Vegan Chickpea Tikka Masala with Pineapple
Happy Hump Day Healthee’s! Can you even deal with the fact that it’s way past mid April and it’s gonna be May (said in my best Justin Timberlake voice)!? Seriously, where does the time go. Ok so this is my last week of school for the semester and I’m so looking forward to summer break. I’m all like bring it on summer, I’m ready for ya. I’ve been exercising more, eating cleaner so I can be leaner and meaner come swimsuit season.👙
When I was in my early twenties (oh the memories) I would lose weight so easily. A little cardio, a little cut back on the junk food and bam, I was a hot tamale. Now, I’m 35 and to shed 1 freakin’ pound has me all like please lawd have mercy on me! 😩 It’s hard to lose weight the older we get. Our bodies LOVE fat, so it holds onto it for dear life. Of course right, the one thing we want to lose most our bodies would love, figures. That’s why it’s important to not gain unwanted weight to begin with but it’s life, shit happens, cake happens, and little love handles appear. For some it’s more than others but it’s still hard the older we get. However, all is not lost, so don’t lose hope on me. I’ve found that patience along with healthy eating, and daily physical activity (key word daily), is key to maintaining a healthy weight, and to help shed those unwanted LB’s.
Why am I talking so much about weight loss? Well because I struggle with this shit myself. Sometimes I think to myself, do I have to literally starve myself to lose weight. It’s a process. Starving myself is not the answer, finding balance is. As I continue on my journey I’m faced with new challenges as we all are, and I’ve learned how to react not act towards those challenges differently. I have a different concept of how I look and I go more according to how I feel. When I feel good, I look good, when I feel bad, I look bad. So beauty really goes skin deep. I find I feel more attractive and sexy when I’m all feeling myself. I do what I have to do to stay on track and I keep my mind focused on the positive and I encourage you to do the same if you’re struggling with any issues.
I enjoy food a whole lot. I got a lotta love for good grub that’s why making things healthy has been my thang. I like to be able to sit down and not have to worry about what I’m eating. I want to know that what I’m eating is real, quality food meant for human consumption. Recently my favorite Indian restaurant in my hood burned down. Terrible, simply terrible. They are almost back up and running but it’s been a minute since I had some quality indian cuisine.
I was like ok I need some Indian food in my life. It’s just so comforting as it’s made with love and a tremendous amount of healthy spices. Vegan Chickpea Tikka Masala with Pineapple was born. Pineapple is not typical in this dish but the sweet tang of the pineapple and the savory taste of the tikka masala compliment each other so well, I’m surprised I haven’t come across anything like this sooner. It’s literally bomb dot com, on all levels. You get to have your fruit and vegan tikka masala too! Score!
Tikka Masala is usually made with heavy duty dairy like kefir and cream. This one however is made with full fat coconut milk in all it’s glory. But using coconut milk doesn’t give it a coconutty flavor at all. What it does is it gives it it’s thickness and creaminess all while remaining cruelty free. It’s amaze. Using the pineapple as a bowl is just an extra perk. And you’ll feel totally cool eating straight out a pineapple. 🍍
All that amazingness!😍
What you do is, you cut the pineapple open lengthwise. Scoop out the meat from the inside, chop it up into cubes, and set it aside for later use. You won’t use the whole pineapple for this dish so you can put some away for later. The pineapples I had were so juicy and sweet…they were perfect.👌🏻
Let’s talk masala shall we. Chickpeas in the vegan, plant based world, are staples, must haves if you will. They can be made into just about anything. They are highly nutritious, and overall just plain out good for you. Put it this way, chickpeas can make anything from “meatballs” to masala sauce like this one. Who knew just a small chickpea pack such a healthy punch. Let’s give it up for the chickpea. 👏🏻
This makes a big batch so you’ll have leftovers for sure. The basmati rice is bangin’. Like, you have to make it with this rice. It’s light, fluffy, and you can make it using either vegetable broth or just water. It’s literally my favorite rice. Like literally. Just one cup makes 4-6 servings, can you even deal. I know right! And it’s the easiest thing to make. 1 cup of rice to a cup and a half of veggie broth or water, 1 tbsp of vegan butter (optional), put it all in a pot and bring to a boil. Cover with a tight fitted lid, reduce heat to low simmer, and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat, keeping the lid on, and let steam off heat for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork when ready. It’s so good it’s not even right.
This is a very well balanced meal that has a hint of sweet to go along with the savory. I’m all about sweet and savory dishes. Plus when you make this for your friends, family, or lovers, whether they are vegan or not, they will absolutely love this because it’s that good. I wouldn’t lie to ya, we’re BFF’s. Trust me when I say, peeps will go cray for this and be all talking about it. It looks super fancy but it’s the easiest thing to put together and the entire recipe will take you all of 30 minutes. 15 minutes of which you’ll be doing some work and spicing things up. After that you’re just headed down to enjoy-ville. So grab a fork, spoon, whichever floats ya boat, and dig the hell in. 🍴
Tikka Masala recipe from TheIronYou
Vegan Chickpea Tikka Masala with Pineapple
- 1 cup basmati rice
- 1 1/2 cup water or low sodium vegetable broth
- 1 tbsp vegan butter
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, sliced thin
- 1 tbsp garam masala
- 2 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp coriander
- 2 tsp tikka masala
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 2 tsp paprika
- 1 1/2 tsp turmeric
- dash of cayenne pepper
- salt/pepper to taste
- 2, 15oz cans of organic chickpeas
- 2 cups marinara sauce
- 1, 15oz can full fat coconut milk
- 2 tsp cornstarch or arrowroot powder for thickness
- 1-2 pineapples, cut lengthwise and meat scooped out
- fresh cilantro to top
- Prepare the rice first. Place 1 cup of rice, 1 1/2 cup water or vegetable broth, and 1 tbsp of vegan butter in a pot. Bring to a boil.
- Cover with a tight fitting lid, reduce heat to low simmer, and cook 15 minutes.
- Remove from heat, with lid on, and let steam for 10 minutes. When ready fluff with a fork.
- For the Vegan Chickpea Tikka Masala, start with adding the extra virgin olive oil in a large pan over medium heat.
- Throw in chopped onions, garlic, and a dash of salt. Let cook until onions and garlic are translucent and tender.
- Add all spices, marinara sauce, chickpeas, and let marinate for about 2 minutes before adding the coconut milk.
- In a separate bowl whisk together coconut milk and cornstarch. Stir this mixture into the pot.
- Once everything is mixed well together, let it boil, then lower to a simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Taste and adjust seasonings if needed.
- Spoon rice to one side of the pineapple bowl and the chickpea tikka masala to the other side of the pineapple bowl.
- Top with fresh chunks of pineapples and sprinkle with cilantro.
- Serve immediately and Enjoy!
- Holds well in the fridge for up to 5 days
- Will thicken as it cools and is refrigerated.
- To heat back up, place in a pan and cook until warm.