One-Pot Week: Chickpea and Spinach Stew - Sweet Potato Chronicles - Sweet Potato Chronicles

One-Pot Week: Chickpea and Spinach Stew

I got home early the other day (after a pre-dawn start to do Canada AM!) and sat on the liv­ing room floor, goof­ing around with Julian and watched Oprah. Lux­ury! It was her Vegan Chal­lenge episode, did you see it? Michael Pol­lan and Kathy Fre­ston were on dis­cussing North Amer­i­cans' over depen­dence of meat and meat prod­ucts in and the insane con­se­quences for our health and the envi­ron­ment. They also got a very rare look inside a major US slaugh­ter house. If you've never seen it — and most peo­ple haven't — and you eat meat, you really should. Cargill — the slaugh­ter house they showed — is one of the best and they fol­low the most humane prac­tices and yet it's still hard to watch. (Hang in there, this is going to end with a recipe you'll want. I swear.)

I think I've men­tioned before that I grew up on a small farm and was naive for many years about the real­i­ties of com­mer­cial farm­ing. It's so impor­tant to me to know where our meat comes from, what the ani­mals are fed, how they're treated and slaugh­tered. We eat meat but we pay more to buy bet­ter qual­ity meat we can feel good about. But I'm also con­stantly try­ing to come up with meat­less meals. I hate the idea that it doesn't feel like a meal unless there's meat on the plate, you know? I was glad that I'd already planned a chick­pea stew for that night's din­ner! This is a meal that Ben makes reg­u­larly and I've often thought the kids were more open to it because it's dad's din­ner. But lo and behold, they ate my ver­sion, too! It's really easy, deli­cious and tastes even bet­ter the next day.

Chick­pea and Spinach Stew

2 onions, chopped
2 — 3 table­spoons veg­etable oil
1 3-inch piece of gin­ger, grated or minced
4 cloves of gar­lic, minced
2 or 3 big hand­fuls of baby spinach, washed and stems trimmed
2 tea­spoons tumeric
1 tea­spoon cumin
1/2 tea­spoon ground corian­der
1/2 tea­spoon cayenne (optional)
1 28-ounce can toma­toes
1 28-ounc can of chick­peas
1 cup water
pinch of salt


Sautee onions and pinch of salt in oil until they  are quite soft — maybe 10 min­utes. Don't let them brown. Add gar­lic and gin­ger and stir for about a minute or two. Add spices, stir and cook for another minute.

Add chick­peas and toma­toes. Use the back of a spoon to break up the toma­toes. Add the water and bring to a boil. Add the spinach and reduce to a sim­mer for about 15 minutes.

I love this stew served over brown bas­mati rice and a lit­tle dol­lop of plain yogurt on top. It's also good with grilled naan bread. I like that, too, but we don't seem to be able to make it with­out set­ting off the fire alarm.



  1. Louise says:

    Thanks for the recipe. My son is a veg­e­tar­ian for the exact rea­sons that you site in this arti­cle. Last year I watched FOOD INC. and was astounded and hor­ri­fied on how our food/meat is pro­duced. I have been try­ing to find local, free range, grass fed beef, chicken and pork. Not easy to find and expen­sive. My son will be home this week­end for two months and this recipe is going on the menu for sure!

  2. Ceri Marsh says:

    I'm so glad! Where do you live? I agree — it's not always easy to find the food we'd be more com­fort­able serv­ing. Par­tic­u­larly at some of the big gro­cery stores. I con­fess I've been putting off see­ing Food Inc as I'm sure it's trau­ma­tiz­ing. But I'm going to make myself.
    Let me know what your fam­ily thinks of this dish — I hope it's a hit! And we'll keep the veg­e­tar­ian options com­ing!
    Thank so much for get­ting in touch,

  3. […] This post was men­tioned on Twit­ter by Carly Rigby, Ceri Marsh. Ceri Marsh said: One-pot (veg­gie) won­der! Del­ish chick­pea spinach stew. […]

  4. Natalee says:

    I'll def­i­nitelt try this it looks del­ish. A friend of mine who worked at a ver good butcher shop in Cal­gary once told me that know­ing what he knows now about the indus­try he would only get his meat from a proper butcher or from Costco. I guess they have good prac­tises at Costco.We later met anotehr butcher who said the same thing.

  5. Dianne says:

    I made a spinach, potato, chick­pea casse­role ear­lier this week. I think I'll add the tomaotes and the spices you have listed here to the left­overs and have a sim­i­lar stew. Thanks for the inspiration.

  6. Vanessa says:

    Looks deli­cious AND gluten– egg– and (sans yogurt) dairy-free. Basi­cally, the per­fect meal for just about any dietary issue!

  7. Ceri Marsh says:

    Hmmm.… looks like need to do some more veg­e­tar­ian recipes. So good to get your feed­back, guys!

  8. boo says:

    Nice…how would it work with­out gar­lic? I can't stand garlic.

  9. Ceri Marsh says:

    Hi Boo,
    I can't imag­ine a life with­out gar­lic! But I'm sure the recipe would be fine with­out it — the gin­ger is more dom­i­nant in the recipe any­way. Let me know how it goes!

  10. Natalee says:

    I'm proveg­e­tar­ian recipes but maybe also some with­out toma­toes because I have a few friends I love who have tomato aller­gies and I cook with toma­toes all the time so I am often at a loss. Hmm do I still have a Moose­wood cookbook?

  11. […] you need a break from all the meat, chick­pea spinach stew is healthy and hearty. [Sweet Potato […]

  12. lp says:

    Hey Natalee, I'm on a elim­i­na­tion diet right now (which means no toma­toes) so I had the same ques­tion. I just made this with 1 medium egg­plant, cubed, and 1/2 tsp of curry pow­der instead of the toma­toes and it was pretty good!

  13. Regan says:

    Love this recipe. So easy to make (I cooked it while cook­ing a roast chicken din­ner), so yummy, healthy and per­fect for lunch. I added peas for addi­tional veg­gies. And mango chut­ney on the side for a hint of sweet­ness. You could add any veg­gie to this — swap chick­peas for potatoes/sweet potatoes.

  14. Lisa says:

    Just made a big batch so I've got healthy sup­pers for the week. Added extra cherry toma­toes, 4 tbsps red lentils and chilli flakes and chilli pow­der. Going to serve with a chunk of crusty bread :-)

  15. Ceri Marsh says:

    Yum! Adding lentils is a great idea, Lisa. Hope your crew loves it!

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