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Smoky Chickpeas with Spinach is a healthy, budget-friendly meal that’s full of flavor, packed with protein and just happens to be vegan!
I’m sharing one of my tried and true recipes today. I was inspired to make this chickpea recipe several years ago after eating something similar at a Spanish restaurant. I think it was Barcelona Wine Bar, where I had a spinach and chickpeas tapas dish that I loved.
Tapas. That’s another topic. I love them, but I never feel satisfied after a dinner of little plates. Maybe it’s my southern roots? Anyway. I took the idea from that dish and flipped it – letting chickpeas take the lead for a more filling meal. I added smoked paprika to add savory, meaty flavor without any actual meat.
This month’s recipe redux challenge is healthy budget-friendly meals. Whether you overdid it during the holidays or are feeling uncertain about how the economy will fare this year, it’s a good idea to keep the food budget in check. This chickpea recipe can help. It’s vegan, packed with protein, filled with fiber, fast to make, and less than $3 per serving! What’s not to love?
When eating healthy on a budget, pulses are the first food to come to mind. Pulses include hundreds of varieties of dried beans, peas and lentils. I could write a book on the power of pulses and why you should eat them. But I’m sure you’re here for the recipe, so I’ll just share these main reasons why you might want to pick up and prepare a bag (or can!):
- Pulses are an excellent source of fiber and plant-based protein and a number of other important vitamins and minerals like folate and magnesium.
- They may help prevent chronic diseases and help lower blood sugar levels, cholesterol and weight.
- Dried beans, peas, and lentils have a low carbon footprint making them a good choice for the environment.
Though it sounds fancy, it’s one of the easiest recipes to make with just a few ingredients. I know smoked paprika and turmeric are not in everyone’s kitchen, so I included it in the final cost. Smoked paprika is critical to the flavor in this simple dish – don’t skip it.
Assuming you already have salt and pepper in the pantry, here’s how the cost breaks down:
1- 15 oz. can chickpeas = $1.00 (I buy Simple Truth Organic)
1- 5 ounce package fresh spinach (triple washed) = $2.50
2 T extra virgin olive oil = $.40
2 cloves garlic = $0.16
1 t smoked paprika = $0.10
1/2 t ground turmeric = $0.10
Entire recipe = $4.26/$2.13 per person
This recipe is even cheaper if you skip the shortcuts. A bundle of spinach that you’d have to thoroughly clean yourself will cost a lot less, and a pound of dry chickpeas costs less than a dollar at my market. Like most things in life, you pay in dollars or time. And the way my life is set up right now, I choose to save time.
Confession: This recipe had a former life. I’ve since advanced my photography skills a bit and changed the recipe a little too. Take a look if you dare!
Here’s the current version of the recipe. Before you head out, be sure visit the Recipe Redux link at the end of this post to see all of the other healthy, budget-friendly meals in the roundup!
Smoky Chickpeas with Spinach is a healthy, budget-friendly meal that's full of flavor, packed with protein and just happens to be vegan!
- 1½ tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
- 2 cups cooked chickpeas (1-15 oz. can, rinsed and drained)
- 6 cups fresh spinach
- 2 tbsp water or vegetable broth
Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a skillet. Add the garlic, turmeric, and smoked paprika. Stir. Heat the oil and spice mixture 1-2 minutes, until fragrant.
Add chickpeas and stir to coat with the oil and spice mixture. Add spinach and water. Cook over medium heat until the spinach wilts. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve!
Go ahead. PIN this recipe for later.