Chickpea Curry with Cashew Cream

by Steph Sunshine at

Yield4 servings

Prep Time20 minutes

Cook Time25 minutes

Total Time45 minutes


  • 1/2 cup raw, unsalted cashews, soaked
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp. safflower oil or coconut oil
  • 1 cup onion, diced (about 1 medium onion)
  • 2 tbsp. ginger root, minced
  • 2 tbsp. garlic, minced
  • 1 cup tomatoes, diced (about 2 medium tomatoes)
  • 1 can chickpeas (garbanzo beans) (15.5 oz / 439 g)
  • 2 tbsp. maple syrup (optional)
  • 1 tsp. salt (to taste)
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro (coriander), chopped
  • rice or naan, for serving

Spice blend

  • 1 tbsp. ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tbsp. ground coriander
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. ground fenugreek
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cayenne*
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cloves


  1. Blend pre-soaked cashews (soaked for 2 hours, or boiled for 10 minutes) with 3/4 cup water until smooth (2-4 minutes, depending on your blender). Add 1 tbsp. tomato paste and blend until evenly distributed. Set aside.
  2. Add oil to a medium saucepan over medium heat, and cook diced onion until it just begins to brown (about 5 minutes). Then add garlic and ginger and cook another minute.
  3. Add your spice blend to the pan (turmeric, coriander, cumin, fenugreek, cayenne, cinnamon, and cloves), and allow to cook until just fragrant, about 30 seconds. Then add diced tomatoes and cook for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. You may need to add a splash of water when you add the tomatoes, or as they cook, to keep them from drying out.
  4. Add chickpeas, tomato-cashew cream, maple syrup, and salt to the pan, and stir. Reduce heat to medium low, and continue to cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring regularly. Taste and add spices or salt as desired.
  5. Stir chopped cilantro into the curry and cook for 1 minute longer. Serve with basmati rice or naan.

Notes & Hints

This recipe has a mild level of spiciness; for medium heat, use 1/4 tsp. cayenne, or for no heat, omit cayenne.

If your ingredients get too dry at any point during cooking, add a splash of water to the pan.

Turmeric will temporarily stain anything it comes in contact with, including countertops, appliances, dishes, and your hands. Be careful when using it!

I recommend chopping all your vegetables and measuring your spices before starting this recipe, so that each ingredient is ready to go when you need it.

The spice blend can be adapted to your tastes. I often get the best results through experimentation!