This delicious Moroccan chickpea stew is a healthy recipe rich in protein and fiber. Serve over long grain rice for an easy dinner.
This Moroccan chickpea stew is an easy and healthy dinner, rich in plant-based protein and fiber. Using dried chickpeas makes this recipe cheaper, plus you know exactly what you’re eating and you don’t have to worry about preservatives and other additives.
Having said that, if you’re in a hurry, using good quality canned chickpeas will make your life easier and you’ll be able to bring food to the table in less than 30 minutes. 🙂
My all-time favorite chickpea recipe is this Greek baked chickpeas (Revithada), a classic Greek dish which requires a 4-hour baking for the chickpeas to develop an unbelievable rich taste and become soft and tender without losing their shape.
So, at first I thought of baking these Moroccan chickpeas instead of making them a stew, but I was afraid that the acidity of the tomatoes would prevent them from becoming soft and creamy.
That's why I decided to use boiled chickpeas and bathe them in a rich tomato sauce scented with classic Moroccan spices. If you want to go to the extra “trouble” you can combine the boiled chickpeas with the rest of the ingredients in a dutch oven and bake them for a little more than an hour at 390°F (200°C).
How to boil chickpeas (and other legumes)
Except for lentils which boil very easily, dried beans and chickpeas can be difficult to cook sometimes, because they require a lot of time to get soft and tender. Aside from using good quality and not too old legumes, it’s always a good practice to soak them overnight in a bowl filled with water.
Beans will soften even more if you soak them in salted water and chickpeas in water with a tablespoon of baking soda added in it. Just make sure to rinse them very well before cooking and cook them in a pot filled with soft water.
I remember that my grandma and other women in my villlage used to collect rainwater every time it rained, just for this purpose, since the water in our village was high in calcium and magnesium.
For the same reason you should never salt your legumes from the start, but wait until they’re soft (the same goes for acidic ingredients like lemon or tomatoes).
*If you have a pressure cooker you can skip the soaking stage.
- If you want to use dried chickpeas, the “secret” for making them soft and tender is to soak them overnight in a bowl filled with water and 1 tablespoon of baking soda.
- Keep in mind that when you cook legumes, you should use soft water (low in ions of calcium and magnesium). If your tap water is hard, then use bottled water for best results.
- After you boil the chickpeas you can also bake them in the oven instead of stewing them.
- This Moroccan chickpea stew will also work if you skip or substitute one or two of the spices with others that you may find fitting (allspice, ginger, turmeric, saffron, cloves, thyme are good choices!)
Similar recipes you may like:
Easy Moroccan chickpea stew recipe (vegan)
For the chickpeas
- 1 pound dried chickpeas ((you can also use canned, cooked chickpeas. See notes))
- 1 tablespoon baking soda
For the homemade ras el hanout
- 1 teaspoon sweet paprika (or chili)
- ½ teaspoon cumin (ground )
- ½ teaspoon oregano (dried)
- ½ teaspoon black pepper (freshly ground)
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- A pinch cloves (ground)
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika (optional, for a smokey taste)
For the chickpea stew
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion (finely chopped)
- 0.75 teaspoon salt
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 garlic cloves ( minced)
- 2 cups pureed tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons chopped raisins, or other dried fruit
- ¼ cup fresh parsley (chopped)
Prepare the chickpeas:
- Soak the chickpeas overnight in a large bowl filled with plenty of water (the water should cover the chickpeas at least by 2 inches).The next day drain well and mix them with the baking soda. Let them sit for 20 minutes, then rinse very well under running water.Transfer the chickpeas in a large pot, fill with plenty of water and place on the stove. Set the heat to high and when the chickpeas start to foam, skim the foam with a slotted spoon.When the water starts to boil, reduce heat to a gentle simmer and cook uncovered for 40 minutes or until soft.Drain them and keep aside.
Make the Ras El Hanout:
- Combine all the ingredients for the ras el hanout to a small bowl.
Make the stew:
- Transfer the olive oil, the onion, the salt, the bay leaves and the ras el hanout mixture to a pot or deep skillet and cook over medium/high heat until the onion is soft (about 4-5 minutes).Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more.Add the pureed tomatoes, the chickpeas, the raisins and the chopped parsley and when the sauce starts to boil, reduce the heat to a low simmer and cook uncovered for 20 minutes or until the sauce thickens.Serve over rice or with a crusty bread and a green salad.
If you like this post, Pin it!