
Kala Chana is a common item in Indian homes. For Hindus, it also has religious importance. On auspicious days like as Dasara Navratri and festivals, ladies exchange soaked Kala Chana, which is said to bring wealth.
Because of its multiple health advantages, both traditional and modern medical practitioners strongly advise incorporating it into one’s regular diet.
Due to its gluten-free and high protein qualities, baked goods produced with black chickpea flour have grown in popularity in recent years. We’ve prepared two classic Kala Chana dishes that are popular in India.
Traditional Black Chana Salad (Sundal)
1 cup or 250 grammes soaked and soft black chana
1 teaspoon oil
12 teaspoon mustard seeds
12 teaspoon urad dal
12 teaspoon hing 12 teaspoon turmeric
Season with salt to taste
- Pressure In 2 cups of water, simmer soaked Kala Chana for 7 to 8 whistles.
- Drain the chickpeas and set them aside.
- Add oil, mustard seeds, urad dal, turmeric, and hing to a kadhai.
- Give it a good shake. Allow it to boil for 3 minutes with the lid closed.
- Season with salt to taste and serve hot.
This tried-and-true dish with chickpeas and urad dal is strong in protein and delivers quick energy. It is, in reality, a type of salad from India. Turmeric has anti-inflammatory and anti-fungal properties, while hing and mustard assist with digestion.
Kerala Kadala Curry
Soak 1 cup black chickpeas overnight
1/2 cup fresh grated coconut
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
2 to 3 green chilies
1 teaspoon each ginger and garlic Paste
12 cup coarsely chopped onion
12 cup coarsely chopped red tomato
1 tablespoon coriander powder
12 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon red chilli powder
2 tablespoons coconut oil
ten to twelve curry leaves
1 teaspoon garam masala powder
Season with salt to taste
1 tablespoon coconut oil
12 teaspoon mustard seeds
ten to twelve curry leaves
2 to 3 dry red chilies
- Pressure Cook soaking chana for 6 to 8 whistles in 2 cups of water.
Dry roast the fresh coconut till it gets brown. Transfer to a blender, add a little water, and process until smooth.
- Heat the coconut oil in a kadai, then add the mustard seeds, curry leaves, ginger and garlic paste, and cook for a minute.
- Cook until the onions, tomato, and green chilli are soft.
- Combine all of the ground spices, including the turmeric, chilli powder, and garam masala.
- Now, add the cooked Kala chana and water.
- Cook for 10 minutes on medium heat with the lid closed.
- Mash a few chanas and return them to the gravy.
- For tempering, add mustard, curry leaves, dried red chilli and combine it with gravy
- Allow the gravy to boil for 5 minutes before serving with puttu, idiappam, appam, or roti.
Kadala Curry is a classic Malayali cuisine that is high in protein, vitamins, and other elements. While chole is high in fibre, coconut is high in monosaturated good fats that help keep the heart healthy. The use of several ground spices to this meal boosts immunity, aids digestion, and provides quick energy.
Though Kala Chana has several health and nutritional advantages, it is best used in moderation. Diarrhea, gas, cramps, and bloating may occur due to the high fibre content. It is not suggested for people who have severe legume allergies. Consult a doctor right once if you develop skin rashes, headaches, or a cough after consuming Kala Chana.
F & Q about Chana (Chickpea)
Which chana is high in protein?
Desi kala Chana is High in Proteins.
Is chana a protein or carb?
Chana is highr in Protein and less in carb. For vegans, brown chana is the finest protein option. 3 grammes of protein are found in 28 grammes of brown chana. A vegetarian food source that contains such a high quantity of plant-based protein is uncommon.
Kala Chana nutritional value per 100g?
Does chana increase weight?
An expert in Ayurveda claims that “Chana, with the outer shell, can supply you a high amount of protein and fibre, which are known to keep you satiated for longer as they take time to digest. As it helps a person consume less calories overall, it is the ideal snack for weight loss.
Is chana good for liver?
Kala chana, which is high in proteins, is a great natural treatment for jaundice, a condition caused by the liver’s inability to process blood owing to infection or a reduction in hepatic functioning.
Is black or white chana better?
Kabuli Chana is superior to Kala Chana in terms of bone health and strength maintenance. Kabuli chana strengthens your bones. Kabuli Chana is abundant in iron and calcium, both of which are essential for bone strength. Because of a shortage of calcium in your body, osteoporosis can develop in your bones.
Which is better boiled chana or soaked chana?
“Soaked black chana is a wonderful source of nutrients like potassium and magnesium which can assist to avoid high blood pressure and lower harmful cholesterol levels, so improving heart health.” Additionally, consuming black chana on a daily basis promotes the formation of butyrate, a fatty acid that decreases inflammation.
How much chana should I eat a day?
What Serving Size of Roasted Chana Is Healthy? 100 grammes, or around two bowls, of chana, would be the recommended daily intake. This will guarantee a maximum impact on weight reduction, preserve the body’s fibre content, and maximise the use of chana’s health advantages.
Kala Chana or Black Chickpeas are a superfood packed with protein, vitamins, and minerals that can help us achieve our daily nutritional needs. These bean miracles are a must-have component in Indian cuisine and may be turned into delectable meals. The chickpea flour derived from Kala Chana is an excellent component in cosmetics. Face masks prepared from chickpea flour are popular among people of all ages. However, while ingesting these legumes, moderation is essential because they might induce digestive disorders such as gas, diarrhoea, and nausea. Choose black chana for your daily protein intake.