Tag Archives: Chickpeas

Spinach-Artichoke Hummus with Fresh Pita Chips

Super Bowl (of Dip)

I don’t follow football, but I do like just about any excuse to make snacks and get together with good friends.  Yesterday was Super Bowl Sunday, and I made spinach-artichoke hummus!  This was inspired by some really good store-bought hummus that my friend Heather brought over when we had dinner at Julie’s a couple weeks ago.  I thought that using hummus as a base was a brilliant way to veganize spinach-artichoke dip (one of my favorites), so I decided to make my own, chunkier version.  My friends said they really liked it.  I will definitely make this again.

I started by basically making Kate’s famous hummus recipe:

“1 large can (28 oz?) garbanzos, drain but save the liquid. 2 ROASTED garlic cloves (you can do this on the stove- leave the skins on during roasting and use a dry skillet.) Puree the beans and the garlic first, adding a drizzle of olive oil and some of the liquid from the can until the desired consistency is reached. Then add at least 1/3 c tahini (it’s a LOT cheaper if you buy it at an Indian or Middle Eastern grocery store, btw) and a squeeze of lemon. Usually I don’t add salt, since canned beans usually already contain plenty. Puree it some more so that the tahini and lemon are thoroughly mixed in, and you’re done!”

Then I added a 10-ounce package of frozen spinach (thawed, squeezed, and drained), and pulsed it a few times in the food processor (until it was incorporated but not pureed).  Then I scraped the goodness into a bowl and stirred in one 24-ounce can of quartered artichoke hearts (drained), by hand.

  • large can chickpeas (28 oz): $1.99
  • 2 cloves garlic: $0.10
  • 1/4 cup olive oil: $0.20
  • 1/3 cup tahini: $0.83
  • 1/2 lemon: $0.33
  • 10-oz package frozen spinach: $1.69
  • 14-oz can artichoke hearts: $2.99

=$8.13 for a HUGE bowl of hummus (filled a 1 1/2 quart-sized bowl).

If I hadn’t added the spinach and artichokes it would have been $3.45 for a BIG bowl of plain hummus: way cheaper than what you can get at the store!

I also made my own fresh pita chips.  I bought a loaf (10 slices) of fresh locally baked pita bread from Jerusalem Bakery for just $3.00.  Then I cut each slice into 8 triangles (scissors are the easiest tool for this job), and put them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  I sprayed the bread with a good coat of cooking oil spray and then sprinkled with kosher salt.  I like the spray oil here because it’s easier to apply and lower in calories.  Then I flipped the bread and repeated.  Next I baked it at 400 degrees for 8 minutes (flipping after 4 minutes).  I repeated that process several times and ended up with a HUGE bowl of the best pita chips ever. This was not hard to do, and I was able to work on other things in the kitchen whenever a batch was in the oven.

  • 1 loaf pita bread: $3.00
  • About 1/4 can cooking spray: $0.50
  • kosher salt: We’ll say about $0.02

…so for about $3.50 you can get a tiny bag of hard, stale pita chips at the store or you can make 80 fresh, flavorful chip, more than enough to fill a 4-quart bowl!

…so altogether I spent $11.65 on snacks to bring over to my Chris and Yaina’s house for Super Bowl Sunday.  There were five party people.  Four of them were omnivores.  We all filled up on this hummus, and there were still leftovers.  So, I’m going to say that this could feed at least eight people at a party, which comes out to about:




Nine-A-Day Salad

I don’t normally use a recipe when I make salad, but it’s definitely worthwhile in this case: http://www.food.com/recipe/nine-a-day-salad-382136

This salad is chunkier and heartier than what I usually come up with on my own.  It’s a real crowd pleaser, my go-to salad for parties/potlucks, so I knew exactly what to do when my Aunt Julie asked me bring a salad for a family dinner.

I always double the recipe for a crowd.  This time around I used tarragon instead of basil, doubled the olive oil (oh yeah!), and used one whole yellow bell pepper instead of two different colors.  I also subbed sunflower seeds for the almonds because that was what I happened to have.  I like to let it marinate in the dressing for a couple of hours before serving.  Everybody always asks me, “What kind of dressing did you use?”  and I take pleasure in responding, “homemade.”  The truth is, though, that vinaigrette is super, super simple to throw together.


  • 4 tablespoons cider vinegar: $0.32
  • 2 teaspoon lemon juice: $0.24
  • 1 teaspoon dried tarragon: $0.02
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano: $0.02
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped: $0.10
  • 1 teaspoon salt: $0.01
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil: $0.20

=$0.91 for about five ounces of salad dressing or $0.18/ounce

Newman’s Own dressing is $3.99/16 ounces on their Web site, or about $0.25/ounce.


  • 2 cups broccoli florets: $0.90
  • 1 yellow bell pepper: $1.26
  • 4 slices red onions: $0.12
  • 1 can chickpeas: $0.89
  • 1 cup carrot, sliced: $0.16
  • 1 zucchini, sliced: $0.70
  • 1/2 cup mushrooms, sliced: $0.50
  • 16 cherry tomatoes: $0.66
  • 4 cups spinach: $0.99
  • 4 tablespoons sunflower seeds: $0.16

=$7.25 for a gigantic bowl of salad with dressing/7 servings

= $1.04/serving

…or I imagine it could feed 4 people as an entree, which would be $1.81/serving.

Julie set up a pasta bar, which was a fun idea.   She had different fresh chopped veggies and meats set out and let each person make a bowl of raw ingredients, which she sauteed, then added pasta and (choice of red or white) sauce: kind of like a Mongolian barbecue restaurant!  She very thoughtfully cooked mine first to avoid meatamination.
I chose garlic, red onions, yellow squash, and two(!) kinds of mushrooms.  She also made yummy garlic toast.
It was fun to catch up with the ladies over some comforting food.

Chili Verde

There’s no doubt that chili (sin carne) is a vegetarian staple.  Without the meat it’s still hearty enough and recognizable enough to please omnivores and vegans alike.  But, of course, variety is the spice of life, so I’ve been thinking about developing a veggie version of a white chili or green chili recipe for some time.  When I had some friends over for my birthday this week, it was the perfect chance to test my idea, and I was happy with the results.

Before leaving for work I threw the following into my crock pot:

  • 1 can chickpeas, drained
  • 1 can cannellini beans, drained
  • 1 can corn, drained
  • 2 cans green chiles
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 4 fresh jalapenos, chopped
  • 2 small zucchini, cubed
  • 1 pound button mushrooms, sliced
  • 4 cups veggie broth
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon cumin

I let that cook on low for about 7 hours (or you could cook it on high for just a few hours).  When I got home, it was a bit soupy, so I added:

  • 1/2 cup quinoa

…and let it cook for another hour.  That soaked up the extra broth and added exactly the textural dimension it needed.

Feel free to garnish it with fresh cilantro, lime juice, crushed tortilla chips, Tofutti sour cream, etc.

  • 1 can chickpeas: $0.89
  • 1 can cannellini beans: $0.89
  • 1 can corn: $0.49
  • 2 cans green chiles: $1.58
  • 1 onion, chopped: $0.25
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped: $0.10
  • 4 fresh jalapenos, chopped: $0.80
  • 2 small zucchini, cubed: $1.40
  • 1 pound button mushrooms, sliced: $1.99
  • 4 cups veggie broth: $1.99
  • 1 teaspoon oregano: $0.02
  • 1 teaspoon cumin: $0.02
  • 1/2 cup quinoa: $0.67

=$11.09/8 servings


PS: Kudos to my friend Kate for bringing over homemade guacamole and pico de gallo.  They were delicious!!!

Chickpeas in Tomato Sauce

This is one of my favorite “pantry recipes.”  Actually, it’s one of my all-time favorite recipes period.  It’s insanely easy, cheap, nutritious, and delicious.

…another great recipe from my friend Brandon, although he said I shouldn’t credit him; he got it from a cookbook called Everything Vegetarian.  Here it is, as transcribed by Brandon:

Chickpeas in tomato Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons peanut or safflower oil
  • 1 tablespoons cumin seeds (i used 2 teaspoons of powder cause i was seedless)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 large onion, halved and sliced into half moons (whatever, tastes the same no matter how you slice it)
  • 1 medium can 15-20 oz. tomatoes, crushed or diced
  • salt and black pepper (oops i forgot the pepper)
  • 2 cans (15 oz.) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • chopped cilantro (optional garnish, its better with it)

Heat the oil in a large sauce pan over med. heat. add cumin seeds and cook for 1 minute, or just add powder. Stir in the ginger, crushed red pepper, and onions, cook until onions are soft, about 5ish minutes, add tomatoes and cook for 5 more minutes, until nice and saucy. hahah, saucy.

OK, so then you can season with salt and pepper, but i think i forgot this and it still tasted good…..add chickpeas and cook for 5 minutes more. garnish with cilantro. yummies.

yeah this seriously takes 15 minutes.
serve with rice or naan. or both. or neither.
He later added that you can serve it over fresh greens if you’re on a carb-restricted diet.

I have discovered that I prefer to use 2 cans of tomatoes.  Plus, I like to add some curry powder.

The leftovers are even better, and they freeze well.  I was heating some up at work yesterday, and one of my co-workers said it smelled really good.

  • 2 tablespoons peanut or safflower oil: $0.05
  • 1 tablespoons cumin seeds: $0.25
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder: $0.25
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger: $0.25
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes: $0.01
  • 1 large onion: $0.25
  • 1 28-oz. tomatoes, crushed: $1.99
  • 2 cans (15 oz.) chickpeas, drained and rinsed: $1.78

=$4.63/6 servings


$0.89/serving with brown rice

Ratatouille in the Crock Pot

Another recipe from the beginning of the summer (too good not to post):

I’ve been looking for some vegetarian crock pot recipes that aren’t soup.  Although by now you surely know how much I LOVE soup, it’s nice to have other options, and this recipe did not disappoint.  The addition of chickpeas made it a complete, hearty meal.

This recipe came from:


  • 1 onion, chopped: $0.64
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced: $0.20
  • 6 cups eggplants, cubed (one large): $4.19
  • 2 teaspoons basil (dried): $0.05
  • 1 teaspoon oregano (dried): $0.05
  • 1 red pepper: $2.66
  • 2 zucchini: $2.34
  • 1/3 cup tomato paste: $1.49
  • 1 (19 ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed: $1.49
  • 1 (28 ounce) can tomatoes: $3.39
All of the ingredients (except for the dried herbs) were organic.  I bought them at the local co-op.
=$16.50/8 servings

=$2.06/serving! (or $2.17/serving with brown rice)

The recipe called for cooking the onions, garlic, and eggplant in a skillet first. Some reviewers had complained that the eggplant came out mushy, so I opted to skip that step.  It seriously only took me 10 minutes to chop the veggies and throw everything in the crock pot.

Then I cooked it on low for about 4 hours and threw some fresh basil on top before serving.

I served it over brown rice.  My BFF brought over some nice crusty bread, and, of course, a lovely bottle of red wine.  Perfection.