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Spicy Chickpea and Spinach Stew

Spicy Chickpea & Spinach Stew Recipe

Spicy Chickpea & Spinach Stew with HarissaSponsored RecipeThis Spicy Chickpea and Spinach Stew recipe comes together in about 25 minutes. Serve it over couscous for an easy, delicious vegetarian dinner!

Reader Survey Results

When I did my reader survey, quite a few of you asked me to write more about the products I use everyday in my kitchen. Some people even requested that I take photos of the inside of my refrigerator. That was funny to me, because I had thought about doing something like that before and I thought, “People are going to think I’m nuts.” But apparently not! I guess I’ll have to put together a post like that soon, although really, there’s not that much to see. I keep a whole lot of fruit and veggies on hand and then all the racks on the refrigerator door are jam packed with sauces and condiments. It’s like a United Nations of hot sauces all up in my fridge.

I have definitely come a long way from the girl who grew up thinking that Tombstone frozen pizza was unbearably spicy. Now I like spicy foods! And I add hot sauce to so many dishes—sriracha on salad (don’t knock it if you haven’t tried it!), Cholula on tacos, harissa in soups. All hot sauces are not created equal and I’ve come to appreciate how some are sweet, some are garlicky; some have a slow warmth that creeps up on you, while others pack an immediate punch. Hooray for hot sauces!

Mina Harissa

What is Harissa?

Harissa is a hot sauce that’s often used in Tunisian and Moroccan food. It’s a flavorful combination of chili peppers, garlic, olive oil, and spices. I’ve found that different brands have different levels of heat—some just right, others almost unbearably hot. Some are thick like a paste, others are more saucy. Because there’s such a wide variety in formulations for harissa, when you use it in a recipe, it’s best to add a little, taste, then add more as needed.

When Mina Harissa asked me to develop a recipe using their products I was excited because their harissa is my favorite harissa. The spice level is perfect in their Spicy harissa and I like the consistency of it too—it’s more of a sauce than a paste. Mina harissa is made with only 6 ingredients and it’s all natural, so unlike a lot of other hot sauces, there are no preservatives or food coloring in it. A few teaspoons will perk up a soup or add a welcome kick to your next batch of roasted potatoes.

Spicy Chickpea & Spinach Stew with Harissa

About the Recipe

Since it’s starting to get a little chilly out (I wore a cardigan the other day—yay for cardigan weather!), I thought a Moroccan-inspired Chickpea and Spinach Stew would be the perfect recipe for this harissa. This stew is good on its own, but it’s great when you add the harissa and a big squeeze of lemon juice. (Don’t skip the lemon juice!) The heat of the sauce is a slow one—at first, the stew doesn’t seem spicy, but every spoonful gives you a little more heat. We had this over whole wheat couscous, but rice, quinoa, or any other grain you have on hand would work too.

Oh, and bonus: if you serve this over couscous, dinner is done in about 25 minutes!

Print

Spicy Chickpea and Spinach Stew

Spicy Chickpea & Spinach Stew Recipe

Harissa is a Moroccan hot sauce made with chili peppers, garlic, olive oil, and spices. It gives this stew a slow heat, making it the perfect dinner for a chilly fall evening.

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6 servings 1x
Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 (14.5 oz) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed (or 3 cups cooked chickpeas)
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 tbsp harissa (I used Spicy Mina Harissa)
  • 1 (6 oz) bag baby spinach
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • lemon wedges and couscous or rice, for serving

Instructions

  1. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat.
  2. Add the onion and cook until softened, 5–7 minutes.
  3. Stir in the garlic and cumin and cook for a minute, until fragrant.
  4. Add the chickpeas, tomatoes, and broth.
  5. Bring the stew to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, partially covered, for 10 minutes.
  6. Add the harissa and spinach to the pot and stir until the spinach has wilted.
  7. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  8. Serve over couscous or rice with lemon wedges.

Notes

Different brands of harissa can vary a lot in spice level. You might want to start out with a teaspoon or less and add more to taste.

Disclosure: Mina compensated me for the time spent developing and photographing this recipe. Sponsored Recipes are a once-a-month feature on Oh My Veggies—my sponsors help make this blog possible!

This post was originally published on 19 September 2013.

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96 Comments

  • Reply
    Liz @ I Spy Plum Pie
    September 20, 2013 at 3:46 am

    Ooh I do a Moroccan chickpea stew like this with silverbeet, but I’ve never thought to add harissa! I shall have to give it a try next time I make it (which should be soon, the silverbeet is going wild in our veggie patch!)

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      September 22, 2013 at 8:51 pm

      Definitely add harissa next time you make it! 🙂 It’s the perfect addition to Moroccan stews.

  • Reply
    Colleen @ Culinary Colleen
    September 20, 2013 at 11:49 am

    I keep meaning to buy harissa. Looks like a great addition to this stew! I’m also always looking for new chickpea ideas…

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      September 22, 2013 at 8:42 pm

      You should! There are so many things you can do with it. I even put it in ketchup!

  • Reply
    Katie (The Muffin Myth)
    September 21, 2013 at 4:49 am

    Yum! I love harissa and spicy things. Our fridge is also a united nations of hot sauces (The Hus has a bit of an obsession). This recipe looks so easy and quick, and super healthy. Though we had an amazing summer weather wise in Stockholm, the seasons change quite quickly and dramatically and it is for sure autumn here now. This looks like the perfect thing to make on chilly nights! Thanks for the recipe!

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      September 22, 2013 at 8:29 pm

      Oh good, I’m glad I’m not the only one with the weird hot sauce fixation. I just like to have options!

  • Reply
    Aimee / Wallflower Girl
    September 21, 2013 at 5:16 am

    Mmmm! I’ve been looking for tasty, frugal and healthy meals to stock up on and this definitely fits the bill! Will have to try soon 🙂

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      September 22, 2013 at 8:28 pm

      I hope you like it if you make it! 🙂

  • Reply
    Millie
    September 21, 2013 at 2:15 pm

    This looks like a perfect winter stew, also great for lunch the next day too!
    If you have a moment, do you mind checking out my blog please? Thank you 🙂

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      September 22, 2013 at 8:28 pm

      Hopping over right now! 🙂

  • Reply
    Archana @ FeedingTheFoodie
    September 21, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    love this! In my early blogging days, I made something very similar – chickpea tagine with green harissa and couscous! I love the addition of spinach – in just about anything – and this!!!!

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      September 22, 2013 at 8:27 pm

      I have been meaning to try green harissa! I need to do that.

  • Reply
    Grace @ FoodFitnessFreshAir
    September 21, 2013 at 6:54 pm

    This sounds great! Totally something I would make. The only ingredient I’m missing is the harissa, so I’ll have to check that out.

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      September 22, 2013 at 8:27 pm

      It is good stuff! 🙂

  • Reply
    Kiran @ KiranTarun.com
    September 22, 2013 at 1:29 pm

    I’m loving stews now that it’s officially fall!! Love harissa and that kick of flavor it gives to stews 🙂

  • Reply
    Pam @Mommacan
    September 23, 2013 at 12:06 pm

    I think this looks heavenly. I have never heard of harissa.

  • Reply
    Sara Hagedorn
    September 23, 2013 at 2:13 pm

    This sounds so delicious! I don’t have harissa, but I have tons of Sambal Oelek. If I sub, how much should I use instead?
    🙂

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      September 23, 2013 at 9:20 pm

      It’s hard to give a specific amount without trying it myself, so the best thing to do would be to start with maybe a teaspoon, taste it, and add more as needed.

  • Reply
    leigh ann
    September 23, 2013 at 5:43 pm

    if we are without harissa could we add some other pantry spices to somewhat mimic the flavor?

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      September 23, 2013 at 9:10 pm

      You could add a few pinches of red pepper flakes to taste. It doesn’t really mimic the flavor of harissa, but it will give the stew a spicy kick. 🙂

  • Reply
    Genevieve
    September 25, 2013 at 1:37 pm

    Usually when I see a recipe for chickpea-spinach stew, it’s an Indian curry, so it’s refreshing to see a Moroccan spiced version! I made harissa paste once for a recipe and it was really good, but then I had nothing to do with the leftovers and I think it went to waste…I can imagine it would be great stirred into a soup or stew though!

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      September 25, 2013 at 7:40 pm

      Don’t you hate it when that happens?! I have so many things in my pantry that I have only used for one recipe.

    • Reply
      Ella
      September 30, 2013 at 12:02 pm

      I use harissa on salads and potatoes too. Really, if you can imagine salsa on it, harissa will work even better. But yes, I have this problem with a fridge full of condiments and a cabinet full of spices and oils — many of which have a use-by date that means I’d have to practically eat nothing but these things to use in time.

  • Reply
    Ella
    September 30, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    Made this Saturday night and it was a hit with both vegetarians and carnivores alike. I also tried a raw version just for the heck of it, and it was good too. One thing, I used Mina Harissa, and I needed about 4x the amount to get anything close to “spicy”. Perhaps another type would be spicier, or as in the raw version, I added red pepper…

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      September 30, 2013 at 7:59 pm

      I’m glad you enjoyed it! Yes, Mina Harissa is definitely milder than other brands I’ve tried. I don’t like things TOO spicy, so the amount I added was perfect for me! 🙂

  • Reply
    Nikki
    November 11, 2013 at 10:00 pm

    I made this tonight. It was delicious. It will sound weird, but I had some pineapple I needed to use up, and I diced it up and included it in this recipe. It was pretty good!

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      November 12, 2013 at 8:11 pm

      Well hey, if it tastes good, why not?! 🙂 I’m glad you enjoyed the recipe!

  • Reply
    Felice Forby
    December 19, 2013 at 11:44 am

    This looks wonderful! I’ve heard a lot about harissa lately but can’t find it in the town I live in 🙁 I do have sriracha though, which seems similar (chilis, garlic, a touch of vinegar). Think that would work? I guess I can just try and find out 😉

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      December 19, 2013 at 8:45 pm

      It would be a different flavor, but you could definitely substitute sriracha.

      • Reply
        Felice Forby
        December 20, 2013 at 9:28 am

        Thanks! I’ll give it a try today or tomorrow and let you know how it goes!

  • Reply
    Tricia Eganey
    December 28, 2013 at 10:46 am

    Made this for some friends who are vegan and it was a hit. Can’t wait to try more things. Thank you for a simple but delicious recipe.

    • Reply
      Kiersten
      December 31, 2013 at 11:17 am

      I’m glad it was a winner!

  • Reply
    Andrew
    February 4, 2014 at 1:21 pm

    I’m a little late to the party on this one but I just tried it and loved it, I’ve added to a growing list of chickpea dishes. Thanks for posting this.

    • Reply
      Kiersten Frase
      February 5, 2014 at 9:42 pm

      I’m happy to hear you enjoyed it! I’ve got quite a collection of chickpea recipes myself too. 🙂

  • Reply
    Colette
    April 17, 2014 at 8:52 pm

    My hubby just finally agreed to a semi vegetarian eating plan. That’s meat twice a week. Can’t wait to try this!

  • Reply
    Melissa
    May 23, 2014 at 9:49 am

    Recently bought some harissa and was looking for vegetarian recipes and came across yours. Love what you did with the harissa. Trying it soon. I also purchased the mina brand. Love it! Thanks.

    • Reply
      Kiersten Frase
      May 23, 2014 at 3:41 pm

      I hope you enjoy it! There are so many things you can do with it. I like stirring it into my ketchup too. 🙂

  • Reply
    Adriana
    June 17, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    What a wonderful way to use harissa. Glad I found this. We just started using harissa and were looking online for recipes. We love harissa. Thanks for the idea!

  • Reply
    Lisa
    June 25, 2014 at 10:15 am

    Wow this looks so delicious! Reminds me of Moroccan food. I love chickpeas and harissa. I have the same harissa so looking forward to making this dish. Harissa rocks!

    • Reply
      Kiersten Frase
      June 25, 2014 at 2:30 pm

      It does! 🙂 I hope you enjoy the recipe! 🙂

  • Reply
    Izabela
    August 14, 2014 at 3:46 pm

    I’d love to try this recipe but don’t have Dutch oven… Is it going to be the same, or at least similar, in flavour when cooked in ordinary pot???

    • Reply
      Kiersten Frase
      August 17, 2014 at 8:21 pm

      Oh yes, you can definitely just use a big pot instead! 🙂

  • Reply
    Ruth
    December 30, 2014 at 6:42 pm

    Loving this harissa recipe. Also tried it with mina harissa. Amazing! Thanks 🙂

  • Reply
    Rachel
    January 9, 2015 at 7:39 pm

    Have a jar of harissa can’t wait to use. This vegan friendly recipe is perfect. Looking forward to some spicy harissa moroccan style chickpea stew.

  • Reply
    Erika
    January 19, 2015 at 10:15 am

    I just found this in my ongoing search for healthy, interesting lunches to take to work. This fits the bill perfectly! Very tasty! I used a Harissa spice blend instead of a paste, and needed a little more. Thanks for this – it will be in my regular rotation!

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