Chickpeas were never one of my favorite things to eat — the dryness always weirded me out and they were often served to me bland. The first time I tried making them on my own, if I remember correctly, is when I wanted to try chickpea “egg” salad. After making that recipe, I was actually convinced that they aren’t so bad after all!
Roasted, smashed, sauteed, you name it, chickpeas can be so flavorful and well-rounded no matter how you prepare them. I’ll add a cup of chickpeas to a recipe I’ve made a thousand times just to shake it up, and I’ve worked on recipes to make them the star of the dish. But there’s one recipe I always come back to: Saucy Chickpeas.
I can’t even remember how or when I decided to make this recipe, but, much like my Weekday Orzo Pasta, it’s literally one of my favorite quick, nutrient-dense meal when nothing else sounds good. I probably make it a little bit different each time, but that’s what makes it so great! You can add all sorts of veggies to it, scoop it over rice or dip into it with some tortilla chips.
The “saucy” part of these Saucy Chickpeas is probably my favorite part. Every time I cook it, I find new little tweaks to make it that much better. First, it was a squeeze of lemon. Then, a dollop of vegan mayo. Next, some Cholula in the pan while it cooks. Who knows what I’ll add next?
The reason I think I always come back to this super easy dish is the fact that, despite the little effort it requires to make it, it really does feel like I’m getting lots of important nutrients. There’s protein, fiber, vitamins from the veggies and spices I add; it feels like everything is there. It also fills me up! Sometimes, I get caught up in thinking I need a frozen meat substitute to stay full, but then I go back to the basics, open a can of chickpeas, and get to making this tasty meal.
Saucy Chickpeas Recipe
- 1 can chickpeas, drained & rinsed
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 1 cup frozen corn
- 1 cup frozen spinach
- ¼ onion, chopped
- 2 tbsp minced garlic
- 2 tbsp vegan mayo
- ½ lemon, juiced
- cayenne pepper
- ground ginger
- nutritional yeast
- curry powder
- Drain and rinse the can of chickpeas. Coat your pan in oil and set to medium high heat
- Add the chickpeas and spice mix (at least 1 tsp of each spice, but alter per your preferences) to the pan. Stir to evenly coat and let saute for 2-3 minutes
- Prep the veggies: cut the bell pepper and onion. Add the onion and garlic to the pan and stir for 1 minute before adding bell pepper
- Once the onions and garlic are fragrant, add the frozen veggies and stir
- After everything is thawed and sauteed, add some lemon juice. Scoop the vegan mayo straight into the pan and stir until a creamy sauce forms
- Serve hot in a bowl with some tortilla chips, or on top of steamed rice. Enjoy!
- If you like spicy, add chili flakes and/or some hot sauce to the pan while the chickpeas cook! It’ll definitely add a nice kick, especially with the cayenne already in the recipe
- Add in whatever veggies you have! This is the perfect recipe to use up any produce that’s almost going bad.
- I love what the vegan mayo adds to this dish, but if you really don’t like creamy sauces, you can omit the mayo. Just be sure to add some form of liquid to help loosen up the spices from the pan — a splash of apple cider vinegar or even soy sauce would be super yummy!