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Spiced Chickpea Stew with Curry and Coconut in a white bowl on top of a blue jean napkin
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5 from 2 votes

Spiced Chickpea Stew with Coconut and Curry

The following recipe is my attempt to add a little more flavor and to mitigate the richness. Indeed, the original recipe required double the amount of coconut milk. But don't worry, my version is just as smooth and filling.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time55 mins
Total Time1 hr 5 mins
Course: Main
Cuisine: Caribbean
Servings: 4
Calories: 230kcal
Author: Naïby


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil and more for serving
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 large Spanish onion chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 2 inches ginger freshly grated (about 1 teaspoon)
  • 1 tablespoon ground curry
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes and more for serving
  • 1 ½ cup chickpeas soaked in water the day before with 2 teaspoons of baking soda (about 3 cups cooked or 2 cans (400 g / 15 oz) chickpeas, drained and rinsed)
  • 1 400-ml can whole coconut milk (about 15 ounces)
  • 3 ¼ cups vegetable broth
  • 1 Scotch Bonnet pepper or ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 bunch chard kale, or green cabbage, stems removed, leaves torn into small pieces
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 cup mint leaves for garnish
  • 1 serving lime cashew yogurt (optional)


  • Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Sauté the garlic for 2 min until it smells fragrant. Add the onion and ginger and stir from time to time until the onion is translucent and begins to brown a bit around the edges, 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Add the curry, cumin, and red pepper flakes, then the cooked chickpeas. Season with salt and pepper. Let the chickpeas sizzle and fry in the spices and oil, stirring frequently until the chickpeas begin to decompose and become slightly golden and crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove about a cup of chickpeas and set aside for garnish.
  • Using a spoon, wooden spatula or potato masher, mash the remaining chickpeas a little more to release their starch (this will help thicken the stew). Add the coconut milk (reserve ¼ cup to garnish, if desired) and broth. Bring to a boil, scraping all the pieces that have formed at the bottom of the pan. Stir in the Scotch Bonnet pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the stew has thickened and the flavors have started to blend, 30 to 35 minutes. (Taste a chickpea or two, not just the liquid, to make sure they’re also tasty.) For a slightly thicker stew, continue to simmer until you get the desired consistency. (Alternatively, you can add a teaspoon of chickpea flour or other thickening powder).
  • Add the green leaves and stir, making sure they’re submerged in the liquid. Cook for a few minutes so that they wilt and soften, 3 to 7 minutes, depending on the type used. Season again with salt and pepper, if desired.
  • Remove the Scotch Bonnet pepper, if used. Divide among bowls and garnish with mint, reserved chickpeas, a pinch of red pepper flakes (if you can handle the heat) and a good drizzle of olive oil. Serve with coconut milk or cashew yogurt and toasted pita bread if you have on hand.


  • Whole coconut milk is tastier than its light version. It contains more water.
  • If you ever find that the soup liquid is too watery, you can thicken it by reducing the liquid during cooking, adding more whole coconut milk, injecting starchy starch from chickpeas, or by adding a thickening powder like chickpea flour or whatever.
  • The leaves can be replaced by other green leaves. However, be aware that Swiss chard and spinach wilt and soften much faster than kale.
  • Stored in an airtight container, this stew will keep for 5 days.
  • You can even freeze it without any problem.


Calories: 230kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Sodium: 946mg | Potassium: 677mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 5695IU | Vitamin C: 35mg | Calcium: 134mg | Iron: 5mg
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