Healthy Eating

Chickpea and Lemon-Herb Pasta


In this clever dish, puréed chickpeas become a luscious pasta sauce spiked with garlic, rosemary and red pepper flakes. Add a few whole chickpeas at the end for texture.


  • Kosher salt
  • 1 lb. short ruffled pasta, such as mafalda or farfalle
  • 3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil; more for drizzling
  • 3 medium garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 Tbs. chopped fresh rosemary
  • ½ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes; more to taste
  • 4 cups cooked chickpeas plus 1½ cups cooking liquid (see below) or 3 x 15 oz. cans, drained, liquid reserved
  • 1 large lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves; more for garnish


  • Cook the pasta according to package directions until just under al dente
  • While the pasta is cooking, heat the oil in a medium saucepan over low heat, add the garlic, rosemary and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring, until the garlic is golden, about 3 minutes
  • Add 3 cups of the chickpeas and cooking liquid and bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat and, using an immersion blender, blend until smooth, adding more cooking liquid if too thick. Stir in the remaining whole chickpeas, and lightly mash with a potato masher. Season to taste with salt
  • Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of cooking water, and return the pasta to the pan. Add the chickpea sauce and a splash of reserved cooking water. Gently toss to combine and cook until the pasta is al dente, about 3 minutes. Add more cooking water to thin the sauce if necessary
  • Remove from the heat and stir in the chopped parsley. Season with salt, lemon zest and juice, and more crushed red pepper flakes. Divide pasta between bowls, drizzle with oil, and garnish with more parsley

Serves 6

*For dried chickpeas, place 12 oz. chickpeas in a large bowl and cover with a few inches of water. Set aside for 6 hours or overnight. Drain and rinse the chickpeas and transfer to a large saucepan. Add an onion, 3 sprigs thyme, 2 bay leaves, and about 8 cups of cold water and bring to a boil, skimming any foam from the surface. Reduce the heat and simmer until just tender, about 1 hour. Add a large pinch of salt and cook for a further 15-30 minutes until tender. Drain, reserving the cooking liquid. Discard the onion and herbs.

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