Lebanese Chickpea Stew – Holy Cow Vegan

One of my favorite chickpea recipes is this vibrant and easy one Lebanese chickpea stew, a medley of chickpeas with roasted red chillies and jata masala. It comes together very quickly and makes a delicious dinner with either crusty bread or steamed rice.

Lebanese chickpea stew in black bowl with spoon.

Chickpeas are delicious in a variety of recipes, including this chana masala and this chickpea curry. One of my favorite chickpea recipes is this smoky, vibrant, absolutely gorgeous Lebanese Chickpea Stew flavored with the warmth of Zaatar.

This is a great weeknight stew, especially if you use canned chickpeas. Minimal chopping is required, with plenty of flavor added by roasted red bell peppers, rich tomato paste and the smoky, tangy, spicy, nutty za’atar, a blend of herbs and spices used throughout the Middle East.

Lebanese food is not only extremely tasty, it often uses a great complement of vegetables and beans which makes it really healthy. Even meat dishes often contain beans or grains. And many dishes, as delicious as they are, can be complicated to make, requiring minimal spices and herbs that combine expertly to give you loads of flavor and oomph.

It is almost impossible to describe the incredible aroma that wafts through the kitchen and the room as this stew bubbles on the stove. Desi walked to the door to sniff the air, and put down a bowl of rice with chickpea stew. “It is very Good,” he declared.

Why you will love this recipe

  • flavored. It’s hard to believe you can get so much flavor from so few ingredients, but this hearty chickpea stew is truly amazing.
  • Simple. Very little cutting and chopping is involved and you can get most of the ingredients from a jar or a can.
  • gorgeous. If you eat with your eyes first, as most of us do, this is an absolutely stunning stew with a rich, deep-red, appetizing sauce punctuated by chunky, beige chickpeas.
  • healthy. Chickpeas, bell peppers and zaatar make this a very healthy recipe. If you’re watching how much fat you’re eating, you can reduce the oil to as little as a teaspoon.
  • Vegan, nut-free, soy-free and gluten-free.


  • Spices: Cumin, paprika, jaatar spices And Stay red pepper.
  • Herbs: Garlic, dry bay leaves And Fresh parsley (You can use fresh mint instead of parsley).
  • Extra virgin olive oil. Or use any neutral vegetable oil.
  • tomato paste
  • chickpeas. They can be canned or cooked at home. Be sure to drain chickpeas before using.
  • Roasted Peppers. Red is preferred, but yellow or orange will also do. You can roast your own bell peppers and dice them, or use the roasted kind.
Lebanese chickpea stew in black bowl with spoon.

Serving advice

Helpful Tips

  • If you don’t have za’atar or can’t make it, substitute two to three teaspoons of a mixture of dried oregano, marjoram, and thyme. In a pinch, thyme alone will do. Sumac can be added with a squeeze of lemon juice for tang. I recommend buying or making ja’atar–it’s a really easy recipe and you’ll find all sorts of uses for it.
  • Be sure to drain the chickpeas before adding them to the pot. If you cook the chickpeas yourself, you can add the cooking stock back into the stew instead of the 2 cups of water in the recipe. You can also use vegetable stock or vegetable broth instead of water.
  • Add more water or stock as needed to thin the recipe. I like this stew quite thick and note that it will thicken as it stands.
  • If you like a stew with a lot of heat, use cayenne instead of paprika.

Storage instructions

  • Keep in fridge: Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to four days.
  • freeze: Freeze in a freezer-safe container for up to three months.
  • Reheat: Reheat in oven or microwave. Dilute with water if necessary.

More delicious chickpea stew recipes

If you like this Lebanese chickpea stew recipe, be sure to check out more Mediterranean recipes at Holy Cow Vegan!

Lebanese chickpea stew in black bowl with spoon.
Lebanese chickpea stew in black bowl with spoon.

Lebanese chickpea stew

One of my favorite chickpea recipes is this vibrant and simple Lebanese Chickpea Stew, a medley of chickpeas with roasted red peppers and za’atar spices. It comes together very quickly and makes a delicious dinner with either crusty bread or steamed rice.

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Recipe review

Course: Stew

Recipe: Lebanese, vegan

Diet: Gluten free, vegan, vegetarian

Serving: 4 serving

Calories: 282kcal

Author: Vaishali · Holy Cow Vegan

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  • Place the garlic cloves and cumin in a mortar or food processor. Grind into a thick paste.

  • Place the olive oil in a large pot or Dutch oven along with the minced garlic and cumin. Reduce heat to medium-low and sauté until garlic and cumin are very fragrant, about one minute.

  • Add the tomato paste, paprika and red pepper flakes to the pot and stir to combine. Continue to fry for a couple of minutes.

  • Add chickpeas to the pot along with the zaatar, roasted red chillies and bay leaves. Stir to mix.

  • Add 2 cups of water to the pot and bring to a boil over medium heat. Cover the pot and cook for 10 minutes to allow the flavors to blend and the stew to thicken. Remove the lid in the last two minutes of cooking. I like to mash some chickpeas with a ladle to help thicken the stew.

  • Add salt to taste, stir in the parsley and turn off the heat. Serve the chickpea stew warm or hot.


Calories: 282kcal | Sugars: 37g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fats: 2g | Monounsaturated fats: 6g | Potassium: 455mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 693IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 100mg | Iron: 6mg

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