Chickpeas: three mighty recipes

A prince among pulses, the humble chickpea is an essential ingredient for anyone  embracing more vegan and vegetarian foods. Chickpeas are packed with protein and are, of course, the key ingredients behind popular snacks like falafel and hummus, but also form the basis for so many other dishes, both savoury and sweet. Here are three of our favourites.


Broad Bean Hummus

This is a fresh alternative to traditional hummus. The nutty flavour of broad/fava beans works really well with lemon and the sesame of the tahini.

The Mighty Chickpea

300 g/2¼ cups fresh broad/fava beans

400-g/14-oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

50 g/¼ cup tahini

2 roasted garlic cloves (see Note)

Grated zest and freshly squeezed juice of 1 lemon

Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to season

Toasted bread, to serve



Put the broad/fava beans in a saucepan of cold, unsalted water and set over a medium heat. Bring to a low simmer and continue to simmer for 5 minutes. Drain, then put in a bowl of cold water and chill in the fridge to halt the cooking. After a few minutes, remove the outer skins and discard, reserving the inner beans to use in the hummus.

Put the beans and the remaining ingredients in a large mixing bowl with ½ teaspoon of salt. Blend to a fine paste using a handheld electric blender. Taste the mixture and add extra salt if needed. Sprinkle with black pepper and serve right away with toasted bread or cover and store in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Note: To roast garlic, place a whole bulb of garlic on a baking sheet and cook in a preheated oven at 180°C (350°F) Gas 4 for 45 minutes. You can easily do this while you’re cooking something else and save it in the fridge until you need it. You will now have a bulb of soft garlic paste that can be squeezed, like a tube of toothpaste, one clove at a time.


Moroccan Chickpea Soup with Falafel & Harissa Pockets

Moroccan food is so flavoursome with hints of cinnamon and citrus as well as fiery heat. This recipe uses a harissa made with rose petals but if you cannot find it, substitute regular harissa paste instead.

The Mighty Chickpea

3 shallots, finely chopped

15 g/1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 garlic clove, finely sliced

1 teaspoon black onion/nigella seeds

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Freshly squeezed juice of 2 lemons

1 teaspoon rose harissa

2 x 400-g/14-oz. cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed

80 g/½ cup soft dried apricots

1 litre/quart vegetable stock

Freshly ground black pepper, to season

Fennel fronds, to garnish (optional)



1 teaspoon rose harissa

200 g/1 cup Greek yogurt

12 ready-made falafels

4 wholemeal pitta pockets

A few handfuls of mixed soft salad leaves

Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to season



For the soup, fry the shallots in the butter and olive oil until they are soft and translucent. Add the garlic and fry until lightly golden brown. Add the black onion/nigella seeds and cinnamon and fry for a minute to heat the spices, stirring all the time. Add the lemon juice, harissa, chickpeas, apricots and stock to the pan and simmer for about 20 minutes. Pour the soup into a blender or food processor and blitz until smooth. Return to the pan and keep warm. 

To make the harissa yogurt dressing for the falafel pockets, fold the harissa into the Greek yogurt, season with salt and pepper to your taste, cover and store in the fridge until you are ready to serve.

When ready to serve, preheat the oven to the temperature recommended on the falafel packaging and cook the falafel following the package instructions. Warm the pitta breads under the grill/broiler and then cut them open. Fill each with salad leaves and falafel and top with a drizzle of the harissa yogurt dressing.

Pour the soup into bowls and top with chopped fennel fronds, if using, and freshly ground black pepper. Serve straight away with the falafel pockets on the side.


Chickpea & Pepper Curry Bake 

Chickpeas and (bell) peppers combine beautifully in this dish to bring sweetness, tanginess and yet the mellowness of a substantial vegan baked meal-in-one.

The Mighty Chickpea

5 shallots, very finely chopped

2 small garlic cloves, very finely chopped

2-cm/¾-in. piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated

2 teaspoons ground cumin

¾ teaspoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon ground turmeric

400-g/14-oz. can tomatoes

400-g/14-oz. can coconut milk

2 teaspoons sea salt

½ yellow (bell) pepper, deseeded and thinly sliced

½ red (bell) pepper, deseeded and thinly sliced

½ orange (bell) pepper, deseeded and thinly sliced

2 x 400-g/14-oz. cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed

Freshly chopped coriander/cilantro, to serve

Boiled rice, to serve



Preheat the oven to 220°C (425°F) Gas 7.

Mix the shallots, garlic, ginger, spices, tomatoes, sea salt and coconut milk together in a bowl or food processor.

Put the sliced (bell) peppers on a sheet pan with sides. Pour over the coconut milk and spice mixture. Cover with foil and bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes.

Add the chickpeas to the curry mix and stir. Return to the oven and bake for a further 5 minutes. Sprinkle over the coriander/cilantro and serve with rice.


These recipes are from The Mighty Chickpea. To get more great blog posts like this one - direct to your inbox – be sure to sign up to our mailing list here.