Vegan Chickpea Stew

by Simla on November 4, 2010

I spent this past week with my dear cousin, who is more like my sister, and her lovely family near Vancouver. She spoiled all of us with her delicious cooking. Here’s a recipe of hers that’s perfect for the crisp coolness of the Fall season and which will keep you warm and satisfied throughout the winter months. It is based off of a traditional Turkish recipe with her spin on it.

This stew is a well-rounded option for vegetarians and vegans alike, or if you just want to lay off the meat for a day or two. The chickpeas combined with the grain it’s served on give you a complete range of essential amino acids (proteins), and it tastes great to boot.

Important prep notes:

* Estimated cooking times and amounts of broth needed for each:

With canned chickpeas: 15-20 minutes (3/4 cup broth)
With dry chickpeas, in a pressure cooker: 40 minutes (enough broth to cover the top of all the ingredients in the cooker)
With dry chickpeas, in a regular pot: 2 hours (2-4 cups broth – keep adding more HOT broth as needed, as water level gets low)

Vegetarian Chickpea Stew

Makes enough for 4 servings (or double it and freeze it for later)


1 cup dry chickpeas (if you have time to cook for longer), or 2 cans of chickpeas (for less cooking time – try Eden’s Organics brand)
1 large yellow onion, peeled and chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced (cut large slices in half)
1 TBS tomato paste OR 2-3 fresh tomatoes if in season (during the summer)
1.5 teaspoons ground cumin powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon hot pepper flakes (more or less, to taste)
2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt, to taste, right before serving
3/4 – 4 cups unsalted vegetable broth, as needed based on chickpea type and cooking method


  1. If using dry chickpeas, wash then soak overnight. Change the water if it gets murky. Drain and wash before starting to cook. If using canned chickpeas, just drain and wash the chickpeas and set aside.
  2. Warm pot on medium flame for 2 minutes.
  3. Add olive oil. Warm for 1-2 minutes.
  4. Add onions and saute for 2 minutes.
  5. Add tomato paste or fresh tomatoes. Continue stirring.
  6. Add carrots and all spices (except for salt) and continue sauteing.
  7. If using canned chickpeas, add chickpeas, saute for 2-3 minutes. Add 3/4 cup broth and simmer for 8-10 minutes to warm through and get the flavors mingling.
  8. If using dry chickpeas, simmer for around 2 hours (in a regular pot with 2 cups broth to start) or 40 minutes (in a pressure cooker with enough broth to cover all the ingredients), until the chickpeas are tender. If using a regular broth, check in on the pot every 30 minutes to check on the liquid level; add 1/2 cup of WARM broth at a time as needed.
  9. Once cooked, season with sea salt, to taste.
  10. Serve over brown rice, quinoa, or other whole grain of choice.
  11. Enjoy!


If you share this recipe, please include this blurb with it:

This recipe is shared with you courtesy of Simla Somturk Wickless, MBA, CHC, CNE, and founder of Delicious Health, Inc., a health, nutrition, and lifestyle consultancy whose mission is to transform busy bodies into healthy, balanced beings (TM). Learn more about Delicious Health at or

Have a deliciously healthy day!

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Amy November 8, 2010 at 10:44 am

I’m excited to try this stew. Do you know how to cook this with a slow cooker? I live by my slow cooker and would love to throw the dried chick peas with all the ingredients in my slow cooker and come home from work to yummy soup. I’m most curious if you would need to soak the chick peas the night before and how much water to use. THANKS!!

Monique November 19, 2010 at 6:34 pm

Hi Amy,

I love my slow cookers too!! I have 3 of them!!

Yes you should still soak your chickpeas overnight. In the morning, drain, wash and chuck in slow cooker with everything else. You can omit the olive oil if you throw the onion and carrots in raw, or you can saute them on the stove first. I never do. It doesn’t make much difference to the taste and I’d rather not wash an extra pot :)

I would use about 1.5 – 2 cups of broth and cook it on low setting all day.

Let me know how it goes. I’m not too good with spicy things but I think if I omit the hot pepper I might be able to handle this.

Monique November 19, 2010 at 6:44 pm

nope, changed my mind.

3/4 of a cup of broth should give you a stew consistency in the slow cooker. The 1.5-2 cups I said a minute ago will give you soup. Which could actually be really yummy, especially if you partially mash the chickpeas. But I digress. Start with 3/4 of a cup in the morning (make sure that is enough to cover the chickpeas). When you get home from work have a look. If it’s too thick, you can add some extra hot broth to thin it. If it’s too thin, take the lid off and turn the slow cooker up to high for an hour or so to evaporate some of the liquid. With a little bit of experimenting you’ll find the perfect amount to add at the start so it’s exactly how you want it when you walk in the door :)

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