This healthy vegan curried chickpea stew with rice, spinach, and coconut milk takes just 30 minutes to make in 1-pot with basic pantry ingredients.

A bowl of chickpea rice stew topped with fresh cilantro.

Recipe Features

  • quick and easy – you’ll need 1-pot and a little over 30 minutes
  • dietary restriction-friendly – this recipe is vegan, gluten-free, oil-free, low-fat and no added sugar
  • pantry-friendly – made with pantry items like chickpeas, rice, canned tomato, spices, onion, and garlic

What You’ll Need

Labelled ingredients for a tomato rice and chickpea stew.
  • onion, garlic and ginger – you’ll need these 3 stew basics to start things off, if you’re missing fresh ginger, a pinch of ground ginger works
  • spices – you’ll need curry powder, turmeric, cumin and optional red pepper flakes
  • canned diced tomatoes – any canned diced tomatoes work but fire-roasted are the best!
  • chickpeas – canned chickpeas are great but you an can use home-cooked too
  • coconut milk – I recommend light coconut milk for this recipe as full-fat was a bit heavy, however, you can use it if it’s all you have
  • rice – use basmati or jasmine rice
  • spinach – you’ll need 10 oz of fresh spinach or about 8-9 small handfuls

Step by Step Instructions

Step 1. Saute the onions, garlic and ginger for 5-6 minutes until soft and fragrant.

Onions, garlic and ginger cooking in a pot.

Step 2. Add the spices, stir well and cook for a few more minutes. It should be smelling amazing!

Spices, onions, garlic and ginger cooking in a pot with a wooden spoon.

Step 3. Add everything else and simmer away until the rice is tender. This should take 15-20 minutes depending on the type of rice you use.

Diced tomato, rice, coconut milk and chickpeas cooking in a pot with a wooden spoon.

Step 3. Stir in the spinach and lime, turn the heat off and let sit for 5 minutes. That’s it!

Spinach being stirred into a thick tomato stew in a pot.
A pot of chickpea and rice stew with spinach.

Serve your stew right away, topped with fresh cilantro and another squeeze of fresh lime juice.

A close up of a bowl of chickpea rice stew topped with fresh cilantro.


Can I freeze this?

Yep! This recipe freezes well, just make sure you let it cool completely before sealing and freezing.

How long does this keep?

Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 2 months.

Do I have to add spinach?

If you’re in a pinch and missing fresh spinach, no big deal, you can leave it out or replace it with finely chopped kale.

Taking a spoonful of rice, chickpea and spinach stew.

If you’re loving the looks of this stew, you’ll want to try these ones too:

Did you try this recipe?
I’d love to hear about it! Click here to leave a review and be sure to tag me @runningonrealfood if you post it on social media.

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A close up of a bowl of chickpea rice stew topped with fresh cilantro.

Vegan Chickpea Curry Stew

  • Author: Deryn Macey
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Stew
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan
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This healthy, hearty curried chickpea stew with rice and spinach takes just 30 minutes to make in 1 pot, is packed with nutrition, and keeps well for healthy meals all week.


  • 1 medium white onion, finely diced (about 2 cups)
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced (about 1.5 tbsp)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp curry powder
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional, adds some spice)
  • 1 x 28 oz. can diced tomatoes with the juices
  • 2 x 19 oz. cans chickpeas, drained and well-rinsed (about 4 cups, doesn’t need to be exact)
  • 1 x 400 mL can light coconut milk
  • 1.5 cups vegetable broth 
  • 1/2 cup uncooked jasmine or basmati rice
  • 1 x 10 oz. bag baby spinach (89 small handfuls, doesn’t need to be exact)
  • 12 tbsp fresh lime juice, optional
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • finely chopped cilantro for topping, optional


  1. Add the onion, garlic and ginger to a soup pot with 1 tbsp oil, vegetable broth or water for cooking. Saute for 5-6 minutes until softened and fragrant.
  2. Add the salt and all of the spices and cook for 2-3 more minutes, stirring often.
  3. Add the diced tomatoes, chickpeas, coconut milk, broth and rice.
  4. Simmer uncovered over medium heat for 15-20 minutes, or until the rice is tender.
  5. Stir in the spinach and a squeeze of lime juice, turn off the heat and let sit for 4-5 more minutes until the spinach has wilted and mixed into the stew.
  6. Season with salt and pepper, if needed, and serve right away topped with finely chopped fresh cilantro.


If storing leftovers, let them cool then store in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 2 months.


  • Serving Size: 1
  • Calories: 310
  • Fat: 6 g
  • Carbohydrates: 52 g
  • Fiber: 9 g
  • Protein: 13 g

Keywords: chickpea stew, chickpea curry stew, curried chickpea stew

UPDATE NOTE: This recipe was originally published August 20, 2015. It was updated on May 5, 2020 with new photos and text.