Chickpea Veggie Stew

Winter in California doesn’t always bring cold temperatures or harsh conditions, but merely hearing about snow storms and single-degree temperatures from friends on the East Coast makes me crave a hearty, filling meal. Often soup is thought of as an addition to a meal — hardly ever does it stand on its own.

This soup seeks to defy that norm. It’s full of nourishing flavors while the chickpeas provides protein and the sweet potatoes carbs making for a filling meal. Feel free to add other fresh vegetables to add even more variety to the recipe.

Chickpea Veggie Stew

Ingredients:

> 2 tablespoons olive oil
> 1 yellow bell pepper, diced
> 1 sweet potatoes, cut into bite-size pieces
> 4 heirloom carrots, diced
> 2 garlic cloves, minced
> 3 cups vegetable broth
> 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
> a dash of almond milk
> 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
> salt and pepper
> 3 cups arugula

Instructions:

In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Cook the bell peppers until browned, about 5 minutes. Add the sweet potatoes, carrots and garlic and cook about 5 minutes. Add the broth and chickpeas and bring to a boil.

Cover and simmer over low heat until the potatoes are tender, about 12 minutes. Add a dash of almond milk and the lion juice. Bring to a simmer and season with salt and pepper. Top with a handful of arugula.

Makes 4 servings.

Adapted from Food & Wine.

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Toasted Quinoa and Cabbage Salad

Quinoa and chickpeas are two of my favorite, go-to sources of flavor and protein, but I have never thought to combine them with sautéed cabbage. In fact, cabbage is often a lettuce that I steer away from, merely because of its association with heavier foods such as ham, potatoes and cheese. I’m always excited about trying a vegetable that I typically wouldn’t cook since it opens my eyes to new flavors and ways of preparing dishes.

Toasted Quinoa and Cabbage Salad

Ingredients:

> 1/2 cup red quinoa
> 1 tablespoon olive oil
> 1/2 head cabbage, cut into 1″-thick slices
> 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
> juice and zest from 1 lemon
> salt and pepper

Instructions:

Cook quinoa by bringing 1 cup water to a boil. Stir in quinoa, cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until water is absorbed.

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the cabbage and a dash of salt, and cook about 8 minutes or until tender. Add quinoa to the skillet with the cabbage. Cook, stirring occasionally, until quinoa is toasted and crisp, about 8 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine quinoa-cabbage mixture with chickpeas, lemon zest and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper.

Note: This dish tastes delicious when cherry tomatoes or sun-dried tomatoes are added.

Makes 4 servings.

Adapted from FitSugar.

Vegan Chickpea Spread

No matter what form chickpeas are in, I’m a die-hard fan. Typically I roast them or use them raw on salads, so when I found this recipe for a chickpea spread, I had to give it a try since it’s a deviation from the normal way I enjoy chickpeas. The key to making the spread stick together and have a distinct flavor lies in the mustard. Don’t be discouraged if the mix doesn’t stick together as, say, a hummus would — it’s not meant to. Enjoy!

Vegan Chickpea Spread

Ingredients:

> 1 can chickpeas, drained
> 1 carrot, diced
> 4 green onions, diced
> 2 teaspoons yellow mustard
> 1 teaspoon coconut water

Instructions:

In a medium bowl, mash the chickpeas with a fork until the majority of the chickpeas are no longer whole. Add the carrot, onions, yellow mustard and coconut water. Stir until well combined. Season with salt and pepper.

Serve on crackers, toast or vegetable rounds (zucchini seen here).

Makes 4 snack-size servings.

Adapted from MindBodyGreen.

Marinated Chickpeas with Quinoa and Arugula

Chickpeas and quinoa are two of my favorite sources of vegetarian protein, in addition to seeds and nuts. That’s why this salad is the perfect combination of flavor and nutritional content for anyone. It’s light yet refreshing and the red pepper gives it a hint of heat.

Marinated Chickpeas with Quinoa and Arugula

Ingredients:

> Grated zest of 1 lemon, plus 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
> 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
> 1 tablespoon fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
> 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
> coarse salt
> 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
> 1/2 cup almonds, toasted and chopped
> 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
> 2 scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced
> 1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
> 4 cups packed arugula

Instructions:

Whisk together lemon zest, lemon juice, oil and parsley in a medium bowl. Add chickpeas and season with salt and pepper flakes. Let sit for 30 minutes.

Combine almonds, quinoa, scallions, tomatoes and arugula in a large bowl. Add marinated chickpeas, and toss to combine. Season with salt.

Makes 4 servings.

Adapted from Martha Stewart.

Raw Zucchini Pasta with Sun-dried Tomato Sauce

Pasta is delicious, don’t get me wrong, but it often leaves me feeling stuffed to the brim and on a carb overload. That’s why when my friend Brooke, author of Naturally Wholesome Life, mentioned that she recently made zucchini pasta, I didn’t wait another day to give it a try.

In the past I’ve oohed and aahed over raw pasta recipes, but I thought since I didn’t have a spiralizer, I couldn’t make those dishes. Quickly I found that a spiralizer isn’t necessary because the same thin, yet textured, effect can be created with a peeler.

I chose zucchini and heirloom carrots to make the pasta and whipped up a sun-dried tomato sauce with cashews which added a whole new level of flavor. Enjoy!

Raw Zucchini Pasta

Ingredients:

> 2 medium-sized zucchini
> 1 heirloom carrot
> 2 tablespoons sun-dried tomatoes, in olive oil
> 2 tablespoons raw cashews
> 1 clove of garlic
> salt and pepper
> 8 cherry tomatoes, sliced
> 1/2 cup chickpeas

Instructions: 

Peel zucchini and carrot into thin, pasta-like strands, and mix together.

To make sun-dried tomato sauce, add sun-dried tomatoes, cashews and garlic to food processor and season with salt and pepper. Process until pureed and smooth.

Assemble veggie pasta, sun-dried tomato sauce, tomatoes and chickpeas on plate, and season with salt and pepper.

Makes 1 serving.

Original recipe.

Vegan Tacos with Chickpea-Bean Mix

Tacos are typically a meat-dominant food, but they can just as easily make a delicious vegetarian meal. Plus with corn tortillas, they can be vegan and gluten-free, satisfying many dietary needs. Grilling or sautéing the vegetables of your choice is also a good go-to, but why not jazz it up with a flavorful chickpea-bean mix.

Veggie Tacos with Chickpea-Bean Mix

Ingredients:

> 1 can chickpeas, drained
> 1 can black beans, drained
> pinch of cumin
> pinch of paprika
> pinch of chili powder
> pinch of cinnamon
> 2 medium zucchini, cut into bite-size pieces
> 1 green bell pepper, cut into bite-size pieces
> 8 corn tortillas
> 1 yellow onion, diced
> cilantro, chopped
> salsa

Instructions:

To make the chickpea-bean mix, spray medium pan with cooking spray and add chickpeas and black beans to the pan. Season with a pinch of cumin, paprika, chili powder and cinnamon. Cook for about 7 minutes, or until the mixture is thoroughly cooked into a molded mix.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Place zucchini and bell pepper on baking sheet. Spray with cooking spray and season with a pinch of cumin and salt. Cook for 15 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.

Warm tortillas over gas stove. Assemble tacos with chickpea-bean mix and vegetables, and top with salsa, onion and cilantro.

Makes 4 servings.

Original recipe.

Spiced Chickpeas with Quinoa and Yogurt

Chickpeas are a staple in my kitchen. Just ask my roommate who found a drawer filled with nine cans of chickpeas after a Costco trip! Nonetheless, I’m always looking for new ways to cook with chickpeas. A classic go-to meal for me is roasted or steamed vegetables with chickpeas — simple yet flavorful and healthy. One night when I was in the mood for a dish with more texture and spice, I stumbled upon this recipe. This is a simple recipe that doesn’t require many ingredients. Plus it can be modified in many ways to satisfy your tastebuds.

Spiced Chickpeas

Ingredients: 

> 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
> 1 large onion, finely chopped
> 3 large garlic cloves, minced
> 1 teaspoon ground cumin
> one 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained
> 3 handfuls fresh spinach
> 1 cup water
> 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
> salt and freshly ground pepper
> 1 1/3 cup fat-free plain Greek yogurt

Instructions:

In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the onion and garlic and cook over medium-high heat until softened, about 7 minutes. Stir in the cumin and cook for 1 minute. Add the chickpeas, spinach and water and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

Stir in the lemon juice and boil, uncovered, until the liquid is thickened, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Serve alone or over a cooked grain (I chose quinoa) and top with yogurt.

Makes 4 servings.

Adapted from Food & Wine.