Quickly defined, when separately cooked rice and chana (white chickpeas) are mixed together for a meal, they are called Chana Chawal. It is also called Chole Chawal and is a popular North Indian meal for the family.
Chana chawal is different from Chana Pulav or Chana Pulao since chana and chawal are cooked separately as independent dishes, while in the case of Chana Pulav or Chana Pulao, both are cooked together.
Making Chana Pulao is easier and can even be assembled as a one-pot meal while Chana Chawal needs more intensive preparation.
In the case of a chana pulao the taste of the finished dish is quite the same, while in the case of individually cooked chana chawal, the chana can get the taste you desire.
Chana Chawal tastes best when it is served with kachumber salad, raita and pickles.