On the table in 35 minutes, this creamy cauliflower and chickpea curry recipe with coconut milk and store cupboard spices is a flavour packed healthy vegan curry that kids love.
Why we love this recipe
- Chickpea curries such as this one are easy, healthy, can be meal prepped on the weekend for the week ahead or frozen, and the whole family enjoy them.
- Using fragrant spices rather than hot and spicy ones, as well as adding creamy coconut milk is a great way of making curries kid friendly.
- Like my mushroom curry, this vegan curry is rich, filling, and enjoyed by the meat eaters in the house.
- It is a great make ahead meal prep recipe too: cool then place into containers and store in the fridge then heat through and serve.
Ingredients notes and substitutions
- Cauliflower – Cauliflower is such a great vegetable to make a curry with. It soaks up all that flavourful curry sauce and adds texture.
- Chickpeas – Canned chickpeas. This store cupboard staple is budget friendly, packed with protein, and in our house, is a legume that everyone enjoys. You can use another tinned bean such as kidney beans or butter beans to make this curry.
- Tinned / canned tomatoes – Diced or crushed tomatoes, or if you only have plum tomatoes then break them up with a spoon.
- Coconut milk – I recommend using full fat coconut milk in this curry recipe. Not only does it make the curry creamier, but is less likely to split.
- Cardamom pods / seeds – Green cardamom pods add a slight citrusy warmth to the curry. If you don’t have them you can leave them out.
- Spices – Ground cumin, ground coriander, turmeric, and chilli powder. If you don’t have all these spices, you can substitute with 1 – 2 teaspoons of mild curry powder.
- Garlic – Instead of 2 cloves of fresh garlic you can use 1 teaspoon jarred crushed garlic.
- Ginger – If you don’t have fresh ginger, you can substitute with 2 teaspoons of jarred crushed ginger or pureed ginger.
- Garam masala – This Indian spice mix is added at the end of cooking as a seasoning. If you don’t have it feel free to leave it out.
How to make this vegan curry
Note: For full detailed recipe please scroll down to the recipe card at the end of the post.
- Cook the diced onion in the oil with the cardamom pods over a low-medium heat until the onion is soft.
- Add crushed garlic and grated ginger and cook for a minute before adding the dried spices (apart from the garam masala).
- Tip in the tinned / canned tomatoes, water, and chopped cauliflower florets and stalks, then cover with the saucepan lid and cook for 18-20 minutes until the cauliflower is cooked but still has some bite to it.
- TIP: covering with a lid helps the cauliflower to cook evenly.
- Pour in the coconut milk, chickpeas and garam masala and cook for 5 minutes until heated through.
- Check for seasoning and serve.
Garam masala is a spice blend widely used in Indian cooking made form cinnamon, coriander, cumin, mace, peppercorns and cardamom. It’s typically added at the end of cooking the dish to retain the flavours of the spices.
Yes you can. Thaw slowly – overnight in the fridge should do it – if you try to heat whilst still frozen it can change texture and become a little soft and mushy.
My recipe tips
- How to cut cauliflower stalks for the curry:
- Peel the woody end of the stalk (no need to peel higher up the stalk as the skin isn’t as tough.) Cut the stalk in to 1 cm (⅓ inch) squares.
- Chilli powder – I often use a small pinch of chilli powder to make this cauliflower chickpea curry recipe suitable for my toddler son, but if you want a spicier cauliflower curry then add a little more chilli powder. Not too much though otherwise it will not be pleasant!
- Fridge: Store in the fridge, in a Tupperware or covered dish for up to 3 days.
- Freeze: cool the curry completely then place in to sealable bags or containers. Freeze for up to 6 weeks and defrost in the fridge overnight. Make sure it’s fully defrosted before you heat to avoid the cauliflower from going soft.
- Cauliflower potato and chickpea curry – if you want to add potatoes to the chickpea cauliflower curry, peel and cut 150g-200g (5.25 oz – 7 oz) potatoes in to 1 cm (½ inch) cubes and add with the cauliflower florets.
More recipes with chickpeas
Chickpea and Cauliflower Curry
- 1 Large saucepan with lid
- 1 tablespoon oil (vegetable oil or rapeseed oil) ($0.08 / £0.03p)
- 1 brown onion, finely chopped ($0.45 / £0.10p)
- 2 cardamom pods ($0.12 / £0.04p)
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed ($0.26 / £0.05p)
- 2.5cm (1 inch) fresh ginger, finely grated ($0.25 / £0.06p)
- small pinch chilli powder ($0.02 / £0.01)
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin ($0.20 / £0.08p)
- 2 teaspoons ground coriander ($0.28 / £0.10p)
- ½ teaspoon turmeric ($0.04 / £0.02p)
- 1 medium cauliflower (approx 500g – stalks and florets) ($3.90 / £0.90p)
- 400g (14 oz) tin / can chopped tomatoes ($0.75/ £0.28p)
- 60ml (¼c) water
- 400ml (1 ⅔ c) coconut milk ($0.95/ £0.82p)
- 400g (14oz) tin / can chickpeas ($0.80 / £0.37p)
- 2 teaspoons garam masala, plus extra for serving ($0.24 / £0.04p)
- handful fresh coriander, to serve, optional ($1.10 / £0.40)
- salt ($0.01/ £0.01p)
- Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over a low heat and cook the chopped onion and cardamom pods until the onion is soft – around 10 mins.
- While the onion is cooking, cut up the cauliflower. Break the florets in to medium sized florets, cut the leaves in to 1 cm (⅓ inch) strips and cut the stalk into chickpea-sized cubes (approx 1cm / ⅓ inch).
- Add the crushed garlic and finely grated ginger and cook for 1 minute before adding the chilli powder, ground cumin, ground coriander, and turmeric.
- Pour in the chopped tomatoes and 60ml / ¼ c water then add the cauliflower florets and chopped cauliflower stalks and the salt.
- Place the lid on the pan, turn the heat up and bring to a boil then turn the heat down to medium and simmer, covered, for 18-20 minutes, until the cauliflower is just tender but still with some bite.
- Pour in the coconut milk, then add the chickpeas and garam masala.
- Heat through for 5 minutes then serve.
- Serve with rice, naan, chapatis. Sprinkle with fresh coriander and a pinch more garam masala sprinkled over.