Seven spice chickpea stew with tomato + coconut via #veganpin it!

This post is sponsored by Muir Glen Organic.

Seven spice chickpea stew with tomato + coconut via #veganpin it!Seven spice chickpea stew with tomato + coconut via #veganpin it!Seven spice chickpea stew with tomato + coconut via #veganpin it!
It’s my first everyday eats post of the new year! And it feels good. I like to flex my cooking muscles sometimes, but my favourite meals, the ones that satisfy me to the core, are either the tasty ones that come together real fast (heeeey Burrito Bowls) or the ones that use up all the little languishing bits in the refrigerator with unexpectedly amazing results. Minus the fresh herb sprinkle at the end, this quick recipe is all fairly common pantry stock. Although the ragged bits of parsley that I used actually came from my struggling, but still going, planter outside, so it was all “pantry” for me ;)

One of my keys to fast/tasty meal success though: my man and I eat some kind of tomato-based concoction over starch at least once a week. Whether that’s basic tomato sauce and brown rice spaghetti, or Moroccan Stew with quinoa, or even just a quickie tomato soup with fresh bread. It’s basically in our blood at this point, but I’ve never canned a tomato in my life.

I pick my battles when it comes to making things totally from scratch. I’m a busy-ish person who appreciates efficiency. I love making fresh nut milk or creamer, growing vegetables from seed, or practicing my skills with homemade bread, but canning is something that kinda puts me on edge. Something about the steamy heat and the sanitizing and the jars everywhere. The quality of preserved produce you can find in nicer grocery stores is pretty spectacular nowadays too.

I’ve been using Muir Glen Organic tomatoes for years, and if you’ve been following along here, you know that my devotion to the fire-roasted ones is do or die. We’re lucky to live so close to an American border crossing (and the best grocery store eveeer–Wegman’s!) because I stock those tomatoes up by the case in my basement. When Muir Glen invited me to come check out their farm, compost, and canning facility (and the outdoor fire roaster!!) in California last Fall, my excitement was off the charts.

It was about 107 degrees and dusty from the draught when we were there, but the processing from farm to can/jar kind of blew me away. We picked and ate the actual tomatoes that they use right there in the field with fresh basil, salt, olive oil, and baguette. While we were snacking, truckloads of tomatoes were driving by to their canning facility. We learned that the process time from field to can is 8 hours or less, and I kinda had a hunch that this was true before they even told us because the taste is so genuinely and richly tomato-y. It was a fun trip that re-affirmed my devotion to the brand. Plus I got to hang out with some of my faves ;)

I used their new line of jarred tomatoes for this recipe. I love the flavor in these and also the fact that I can use a cup or so, screw the lid on, and slide the jar back in the refrigerator. No transferring from can to bowl for leftovers and no BPA lining concerns either. The quality of the tomatoes and the freshness of your spices will make this recipe. Once your ingredients are lined up, this hearty and cozy bowl comes together in 20 minutes. The seven spice chickpea stew is lightly creamy and fragrant with coconut, and the spices make it interesting (but all of them are quite common). We ate this with some millet polenta and it was just the thing for a cold winter night. I think there might be a few more of those coming up.. ;)

Seven spice chickpea stew with tomato + coconut via #veganpin it!Seven spice chickpea stew with tomato + coconut via #veganpin it!Seven spice chickpea stew with tomato + coconut via #veganpin it!Seven spice chickpea stew with tomato + coconut via #veganpin it!
Print the recipe here!
Serves: 3-4, with sides
Notes: This stew has very few ingredients, so it’s ideal to use good quality preserved tomatoes and fresh spices. I made this during the day for the purpose of photographing/sharing it here, but when I reheated it for dinner, I added about 1 cup of chopped Swiss chard for an extra hit of greens.

Stew Ingredients:
2 teaspoons olive or coconut oil
1 medium yellow onion, small dice (about 1 cup of diced onion)
spice blend (below)
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 cups cooked (and drained) chickpeas
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1 cup jarred/canned diced tomatoes
1 cup light coconut milk
sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste
⅓ cup chopped flat leaf parsley or cilantro (or a combination)

Spice Blend:
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
½ teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon dried chilies
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

In a deep cast iron skillet or a small soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Once the oil is lightly shimmering, add the onions to the pan. Cook and stir the onions until translucent and quite soft, about 5-6 minutes. You want the onions to be quietly sizzling while they cook, so lower the heat if necessary.

Add the spice blend to the skillet and stir. Once the spices are quite fragrant and fully integrated with the onions, add the tomato paste, mashing it with the back of your spoon into the spices and oil. Add the garlic and chickpeas and stir the mixture for 30 seconds.

Add the balsamic vinegar and tomatoes to the pan and stir, using the back of your spoon to scrape up any brown bits that may have formed on the bottom of the pan. Add the coconut milk to the skillet and season the stew with salt and pepper.

Bring the seven spice chickpea stew to a boil, and then lower the heat to a light simmer. Cook the stew for about 10-15 minutes, or until the flavours have melded to your liking. Garnish the top of the stew with the chopped parsley/cilantro. Serve stew hot with polenta, brown rice or any other accompaniment you like.

*This post was created in partnership with Muir Glen Organic. All opinions/endorsements are my own. Thanks for supporting!
**Wares in this post: cast iron pan by FINEX, wooden ladle by EARLYWOOD, wood topped storage jars from FOOD52

  • Oh this looks so delicious, I love chickpeas! I definitely have to try this, the spice mix sounds really lovely.ReplyCancel

  • Lisa20/01/2016 - 5:41 am

    Waahhh, Laura! I love the fact that we love and use exactly the same kinda ingredients (daily). xx-LisaReplyCancel

    • Laura20/01/2016 - 8:33 am

      I guess we just have excellent taste ;)
      xo LReplyCancel

  • Katrina20/01/2016 - 9:45 am

    All of those spices together make this dish sound so inviting! Perfect for winter :)ReplyCancel

    • Laura20/01/2016 - 9:58 am

      It’s definitely a Winter warmer kinda dish :) Thanks Katrina!
      xo LReplyCancel

  • Sarah | Well and Full20/01/2016 - 9:57 am

    This chickpea stew looks so dreamy served over that creamy polenta! I’ll have to look out for those Muir Glen jarred tomatoes at the grocery store! :DReplyCancel

    • Laura20/01/2016 - 9:59 am

      Yes! They are so good. If you find them, I really recommend the Arabella Select ones. Such bright, beautiful flavour! :D
      xo LReplyCancel

  • Umm Salma20/01/2016 - 10:44 am

    Hi, this looks too good to not try. Just a question about how much of the spice blend to add. Do i make it all and add all of it to the stew or just like a tbsp of it?ReplyCancel

    • Laura20/01/2016 - 11:21 am

      You use all of the spice blend for this recipe!

  • Heidi20/01/2016 - 11:25 am

    Yum! I plan on making this tonight. I actually have all of these ingredients( except I have a different brand of tomatoes). That is so cool you got to visit Muir Glens factory! I’d love to do that. One question – you mentioned millet polenta – do you have a recipe for them as well? I’ve been try to cook more millet, but I’m still new to working with it. Thanks! ☺ReplyCancel

    • Laura20/01/2016 - 11:28 am

      Hi Heidi,
      I have a recipe for the millet polenta in an older post right HERE :)

      • Heidi20/01/2016 - 11:38 am

        Sweet! Thank you very much. ☺ReplyCancel

  • valentina | sweet kabocha20/01/2016 - 11:54 am

    I have their roasted tomatoes in the pantry – my boyfriend bought a can!
    Anyway, I’m going to pin this recipe since I just started to live together with him and I’ve never ideas for dinner :DReplyCancel

    • Laura22/01/2016 - 7:25 am

      Your boyfriend is a good man for buying those ;) Hope you get around to trying it!
      xo LReplyCancel

  • renee (will frolic for food)20/01/2016 - 2:23 pm

    this. sounds. delicious! going to make this to combat the cold / oncoming snow storm here in virginia. stews and soups and one pot meals + tons of greens are my staple always. i can see this recipe entering my regular rotation. also, your photos are such a constant inspiration!ReplyCancel

  • Kiki20/01/2016 - 3:08 pm

    I follow you from Australia and although its boiling hot here I’m still gonna make this deliciousness. Also, Wegman’s is the Mecca of Upstate NY. I miss it!ReplyCancel

    • Laura22/01/2016 - 7:24 am

      The American dollar is quite high compared to the Canadian dollar right now, so we haven’t been over to Wegman’s in mooooonths! Slight withdrawal. Once you’ve been to one, every other grocery store is kinda “meh.” ;)

  • Allyson20/01/2016 - 3:32 pm

    A good canned tomato is sunshine during winter.This looks so good and warming.ReplyCancel

  • Maggie20/01/2016 - 7:47 pm

    I made this for dinner tonight! It was the perfect dish for this cold Michigan weather. Super yummy and bonus is I feel great after eating it! I threw in a handful of spinach just to my bowl and it worked great. The millet polenta was also on point. Can’t wait to go to my candlelight stretch yoga tonight now that my belly is so happy :)ReplyCancel

    • Laura20/01/2016 - 8:10 pm

      Your turnaround time is amazing! So glad you made it and loved it. Stay warm :)

  • Katherine21/01/2016 - 12:03 am

    Made this tonight after seeing your post last night and the picture looked so good I had to try it. It turned out amazing! ! I followed the recipe as written and added chopped spinach at the end and served it over whole wheat cous cous. The whole family loved it. Will definitely be making it again. Super easy to make and so good when the weather is chilly. Had it with a Moroccan carrot salad and roasted cauliflower on the side. Love this recipe!ReplyCancel

    • Laura21/01/2016 - 3:18 pm

      Woohoo! So glad that you and your family loved it, Katherine. The sides sound amazing too :D

  • Sarah21/01/2016 - 12:07 am

    Chickpea stews are my fave – always nourishing and filling and hearty and, when done right, tasty. Looking forward to giving this one a go, sounds like a winner!ReplyCancel

  • Tieghan21/01/2016 - 12:51 am

    This is my kind of comfort food!! So pretty and healthy and flavorful!! YESS!ReplyCancel

  • Anna Balaton21/01/2016 - 9:24 am

    I’ve just made this dish and it is the most perfect food I’ve eaten in quite a while. It is even better than the chickpea stew I ate in an excellent moroccan restaurant. Thank you!ReplyCancel

    • Laura21/01/2016 - 1:40 pm

      Thanks for the wonderful comment, Anna! So glad that you enjoyed it :)

  • Lindsey21/01/2016 - 12:49 pm

    i couldn’t feel you more on the canning thing. brooklyn is so into their canning/preserving that it’s hard to go to a store or market and not find some piece of awesome produce canned like a boss. and what an awesome partnership, love me some muir glen : ) xoReplyCancel

  • Keara McGraw21/01/2016 - 11:20 pm

    I can alwaaays get down with meals that use what ya got goin’ on in the fridge! Gotta get on my tomato game, that’s definitely been something I’ve missed this winter. Looks so SO good!!ReplyCancel

    • Laura22/01/2016 - 7:22 am

      Preserved tomatoes save me from being a grump in the Canadian winters. Like a lil’ bit of sunshine :D

  • Justine22/01/2016 - 8:11 am

    Wow! This looks so delicious!! :-) Where can I buy this amazing pan? It looks so cool :-)

    Cheers, JustineReplyCancel

    • Laura22/01/2016 - 8:16 am

      Thanks Justine! The pan is by Finex and you can find them HERE. :D

  • genevieve @ gratitude & greens22/01/2016 - 9:48 am

    Bowl-meals that come together in 20 minutes are my favourite kinda meal! I love all the spices in this, too. Perfect for the cold weather! <3ReplyCancel

  • Best Bake22/01/2016 - 2:21 pm

    Amazing Post! Images you have updated are really attractive. I enjoyed my stay here…

    Thanks for sharingReplyCancel

  • renee (will frolic for food)22/01/2016 - 8:37 pm

    just FYI i made this and it’s bonkers good. i licked the bowl clean. i want to eat this pretty much every night. the addition of balsamic was so perf. this deserves fancy claps.ReplyCancel

  • Sandra Lea23/01/2016 - 9:15 pm

    I made this today and it was absolutely delicious. When you throw that spice mix in with the onions the aroma is just heavenly. This recipe is a keeper.ReplyCancel

    • Laura23/01/2016 - 9:28 pm

      Throwing the spices in is my favourite part! I always breathe it in deep after :D

  • […] Seven Spice Chickpea Stew with Tomato + Coconut […]ReplyCancel

  • Emily25/01/2016 - 9:17 am

    Looking forward to making this! Love your measuring cups! Where are they from?ReplyCancel

    • Laura25/01/2016 - 9:24 am

      They’re from Pier 1 Imports (HERE), but honestly I wouldn’t recommend them! The copper finish has been rubbing/chipping off some of them and the handles are a little flimsy. I’ve seen similar ones at Anthropologie and Crate & Barrel that may be better quality for the price.

      • Emily25/01/2016 - 3:17 pm

        Thanks for letting me know! I was looking at a set from World Market but I imagine the quality would not be much better. I will look around :) Making the cauliflower, kale + chickpea curry pot tonight! My seven-year-old son loves it!ReplyCancel

  • Dana Wms.25/01/2016 - 10:06 am

    Hi, I would like to try your chickpea stew with tomatoes and coconut, but I don’t like chickpeas. Can you recommend some peas, beans, and other veggies that can take the place of the chickpea? I notice a few of for recipes have chickpeas trying to ear a little healthier. Thanks.ReplyCancel

    • Laura25/01/2016 - 10:23 am

      Hi Dana, you could use the same amount of cooked green or French lentils or navy beans. Even some lightly blanched cauliflower florets would be delicious in place of the chickpeas.

  • ruchi kasajoo26/01/2016 - 1:40 pm

    This looks amazing!! I am definitely making this for weekend lunch. And your pictures are amazing :DReplyCancel

  • Jen27/01/2016 - 5:37 am

    Made this for date night on Monday, and OMG it was so good. And we felt virtuous enough after having this for dinner that we could splurge on dessert! :) Sharing this recipe with everyone I know!!! Thanks!!!ReplyCancel

  • Carolyn27/01/2016 - 10:47 am

    this is soooooooo good and comforting and balanced!!! I am cooking my way through your blog and have yet to be disappointed. I almost just made rice to go with this, but am SO glad I tried the millet polenta, it is so delicious and innovative and went perfectly with the stew. Thnk you for another awesome recipe!!ReplyCancel

  • Vanessa Pita29/01/2016 - 4:41 am

    Hi Laura,

    I would just like to commend you on this recipe. I made it last night! It was the most amazing vegan dish I have ever had in my life. I have recently become vegan, and I don’t know why I didn’t become vegan sooner! The flavors of this meal just ooze in your taste buds and your nostril buds HEHE. I made GMO free Polenta to compliment the Chickpeas, and it is divine! I will definitely be making this again! Thank you!

    Just a question though – I could not find any jarred tomatoes :-(. So I had to buy cans. Would it be wise and would it taste the same buying organic tomatoes and dicing them up myself?

    Vanessa from Cape Town, South Africa.ReplyCancel

    • Laura29/01/2016 - 12:39 pm

      Hey Vanessa!
      Thanks for this lovely comment. I’m so glad that you liked the recipe! And to your question: you want to use preserved tomatoes for this as opposed to fresh diced–that’s what gives this the stew-y texture. I don’t always have access to jarred tomatoes and use canned ones quite often! :)

  • […] Cozy Winter Meal: Vegan Seven Spice Chickpea Stew. All of the spices in this sound so warming and healthy. Plus, it’s made in one pot. You can’t […]ReplyCancel

  • […] love. seven spice chickpea stew quinoa with chai-spiced almond milk vegan chai cheesecake with earl grey fig […]ReplyCancel

  • vivian31/01/2016 - 11:14 am

    I made this for dinner last night and loved it, as I knew I would. The surprise was that my husband, who is usually a meat and potatoes guy, agreed to try some with his chicken dinner, and then asked for seconds! That’s the true sign of a winner in my books. I served it over firm polenta slices sautéed till just crispy on the outside, still creamy on the inside. Thanks for a wonderful recipe!ReplyCancel

  • Weekend Love - Fab Giovanetti31/01/2016 - 1:00 pm

    […] there is a reason if they call them ‘one pot wonders’. This Vegan Seven Spice Chickpea Stew is a great alternative to soup, and warms up my little […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Adapted from The First Mess […]ReplyCancel

  • Mary Ann01/02/2016 - 9:14 am

    My guy made this Saturday night, omg, so delicious! Can you help with your preferred way to cook dried chick peas?ReplyCancel

    • Laura12/02/2016 - 7:55 pm

      Sorry this reply is so late! I use THIS slow cooker method from The Kitchn every single time.

  • […] tomato, avocado, corn tortilla) Mon – 8th           Seven Spice Chickpea Stew served over grits Tues – 9th           Slow cooker creole chicken […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Seven Spice Chickpea Stew with Spinach (slightly adapted from The First Mess) […]ReplyCancel

  • […] roasted sweet potatoes and broccoli Thurs – 10th – Citrus chicken quinoa salad Fri – 11th – Seven spice chickpea stew served over grits (made this for the first time last month – it was ah-mazing!) Sat – 12th – […]ReplyCancel

  • Luisa23/03/2016 - 8:16 am

    I’ve made this today and I loved it. It is so so conforting! And the creamyness of the millet polenta is wonderful!
    Thank you for such a great recipe! Kisses from Portugal :)ReplyCancel

  • […] happy to feature them as the star in any #MeatlessMonday meal, which is why I’m loving this Seven Spice Chickpea Stew with Tomato and Coconut at The First Mess. Unless you keep a very stripped down spice cabinet, you probably have these […]ReplyCancel

  • Katie McMullin28/11/2016 - 2:35 am

    I love this recipe, have done it a few times now. Would like to try using fresh tomatoes, any suggestion on the amount and how it might change the process?ReplyCancel

  • Hannah16/01/2017 - 9:51 pm

    Just prepped this tonight to bring to school this week. I have only sampled it but it is delicious! I added mushrooms and used normal milk as I ran out of coconut milk.ReplyCancel

  • David in Seattle27/04/2017 - 9:33 pm

    On the printable version on Google Docs (, the garlic is missing from the ingredients list.

    It threw me off when I got to, “Add the garlic and chickpeas and stir the mixture for 30 seconds.”

    Wait, what?! What garlic?!

    I see it here on the original recipe, though.ReplyCancel

  • Elizabeth10/06/2018 - 6:28 pm


    I just wanted to share with you that this is one of the recipes on regular rotation around here. I love that it heats up well, so I can take the leftovers to work for lunch. To go with the stew, I make basmati coconut rice by using the rest of the can of coconut milk that is leftover from making the stew. It adds an extra depth of amazing-ness to this dish.

    Thank you!ReplyCancel

  • […] am craving a big bowl of this Vegan Seven Spice Chickpea Stew right […]ReplyCancel

  • Mari Huff04/02/2020 - 11:11 pm

    This was an amazingly good dish!! The spice profile was delicious and fit my palate perfectly.. thank you for this recipe and it is a keeper!! I served over spaghetti squash to keep my calories low and had to restrain myself from overindulgence ReplyCancel

  • Tessa24/03/2020 - 12:29 am

    Made this for dinner tonight and it was SO good!! I scraped up every last bit of the spiced tomato sauce with my spoon :) definitely will be making again!ReplyCancel

  • Elizabeth01/04/2020 - 9:23 am

    My entire family LOVED this including a picky 3 year old. So delicious. Served over mashed millet and cauliflower. Really excellent fresh and as leftovers and also quite quick and easy – big payoff for not too much work. Thank you!ReplyCancel

  • Emily29/07/2020 - 2:05 pm

    I’ve never left a comment before on a food blog but this was so good I had to! This stew is so perfect and comforting but still feeling very healthy. I’ve paired it with polenta, coconut rice, pita, and I’ve even used the stew as filling for a wrap. Thank you so much for always posting such good recipes. Every single recipe I’ve made from your blog/cookbook has been a knockout!ReplyCancel

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