Chickpea, tomato & spinach curry

Chickpea, tomato & spinach curry

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(156 ratings)

Prep: 15 mins Cook: 40 mins


Serves 6

A superhealthy, vegan curry that accounts for 2 of your 5-a-day and is low in calories to boot!

Nutrition and extra info

  • Healthy
  • Vegetarian
  • Vegan

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal204
  • fat7g
  • saturates3g
  • carbs20g
  • sugars6g
  • fibre7g
  • protein11g
  • salt0.5g
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  • 1 onion, chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 3cm/1¼ in piece ginger, grated



    Mainly grown in Jamaica, Africa, India, China and Australia, ginger is the root of the plant. It…

  • 6 ripe tomatoes



    A member of the nightshade family (along with aubergines, peppers and chillies), tomatoes are in…

  • ½ tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp turmeric



    Turmeric is a fragrant, bright golden-yellow root that is most commonly seen and used dried and…

  • pinch chilli flakes
  • 1 tsp yeast extract (we used Marmite)



    Yeast is a living, single-cell organism. As the yeast grows, it converts its food (in the form…

  • 4 tbsp red lentils
  • 6 tbsp coconut cream
  • 1 head of broccoli, broken into small florets



    Like cabbage and cauliflower, broccoli is a brassica and is sometimes known by its Italian name…

  • 400g can chickpeas, drained
  • 100g bag baby spinach leaves
  • 1 lemon, halved



    Oval in shape with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile…

  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame seed
  • 1 tbsp chopped cashew, to mix with the sesame seeds



    The seeds from the 'Cashew Apple' - a tree which bears bright orange fruit and is native…


  1. Put the onion, garlic, ginger and tomatoes in a food processor or blender and whizz to a purée.

  2. Heat oil in a large pan. Add the spices, fry for a few secs and add purée and yeast extract. Bubble together for 2 mins, then add lentils and coconut cream. Cook until lentils are tender, then add the broccoli and cook for 4 mins. Stir in chickpeas and spinach, squeeze over lemon and swirl through sesame and cashew mixture. Serve with brown rice, if you like.

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Comments, questions and tips

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5th Jun, 2020
This was delicious, very tasty and filling. Will definitely be making this again.
22nd May, 2020
Easy and delicious
4th Mar, 2020
I'm doing the 5:2 diet so calorie counting is really important when you only have 500 per day. This calorie count at 204 is attractive, but inaccurate. I distrusted the calorie count with the oil, coconut cream, lentils, chickpeas, seeds and nuts. I changed the tomatoes for a whole tin of chopped tomatoes (less calories than 6 whole tomatoes) and the broccoli for cauliflower (again fewer calories) and the coconut cream for coconut milk (less calories than cream). Even without counting the minimal amounts of calories in the spices this comes to 281 calories. It needs salt and pepper for more flavour and a teaspoon of garam masala.
Kairen Crossley's picture
Kairen Crossley
4th Jan, 2020
I agree with Captain Stavros - this was extremely bitter! I added sugar and some curry powder to balance things out - but I'd recommend using tinned tomatoes instead - or remove the seeds, which obviously caused the bitter taste. It was also dry, so I used a whole can of coconut milk. It all added to the total calories so although eventually tasty, wasn't, in the end, suitable for my 5:2 fasting days.
2nd Nov, 2019
This was delicious and easy. My husband, who's a big meat eater really enjoyed it! You do have to add water when the lentils are cooking otherwise it's too dry. I used fresh tomatoes but I see some people have used tinned which I think would work just as well.
Suzanne Adams's picture
Suzanne Adams
12th Oct, 2019
At first I thought it maybe a bit runny plus I only had coconut milk. I put a teaspoon of flour with the spices and added loads more spinach as I didn't fancy the broccoli. Also added a teaspoon of cayenne as I like to spice things up. Absolutely marvellous. Will make again. Thank you .
Captain Stavros's picture
Captain Stavros
1st Sep, 2019
Most tomato based recipes you'll notice contain some form of sugar to take the acidity away from the tomato, this one does not. You'll also notice that the author has neglected to mention that the seeds from your ripe tomatoes should be removed before cooking/blitzing. Most recipes blitz at the end of the cook process for this very reason, reducing acidity. I went ahead and made this recipe, as directed, because everyone once and a while I'm surprised and something turns out better than my expectations, this recipe however did not. I'm not exactly sure how 118 ratings gave it 4 stars, the end product is very bitter. I would recommend considering adding Garam Masala/Sweet Curry Powder to the recipe and removing the seeds from your tomatoes pre blitz or blitzing the recipe at the end of the cook to your desired consistency to improve the end product.
Renae Wesenberg's picture
Renae Wesenberg
23rd Jan, 2019
I made some amendments to the recipe: I used a whole can of coconut cream (coconut milk would also work, also I'm in America so maybe we have differentproducts here) and a cup of lentils. The amounts given in the recipe seem ridiculously small, and it need more liquid to cook the lentils. One could also easily just use curry powder rather than the separate spices the recipe says. Good dish. The base would make a good base for multiple curry dishes.
28th Sep, 2018
What you need to know is that coconut cream is not the same thing as creamed coconut. Creamed coconut needs to be diluted in the ratio 5:2 to make coconut cream. I was dividing the recipe roughly by 3 to make it for 2 of us and I did find it a bit dry so I just added liquid to make it feel right. I like things spicy so I only halved the spices and used the same amount of ginger, which I love. Also, I substituted cannellini beans for chick peas because I hadn't got any chick peas. It was nice, but hardly enough for two.
Kathryn Osborne
26th Mar, 2018
I had trouble with this recipe because the instructions were unclear. I'd bought coconut cream in a block, made it up & added the 6 tablespoons quoted but needed to eventually add about another pint of water & additional coconut cream because there wasn't enough liquid to cook the lentils or broccoli. Also should the chickpeas be drained or should the liquid they're in be added to make the recipe a bit thinner. Think I've got there in the end & the curry tastes nice but only because of my addition or more liquid. No mention of cashews in the list of ingredients.


8th Nov, 2019
When asked to add coconut cream, is this referring to a block of creamed coconut? And, if so, is that before or after making the cream up with water?
goodfoodteam's picture
10th Nov, 2019
Thanks for your question. You can buy small cans of coconut cream. There are a number of different brands available in larger supermarkets and you'll find them alongside the cans of coconut milk.
14th May, 2018
Can this be frozen ?
goodfoodteam's picture
15th May, 2018
Thanks for your question. We don't generally recommend freezing dishes with coconut cream in them as they can have a tendency to split.
23rd Jan, 2018
Is the coconut cream supposed to be sweetened or unsweetened? I didn't pay attention and used a tin of sweetened cream of coconut. It's OK but I wasn't expecting the sweetness and it's too much. Does the recipe intend it to be sweet? Probably worth specifying.
7th Jan, 2016
What is the purpose of the yeast extract? Do I need it?
8th Mar, 2017
The yeast extract is normally used for flavouring in veggie recipes, may just be a bit bland if you don't use it. Otherwise a sprinkling of vegetable stock cube should work just as well.
22nd Jun, 2014
Erm this recipe says to "swirl through sesame and cashew mixture.", what sesame and cashew?
goodfoodteam's picture
25th Jun, 2014
Hi there, thanks for flagging this. The cashews and sesame seeds were missed off the ingredients list - apologies. They've now been added and they are mixed together then stirred through the curry. Hope you enjoy the recipe.
ryan bamford's picture
ryan bamford
26th Jan, 2020
After adding the broccoli, I covered and simmered for another 10 minutes. After adding the chickpeas and spinach, I added half a can of water and cooked for 5 minutes covered, added salt and pepper and then cooked 5 minutes uncovered. Served with wholegrain rice and some poppadoms. Found it really flavourful with these tweaks.
25th Nov, 2019
I added the full carton of coconut cream (250ml) plus 500ml of veg stock otherwise the curry looked extremely dry! Also added soy sauce once served to add some richness. If I made again I’d increase the spices
Chef Tasty
8th Sep, 2019
A nice recipe, I'd recommend it. Probably serves about 3 though, and would taste good with rice
16th Apr, 2015
Double spice quantities, add 1pt stock + use tinned tomatoes if you like a more sauce-y curry (will reduce whilst cooking the lentils). Serves more like 3 or 4 people.
mike gunn
16th Apr, 2014
I tried this and was very impressed glad I read the other comment and doubled spices, will make agaln for sure
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