Healthy Recipe, Curried Chickpeas with Spinach and Tomatoes

This bold-flavored vegan entrée tastes like it’s been simmering for hours yet takes less than 30 minutes to prepare. It’s adapted from Kat Ashmore’s “Big Bites: Wholesome, Comforting Recipes That Are Big on Flavor, Nourishment, and Fun” and consists of inexpensive staples you already have. Canned chickpeas are the principal protein source, delivering vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Pair with greens and a whole grain such as brown rice. Serves 2-3. – Susan Puckett


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 or 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon curry powder
  • ¼ teaspoon cumin
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 medium tomato, diced
  • ¼ to 1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk
  • 1 (5-ounce) bag baby spinach (about 5 cups)
  • 1 or 2 cups cooked brown rice for serving
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro for serving (optional)


  1. In a large, heavy saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring, for 3 or 4 minutes, until tender.
  2. Add the garlic, turmeric, curry powder, cumin, and cayenne (if using), tomato paste, ½ teaspoon salt, and a few grindings of black pepper. Cook, stirring, for a minute or two, or until the mixture is fragrant and the tomato paste darkens.
  3. Add the chickpeas, ¼ cup water, and the tomato and bring to a simmer. Cover the pan, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer for 5 more minutes.
  4. Stir in ¼ cup of the coconut milk and the spinach, in batches, if necessary, stirring as it cooks down. Add another ¼ teaspoon of salt and simmer, uncovered, for 3 to 4 minutes, until most of the liquid has evaporated, adding a splash more coconut milk if you prefer a creamier consistency. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired.
  5. Serve over rice and sprinkle with cilantro, if using.

—  Susan Puckett is an Atlanta-based food writer and cookbook author.