Okay, I’m excited about this.
This recipe, if I do say so, is a bit of a marvel. It’s based on the traditional Indian dish, Chana Masala but super speedy to make with only a handful of ingredients. I even surprised myself when I first made it, it tasted like it had been cooking for hours and was both hearty and nourishing in a way that only chickpeas can be. I thought to myself, “maybe we need to keep exploring more vegan recipes.”
If, like me, you want to incorporate more plant based meals in your life without being vegan or vegetarian, this is an excellent dish to try. Chickpeas are quite meaty, and along with cauliflower and Portobello mushrooms, are what I turn to most as the star of a vegan dinner dish.
I have a deep love for Indian cuisine, from their curries, naan, sag paneer, and yes Chana Masala. This riff has a touch less spice, a more creamy consistency that soaks into the chickpeas, and takes much less work and time while still totally delivering on flavor. Serve it with rice, or cauliflower rice, and some charred naan and it’s a feast any carnivore would be happy with. Just ask my husband.
HOW TO MAKE MY SAUCY COCONUT SPICED CHICKPEAS:
Step 1. Heat a large skillet or pot over medium heat. Add oil and let it get hot.
Step 2. Add onion and let cook for 5 minutes, stirring.
Step 3. Stir in garlic and cook for 1 minute longer.
Step 4. Add turmeric, ginger, salt, and pepper and toast the spices with the mixture for 30 seconds.
Step 5. Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds more.
Step 6. Pour in 1/2 cup of coconut milk, being sure to use some of the hardened cream at the top, and bring to a boil. Add in chickpeas.
Step 7. Reduce to a simmer and simmer, covered, for 15-20 minutes.
Step 8. Remove from heat and sprinkle with lime juice and fresh cilantro. Serve over rice or cauliflower rice, with naan, and enjoy!
Step 9. Enjoy!
Key ingredients in saucy coconut spiced chickpeas:
Chickpeas – What can’t chickpeas do? I use them often as a plant based protein packed staple, from soups and hummus dips to baked goods like cookies. They are cheap, and when bought in a can they indicate you are only minutes away from a filling meal.
Coconut milk – Coconut milk is another ingredient that can serve so many purposes, and does in my household. I use it to replace cream in creamy sauces like in this fan favorite pasta, in smoothies and baked goods, and in simple simmered suppers like these coconut spiced chickpeas.
Tomato paste – Tomato paste is another favorite ingredient of mine (three in one recipe, is it any wonder I am so excited to share this with you?). It’s got such incredible, concentrated flavor and adds a ton of personality to food. I use it as a base in that amazing pasta I mentioned above. It also gives your meal that “cooked all day” taste, especially when toasted a bit in olive oil and spices like we do here, while you and I know better.
What else can I use?
- I call for full fat coconut milk in this dish, which is often what I use. I love the solidified coconut cream at the top of the can, it gives sauces wonderful body. If you’re committed to light coconut milk, you can use it, the sauce will be a bit more loose but it’ll be delicious.
- I call for a yellow onion here, but use what you have. Red onion, scallion, leek… all of those will work.
- If you have fresh ginger on hand, this is a great place to use it. Grate in a bit to taste in place of the powder… about 1/2 teaspoon to a teaspoon depending on your tastes.
Want more of my vegan staples?
If you make my Saucy Coconut Spiced Chickpeas, and I hope you do, please leave me a comment here and rate the recipe. Your feedback means a lot to me! You can also post to Instagram and tag me so I can share your creations!
Saucy Coconut Spiced Chickpeas (Vegan, Gluten Free)
- large, heavy bottomed skillet
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 small yellow onion, chopped
- 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
- 1/4 tsp ground ginger
- 1 14.5 oz can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 1/2 cup full fat coconut milk, with the cream
- 1 tsp Kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp Fresh cracked pepper
- 1/2 lime, for serving
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- Heat a large skillet or pot over medium heat. Add oil and let it get hot.
- Add onion and let cook for 5 minutes, stirring.
- Stir in garlic and cook for 1 minute longer.
- Add turmeric, ginger, salt, and pepper and toast the spices with the mixture for 30 seconds.
- Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds more.
- Pour in 1/2 cup of coconut milk, being sure to use some of the hardened cream at the top, and bring to a boil. Add in chickpeas.
- Reduce to a simmer and simmer, covered, for 15-20 minutes.
- Remove from heat and sprinkle with lime juice and fresh cilantro. Serve over rice or cauliflower rice, with naan, and enjoy!